Between the construction of the HavServe Community Center, the gardening and registering the kids for school and summer camp there was a lot going on during my recent one-week stay in Lebrun, as I had anticipated. But volunteering with HavServe is always an adventure with surprising benefits. One of the nicer surprises on my recent (fifth) visit to Lebrun, was meeting and getting to know our new volunteer, Thomas Boyer.
Tom is a successful 31-year old software sales manager from the Twin Cities area of St. Paul/Minneapolis in Minnesota. He was born in South Korea and adopted by his American parents when he was three months old. A well-rounded young man with a wide variety of interests, including hunting, fishing, biking, golf and a host of other sports, Thomas had been feeling the need to “give something back” in thanks for what he considers his “privileged life.”
We are very fortunate that Thomas chose to volunteer with HavServe in Lebrun. His easy-going and compassionate personality, sense of humor, and eagerness to know and learn about Haiti and her people, alongside his computer skills, are a valuable addition to the HavServe team. He quickly developed a rapport with the young men in the community and was able to work well with the young children who came to register for summer camp, even evoking a smile out of some of the timid little ones whose pictures Tom was taking for their school files.
Volunteering with HavServe in Haiti offers the opportunity to work with people of very different backgrounds and from many different parts of the world. Thomas and I are several generations removed from one another. He’s a young man with most of his life ahead of him and I’m a senior citizen with grown children and grandchildren, but I feel that I’ve made a good friend. Despite the differences in age, background, lifestyle, etc. we found that we had common interests and ideals and I believe we both had something of value to offer to each other. This is one of the many perks of volunteering with HavServe; our experiences with the other volunteers and with the people of Lebrun teach us that, at the core, we are all pretty much the same, an invaluable life lesson.
If you HAVE, you too can SERVE.
Written by Rose Ann Lord