Quintesentially American and quintessentially New York – the NYC Marathon was this past Sunday and we had a volunteer crew of au pairs on-hand with a smile and a glass of water.   They agreed that it was truly like no other day in NYC with all that energy and determination of each and every runner swirling about.  Alexa from Mexico seen above in action shares,  “It was an experience I could never forget. I thought our job as volunteers was to give out water to the runners, but it was way more than that! We were cheering for them, and making them seem how long they’d come. We were there to help remind them of their purpose, and how amazing they were by getting so far!  They were all so grateful for us being there, and there wasn’t a single runner who didn’t thank us at least with a smile. It felt incredible to know that all those people had gone through such a long and exhausting day, and even though we were the last mile, they thanked us several times for being there. I just loved it, and I wish everybody could experience the feeling of something like that!! “

The J-1 visa participants annually make up a large percentage of the volunteers for this important day.  Watch below to learn more about their impact in the community:

Here are a few more stories that came in from our hard-working, global volunteering crew in 2021:

Luisa W. from Germany seen above shares, “thank you for giving us this great opportunity!  I was a truly amazing day and so so inspiring!  During the shift I not only got to meet wonderful new people but also got the chance to talk to all the runners and got to hear some of their stories. It really was an amazing experience that I would recommend everyone to do.”

“The volunteering was an amazing experience and I am very grateful that I could be a part of it!” 
-Katrin from Austria
It was amazing!  Great experience, we had so much fun! -Maja from Poland and her friend
It was a once in a lifetime experience. – Luisa R. from Germany
It is a unique experience.  I feel very lucky to be able to cheer on the runners on their way to the finish line
and be part of this great global event.  – Miriam from Mexico
Thank you so much for the opportunity to volunteer at this event!
It was an incredible experience and I had a lot of fun as well! -Kim from Germany
It was a great experience to take part in such a huge event! I loved the volunteering part but
I wish I could run with all of these amazing runners! Hats off! – Paulina from Poland
Volunteering was amazing and so interesting to see all the people doing so good at the marathon.  Thanks for the opportunity.  APIA thanks. – Bianca