Volunteering in Battambang was split into two projects. In the mornings, we taught children at a Children Action Development (CAD). The afternoons were spent building an allotment and stairs for monks at their pagoda.
Anyway, this post is a dedication to Ethan’s & my team members from Sheffield Hallam University – Joe, Tom, Emily, Michelle, Renece, Shannon, Olivia, Rimi & Nicky 🙂 They made the week more amazing than it already was
I cannot express enough on how much we looked forward to getting up in the morning. Us students probably never witnessed a 7am rise in years and there we were getting up and ready. We just loved every minute of spending time and teaching the children. People would say two weeks isn’t enough and there were so many people trying to bring us down saying we’d do more harm than good because of the time frame.
You know what? don’t speak if you haven’t done it. This experience was fruitful for us as much as them. We ensured we had the best lesson plans which will be easily absorbed by the kids and especially ensured that they didn’t already know what we were going to teach them.
Half of the morning was spent in the classrooms, this doesn’t mean it was boring. We engaged them with plenty of hands on activities and taught them a range of subjects in English such as Maths, Science, Geography, History, Arts, etc.
After the lessons, we’d head down to their nearby field for sports activities. We used to draft out ideas on what type of beneficial sports activities to get them involved in – but they only ever wanted to play football! Typical in every country, huh?
We got so attached to the kids and they kept giving us drawings, hugging and kissing us. The guilt of leaving them was just overwhelming that we are already thinking of returning next summer. On the last day, they stood up and sang a few songs for us. These moments are priceless and money just can’t buy them. We didn’t care how we looked. I can be really self-concious but I really did not bother with the way I looked this week (clearly, judging from the photos ;p)
I’ll let the pictures do the talking…
Have you volunteered abroad? Was your experience different and would you do it again?