Volunteer Testimony: The Joy of Volunteering


Testimony from Tiffany Smith - Development Instructor 

Not long after graduating high school did I find myself in Malambanyama, Zambia helping teach 4th grade. Back then there wasn’t a cell phone tower in the whole village and I was the only volunteer for months. To say culture shock had set in was an understatement. From a young age I knew I wanted to work in Africa, to “ help people”. It was only fitting that I got my dream assignment at Children’s Town. The lessons that have surmounted because of that time of my life are still being lived out today. In short, Children’s Town changed my life. Everything that followed the 7 months of living remotely in that beautiful place would change the course of my entire life. It is the basis of how I have chosen to live, raise a family, and ultimately who I am as a person.

After Zambia, I came back two more times to visit and help a friend build a school in Kabwe. Not long after I was recruited to open a medical clinic in Uganda. It was there that I reminded myself that I could no longer tell my African friends they needed to attend university, if I myself had not done so. I have since graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Sustainability Studies. I focused my studies on rural development and designed an income generating village in Uganda- It exist today and is lead 100 percent by Ugandans.

Much of what I learned at Children’s Town helped me consult other non-profits on people centered projects.

I now live on a 35-acre ranch in the rural mountains of Colorado, USA with my husband, we have two large vegetable gardens and are always brainstorming ways that we as individuals can be more self-sufficient. I work for a non-profit that assists individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Children’s Town is pillar in the developmental world because it exudes what it means to teach the local people to be sustainable not just in what they do and in how they provide, but also in who they are and how they choose to live. We have so much to learn from them, I will forever be gaining wisdom by watching Children’s Town grow, change, and thrive. I look forward to showing my husband my favorite place in the world this coming Fall 2018.

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