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Thailand Community Development Course

Learn about educational inequalities while contributing towards sustainable solutions

Discover service learning in Phang Nga province, Thailand. Contribute to the education of local impoverished children by improving the community’s non-formal education center. Develop personal and career focused skills by completing connected educational assignments, all part of a comprehensive curriculum.

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Course Overview

This inter-disciplinary course, accredited by universities and colleges around the world, introduces students to international service-learning and sustainable development, both in content and practice, in Phang Nga, Thailand.

Through lectures, discussion, research, service, and reflection (beginning two weeks prior to their departure and continuing two weeks after their return home), students in this course engage in meaningful, context-driven service-learning at home and abroad. Emphasis will be placed on relating long-term project goals with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and engaging in daily reflection surrounding the experience, which will be lead by qualified group facilitators who are trained to enhance individual student development. The course curriculum will be tailored to your students’ academic needs as well as any faculty requirements.

A GVI service-learning course provides students with access to skill development and practical experience while engaging with a rigorous curriculum. By participating in this course, students will be prepared and encouraged to discuss and contribute to solutions for critical global issues related to sustainable development, within a local community and alongside an international team. By providing students the opportunity to live and work within the “classroom” of their chosen field of study, they will develop professional capacities associated with intercultural competency, global citizenship, teamwork, problem-solving, and leadership.

For full details of the curriculum, you can download our Service Learning Curriculum PDF here.

Learning Objectives

Participants in this course will:

  • Experience global learning contexts associated with international service-learning
  • Learn about the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and how they are implemented both domestically and abroad;
  • Explore their role as a development actor through in-country service-learning and reflection;
  • Develop greater intercultural competency, global awareness, and a sense of global citizenship; and
  • Build personal and professional capacities of writing, reflection, communication, flexibility, adaptability, teamwork, leadership, and problem-solving.

 

 

The Project in Phang Nga:

The objectives for each GVI project are based on specific United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. In Phang Nga, students will largely contribute to need-based community development projects in the area that primarily improves the general infrastructure and learning environments for local disadvantaged children. These initiatives collectively incorporate the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals listed below:

  • SDG no.1: End poverty in all of its forms everywhere
  • SDG no.4: Ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning
  • SDG no.9: Build resilient infrastructure, promote sustainable industrialization and forest innovation
  • SDG no.10: Reduce inequalities within and among countries
  • SDG no.16: Promote just, peaceful, and inclusive societies

The course will focus on improving basic human rights through educational development, infrastructure improvement, and reciprocal cultural exchange. Students will critically examine their individual and collective on the ground impact asking pertinent questions in order to evaluate their successes and challenges. They will receive continuous support from qualified staff members who will help relate and connect the students involvement with the community development projects and the SDG’s.

Please note that courses can tailored to a group’s in-class curriculum; however, specific work will always be dependent on the needs of the community and our local partners at the time.

Location

GVI’s Thailand project is located in Phang Nga Province, two hours North of Phuket, with The Andaman Sea to the West and Phang Nga Bay to the south. The province is blessed with an abundance of natural resources, numerous national parks and beautiful scenery, white sandy beaches, tropical islands, majestic limestone rock formations, and the warm hospitality of Thai locals.

 

 

Example Itinerary:

This course varies in duration, depending on project requirements as well as cultural expeditions or activities. The below outlines a one week course; however, your in-country service can run for as many weeks as set by your academic curriculum, objectives, and requirements.

Pre-Departure

Two weeks prior to departure, students will be assigned readings and assignments. These assignments make sure they have a basic cultural understanding of Phang Nga and it’s local conservation-based issues; a foundational understanding of international service learning and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals; and begin a dialogue surrounding global engagement. Materials will be chosen based on collaboration with the group’s educational leader to ensure the work fits within the group’s in-class curriculum.

In-Country:

Day 1- Arrival at Phuket Airport, Transfer, and Orientation

You will be met at Phuket airport by a GVI staff member or an appointed representative. The group will travel immediately to the project location In Phang Nga province. Students will be accommodated in dorm style rooms or homestays, and will have a chance in the afternoon to relax and settle into their rooms and new surroundings.

There will be an initial welcome presentation and introduction to the GVI staff, history and background of the projects, as well as a health and safety breakdown. Following this, the group will head out for an orientation tour to learn a bit more about the local area and language.

In the evening a reflection period will take place in which participants will debrief and review their initial reactions and observations surrounding the experience and location.

Day 2-6- Daily Structure: Service, Education, and Reflection

Students will report daily to the project construction sites where they will work side by side local community members and our partner organizations. Specific projects will depend on the needs of the centers at the time, and could involve engagement in construction and renovation projects, as well as creative activities, basic healthcare and hygiene programs, and sports development initiatives. Participating in the multiple projects is a great way for students to practice effective team building skills in order to achieve overall goals that positively affect the greater global world.

All service elements will be connected to a greater understanding of the cultural context in which the students are working. Assignments, in the form of lectures, readings, written response papers, journal entries, group presentations, and miscellaneous creative projects will be conducted daily to enhance student learning from their service involvement. Daily reflection sessions will act as the bridge that connects and helps to synthesize the many aspects of the experience.

Particular emphasis will be placed on the ways in which participants are working towards achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Students will critically examine their part in this process, by analyzing their contributions, challenges, and observations.

Day 7- A Fond Farewell

GVI field staff transfer the team back to the airport and bid them a fond farewell! GVI will endeavour to keep the group informed of any updates there might be in the field and with particular reference to the projects participants contributed to during their time in Thailand.

Post-Return

Students will continue to engage with active reflection and educational expansion two weeks after leaving Phang Nga, with emphasis placed on incorporating the international experience, and insights gained which are then applied to the students’ home context. Assignments will involve generating ideas to continue global engagement, connecting the experience to personal and career goals, and reflecting on the insights gained while in the field.

 

 

What’s Included

  • A dedicated trip co-ordinator
  • Pre-departure information
  • Flight bookings service on request
  • Accommodation
  • In-country support
  • Group leader
  • Insurance on request
  • 24/7 back up and support
  • Food and drinking water
  • First aid equipment
  • Comprehensive health and safety procedures (Emergency Action Plans and Risk Assessments)
  • In-country transport costs
  • Access to local medical facilities
  • Up-to-date safety and country information
  • Highly experienced and well qualified GVI field staff

What’s Not Included

  • Visas
  • Vaccinations
  • Personal kit
  • Additional spending money
  • Flights

Please note prices are subject to seasonal fluctuation and will vary depending upon the needs of the group.

**Optional extras include travel insurance and flight services

Course Details

Location

Asia – Thailand – Phang Nga

Duration

From 1 week +

Course Focus

Community Development

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7 Day PDF

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14 Day PDF

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The spirit. There seemed to be some intangible bond between the kids and the GVI staff. It was a joy to see that a group of highly dedicated, hard working people spend their life pursuing happiness for all, even those with disadvantages such as disabilities.

Louis Charles Van Der Lande

Thailand Community, 2014, UK

Interested in this exciting opportunity?

Get in touch, and secure your future by learning the right way.

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