Hello! As many of you now know, Daniel and I are giving up our stable, fairly comfortable, life here in the US to go off and volunteer around the world.
Before we get into the details of the journey, let’s start with some background. I have been a teacher in San Francisco for the last 5 years, but recently, I have felt my passion and creativity for teaching pushed aside by politics, standardized testing, and overall a lack for the value of education.
Last summer, my sister and I, were fortunate enough to accompany our parents to Africa and it was there that this deep fire sparked within me. We visited a school in a rural part of Tanzania because we had donated books and school supplies to the school. The children, although barely having enough rooms for the school, let alone adequate technology or books, were the most enthusiastic and passionate kids I have yet to encountered in my 5 years of teaching. They were craving for their education, they literally lived for it and at the same age of the students that I taught, understood the absolute need for it. It wasn’t until I came back to the States and spent a year in my 7th grade classroom that I really realized that something was missing.
As for me (this is Daniel), I have had the privilege of living in 3 countries throughout my life and have been able to be competent, both culturally and linguistically. With all this said, this was all accomplished purely because of my parents, my sister, my brother, and my entire family. In short, I have been on the receiving end of knowledge, experiences, and cultures that has made me the man I am today. Comparably, in the last 4 years, I have been extremely fortunate to work at Google and live in San Francisco, I have seen incredible growth in its city, companies, and people that I surround myself with.
So, it’s time for me to get out for a bit. And for these main reasons: to give back a little to the world. To see the world in the purest form. To create my own experiences, knowledge and cultural perspective. And let’s be honest here, to have an unforgettable fun experience with Melissa.
So after many conversations, Daniel and I decided to go on an adventure. But not one where you travel around the world touring all of the places on your bucket lists items (not that we wouldn’t like to do that someday). No, this journey, we both decided, needed a purpose. We needed to go places that would develop our skills and reignite our various passions for what we do, all while helping others.
We planned and researched and contacted many people and we came across a couple of pretty amazing programs. (let’s be honest, I did the planning… Daniel is more into the “ole wing it” mentality, both very necessary on an endeavor like this 🙂