Co. Mayo Locals volunteer in Mozambique

“When I received the email last year offering me a place it was a no brainer!”

2023 SERVE volunteers at Training Day in Scala, Cork

This summer, Co. Mayo locals Sinead Coll and Diane Tierney will travel alongside 10 others, to Mozambique.

For three weeks they will work on various projects on the Dondo and Manga campuses, in collaboration with  our partners; Young Africa.

Diane Tierney attended school at Mount St. Michael’s, before going on to study Environmental Science in UL. “I always kind of had an interest in science (which might come as a surprise if any of my past teachers are reading this!)”, she joked. “When I was in transition year I participated in Gaisce so that involved volunteering in the local community so I would have helped out in the parish at masses and with local Foróige clubs being a youth leader!” 

Sinead Coll, who attended Davitt College, is presently studying Mechanical Engineering at UL. She too has previous experience with volunteering, having volunteered with SERVE in 2019. “Since going to Zambia I knew I wanted to do something like this again for a longer period of time… I chose to go with SERVE because I’d such an amazing experience with them the first time” Sinead explained. She also hopes to gain a new perspective on her future career path and find a way to use her degree to help other people.

Diane adds, “My cousin Rachel previously volunteered twice with SERVE. I was only maybe 8/9 yrs at the time but I remember her telling stories about the work they did and showing me pictures and from then on I always had it in my head that it was something I wanted to do. When I saw a flyer on campus one day I decided to sign up. Originally, I had signed up and was offered to travel to the Philippines in 2020. I had attended two of the training sessions and had completed the bulk of the fundraising but unfortunately COVID put a halt to our plans! When I received the email last year offering me a place it was a no brainer!”

Sinead and Diane both noted the value of the workshops, not only for getting to know the other volunteers before going overseas, but also the deeper levels of education on relevant topics.

Sinead said, “I think the training days are really good for getting to know the other volunteers, they’re also educational as we’ve learnt about the Global Goals, we’ve learnt that it’s not only about what we do in the countries but about learning what to take from it and how to continue the work in our everyday lives.” 

Diane and Sinead unanimously look forward to experiencing a new culture, meeting new people and getting out of their comfort zones. 

SERVE’s Volunteer Programme and Global Citizenship Education Coordinator, Laura Canning says: “It’s National Volunteer Week and witnessing the journey of all our volunteers is an extreme joy. It’s also great to be able to send volunteers overseas to our partners for the first time in 3 years… We are really looking forward to seeing the impact that the GCE Programme has on our volunteers when they return and how they put their learning into practice through active global citizenship.”

Join our newsletter to follow Sinead and Diane’s active global citizenship journey. 

About the SERVE Volunteering Programme:

SERVE’s work contributes to the 17 Global Goals. As a part of our commitment to becoming Global Citizens, all our volunteers engage in an extensive training programme in the months leading up to their volunteer placement.  

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