The Rewards of Being an Overseas Volunteer Teacher
Organisations like Involvement Volunteers International provide opportunities for teaching overseas and doing other types of volunteer work abroad. If you have been looking for a way to travel while achieving something worthwhile, then joining these types of programs could be what you’re looking for.
Going to another country to teach can be such a rewarding experience not only personally, but professionally as well.
1. Gain a sense of fulfilment and purpose
When you volunteer in India, Fiji, the Philippines, and other countries, you will most likely be involved in community development and educational programs. The work you do there will be valuable in providing the locals more opportunities so they can achieve better standards of living.
You can witness first hand how learning basic English goes a long way in helping students in a third-world country acquire better options for their schooling. Or how teaching mothers in a mountain village how to read and write can open up livelihood opportunities for them.
The volunteer work you are doing has purpose. And as you see how each lesson you teach is actually helping others positively, you can feel more fulfilled.
2. Immerse in a unique travel experience
Teaching overseas lets you fly to destinations you might have never thought you could visit before. Plus, going there as a volunteer allows you to experience the local culture in a deeper and more meaningful way. As a tourist, you would most likely just see the ‘postcard’ side of a locality—the side which is attractive to potential holidaymakers. On the other hand, volunteering lets you immerse in the community and observe real day-to-day culture and traditions. Your experiences will be those which you can’t usually read about in travel guides.
3. Build wonderful friendships
By joining volunteer Philippines programs (or those in other countries), you get to meet and work with people from all walks of life. These individuals have come together for a common purpose, and this is what creates a special type of bond between you. You and your fellow volunteers work to adjust to a totally new culture and place while striving to help others, and the experiences you share are unique to your group. It is not surprising to return home with a lighter heart and a load of new friends.
4. Expand your horizons
Doing volunteer work such as teaching overseas is one of the best ways to see the world. And not just see it, but actually experience it. And as the famous saying goes, “Experience is the best teacher”. If you didn’t teach in a rural primary school in Cambodia, you might have never really known how impoverished some people are in other parts of the world, or how illiteracy is such a widespread problem in other countries.
By volunteering abroad, you gain first-hand knowledge on what is really going on in other parts of the globe. The things you experience can open your eyes and give you a totally new perspective on life.
5. Acquire new skills and experiences useful to your career or profession
If you plan to volunteer India programs for teachers, for example, you can be placed in classroom settings that you are not accustomed to. The facilities and resources there can be so different from what you’re used to at home. Your teaching creativity will be tested and honed. You might have to find new techniques and be more resourceful. All of this will definitely come in handy as you continue your practice when you get home.
In addition, your volunteer work and travel experience can actually make for a more attractive application, whether for further studies or for work. This can give you an edge over other applicants and open more doors for you.
Being a volunteer teacher abroad can be one of the most rewarding experiences. And the rewards are enjoyed not just by you, but also by those you are helping and whose lives you touch.