Why is it that just when I decide to leave NZ, I suddenly become interested and excited about local issues? That sucks. All I can do is sit in impotent frustration as I see things happening, or about to happen, that I can’t get involved in!
So I’m writing this post to encourage anyone out there who feels a connection to a cause or movement to get involved while you can. There are so many great opportunities around to become part of the community and be a necessary piece in an important issue/community event/insert your passion here. And no matter what you’re interested in, there are so many great people and groups crying out for volunteers or even offering paid roles.
Last year I decided to get involved in a local church group dedicated to free esol classes (English for Speakers of Other Languages) for foreigners and integrating new residents into the broader community. At first it was a somewhat selfish move on my part, wanting to teach English overseas and looking for a way to beef up my experience. I volunteered as a class “helper”, to support the main teacher… two weeks later I had my very own class. Eeeek!
Every Saturday for a year I taught the intermediate English class, and even though at times I had no idea what I was doing, it was such an amazing time in my life. I gained a great connection with my students (some of whom I see outside of class), and it was so rewarding to have made a difference and a positive impact to their NZ experience. Plus, the other volunteers were SO grateful to have another teacher to balance their huge workload. My small contribution made so much more of an impact than I could have imagined.
This morning I received an email from Generation Zero (a youth movement in NZ who campaign on issues including cycling and transport) advertising jobs and ways to get involved. I think life would be so much simpler if I could just live under a rock, totally oblivious to all the things I can’t do! They’re looking for writers for campaigns, social media etc… and since I work in tv promos, these are skills I do actually have…
Ah well, if you’re reading this and want to check out the work they’re doing and get involved, head over here:
And if Generation Zero is not the movement for you, find something that is. You’ll impact the lives of a lot of people as well as making positive changes in yourself.
Do it for those of us who can’t! Get involved and make a difference!