Caring Cambridgeshire student to help in Africa

Alice goes to Kenya.
June 24, 2013.
Photograph by Michael Boyton.
Pic shows: Alice in h

Alice goes to Kenya. Duxford. June 24, 2013. Photograph by Michael Boyton. Pic shows: Alice in her garden with her rucksack. Name: Alice Lovell. - Credit: Archant

WHILE most young people spend their free time saving up for the latest iPhone or a holiday with friends, one teenager is bucking the trend.

Alice Lovell, 18, from Duxford, is set to take part in a month-long humanitarian trip to Kenya, starting this weekend.

She had contacted the charity International Volunteer HQ, in the hope of finding a “cheap” volunteering experience. But she discovered the “awful” living conditions of young people in Nairobi and was determined to help – now she will roll up her sleeves to assist in an orphanage alongside a host of other volunteers.

“I have only ever seen conditions like those on television before,” said Alice. “I don’t know how much I can help them long term, but just to see how they are living will be real experience.

“I have been told that the trip will change me completely. It will definitely change the way I see my own life.”

Alice used to baby-sit for families in Saffron Walden and worked for nine months at a Chinese takeaway, earning £40 a week, in order to raise the £2,500 needed to take part in the trip.

It will be a “great use of time” before heading off to the University of Bath in September to study sociology, biology and photography.

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“It was perfect timing,” she said. “We waste a lot of money on things we don’t need. I’d rather do something better with my summer that isn’t a waste of time.

“I don’t know exactly what I’ll be doing, but it will mainly be looking after children, getting them ready for school and cooking for them, as well as basic chores around the village. I am really looking forward to it.”

International Volunteer HQ aims to provide volunteer travellers with quality, flexible, safe and highly affordable volunteering placements in developing countries. It helps to place 5,000 volunteers every year with a wide range of opportunities.

To get involved, visit or call their office in New Zealand on freephone 0808 234 1621.