Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Volunteering at Janda Baik

12-13 Nov 2011 (Sat-Sun): Click!2.0 Camp @ Janda Baik
Traveled to this village about an hour away from KL over the last weekend to volunteer for a social entrepreneurship camp organized by the US Embassy. Now that I'm back in Penang, there ain't a lot of time and chances for me to participate in state alumni activities so decided to grab this chance since it falls on a weekend. Besides, one of the activities was community service which was something I wanted to do coz haven't been involved in any volunteering yet this year. Last year, I also had the chance to attend this camp in Cherating, this year it was held in Janda Baik.

Cherengin Hills resort was the location for this camp. Janda Baik is located deep within the jungle so nothing much there. :p I was lucky I got a room with the pool view all for myself coz my roommate didn't make it to the camp. =)

Misty mountain views. This hotel is located at an altitude of 600m above sea level so the weather was pretty nice and cooling, especially when the sun sets. 

All the volunteers were alumni from various U.S. government sponsored exchange programs. Our roles as volunteers were facilitators/mentors/discipline master/teacher. =.= All of us had no idea what we were supposed to do until we got there...poor organizer.

I was given a group of 5 students...they named their team Jabbawockeez coz the 2 boys liked this dance group. As their facilitator, I helped to guide them as they worked on their ideas...but they called me 'teacher' pulak. =.= The participants of this camp were high school students and they are all supposed to come up with a social entrepreneurship idea and implement it with a seed funding of RM250. The best 3 teams stand a chance to win ipod touch, digital camera, or a chance to go for an exchange program in the U.S. 

3 batches of Global UGRAD Alumni volunteers. =)

One of the activities during the camp...community service. We were split into 6 groups for different types of community service at the mosque, community library, kindergarten, and orphanage. I was quite lucky to be allocated to the group with the most volunteers and we went to an orphanage to help out with organic farming...sounds interesting huh! :p

The orphanage was the furthest from our hotel so we had a bus to bring us there. Mana tau our bus took us to the wrong place...luckily we got another van to fetch us. 24 of us managed to squeeze into that van...lol!!

Finally arrived at the orphanage. Big place with big compound.

This community service was pretty interesting coz we got to learn about organic farming. =) We helped to plant seedlings, transferred the plants to the ground, picked the weeds, plough the soil, and cleaned up the surroundings. It was raining for awhile but we were quite efficient and got all our work done within 2 hours. =)

It's pretty refreshing to get out of the hustle and bustle of the city and get close to nature.

There were various types of veggies planted at the farm. Good initiative to reduce the food cost for the orphanage and also help them earn some money from all these crops.

U.S. Ambassador Paul Jones also came all the way to Janda Baik to join us in the community outreach activities.

Group picture of the volunteers with Ambassador Jones. =)

Another activity for the students during the camp...treasure hunt. 

Farewell BBQ dinner and certificate presentation ceremony for all the students who participated in this Click! 2.0 Camp.