Thailand - Learn, Volunteer and Travel
This is a great opportunity to experience Thai culture and volunteer in a meaningful teaching or orphanage placement. This is a unique program, which you can design in part by yourself and even join an exciting eco-trip after your placement.
|Location of Project||Sing Buri Province|
|Project Length||Min 1 week - Max 12 weeks|
|Arrival Airport||Bangkok Airport on Sundays|
|Volunteer Work||Orphanages, teaching, and renovation work|
|Number of Participants||10 - 20 international volunteers|
|Age||17 - 70|
|Age Exceptions||This project accepts volunteers who are 17 years old and younger with a letter of consent from a parent or guardian.|
|Family Option||This project accepts families with children as young as 5 years old.|
|Accommodation||Eco lodge campus 2 - 4 people per room|
|Food||3 vegetarian meals a day, 2 meals per day during the weekend|
|Support||Local in-country team and 24hr emergency support|
|Airport Transfers||Included on arrival day (Sundays)|
|Excursions||Local cultural tours in the area (in the Siam Culture Week)|
|Pre-Departure Kit||Full project details will be sent following registration|
|Insurance||Comprehensive travel health insurance with volunteer abroad coverage|
What's Not Included
Sing Buri is a beautiful town located 142 km north of Bangkok. It was founded during the reign of King Rama V through consolidation of 3 small towns located on the bank of The Chao Phraya River, north of Ang Thong. The town boasts an impressive collection of temples and colorful architecture that create the perfect backdrop for the numerous festivals held during the year.
About the Project
This project is designed to bring support and education to the communities of Sing Buri. Project coordinators place volunteers from all over the world in schools and orphanages so they can either help with teaching or construction work.
Volunteer Work and Contribution
You will have the option to choose between teaching at local schools and participating in construction projects at one of two orphanages.
Teaching: At this placement you will teach students aged 4-21 English or physical education in one of many rural schools in Sing Buri. The schools accept an informal teaching approach, meaning that you are able to use your own methods or style to educate the students. When volunteering, your duties may include:
- Informally teaching and assisting with school work
- Creating activities for the students
- Arranging workshops for cultural exchange, environmental awareness, and other important issues
Thai schools show respect each day to the King of Thailand and may ask participants to join the 8 o'clock morning ceremony and be part of the morning exercises that are common in Thai schools. Please note that the subjects taught are subject to change depending on current activities in the schools, which might include, for example, environmental issues or current festivals.
Orphanage Effort: Most large orphanages in Thailand also have a primary and secondary school on their grounds for both orphans and poor children in remote area of the country. The children from outside the orphanage have limited access to education so they travel to the orphanage for lessons and return home during certain periods of the year. The orphans remain in the orphanage year-round where they can enjoy a safe and secure environment with food and housing. You will be volunteering at two main orphanages and your duties may include:
- Maintaining the orphanage buildings and grounds.
- Renovating and light construction projects
A typical day: At the school placement your schedule can be flexible, but you should be prepared to volunteer 3-6 hours a day beginning at 8:30am, Monday to Friday. At the orphanage, you will also volunteer around 3-6 hours a day, but will begin working after 9am, Monday to Friday.
IMPORTANT: When confirming your dates, please take note of the long holidays (which are from mid-March until mid-May and during all of October). During such times the kids leave the orphanages and go back to their families or their villages, and special classes and English camps are arranged, as well as renovation projects. Additionally, when relevant, volunteers are able to take part in the cultural festivities occurring in the area.
Accommodations: You will live in one of 3 'Eco Houses' in Sing Buri. The houses sleep 30-72 people and have single gender shared rooms with the 2 bunk beds, with up to 4 per room. All rooms have a private western toilet and shower. A private room is available for an additional fee (please inquire upon registration if interested).
The houses are walking distance or a very short bike ride to the local villages of Tha Kham or Tha Chang. There, you can find ATM’s, pharmacy doctor surgeries, convince stores and local food markets. The local school Wat Klang Tha Kham also has a swimming pool, which you are allowed to use for a fee.
These houses are situated about 8-15 km from the town of Sing Buri depending on which house you stay at. In Sing Buri you will find all the amenities you could need i.e. internet, shops, swimming pool, hospital, pharmacy, banks and restaurants.
Food: All meals are provided daily and are typical Thai fare, including plenty of rice dishes. Meals at the house are all vegetarian.
Laundry: This can be done by hand, or at a local launderette (walking distance) for a nominal fee.
Internet: All houses have free WiFi.
You are expected to be environmentally aware and to use all resources with restraint, especially water, paper and electricity. You will be expected to clean up after yourself, and to play your part to keep the accommodation neat and organized.
You can extend your stay with one or more great program add-ons for an additional fee. Choose from one or more of the following and sign up upon registration.
Culture Week (Recommended): This 7-day jam-packed week is a great opportunity to learn about Thailand and meet other international volunteers. It offers you tours around historical areas (Ayutthaya historical park), Thai language lessons, cooking lessons, taste-testing (Thai BBQ), school visits, sightseeing (Wat Phra Phutthabat Temple (Buddha's footprint)), and so much more! This week will ease you into your volunteering experience by providing you with an better understanding of the history, culture and customs. Please note that the schedule can change at any time based on the weather conditions.
Thai Boxing: Sign up for authentic and traditional Thai boxing classes under the provincial champion of the Sing Buri district. Learn the basic principles and foundations of the exquisite art form, Muay Thai.
Hua Hin Beach & Volunteer Week: This jam-packed week will help you make the most of your experience in Thailand. You will have the chance to go on cultural excursions to learn about Thai Buddhism and assist monks with daily chores. You will also have the opportunity to teach local children with some time dedicated to beach conservation. On a few afternoons you will have free time to relax at the beaches of Hua Hin!
Jungle Trek in Khao Yai National Park: Get ready for adventure as you trek through the tropical forests which cover Khao Yai National Park. You'll have the opportunity to attend a traditional tribal dance show, trek to spectacular waterfalls and caves hidden in the jungle and more!
Thai Buddhism Immersion in Wang Nam Khiao: During this week-long program you will be introduced to Buddhism. You will have the chance to discuss Buddhism with a local monk and enjoy a 2-day stay at the Wat Suptawee Temple to learn walking and sitting meditation forms as well as experience the daily life of monks.
Elephant Experience in Umphang: Spend a week working side by side with the mahouts (elephant care takers) as they do their daily tasks with the elephants: feeding them, cleaning them and preforming health check-ups. This is an excellent opportunity to learn about how elephants fit into Thai culture and the social problems that have arisen as elephants and humans compete for land.
- Good level of English
- Motivation to work with children and meet new cultures
- Able to work in hot and humid climate
- Full travel and medical insurance
- Immunizations (please consult your doctor)
Here's an excerpt of Carmen's experience:
Here's an excerpt of Jessica's experience:
Here's an excerpt of Liran's experience:
Check out our volunteer blog at blog.goeco.org
Thailand - Orphange Volunteer Feedback, Yan Kaminsky 2010
The volunteer work was varied; I assisted with teaching English and art in schools, played football with the children and took part in renovating an entire orphanage. I even discovered skills I never knew I had and I feel that my contribution went a long way. This program is an amazing way to discover the rich culture of Thailand, which I am pretty sure most tourists never see. I should mention that the location is lush, beautiful and a great place to meet volunteers from around the world, some of whom I traveled with after my placement. So... If you looking for a unique experience, you should really put this program on your "To Do list".
Thailand GoEco Volunteer - Emilie Boucher 2010
The project in Thailand was amazing! I would definitely recommend this program. I really wish I could have stayed longer and I am hoping to go back some day. Also, I wanted to let you know that after talking to some other people about their organizations, GoEco is well organized and supportive of their volunteers.