Na Chueak

Volunteer in Thailand | Teaching English in Na Chueak

Brief description

Volunteer in Thailand - Teaching English in Na Chueak

  • The local contact is a 57 year old Thai woman who works as head of the English department at the local school. She has been receiving volunteers since nearly 10 years now and has built extra volunteer accommodation on the same grounds of her house. Her ‘camp’ consists of a few acres of land which surrounds a small, self-made lake with a bridge over it. The volunteers stay at her camp and teach children from the local primary and secondary school either at the school (which has over 2,200 students) or at the camp itself, which is equipped with a few outdoor (shaded) areas for the volunteers to teach them. Some people from the surrounding rural area at times come to join the English classes as they are eager to learn and cannot afford paying for classes.
  • The classes are generally given with the assistance of one of the local Thai teachers. Lessons consist of simple grammar and vocabulary (and lots of English songs and games) for the younger children, and a more advanced level of grammar and vocabulary teaching for the older children.
  • The program was also initiated with the aim to promote voluntary service as a mean of cultural and educational exchange among people, and a lot of the volunteers learn local cooking, local dance, local Thai silk weaving and at times even learn how to harvest rice with the local farmers.
  • DURING THE MONTHS OF APRIL AND OCTOBER THE CHILDREN ARE ON HOLIDAYS: DURING THOSE MONTHS, ONLY IN EXCEPTIONAL CASES WILL VOLUNTEERS BE ACCEPTED TO TEACH ASPIRING MONKS.

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Na Chueak program info

 Accommodation

  • Volunteers stay at the camp. It has 3 separate wooden houses; each with an exterior patio. One house has two rooms (each with their bathroom), and the other two houses have one room (also with their respective bathroom). Each room has space for two volunteers. Finally there is also the host house, which has space for another six volunteers.
  • The camp also has a television, wifi internet, a washing machine and fans in every room (as well as some fans on the exterior patios), and a number of common areas for the volunteers to relax. There are three meals a day. Sheets, pillows, mosquito nets & blankets are provided. Bathrooms (with a toilet and shower) only have cold water, but considering the warm, humid weather, hot water is far from necessary; please bring your own towel.

Volunteer in Thailand - AccommodationFood

  • The food is typical Thai cuisine, though slightly adapted to the foreign palate (little to no spicy food), and you can expect to eat very well during your placement. There is a permanent cook who prepares a wide variety of delicious and authentic Thai dishes.
  • Breakfast: There is always bread, jam, coffee and tea, as well as some fruit. Volunteers sometimes buy some extras like cereal from a local supermarket.
  • Lunch: Rice or noodles with either vegetables, tofu, chicken, beef, fish or pork. Vegetarian dishes are always available.
  • Dinner: Similar to lunch. It is the time when most volunteers come together and talk about their day.

Volunteer in Thailand Program Na Chueak Food

What to see & do

(In Na chueak)

  • Na Chueak is a quiet rural town with just over 8,000 inhabitants. It has the typical corner store supermarket and a number of small to medium sized shops and markets, which cover the essentials.
  • Just outside the town there is a beautiful lake where volunteers often play volleyball or have a dip in the lake to refresh.
  • It also has an innovative ‘dictionary park’, where children can learn English in a fun way and at the same time enjoy themselves in a pool or with games.

Volunteer in Thailand - What to visit(In Maha Sarakham)

  • Maha Sarakham is the nearest ‘big’ city to the Camp (just under an hour from Na Chueak). It has everything a western city has (cinema, shopping center, many restaurants and bars etc. It is a university city and is catered to students in a number of ways.
  • It has a silk village and pottery village just outside of the city where you can find just that: a world of hand made products in silk or clay
  • Wang Ma Cha (“Fish Sanctuary”) is a beautiful park just North of Maha Sarakham where you can relax by the nice lake in one of the many gazebos.

Schedule

  • Working hours will range between three to five hours per day at either the local primary or secondary schools.
  • After school there are activities at the volunteer accommodation site for the children, revolving mainly around English communication for daily life.
  • The school is about a 5 minute car drive away from the volunteer house or 20-30 minutes by bike close to the center of Na Chueak.
  • DURING THE MONTHS OF APRIL AND OCTOBER THE CHILDREN ARE ON HOLIDAYS: DURING THOSE MONTHS, ONLY IN EXCEPTIONAL CASES WILL VOLUNTEERS BE ACCEPTED TO TEACH ASPIRING MONKS.

Volunteer in Thailand Program Na Chueak Map

  • Minimum 18 years old, show creativity & initiative, confidence in the classroom & effective time management skills.
  • Fluent English
  • (Depending on the program the requirements can be slightly more; for some a University degree, teaching certificate or being a native speaker can be a prerequisite).

Volunteer in Thailand Program Na Chueak House

  • Pickup from Bus terminal
  • Accommodation (Food and lodging) at the local NGO dormitory
  • Orientation
  • Short introduction to Thailand and the local area
  • Practical information and arrangements
  • The possibility to practice Thai with a local volunteer
  • Sightseeing and exposure tour in the local area
  • Visit to Host Placement(s) primarily with the local contact.
  • On-going support and supervision during the program

Volunteer in Thailand Program Na Chueak House Outside

Volunteer Period Cost (Thai Baht)
2 weeks THB 6,000
3 week THB 9,000
1 month THB 12,000
6 weeks THB 18,000
2 months THB 24,000
3 months THB 36,000
4 months THB 48,000
5 months THB 60,000
6 months THB 72,000
7 months THB 84,000
8 months THB 96,000
9 months THB 108,000

 

Please click here to convert the prices to your local currency.

  • INTVS charges its own fee of 185€, regardless of the time that a volunteer stays abroad. This fee covers;
  • Volunteer support prior to, during and after the volunteer experience (in English, French & Spanish)
  • All necessary preparatory information including;
    • Visas
    • Vaccinations
    • Travel/Medical Insurance
    • Police Check form
    • The program (the site, schedule, role…)
    • Local contacts & important numbers

And also…

  • History, demographics & local norms
  • What to bring
  • Do’s and don’ts
  • And much more.
  • It also covers work and travel costs that INTVS staff incur to check up on and document the programs on a regular basis.
  • The payments to the local organizations and INTVS are completely separate. We do NOT charge them a commission and 100% of the program cost goes to them.

Volunteer in Thailand

Why did you decide to become a volunteer? Because I love to help and also love to travel around the world learning about the different cultures, so this is a really nice opportunity to do both.

What did you find the most challenging? I think the most challenging thing was trying to make myself understood, and keep all the attention, because for these kids it’s not easy learn English, and nobody there speaks it, so it’s really hard try to communicate with them.

What did you find the most rewarding? The love they give me, for that you don’t need words.

What have you learnt from the experience? I learn about the simplicity of life, and how these people there live with the basic and they live totally happy and quiet.

What advice would you give to future volunteers? I advise them to keep their minds open to learn about a really interesting culture, because they are really friendly and want you to learn everything about them.

Maria Fernanda Martinez (Colombia)

Demographics

  • Population: 70 million (2013)
  • Currency: Thai Baht (THB)
  • Capital City: Bangkok
  • Land area: 198,000 square miles / 513,000 square kilometers (about the size of Spain)
  • People living below poverty line: Approximately 7,8% of the population. (Approximately 5,5 million)
  • Language: Official: Thai
    Spoken: Thai, Chinese, Lao, Malay and Mon-Khmer, while English use is becoming more prevalent in government and commerce. It is also being taught in secondary schools and Universities, so many of the younger generation have a reasonable level of English, though this is far less evident in rural areas.

Volunteer in Thailand Maps

Culture

  • Thailand’s culture is influenced by today’s society, yet also stays very true to its traditions.
  • ‘’Bangkokians’’ (and Thai people in general) are very polite people, proud of their past and always contained even when angry. In fact, maintaining a calm, peaceful and harmonious demeanor at all times is crucial. Bad temper, raising one’s voice, threatening gestures and critical comments are generally avoided as they are deemed of no purpose. Though most Thai people are too polite to make a remark about rude behavior, their silence should not fool you…they will still be offended. Looks and appearances are important as, the more you have made an effort to dress appropriately, the more you show respect. When meeting Thai people, dressing smartly, or at least appropriately, can be interpreted as the degree of respect you hold for them.
  • The Thai Royal Family is looked up to by most Thai, and visitors are asked to show respect towards the Royal family.

Volunteer in Thailand - CultureHistory

  • Thailand is the only country in South East Asia that was never colonized throughout its 800 year ‘recent’ history. In fact Thailand literally means the land of the ‘’Free’’ (Thai). Prior to the 13th century however, modern day Thailand had been settled by ethnic Malays, Khmers and Mon.
  • During the 10th century, ethnic Thais invaded, fighting off the governing Khmer empire and establishing the Sukhothai Kingdom (1238-1448), as well as its rival, the Ayutthaya Kingdom (1351-1767). Over time, the Ayutthaya grew more powerful, subjecting the Sukhothai and dominating most of southern and central Thailand.
  • In 1767, the Ayutthaya were driven from the Ayutthaya capital, dividing Thailand. The Burmese only held power for two years and were soon overrun by the Siamese leader general Taksin. Taksin soon went mad and was replaced by the founder of the Chakri dynasty; Rami I. This dynasty remains in place until today, Rama I having moved the capital to its present site of Bangkok today.
  • In 1932, the military forces staged a coup d’état that transformed the country into a constitutional monarchy. Nine years later, the Japanese invaded the country, inciting the Thais to attack and take Laos from the French. Following Japan’s defeat in 1945, the Thais were forced to return the land they’d taken.
  • The current monarch, King Bhumibol Adulyadej, came to the throne in 1946 after the mysterious shooting death of his older brother. Since 1973, power has moved from military to civilian hands repeatedly.

 Volunteer in Thailand - History