FAQ for Learn2Give Volunteers
- How much is the project fee?
We do not charge our L2G Volunteers a project fee as we believe it will inspire them to make the most of their opportunity, which in turn is of more value to the schools in our communities.
- How many L2G volunteers you host at a time?
We host many L2G Volunteers but would normally place one or two volunteers in each school that we work with.
- Is accommodation provided for me whilst volunteering and is there a cost?
You will get free accommodation provided by the school whilst volunteering with them.
- Is it possible to have a choice as to which school or age group that I will be teaching?
L2G will place the volunteers based on the schools needs.
- If my application is successful, are you able to provide a letter of recommendation to apply for longer visa (non-immigrant ‘O’ type for volunteers)?
As we are a student-lead and unregistered organization, we are not able to provide you with a long-stay visa recommendation letter. Most of our previous volunteers were holding tourist visas at the time of their placements.
- 6. Will I have 24-hour service from the project?
We cannot provide you with the 24-hour service. However, you can call us any time if you would like assistance or advice and of course in case of any emergency.
- 7. Where do the English Crazy Club get their funding from?
We are a self-funding organization. The main source of our fund-raising activities is organizing free English camps for schools, for which they make a small financial donation back to us. We have also been raising funds by selling which we create ourselves, namely postcards, T-shirts, bags, etc.
- 1. How rural/urban is the area where I will be staying?
We operate in rural communities in which there are basic infrastructures, namely local groceries, primary care unit, police station, running-water systems, electricity, Internet access. These basic facilities accommodate communities simple lives and local sustainability.
- 2. How far is the school from Ubon city?
Our service areas cover a maximum radius of 100-200 kilometres from Ubon.
- When do the L2G school networks take a break? When does the semester start?
The first semester starts from mid—May to the end of September and the second semester is from the beginning of November to the end of February. That means the school break is between Match to mid—May.
- 4. Will I have the Internet access in the teaching area?
Yes you will have, but the speed is somewhat limited.
- 5. Will I have another volunteer staying with me in the same school?
Normally, there is only one volunteer at the school at a time.
- Where will I be teaching
You will be teaching in primary schools and high schools mainly in Ubon Ratchathani and neighboring provinces namely Sisaket, Amnat Charoen, located in the northeast ofThailand.
- How long will I be teaching for?
The duration of your teaching will last at least two weeks, longer placements depend on your availability.
- How old are the students?
In case of the primary school, the students are aged from 7-12 years old. In case of the high school, the students are aged from 13 to 18 years old.
- Is it possible to teach independently or will there be other volunteers sharing the classroom?
Normally, you will be the only volunteer at the school. If you are confident in teaching and coping with the students, you will be teaching independently. If you think you are very new in teaching, you can be the local teacher’s assistant.
- Is it possible to teach for 3 months? Would that be at the same school for the whole time?
It is possible in case of the school’s finance as well as your teaching performance and school’s consideration. That means if the school is running out of budget we need to relocate you in another school. However, from our experiences, none of our volunteers were relocated.
- Can you suggest anything to prepare for teaching or anything to bring along?If you would like to, you can bring along some souvenirs representing your country or family for the host school.
- Do I have to bring something along for my teaching class?
The school can provide you with basic teaching materials namely whiteboard, markers, chairs, tables etc. However, if you would like to make your class interesting, we highly recommend you come up with your presentation of your country/family/school/foods as cultural exchange activities.
- 8. What dress should I wear when teaching?
You should dress politely but you do not need to wear uniform. No shorts, No tank—top, No sleeveless are consider inappropriate.
- If I come with my partner (spouse/boyfriend/girlfriend/friend), will we be teaching together? Or will each have a separate group?
You can be teaching together at the same school.
- 10. How many hours a day I will spend at the school?
You are supposed to be at the school from 8 am. to 4 pm.; however, you might be teaching for approximately 3 – 5 hours a day.
- 11. When I arrived will there be an opportunity to debrief on exactly how we are to go about teaching?
You can discuss teaching activities with our L2G staff. Also, we believe that the host teachers are willing to share their teaching experiences with you before, during and after your class.
- 12. Does the teaching happen with a Thai teacher in class?
If you would like to have the Thai teacher as your facilitator, you can ask the host teacher to co—work in class.
- How do I get to Ubon Ratchathani from Bangkok?
There are several ways to get to Ubon Ratchathani;
- A train: we highly recommend you to take a night sleeping train. It takes around 12 hours from Hua Lampong station inBangkokto Ubon Ratchathani station. The ticket fare is around 500-700 baht depends on what type of train you are taking. There are cheaper trains provided which cost 300-400 baht: they are not sleeping trains.
- Buses : we recommend you to take air-conditioned bus Nakhonchai Air or you can find more information by visiting www.nca.co.th
- Planes: there are several flights directly fromBangkokto Ubon Ratchathani. There are two airlines, providing you with the flight.
- 1. Will I have an orientation before I start teaching?
Yes, there are two sessions of orientations conducted INFORMALLY. The first orientation will be in Bangkok, you will meet and get to know the project and its staff before heading to Ubon Ratchathani. Another session takes place in Ubon Ratchathani in which you will be staying with some of the L2G staff members for a few days before going to the host school.
- How long will I stay with the English Crazy Club members?
After your arrival in Ubon Ratchathani, you will be picked up at the station by our ECClub members then you will be staying with some of them for one of two days before heading to the host school. During your stay with the ECClub’s members, you will be informally introduced to the local contexts.
In addition, in the case that you come as couple, we suggest you rent your private room because our L2G staff members are university students who are supposed to stay separately between male and female unless you are willing to stay separately.
- 3. How do I contact you or where should I meet when I get to Ubon?
Before your arrival in Ubon Ratchathani, you will be given the host ECClub’s number so that you can contact them in advance. Normally, if the ECClub are available, they will meet and pick you up at the train/bus station (or airport). In case of their unavailability, they will guide you how to get to them.
FOOD AND ACCOMMODATION
- 1. Do I have to pay for accommodation and food (including who I’m going to stay with)?
You will be provided with accommodation and local food during the programme,
- Do we need to worry about food and water?
If you are seriously allergic to any kinds of foods and drinks, you’re highly recommended to inform the co—ordinator staff as well as your host teacher. We would like to inform you that Isaan foods are typically hot and spicy and we DO NOT drink water from the tap. So far, most of our volunteers did not have serious problems with the foods and water. However, we believe that the localities can provide you with exotic and healthy foods which are made of household vegetables.
- 3. Are meals provided on week—ends or only during the school hours?
Yes, they are. The meals are provided by the school throughout the programme.
- If there are unusual foods for us to eat, would the family be insulted if we decline?
We are highly encouraging you to try the local food. However, if you really cannot, you can find reasonable way to refuse as we believe that the villagers are understanding.
- 1. Who can I contact if I have a problem during my stay at the school?
The first person you are recommended to consult is the host teacher. However, you can also contact the L2G co-ordinator as the second option.
- 2. Do you know if I will need to take Malaria tablets whilst we’re there?
We believe that Malaria no longer affects local people and visitors. However, if you are really concerned, you are highly recommended to be on the safe side by having all vaccinations before travelling to Ubon Ratchathani. We advise you check with your own in country medical group for their latest advice too.
- 1. Are there any activities for me to do on weekends and holidays?
The additional activities organized by the ECClub are the English camps. However, there may be extra activities organized by the host school occasionally.
- Will there be any English camps during my stay?
Yes, they are organized occasionally according to the host school’s demands.
- Are there any extra activities that I can participate during the program? (English camps and cultural activities)
Sometimes, we organize the English camp for the rural schools on the week—ends; therefore, you can join our camp activities as one in our staff team.
- 1. Can you provide me contact information of previous volunteers so that I can email them and ask to share their experiences?
Yes, in the near future we are planning to provide the new volunteers with the e-mail addresses of the previous volunteers who are willing to share their experiences.
- 2. Who are those volunteers and where are they from?
They are from various countries, USA, UK, Ireland, Canada, Australia, The Netherland, France, Spain, Sweden, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Botswana, China, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, The Philippines, New Zealand.
- What kind of visa should I apply for?
Most of our previous volunteers held tourist visa.
- Will ECClub provide me with the invitation letter for my visa arrangement?
We are terribly afraid that we cannot provide you with the invitation letter as we are non—profit and student—led organization only.
- Is a tourist visa sufficient for volunteering?
Yes, it is. Most of our previous volunteers applied for our project with the tourist visa.
- What is the cost of living like living in Ubon Ratchathani?
It is relatively cheap compared to that in Bangkok..
- 2. Is there any tips on type of clothes I should or should not wear out there?
We highly recommend you wear casual and polite dress and try to avoid wearing sleeveless or mini—skirt.
- What is the weather in Ubon like?
There are three seasons in Thailand: rain, winter, summer. The rainy season is between May to September. The winter time is between November to early February and the summer is from the end of February to late April.
- Is there a Catholic or Chapel that hold Sunday Mass?
You can perform your religious practice in a protestant Church only in the city.
- 5. What do teachers do in their spare time when they’re not teaching?
You are highly encouraged to come and experience it by yourselves. ^^