Tuesday, February 16, 2010

In the news

Add to Google Reader or HomepageA few weeks ago, I met a free-lance reporter who had just finished an article on the crèche. She had seen me working there and had asked the director about me. (I imagine that she asked “Who is the old guy with the American accent?”) She said she wanted to do an article on me because it was rare to see a volunteer and she wanted to learn more about me and my interest in volunteering.

We met at one of the local cafés and, over espresso, I answered her questions. I like her article and hope you will, too.

Vaucluse Matin Vendredi 5 février 2010 
     by: Sophie Grebel

Translation: A happy volunteer in France

            Marc Sullivan comes from Michigan. For the past two years, he and his wife spend six months in Vaison and six months in the United States. Since last March Marc works as a volunteer two afternoons per week at “Gingerbread”, the program for young children in Vaison.
            He tells stories, sings songs in his language and tries to be helpful wherever he can. The children have accepted him totally. They correct his French when he makes mistakes and say “bye bye” when he leaves.
            For him, nothing makes him happier. Now as a regular, he enjoys his time and comes home to tell his wife about the events of the day that he shared with the children and the staff of professionals with whom he works (and enjoys).
            His decision? Before joining the program, he had to explain in a letter that he was retired and wanted to return to working with young children, the focus of his career. He had to provide a police record and other documents related to his work.
            From the time he was in college, he volunteered his time working in child care programs for poor children (Head Start). And, after teaching in Chad, he found work in child care, ending his career as the director of a child care trade association for Michigan which organized training programs and where he worked to find funding to continue to offer the programs.
            The work became more administrative and that is why today he is pleased to be able to have meaningful contact with young children. Living next door to “Gingerbread” Marc adds “even when I am not there, I can hear the kids, I can watch them play outside and it makes me smile.”


  1. What a great article! How nice to be featured.

  2. ...Félicitations!

    not to mention the benefits for the young kids who will remember - no doubt - the good and "cheering chap" from across the ocean, his humor and good old songs!

    Take care!


  3. What a great article! Thanks for the translation! Mark, it's good to see you with kids... just need to know... did you bring your parachute?