Volunteering To Assist


Eighteen year old Lauryn Sinclair, of  West Melton is not only in her first year of tertiary study at the University of Canterbury studying Law and working part time at Rolleston New World, but is also embarking on a trip to Uganda to assist with the building of a school.

Lauryn has become involved with an organisation called Purpose Projects as a volunteer. This is a Non Government Organisation that takes volunteer trips to developing countries to help with specific, achievable projects. The current project is to help build a school for 1,000 children in Uganda and Lauryn plans to join the trip in January 2019 and travel to Kkoba, Uganda for a month.

“The whole ethos behind Purpose Projects is that it provides our local community with a direct link to the community in Kkoba, Uganda,” Lauryn explained. “The idea is to involve the local community in the development of a third world country, in a way which will benefit the lives of many. We are currently in the process of beginning to raise support to gather funds which will go directly towards the construction of the school in Kkoba and I am hopeful there will be locals in my community who may be able to assist.”

Lauryn and her family have lived in West Melton since 2014, and commented that they really loved the community atmosphere both there and across greater Selwyn too.

Lauryn came to be involved with Purpose Projects when she met Laura Robinson, the founder of the organisation at university. Laura had concerns about some organisations’ fundraising revenue not always reaching its target.

“It was because of this she decided to form her own volunteering organisation for students, with a focus on transparency,” Lauryn said. “Each volunteer raises funds which go directly towards a project in a developing community.

“I have volunteered overseas in the past (on a school World Challenge trip to India in 2016) and I loved every second of it and always knew that I wanted to do more of it in the future! It was an incredibly rewarding experience which totally changes your outlook on life in general,” Lauryn enthused.

The main project for the volunteering trip is the construction of a school. It is partially built, with one block completed, as other volunteers have worked on it through a partner organisation (Hope Line). However, the volunteers came individually and only with limited funds, meaning that little progress has taken place over a long period of time. We aim to have the project completed and opened in 2019. Alongside the construction work we will also be involved in local outreach and development programmes, including education, teaching and the local health care centre.

“Additionally we will be working alongside local business people through micro financing – providing them with financial assistance from funds we have raised, in order to encourage them to become self supporting,” Lauryn added.