19 year old Business and Psychology student Vinay Kudhail spent eight months providing educational support to teachers in a school in rural Thailand. The experience was extremely constructive for both Vinay and the beneficiaries of his work.
As well as teaching young children for approximately 20 hours per week, Vinay helped to develop the structure of English language education and set up the first extra-curricular sports club at the school.
Upon returning to the UK at the end of June, Vinay said, “I now find myself incredibly more confident and have much better conviction in everything I do and say. I have learnt many new skills while developing the core attributes I need to take forward in my future career.”
The placement was coordinated by UK based charity VESL. The organisation is run by a team of dedicated ex-volunteers and offers volunteering opportunities in Thailand, Sri Lanka and India. Vinay was based in Ban Tong Mongchum School which is made up of four departments and 22 employees. Although he began as an English Language Assistant, Vinay was soon appointed as a full-time teacher and the Head of Department, meaning his role encompassed a lot of managerial and administrative responsibility as well.
The Ilford born student, who studies at Aston University in Birmingham, was full of nerves during the first few weeks of the placement, but soon adapted to his new surroundings and now reflects on the experience as the most worthwhile of his life.
“Building my confidence and communication skills was one of the biggest personal benefits I took from the experience. Similarly, there is possibly no bigger issue in the workplace than diversity, and job-seekers must demonstrate sensitivity and awareness to other people and cultures. Thailand helped me develop the ability to build rapport with people in a multicultural setting, which will be useful in the future.”
To find out more about VESL projects, visit their website.
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