Rural School Placement
Volunteer to teach in a rural school. Poor rural standards in education are a leading cause of child-trafficking. Desperate parents, seeking the best for their children, unwittingly send them to Kathmandu with traffickers, who falsely promise access to good schools. Having rescued children prey to such tactics, Umbrella is determined to improve rural education standards, especially in high-risk areas, and thereby stem the flow of children to Kathmandu.
You do not need to be a qualified teacher, but should have a strong command of the English language. Of great benefit to young adults seeking employment in the tourism sector, a native English speaker allows schools to model conversational and oral language skills. You will not be there to replace local teachers, but rather to work alongside them and plan complementary teaching activities. You can also assist in other subject areas and energise students by organising extra-curricular activities. And if you are a qualified teacher, you could make an even longer-lasting impact on the school by running teacher-training workshops.
Why not take this rare opportunity to live directly with a Nepali family, learn a new language, culture and way of life, teach local children, support a rural school community and have a challenging, memorable and life-altering experience?
Role and Routine
The majority of children from Nepal’s villages and cities are unable to access good education, due to a lack of financial and physical resources as well as the remote mountainous geography of the country. Umbrella strives to improve rural education standards and thereby reduce the resulting risk of trafficking. We work with schools in 4 districts: Kathmandu, Nuwakot, Sindhupalchok and Rasuwa, as they are the origin of many children in our care and considered to be high-risk for trafficking.
Teaching Nepali children is a thoroughly enjoyable experience. No matter what you believe your skill level to be, you have something to offer. Having a native speaker is a massive advantage as you can teach conversational English and oral language skills to both students and staff alike.
The Volunteer’s Routine
The Nepali school week is Sunday to Thursday 10 am – 4 pm and Friday 10 am – 1 pm, but you are expected to teach Monday to Friday only. Volunteers are not there to replace local teachers, but rather to work alongside them and plan complementary activities. You will be volunteering in primary and lower secondary schools where the children will be between the ages of 4 and 16 years of age. You are only asked to teach English, however you may support other subject areas that you are comfortable with. Assistance with school administration duties like exam supervision would be appreciated, and you are also welcome to help organise extra-curricular activities (talent shows, sports competitions) and school clubs (homework, music, dance, sports and art clubs). Your weekends can be used to explore Nepal, be a tourist, plan activities/lessons or just relax!
In getting ready for your placement, you are encouraged to ask a local school for permission to observe classes and show you some teaching ideas. You should also understand that resources are extremely limited in the institutions you will be working. Therefore, any supplies you can bring relevant to your particular programme will be very appreciated by the local people and staff. We will provide suggestions during our correspondence.
Many volunteers come with specific skill sets and look to use their experience and skills towards projects
or ideas they have in mind. It is great that people have this motivation and energy for the programme, however sometimes it is impractical to give volunteers responsibility for projects that will not be completed during their time here. If you have a certain mission or project in mind, you are encouraged to please contact the office in advance to discuss its feasibility.
Managing Your Time
Volunteers are expected to take weekends off. You are no good to us, or to the children, if you are tired or sick. Your health and well-being is very important to us!
Where: Nuwakot, Rasuwa and Sindhupalchok
Umbrella works with rural schools in these districts, the origin of many children in our care and considered high-risk areas for trafficking. While volunteers may state their location of preference, you are placed subject to availability.
When: 1st of the month
Induction of new volunteers takes place on the 1st of every month. This allows volunteers from around the world to come at the same time and join as a team. You are asked to arrive a day or so in advance. Dates are subject to change based on school holidays.
Duration: 5 weeks / 9 weeks+
There is no fixed end-date, rather just a guideline duration. We are happy to have you stay beyond your initial commitment should you wish. Individual placements can be tailored to suit volunteer’s and the school’s availability.
Accommodation: Rural homestay
You will live in a local homestay with a trusted host family. Due to its rural and authentic nature, you should expect basic but clean living conditions. It will usually include a private/shared room, Nepali toilet/bathing facilities, access to gas-stove cooking facilities and electricity. Meals are cooked for guests 2/3 times daily, and homestays are located just a few minutes’ walk from schools. Living in such a close-knit community will allow you to learn a great deal about typical Nepali life. Your host family will do their best to make you feel welcome, but you are also encouraged to interact with them and participate in household tasks. Meeting local people will equally give you a greater insight into the culture and customs of the community. Although internet can be found in the nearby main towns, there is usually none in the village (although network coverage is available for phones). At weekends, you are welcome to return to Kathmandu and stay in our shared volunteer house.
Cost: $1,500 / $2,200
Umbrella is financed by donations, child sponsors and fundraisers hosted all over the world. We ask volunteers to fundraise a minimum of $1,500 (5 weeks) or $2,200 (9 weeks) before coming to Nepal. This covers your expenses while living with us – accommodation in homestays, two meals a day and programme-running costs – and also finances the cost of caring for one child for an entire year! We appreciate that as a volunteer you will be giving of your valuable time, but we also ask that you fundraise so as to raise awareness of our work internationally and provide much-needed funds to sustain our projects.
- In-country support
- Learning about development
Upon arrival, you will receive an induction which includes a detailed introduction to Umbrella, local culture and customs, basic Nepali language and a tour around the area. For those without teaching experience, there is a workshop to prepare for the classroom, as well as plenty of ideas on how to engage with the children and energise their lessons.
The volunteer coordinator is the link between the office, the house staff and the volunteers, and is available regarding problems in the volunteer house, or to address any basic questions you might have. Umbrella has an open-door policy, so you are also more than welcome to come to the international staff with serious issues or concerns.
You will also be invited to visit related organisations to get a broader perspective of development in Nepal.
Age minimum of 18 years at time of programme
Show evidence of good character – Provision of clean police background check Health / Travel Insurance
Agree to Umbrella’s Code of Conduct
Agree to fundraise $1,000 / $2,200
For more information:
Contact: Communications manager: firstname.lastname@example.org