Ragan Jolly, Volunteer in Peru

United Planet Women's Empowerment Quest

Ragan Jolly, 26 years old, Volunteer in 2009

Describe your volunteer work experience.

I worked at the Quest every morning from 9 to noon. Two weekends I came in for extra time with the girls including one all day outing. I assisted in making some jewelry for them to sell and I bought homemade crafts from all the girls at one point or another.

Most days I tried to get an English lesson in. We danced and played charades using English words and phrases.

What did you enjoy most about your Quest experience?

I liked being able to walk everywhere from where my host family lived.

I was pleasantly surprised how quickly I bonded with the girls at the women's shelter.

Tell us how you feel overall about your experience.

For four weeks I served in a women's shelter in Cusco, Peru. I bonded immediately with the girls at the shelter and their welcoming of me was so appreciated.

I taught them basic English through games, charades, dance, and art projects. It was so fun to help them learn and watch their progress.

At the end of my month, we exchanged tearful goodbyes and little gifts the girls had made to remember them by.