Information for Parents and Families of AYUDA Volunteers 2013 AYUDA Volunteer Programs: Frequently Asked Questions
AYUDA is supported by a motivated and experienced staff, dedicated to creating an empowering, life-enhancing and safe experience for youth and their families. Volunteers receive extensive preparation in United States both online and in person prior to traveling abroad as well as in-country training. Volunteers will undergo an online training program; and will convene in the spring for face-to-face training in Washington DC allowing them to get comfortable with their fellow volunteers, meet some of the local partners from the Dominican Republic and Ecuador, and build confidence in their role with AYUDA. While abroad, volunteers will receive a truly authentic experience based on community involvement and immersion.
Volunteers can benefit significantly from this program. They will learn key leadership, team building, partnering, business development, motivation and mentoring skills. They will develop a unique understanding and respect for a different culture, learn more about living a full life that includes diabetes and improve their Spanish fluency. Volunteers who have diabetes reinforce their own thoughtfulness about diabetes management and bond and grow with others who face similar challenges.
Why is AYUDA’s work important?
Relevant diabetes education, coupled with proper support is key to realizing a happier, healthier life for those living with diabetes. By empowering young people living with and affected by diabetes to work with and educate other youth with the same disease, AYUDA has found improved health outcomes for young people when compared to alternative interventions in resource poor settings, in particular with regard to psychosocial outcomes. Not only have we seen improvements in diabetes management of those young people who participate in our camps and programs, but also in their leadership in their communities. Some of those involved in AYUDA camps and programs are now serving in their own countries as leaders of successful diabetes programs.
As a culmination of their hardwork, AYUDA volunteers work with local partners to prepare activities and programs that are both educational and recreational- giving children with diabetes a chance to be children playing and learning without worry or restriction. As the young participants are more relaxed and having fun they become more open to absorbing information about their diabetes management in an environment where others have diabetes, too. For volunteers living with diabetes, the program can help empower them to live more balanced, fuller lives and our volunteers as well as to become excellent role models as well as teachers, and give the campers hope as well as facts.
What educational and professional benefits does the Summer Volunteer Program with AYUDA offer?
● Real-world experience speaking a foreign language
● Community service requirements and some college/credits can be met
● Unique experience that helps volunteers stand out in the college and graduate school admissions process
● Development of self-confidence and leadership skills that will help volunteers achieve success in all aspects of life
● Experience in project management, cross-cultural communications and teaching
● Exposure to the challenges and personal accomplishments of the fundraising process
● Extremely beneficial for those wishing to enter the education, medical, global and public health and international business fields,
● Resume boosting! Click here for New York Times “Volunteering Rises on the Resume” article
Who is the average volunteer?
● Ages typically range from 16-28. Minimum age: 16
● All education levels can apply (from high school students to medical professionals)
● All educational backgrounds
● No prior diabetes knowledge required
● Intermediate Spanish (It is not unusual for strong volunteers to be learning Spanish during the spring before they begin the program in Ecuador or Dominican Republic.)
We have divided these question by country. Please click below to read about the country your son or daughter will be traveling to.