Great Shape! Inc. loves its volunteers and their responses to “What is your favorite thing about Great Shape!?” or “How did you get started with Great Shape!?” When we posed these very questions to Derek Bentoff, board member and SuperKids (literacy) volunteer, his response was not only energetic but radiates with that common passion for Great Shape! as a whole.
“I was in Jamaica with Papa Joe (AKA Joseph Wright, GS Exec. Director) in 1997 and we were working on a grant for Peggy Barry for then JSIF. It was my first trip to Jamaica with Papa Joe and Great Shape! and, it was amazing. Sometime during that trip Joe began to tell me about the dental needs of people in the rural areas of Jamaica and that he’d like to start a dental project one day. I looked at Joe and my first question to him was “and what do you know about dentistry?” Joe just looked at me in this Zen like way and said ‘we can make it happen!’” – Great Shape! Inc. now facilitates the world’s largest, international humanitarian dental project called 1000 Smiles.
“One of my favorite things about the Great Shape! projects are the lessons and experiences. It gives you time to let go of your life back home as you know it with all the stresses and day to day responsibilities. You get to come to a beautiful country and help make someone’s day a little better and brighter. In doing so, you realize that you receive more from the people you assist than you could ever give in return. Jamaica is truly a teacher in so many ways and I look forward to this year’s project!”
It’s not too late to embrace the experience along with Derek and hundreds more.
Visit us at: www.gsjamaica.org –
You can apply for 1000 Smiles online here: www.gsjamaica.org/VolunteerApplicationTest2/intro.asp
To apply for SuperKids, email firstname.lastname@example.org
To apply for iCare (vision), email email@example.com