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• WE ARE DEALING WITH PROJECTS IN:
Education, Health care, Environmental Initiatives, Organic and Perm-culture Agriculture, women, Youths & Less fortunate households Empowerment
A TRUST BASED TOTAL FREEDOM, FRIENDLY, RELAXED, MEANINGFUL VOLUNTEERING AND FREE LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES' ATMOSPHERE FOR ALL VOLUNTEERS.
We are looking for Volunteers, Donors, Well-wishers, organizations to work with. if interested, drop an email to collaborate and partner with us on community projects in Mfangano and sister Islands in Lake Victoria Kenya.
I am Samuel, a teacher by profession, now 52-years old, I'm a resident of Mfangano Island in Lake Victoria Kenya
I happen to be leading registered community based organizations (C.B.Os) and groups, founded with an aim of alleviating the suffering among the communities of the Islands that have been hit by poverty, hunger and diseases.
We reach and touch needy children, widows, widowers, youths, the aged and poor starving families in the community, We strive to provide access to basic quality education, Health-care, farming gears, facilitate Environmental Initiatives and empower the disadvantaged and less privileged/Less fortunate households and families for sustainable economic development and self-reliance
In so doing we have managed to send over 200 school dropout students back to school and through micro-finance initiative we have improved the standards of living of over 30 groups' members.
I’m blessed with a Lovely, patient and a welcoming family, a family with a higher hospitality and integrity to all Volunteers, visiting my home from different corners of the world.
In our Family we normally have round table evening charts during evening meals as we get the day’s reports from volunteers and asses the situations to help decide on the following day’s Learning activities.
Rising above Lake Victoria on the outskirts of Kenya, Mfangano Island is home to nearly 50,000 people. Most are large families of subsistence farmers and fishermen, with incomes of less than $200 per month. The Island is rich in fresh water and fertile soil, and Mfanganians are brilliantly resourceful, but infrastructure remains severely limited.
Most families have no running water and limited electricity, from the two generators which power the entire Island. Fresh water Lake Victoria is used for drinking, fishing, bathing, washing clothes and dishes, and watering crops. Very few have indoor plumbing, instead with outdoor latrines. The dirt road which circles the Islands becomes impassable whenever it rains, and the island is only reachable by boat, Water Bus and Ferry, making health care and other resources frequently inaccessible. Mfanganians remain positive despite these barriers and work endlessly hard but sometimes this isn't enough.
Our organization takes a multidisciplinary, grassroots approach to supporting the community of Mfangano Island through education, health-care, youth and female empowerment, environmental protection, and economic growth through organic farming. These intertwined initiatives can help the low-income community rise out of poverty.
Our organization is driven by the community, for the community. Our initiatives extend beyond Mfangano Island to eradicate poverty, with a focus on caring for less fortunate mothers and children living in the four Lake Victoria Islands on the western outskirts of Kenya.
Students attend 53 different schools on the Island, all secondary schools charge fees, which range from $380 to $580 (USD)
(INFO ABOUT HOW SCHOOLS WORKS HERE)
Primary school begins at 6:30 am, and lasts until 5:00 pm (with a one-hour lunch break, when students walk home for a simple lunch of bread or rice), Primary school students learn ____
Up to 40 students face chalkboards in unfinished, open-window classrooms, often in dilapidated desks.
When night falls and farm chores have been completed, students read books under battery-operated flashlights, paraffin oil candles and lanterned Lamps, or solar-powered lights.
Despite these barriers, students study intently so they can succeed to universities and beyond.
Teachers are genuinely passionate about teaching, and students reciprocate this enthusiasm.
Recognizing that education is the key to further opportunity, our partnership with other organizations provides children of great financial need with the resources for success.
Sponsors provide uniforms so that orphaned, single-parent children and those from less privileged/disadvantaged/Less fortunate families can attend primary school—when they otherwise might not be able to attend, simply because they cannot afford a uniform, shoes, school subsidy levies or books.
School uniforms cost 7 USD for primary school—but even this is a great burden for some families, who may have to withdraw students before they can finish primary school. With a school day that begins at 4:00am and ends at 10:00pm,
Most high school students board overnight at their public secondary schools. This costs families 400 USD or more—several months’ income for families with working parents. This can be impossible for orphans, or parents who are widowed, ill, disabled, or otherwise unable to earn income. Our sponsors donate school uniforms and fees to support students of the greatest need.
Through donations, we provide books to students who can’t afford them and subsidize exams and other school levies. We also offer sanitary towels and other hygiene products to female scholars, because some drop out of primary or secondary school without these resources.
Many schools lack desks, chairs, finished buildings, latrines, libraries, and other infrastructure critical for a safe and productive learning environment. Our sponsors enable us to build these necessities and help scholars succeed in the classroom.
In primary schools government usually employ only 8 teachers for up to 300 students. Each primary school student contributes at least 100 Kshs. (1 USD) each month so the school can supplement this and employ a few additional teachers, each of whom is paid a monthly wage of just 40-60 USD. Parental support is crucial for academic success, so we develop Parent-Teacher Associations and or School Board of Management (B.O.M) to make learning a community effort.
We are developing a primary school feeding program to make education more accessible to low-income families. Many students also hold critical responsibilities like managing crops, caring for livestock, cleaning the home, and caring for other siblings, an additional barrier for students from small-farm families. The day-to-day realities of poverty can sometimes make impossible investment in the long-term benefits of education. To lower these barriers, we plan to introduce a program providing staple foods (such as rice and cooking oil) to families of vulnerable children each month their child attends school regularly and performs to their best ability.
We help implement preventative public health measures, develop accessible community health facilities, and expand access to health coverage and disease treatment.
Almost all 50,000 Island residents depend on freshwater Lake Victoria for bathing, washing dishes and clothes, and sometimes drinking— but this brings health risks. Outdoor latrines, even when deep, empty directly into the soil. The lack of public waste management means plastic pollution accumulates and breaks down as harmful micro-plastics. Livestock defecations wash directly into the lake after rainfall. In these conditions, typhoid, amoeba, bilharzia (schistosomiasis) and other waterborne illnesses can spread unchecked.
Families’ lives among cattle, goats, chickens, and dogs, all of which can carry diseases, burdened by endless farm and home chores, many people forgo even free cancer screenings offered at health clinics.
At the aquatic crossroads of Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania, Mfangano was devastated by the HIV/AIDS epidemic of the 1980s. Nearly everyone on the Island has been tested for this disease, showing that 25% have been infected—double the rate of mainland Kenya. This caused many orphans and widowed families.
Venomous pythons can sneak into homes, and antidotes are sometimes inaccessible. Women usually give birth on the mud floors of their homes, too many miles away from the nearest health clinic, at great risk of complications or illness.
Accidents occur when cooking on open fires, using sharp tools to plant and harvest crops, fishing in engine boats or sail boats. Sparse health facilities mean that even minor ailments, when left untreated, can escalate to life-threatening infections.
The lack of public health amenities means that diseases considered “preventable” in developed countries are dangerous realities of life here, but they don’t have to be.
Building and improving safe outdoor latrines can prevent diseases from spreading through soil and runoff rainwater.
A few drops of Water-Guard can prevent against water-borne diseases and make rainwater drinkable.
Replanting shrubbery can reduce soil erosion and filter runoff rainwater before contaminating the water supply.
Ensuring that soil stays fertile for vegetables, or treating livestock for diseases, can keep everyone healthier.
Mobile health campaigns and home visits can help treat cancer and other diseases before they progress.
Government-subsidized antiretroviral tablets treat AIDS free of charge for anyone tested positive.
Building low-cost health clinics within walking distance from centers of dense population can make python anti-venom reachable, ensure maternal health, reduce birth complications, and can treat injuries before they endanger lives.
Our organization is planning a free community medical facility to make health accessible to all, regardless of geographic location.
Thousands of Kenyans are amply trained in nursing and medicine, but remain unemployed because of the lack of health facilities.
Land has already been designated for building a permanent health center near high population densities—the principle barrier that remains is procuring funding to build the facility and stock life-saving medical supplies.
3. FEMALE AND YOUTH EMPOWERMENT
Most women serve as housewives, remaining financially dependent on their husbands. Some sell food and other products in small kiosk shops, or work as artisans, helping to lift their families out of poverty, pursue education, and access health-care. Thanks to the efforts of our organization, nearly all women on Mfangano are part of registered women’s groups which offer support and financial opportunities.
When endowed with revolving funds, each group member can receive micro-finance loans to start small scale businesses, pay school fees, or purchase staple foods in times of acute poverty and hunger. This empowers women to be financially and emotionally independent, to protect themselves in situations of abuse, and contribute to the overall economy.
We hope to initiate a shelter for widows, widowers, women and children in dire need, as well as develop community libraries which can strengthen the entire community and promote education.
Youths’ registered groups offer post-secondary students opportunities to launch independent small scale businesses while seeking careers, as Kenya has a very high unemployment rate.
4. ORGANIC AND PERM-CULTURE AGRICULTURE
All farming on Mfangano is done organically, helping the preservation of this island home for rare birds and other wildlife. To sustain growth without pesticides, fences are necessary to prevent animals from harming crops. our organization solicits funds for investment in fences, irrigation, and the tools necessary for new organic farms to be developed
Thousands of fishing boats depend on freshwater Lake Victoria, and the effects of overfishing are beginning to appear. Some residents now pursue aquaculture (fish farming), but other sustainability initiatives are necessary.
Plans are underway to support these groups with revolving funds for micro-finance initiatives for investment in farming tools, irrigation, and fishing gear. All farming on Mfangano relies on ingenious organic methods, ensuring sustainable economic development built on environmentally sound practices.
5. THE ENVIRONMENT
Our environmental initiatives help prevent deforestation, develop sustainable waste-management, and educate the community on sustainability and organic agriculture.
To combat deforestation, we give farmers tree seedlings from nurseries for planting in their farms and the forestry department, provide seeds for developing the farmers own nurseries. Tree planting days are organized on public lands to engage the entire community in combating deforestation.
The lack of organized waste management gives fishermen few options but to discard damaged nets and fishing line in the lake. This leads to the dangerous phenomenon of ghost fishing, or the unintended capture of fish in fishing nets and lake-bottom waste. To preserve the aquatic ecosystem, our organization is launching an initiative for environmental awareness and fishing net management.
Volunteers are actively creating informational posters to share with the fishing community, building a spare fishing line collection box, and teaching unemployed women to turn this waste into a sell able jewelry product.
Presently, the Island lacks any form of public waste management, so plastic byproducts are littered on the ground or discarded directly in the lake. Plastic bags have already been banned from the Island, but most products are imported in plastic containers, and recycling has yet to be implemented. Each farm is required to have a waste collection pit, and some families burn their own waste, but most waste is littered haphazardly.
Volunteers have organized trash collection days to collect trash discarded along the shore and raise awareness about unsustainable practices. Our organization seeks a sustainable waste management program to ensure the preservation of this Island and its incredible biodiversity.
Recognizing the threat of soil erosion on the biodiversity of both Lake Victoria and the Island ecosystem,
Our Organization seeks to grow water catchment initiatives, replant forests, and prevent harmful runoff from farming. Maintaining the plant biodiversity of the Island, maintains root networks to hold the environment in place.
Babysitting / child care
Cooking / shopping
Help with Eco project
Help in the house
Helping with Tourists
Help with Computers / internet
HOW VOLUNTEERS BENEFIT:
Volunteers have a trust based total freedom of doing whatever they want and visiting all places they would want to, they will visit our rich shrines and see for themselves some of the tools, utensils, vessels and Caves used by our great grandparents.
1) Volunteers Working with us will relax and participate in any manual work at their own wish
they will a quire several educational opportunities including visit Local fishing industries and interact with Local fishermen for more information. We have, guided and connected Volunteers with different types of organic farms owned by different growers on the Island, Our Primary and Secondary Schools, Mfangano Island Rock Art, Our rich shrines, Spring Water sites, Mfangano Peace Museum, Our Seasonal Streams, the Soklo Plateau, Mfangano Tilapia Fish ponds, Mfangano Hills and even the beautiful view of Lake Victoria all-round the four Islands many times
2) We have experienced community story tellers of which I'm one, who normally entertain interested Volunteers and other visitors, Volunteers will get a lot of legends and memorized stories of all our cultural livings styles.
they will Get live stories and legends about our great grand parents political, Social and Economical ways of living before the coming of formal education. some of story tellers have written legends and history about all that transpired in the past to our grandparents and even their traditional way of self governance, they will acquiring aural History of our traditional and natural methods of organic farming which doesn't require use of chemicals and see how some of our people still use our traditional tools for both digging and weeding.
3) acquire our cultural and ways of Living and behavior
4) acquire the knowledge from our inherited traditional history on how our grand fathers and mothers led their social, economical and political lives.
5) admire and enjoy the Islands' good climatic condition, The most enjoyable Islands’ Climates conducive for all activities
6) admire and enjoy the Lake Victoria breeze
7) see all Species of different fresh water fish and even enjoy eating them
8) see and enjoy eating food cooked in the traditional way using traditional methods and the crops we grow for food.
9) share and Learn our traditional believes and our old ways of self-governance before the coming of the white in Kenya
10) They will learn directly and practically there and then how we do all our activities of all kinds of their interest/choice and in their field of learning even beyond.
11) The family has vast experience with all the four Islands and even the nearby parts of the mainland and their different locations meaning the volunteer will be helped to integrate in local society and interact with them as much as they can
THE FOLLOWING VOLUNTEERS' OPPORTUNITIES/POSITIONS/PROJECTS, ARE CURRENTLY AVAILABLE WITHIN OUR ORGANIZATION, AND WE ARE REQUESTING FOR VOLUNTEERS' SUPPORT IN ANY OF THEM OR ALL:
Applications are invited from all corners of the world, we will appreciate your choice to work with us:
1. Research & recommend funding options - Fund-raising
There are various funding opportunities for nonprofits like USAID and we need help researching and understanding the options available to us ● (Skills: Fund-raising, Research & Analytics)
2. Write funding grant proposals - Fund-raising
We need experts in grant writing to help us prepare and write professional grant proposals to relevant funding agencies ● (Skills: Fund-raising, Content Writing – English)
3. Review & amend a specific document - Content and Writing
We have written a specific document (report, grant proposal etc.) and before submitting it we would love a native English speaker to proof read it.● (Skills: Content Writing – English)
4. Create a fund-raising video for us - Fund-raising
We would like to create a compelling video about our organization in general or a specific project for fund-raising purposes. We will provide the content but we need a video expert to put it all together and tell a great story ● (skills: Video Editing, Content Writing – English)
5. Develop a responsive website - Web Work
We currently don't have a website and we would really love someone to develop a responsive, Google-friendly site; this task would need to include all back and front end development and design, a Content Management System for our internal use, content upload (we will provide all the content - text, images and videos etc.), and delivery of source code upon completion.● (Skills: Web Development, CMS (e.g. WordPress), Website Builders e.g. WIX)
6. Update our website - Web Work
Occasionally we need to update certain areas or pages in our website (content, photos, news etc.) and we would love someone to help us with this here and there! ● (Skills: CMS (e.g. WordPress), Website Builders e.g. WIX)
7. Fix technical issues in our website - Web Work
Occasionally we have bugs or issues with our website and we would love someone to help us here and there when this happens! ● (Skills: Web Development)
8. Write posts in English for our FB page - Social Media
We are always looking for people who can help us promote our work on social media. Even just a few posts are a great start for us! ● (Skills: Social Media Marketing, Content Writing – English)
9. Setup & optimize our Facebook page - Social Media
We do not have a good Facebook page and would love someone to set up a compelling page for our nonprofit to showcase our mission and work ● (Skills: Social Media Marketing)
10. Setup & optimize our Instagram page - Social Media
We do not have a good Instagram page and would love someone to set up a compelling page for our nonprofit to showcase our mission and work ● (Skills: Social Media Marketing)
11. Design a brochure/report layout - Design
We often need to prepare reports or brochures for our donors and partners and we would love a great design template we can use as a basis for such purposes.● (Skills: Graphic Design)
12. Design a Power Point template - Design
We often need to present to our donors and partners and we would love to have a well-designed template we can use as a basis for our presentations.● (Skills: Graphic Design)
13. Design our logo - Design
We would like to design a compelling logo that would convey the mission of our organization
● (Skills: Graphic Design)
14. We are Looking for someone ready to support and formally prepare Women and Youths micro-finance initiatives groups - (table banking, merry go round, financial and book keeping literacy, business administration and management)
15. We are in need of support and improvement of the status of our organic and perm-culture farmers( fishermen, poultry keepers, animals keepers, crop growers)
16. Help us get supportive and development conscious personnel for our environmental initiatives and Ecological projects
17. Teachers of both academic and co curriculum (Teaching academic subjects in class and sports activities).
18. There is a high need to get well-wishers help in supporting the disadvantaged and the less fortunate in the community ( widows, widowers, the aged and those disowned by the society).
19. Help in Improving computer literacy to community members and or children
20. You can also Just come, without any relevant skill to tour, relax and enjoy weather, breeze & climate around the Islands in Lake Victoria and learn the residents way of living you are welcome.
We are Looking for Volunteers, who are ready to collaborate and partner with us in a working together spirit to help us improve lives of the less fortunate children, households and families in the Mfangano and Sister Islands communities by participating as tabulated under the listed projects categories: -
• Fund-raising for the improvement of Primary Schools and High Schools Infrastructures and the Education of needy children plus the endangered Islands' girls child education.
• Teaching any class from kindergarten to high school (people with relevant experience and training)
2. HEALTH CARE
• Fund-raising for Health-care facilities, food-staff, houses, and clothes donations, for the Aged and the disadvantaged and less privileged/less fortunate families and those who have been abandoned by society.
• Help from health professionals (doctors, nurses, etc.) with running a local clinics and mobile clinics
3. ORGANIC AND PERM-CULTURE FARMING
• Help us with manual work (digging, planting, weeding) and advice if you have relevant experience.
• Fund-raising for farmers and fishermen gears (tools, water pumps, fences, pipes, nets, engines and boats) and poultry units.
4. ENVIRONMENTAL INITIATIVES
• Help with training farmers in agro-forestry, fruit tree production, reforestation, and vegetable production and encouraging all community members to help prevent soil erosion
• Help with events, editing, translating books and manuals.
• Help increase public awareness by talking with schools and other groups. Volunteers are also needed to encourage communities, churches, and civic groups to support tree planting projects,
• Fund-raising for environmental issues
5. WOMEN AND YOUTHS EMPOWERMENT
• Fund-raising for women and youths empowerment issues;
• Help with Financial literacy and entrepreneurship training,
• Help us improve the Micro finance Initiative which Support the disadvantaged and less privileged/fortunate Households and families on the Islands.
6. Help in organizing on-line fund-raisers and or approaching potential donors, organizations and funding opportunities for our community's support.
7. Help with on-line marketing for our activities and identifying viable funding foundations/organizations
8. Help with Successful grant proposal writing
9. CHARITY WORK:
All kinds of support from individual Volunteers, group Volunteers, Organizations, and even well-wishers to either the Families or community are welcome.
English, Swahili, Luo, Suba
•Volunteers will stay with host families from the local community, based in a tranquil, rural environment
•Each volunteer will have their own bed, but may share a room if belongs to the same gender or if are couples, Different gender stay in different rooms.
•Each bed should have a mosquito net
Volunteers will be provided with 3 meals a day by the host family, or receive a pre packed carry lunch if the project is far from the host family residence. OR be bought if the Hotels are around.
Food will be prepared by Host family as per the normal daily diet timetable and on the request of the visitor in case he/she is interested in a different meal,
Any visitor who comes with his/her budget, all his/her meals will be prepared on his/her order and we will require a meals time table to be prepared in a collaboration of both the visitor and the cooks.
We prefer preparing meals with the consent of all people living in the house/family and considering different interests of different house dwellers including Visitors.
1). Apart from Visiting the reach local sights in Mfangano, there are several refreshment Points around, we can always walk and meet people, refresh, chart, dance in Local social meeting points, view variety of activities around, we can as well go swimming any time we feel like and freely in Lake Victoria since we stay near the lake just 60 meters from the Lake, there are high chances of visiting various fish "Bands" and have a look at various Fish species from the Lake and types of boats used in fishing, there are several Bear-Pubs for Music and a variety of drinks, you can watch Soccer if you are a Fun, etc.
2) Visitors are free to prepare their own food if they so wish/interested in doing that, and can be assisted in preparation of the food of their choice if they wish/comfortable with that. We normally go by ones interest/choice when it comes to meals.
Mfangano Island is one of the biggest Islands in Lake Victoria but the largest Island in Kenya; with a conducive climate, it’s Bays and Natural Rocks along the Lake show attracts all Species of Fish This makes it one of the main the Sources of Fish in Kenya
The indigenous have very high profile of Hospitality and respect to visitors, it is an Island of LOVE to strangers and hence the name Mfangano, in Suba Language Meaning Reconciliation
In Mfangano all types of meals are available from fresh fish, beef, chicken, eggs, various types of grains, vegetable and all other market food types that one would like, we even eat "ugali" -bread prepared from fresh millet, sorghum or maize during banana season we prepare and cook the banana bread which is so soft and sweet it is the most convenient for the non Ugali funs.
the indigenous' main activity is organic farming from crops growing, animals keeping to fishing both for subsistence and commercial, it is less expensive, culturally oriented, and done in the most natural and traditional way, with zero chemical appliances. The three other Islands are composed of mainly fishermen.
There are several types of vessels of different sizes used for transportation to bridge the Islands to the main land, transportation means that can be used for movement to and from any destination around the Islands or from one Island to the other on daily basis and even beyond at any time of need are there in plenty, it is easy to move from any Island to the other or to the main land all times of you need, by use of any means of any size of your choice from the biggest vessel ferry, bigger fibered water boat, speed boats and engine boats alighting in different beaches of the Island, on the Island we have a ring-road going round all the Island.
Mfangano and its sister Islands makes the best sites for learning of Various African cultural practices/activities, our culture is preserved to date in all the various different styles that one may ask, we still have cultural sports during August and December Holidays,
We have the most traditional and culturally oriented Organic agriculture and perm-culture ways of farming, from Crops growing, Poultry, Cattle, Goats, keeping to fishing of various Species of fish in Lake Victoria,
Those who choose Mfangano as their learning centre for African culture and organic and Perm-culture farming have always appreciated and came out certified with the knowledge acquired:
1. Here, most people cultivate/till the land from late December to late February every year then plant with the first rains and start weeding in the month of April since most seasonal and annual crops planted either in late February or at the beginning of the month of March have grown enough, and weeds catch up with them seriously from early and mid April, almost all maize and millet crops are three feet high above the ground by mid April and the weeds are also at the same height this is the time most growers have a hell of work in their farms/gardens because they have to remove the weeds in time and let crops give out grains when they are healthy. April is the busiest month with organic farmers/growers each year in Mfangano Island.
2. April comes out to be the only month with enough rains that most crop growers depend on for them to have good harvests in august in our region.
3. Volunteers with higher interests on crops growing especially seasonal and annual crops should utilize this period beginning from March to July every year, although animals rare ring, poultry keeping, fishing, and other types of farming continues throughout the year, but crop farming/growing is done by almost every resident of Mfangano unlike those other farming methods.
4. In August most seasonal crops are harvested and their chapter is over, these are the crops most of our farmers/growers depend on for food and even for commercial in this region seconded by fishing.
5. The month of July is very cold but dry it doesn't have rains.
6. December Our most enjoyable month with all good activities of the year, most sons and Daughters of Mfangano Island take leaves to come Home and enjoy together with their relatives, families and friends, the Kenyan government also recognizes that and makes it the longest Holiday of all the other Holidays, the eve of December Holiday Days are usually in the fourth week that is from 23 December to 28 December, the way people prepare for Christmas 24, 25 and 26 December, is marvelous.
7. It is good luck that we have been getting volunteers who are willing to fund raise for:-
a) Our community health facility at Wakinga Village in Mfangano East Location in Mfangano Island which started on 3rd October 2018 and and is still going on.
b) A School for Disabled pupils in Mfangano and Sister Islands and this is going to be the first school for the Disabled pupils on Mfangano Island
c) Scholarship of some students and already some have received their scholarships and are in school right now.
We still need more volunteers to support more projects in the family and in the community we have websites to those projects which can only be disclosed to Volunteers who are ready to support in that Line
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
More than two
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week
In developing countries (Where most hosts are involved in charity work or community development) some of our hosts may ask for a small donation to help the host family or charity (often less then 5 dollars per day) Workaway will allow this listing when the donation goes directly to the family or charity and is just to cover the cost of the volunteer‘s stay. (This will be clearly marked on the host listing).
We will strictly not allow listings posted by agents, “middle men” or projects who we feel are looking to profit from a volunteers stay.
Accuracy of profile: