Hello everyone, my name is Vivian Nordquist. I am from Germany and have a Master’s degree in International Cultural and Business Studies. I will stay in Mwanza for three years, due to my partner’s job placement. I love travelling and literature and I am looking forward to my time in Tanzania.
Vivian, what is your role at Cedar Tanzania?
I am volunteering as a projects and communications assistant and am also involved in funding applications and event planning.
What inspired you to volunteer with the Cedar Foundation?
Upon arrival in Mwanza, I knew that I wanted to work for an organisation in the development sector. I was very lucky to have found the Cedar Foundation rather quickly as I really admire their approach. I am grateful that they gave me the opportunity to volunteer with them.
How long is your volunteer placement?
My volunteer placement is initially for three months. But if it is successfully extended then I hope to continue to support the Cedar team as much as possible, in any way they need assistance and also learn new things and expand my knowledge, especially in the areas of funding, project management and event planning.
What things have you found surprising?
I found it surprising how quickly I felt part of the team. I believe this is due to the very warm welcome the whole team gave me, their openness and the positive working atmosphere.
What things have you enjoyed?
Firstly, I enjoy being part of such a wonderful team. And secondly, one of the most special things for me so far has been being part of the opening ceremony of the Kamanga Health Centre and seeing all the work and effort that the whole team contributed to its success. Seeing the progress that is being made and being able to contribute something to it, is very satisfying.
What things have challenged you so far?
Being a rather punctual person, it is quite challenging to realize that the clocks tick differently in Tanzania and to adapt to that. I hope I will get used to it at some point!
Would you recommend this volunteer scheme to others?
Yes absolutely! It is a great opportunity to be part of something meaningful and to support the wonderful work the Cedar Foundation is doing.
What would you say to anyone who said that they could not volunteer because they didn't have a skill to offer.
I believe everybody has something to offer and to contribute. The variety of Cedar’s projects offer a broad range of tasks, so everyone can be involved as long as they are interested, motivated and passionate about what they are doing.