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Volunteering in Bali

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Hi everyone, I noticed a few discussions on volunteering and wanted to share my experience. I took a one month sabbatical from my job and wanted to experience a different kind of holiday beyond the usual lazing by the beach. Bali was top on my list because I had been to the island 6-7 times and loved it. After some research, I decided to volunteer with the International Humanity Foundation because I had experience teaching underprivileged kids and because the centre could accommodate my leave schedule. There was also the added benefit of staying in a part of Bali -Candidasa I was not familiar with.

The centre in Bali provides English, Maths and Computer classes for students from the Muslim and Hindu village nearby. Here, I teach English to students between ages 7-8 and 15-16. Since I speak Bahasa Malaysia (very similar to Bahasa Indonesia), I found it easier to explain the words to students. I can only imagine the struggle other volunteers must have, if they do not speak the local language and it is amazing how they persevered.

During my stay, I realized that kids everywhere are just they same: they are competitive during class activities, they love getting stars and praises for good behavior, they have their own cliques with their own politics and they constantly ask to play games on our smart phones. So it turns out, I did not have to worry about too much culture shock.

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