Local Community Building
Not all Good News volunteers travel! Some of the most enthusiastic volunteers assist in our office in Wausau, WI. Local volunteers are the backbone of Good News Project. They are instrumental in keeping our operational costs low by accomplishing tasks such as office assistance, fundraising, bulk mailings, electronic recycling, yard and garden maintenance and HELP closet upkeep.
National Community Building
In March of 2017, Good News Project organized two teams of volunteers to travel to Lumberton, North Carolina. They worked with an organized disaster relief group to help the community clean up after the devastation left by Hurricane Matthew (Oct ’16). 17 volunteers worked over two weeks and made a difference to 7 homeowners. The group was able to muck out 5 homes, apply a mold remediation product to a home and replace the roof on yet another. Although their efforts alone were not enough to complete the projects, the progress made was greatly appreciated. Good News Project is hoping to make disaster relief an ongoing service opportunity within our US borders. If you are interested in more information, contact Bettina@goodnewswi.com.
Global Community Building
We currently work in three countries: St. Lucia, St. Vincent and Dominica, in cooperation with church, government and civic leaders, serving almost 200 schools, clinics, hospitals and institutions. They welcome our help and appreciate and encourage the interfaith nature of Good News Project.
Many people who are unable to spend years in the Peace Corps or similar volunteer organization are very willing to share their time and talents in short term service. Good News Project has found that this opportunity appeals to a wide range of adults, from college age to retirees. What began as a small, Catholic, parish project has become a much larger international interfaith service project.
When Good News service teams come together, they are doing more than building houses. Volunteers working in schools and children’s institutions are also building relationships that are a vital link in our Global Community. The friendships that develop as GN volunteers and host country folks work together, pray together and get together for relaxation, often become lasting bonds. Built on shared experiences, mutual understanding and respect, these friendships continue as holiday and birthday cards, phone calls and letters, and even visits are exchanged. People that initially seemed very different enjoy their many similarities and find their differences interesting.
Good News volunteers find many productive ways to use their talents and energy. Some do home construction and painting, while others do craft work, tutoring, music, or other teaching in schools. Nurses find it interesting to work with nurses in village clinics, and on home visits. With appropriate advance planning and proper credentialing, physicians may see patients in a nursing home, clinic or hospital setting, or teach. Catholic Priests, Deacons and Ministers of other religions may be invited to participate in local church services. Volunteers have taught a wide variety of subjects in schools and adult education classes – CPR, welding, calligraphy, computer skills, anger management, alcohol and drug abuse management, doll making – everything but ice fishing and hockey!
Colleges and Universities are trying to foster an awareness of Global Community in their students, businesses talk of economic globalization, and churches preach the universality of human community. These philosophical concepts find expression in the real life experience of Good News Project teams – personal contact makes the difference!