Alumni Spotlight: Kathrine Raabjerg


Kathrine is 19 years old and from Herning, Denmark. She's currently on her gap year before starting university where she will pursue a career in Public Health. At the moment she is working in a children's theme park and is volunteering at a local home for Huntington patients.

Why did you decide to volunteer with Projects Abroad in Ghana?

Kathrine: I found their internet page and from the first second I felt that PA was a safe and good company to travel with. After a short time of consideration I called the Danish office to talk with them about which projects they could offer me, and in which countries. It should be said that I planed my entire trip in less than three weeks. So from my first call to the Danish office and till I was sitting on plane on my way to Ghana, three weeks passed.

The man at the office and I agreed that he should contact the people in Kenya and Ghana and hear which projects they had. After a couple of days he called me back, and I decided that the project in Ghana was the one I wanted and I ordered the trip online.

So I decided to travel with Project Abroad because they were really helpful from day one. I felt safe with them and they took me serious.

Describe your day to day activities as a volunteer.

Kathrine: I worked at an orphanage with disabled and/or abandoned children every day from 8 till 12. When I meet at 8.00 I would go the the bigger kids (4-10 years) and help the mothers with feeding the kids. At 8.30 I went to the babies room (0-4 years) to change and feed the babies, and after that I stayed with the babies, played, sang and gave them love. The doors were open, so the bigger kids often came and joined us in the babies room. At 11-11.30 the babies got lunch, we changed them and they were put to have a nap, and I went home.

The days I did not have plans with the Project or the other volunteers I went back to the Orphanage from 14.30 till 17.00, and I did more or less the same as from 8-12.

Every Wednesday the project had a meeting where all the volunteers and coordinators meet for a quiz, cooking lesson, football or volleyball match against a school or children's home. We, the volunteers, came with suggestions, and the coordinators tried to make it happen.

What made this experience unique and special?

Kathrine: The fact that I helped the kids at the home of course made it a special and memorable trip. But when I look back, the things I remember the most is all the people I meet. In my four months I got to meet a lot of different volunteers, and all of us had a unique and fantastic friendship. But I also got to know a lot of people who lives in Ghana. Not only Ghanaians but also Lebanese, German, Spanish etc. people - and all of them were amazing, welcoming and helpful. So what made my trip the best was the people I meet and came to love.

How has this experience impacted your future?

Kathrine: It made me more confident. I know now that I can make a difference. It might have been just a small one at the orphanage, but even though I just made a difference for four kids, I made a big difference for these four kids. So I returned home proud of what I've done - and I now know how little you need to do to make a small difference. And this realization have made me want to study something where I can help other people make a difference, and thereby make a bigger difference.