Only one year ago June You, a Ph. D student from Seoul, South Korea found herself in Bocas del Toro volunteering with Give and Surf for the first time. Today we’re sitting down with June to find out more about her experiences with our program and of course, why she wanted to return.
Q: How did you initially find out about Give and Surf?
A: Through my friend’s Facebook page. He liked “Give and Surf.”
Q: Tell us about your first trip here.
A: It was in February of 2012. I had planned to stay here for two weeks but extended my stay for one week longer. Basically I assisted Neil with teaching. And of course, played with the children and had a wonderful time with them. During our free time I went surfing, snorkeling, and enjoyed a cave tour.
Q: What did you like best about volunteering with Give and Surf?
A: My favorite memory from Give and Surf was playing with the kids. Every moment with them was so special to me. If I had to say one thing, I would say the day we brought them to the beach because we had so much fun that day.
Q: How do you feel about being the first volunteer to return to Bocas for a second volunteer experience?
A: Hahaha! Is there any recognition or a prize for this? (Just kidding!) I’m sure that there will be more volunteers returning like I did. I hope so!
Q: What changes have been made since you were here last?
A: The kids. They are growing up so fast and have become so active. I think Neil and Tabitha have done a great job here. The kids are so intelligent. I’m so proud of them!
Q: Tell us about the kids you sponsor to attend school. What made you want to sponsor a child?
A: In this indigenous community, there are issues with women and abuse. When I heard about these horrible stories, I was so shocked and decided to change at leaset one girl’s life. I thought the way to help change this is to educate girls to stand up for their rights. I told this story to my friends in Korea and the my two good friends supported my thoughts and decided to sponsor two children as well. So, between all of us, three girls are able to attend school!