A common question we get asked is how to make the most of your project, this is especially true for volunteers doing a short term project, so we have written some tips below to help you make the most of your time overseas:
*Learn some of the local language, it will help you to fully immerse yourself in the local culture when you get there and it will help you understand why students struggle with certain words if you have an understanding of their language
*Have an idea of any clubs you want to run and ask about a suitable day to run them on your first day at school
*Ask if there is any projects you can get involved with at weekends, in Thailand there are often workshops you can help out with or you can set one up, either for teachers or students. In India you can help the local NGO run additional Saturday classes for upper high school students & undergraduates
* Run classes or informal chats in English for teachers after school, working with the teachers is a really sustainable way of making difference when you’re overseas, helping them to improve their English and increase their confidence in teaching English
*See if there is any additional things you can get involved with in the local community
*Make a display in your classroom or school and/or resources that you can leave at school so students have something they can look at or play to help students and staff continue their English once you’ve gone.
On your return…
*Help VESL out with Information & Selection events when you return home to encourage new volunteers to go to your project next year
*Fundraise for VESL’s Wild Fund on your return which is currently offered to our long term volunteers to enable them to identify potential opportunities to help the communities and schools they work within by purchasing resources and equipment
*Go back next year! Remember repeat volunteers get 20% off our fundraising targets!