A Volunteering Hat-Trick Published: 23 Jul 2018

As volunteering charity, Vine Trust has three types of volunteering opportunity: home building expeditions, school expeditions and medical expeditions. Today, we are celebrating our first ever volunteer to go on all three expeditions!

Dawn Gilles has just returned from a medical expedition on Jubilee Hope. She has previously partaken in two home building expeditions and one school expedition.

Dawn had the following to say about her experiences with Vine Trust:

‘It's been an amazing experience to volunteer in Tanzania with Vine Trust over the past 6 years. To spend time with vulnerable families and communities who have been hugely impacted by HIV/AIDS and malaria, to find out about their lives and the difficulties they face, yet who are so warm and welcoming to everyone they meet has been a huge inspiration. 

During a Medical Expedition on Lake Victoria this July with my friend Lesley (who spent time as a nurse on Jubilee Hope last year, and encouraged me as a science student to take part in a trip) we learned so much about tropical medicine and treatment of the island communities.  They desperately need ongoing medical care, health education, safe water and sanitation along with protection from water-borne diseases, malaria and HIV/AIDS. We saw some extreme cases of malaria and are so thankful that the Doctors on board could provide immediate treatment to save the lives of the patients. As a result of the expedition, I am now able to research and write an Honours year dissertation on HIV/AIDS and malaria.

Volunteering with Vine Trust has also been a fantastic way to meet people and to make many wonderful friends, in Tanzania and the UK. The national Tanzanian teams, along with the UK team in Edinburgh, are very special people, each one playing an important part using the skills and gifts they have been given to serve the communities in both homebuilding and medical expeditions.  It's been a privilege to have spent time working alongside them and learning from them. They are a family who care so much, and it's always sad to leave them. Until next time.’

A huge Vine Trust thank you to Dawn, we suspect she is the first of many to complete the hat- trick.