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    Posted January 19, 2014 by
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Photo essays: Your stories in pictures

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    Childcare volunteer

    Last spring vacation, I went to Australia as a volunteer to take care of children. I wanted to leave Japan and study abroad since I like both English and children, so I decided to join this program. This was my first time to go to a foreign country. In addition, I knew nobody; however, I had many good experiences there and made new friends. On the first day, I was nervous but my host family warmly welcomed me. Living with them and having conversations was really nice and made me feel good. The dinners that my host mother made were really delicious. Every night at dinner, I would tell them what had happened during the day and they would listen to my stories even though my English was not good. Starting the second day, I worked as volunteer at a pre-school. I helped teachers during morning tea time, lunch time, and afternoon tea. I also washed dishes and cleaned the room. This pre-school’s teachers were also very kind to me and the children were very cute. Playing with children is sometimes hard but interesting. Sometimes they fight because they mess of the toys. It was not easy for me to stop them because the children did not listen to me at first, but the teachers could stop them easily, so I was inspired and started to imitate them. On the weekend, I had no job, so I participated in the Blue Mountains tour. These mountains are one of the world heritage sites in Australia. That day was sunny, so we could see beautiful views. Normally, the mountains look green in color, but these ones look blue. On the last day of volunteering, it was difficult to say good-bye to children and teachers because I wanted to play with them more and thought we would never are able to meet again, so I could not stop crying. I hugged the children and some teachers, and they hugged and kissed me back. On the last day of my time in Australia, I cried once more because I had to say good-bye to my host family, and my host mother was also crying. I learned many things from this volunteer experience, for instance, how to talk to children, play with them, and about Australian life style and accent. Moreover, I made very good memories with my host family. I will never forget these experiences.
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