Although most children in secondary school have English lessons, they rarely get the opportunity to hear or speak with native English speakers. The team have fun ways to get them speaking, singing and playing games in English.
Many of the children are already bilingual in Spanish and an indigenous language and have the potential to learn English. They are also exposed to the English language through popular culture and the internet and, in many cases, motivated to learn. However, many parents and even their teachers do not take the subject very seriously and lack the skills to help.
The team therefore try and build the self-confidence and communication skills of the children by encouraging them to speak and understand spoken English. Due to the dynamic nature of the group, you will use a variety of techniques and teaching aids including games, songs and movies.
Please contact us if you are interested to volunteer teaching English in Latin America as we are always looking for people with excellent spoken English who can come up with interesting ways to inspire the kids to learn.
Health and Nutrition:
Many of the children live in communities or housing that lack clean water for drinking. Their diet is often very poor and hygiene standards are generally low. The programme tries to improve the immediate situation for the kids and educate them so they can better look after their own health.
The combination of poor diet and inadequate sanitary conditions put the kids at high risk of both chronic and acute diseases and infections which are entirely preventable. For a variety of reasons, healthcare is not always accessible. Sadly, the children you will work with are also in the high-risk category for physical and psychological abuse. Careful attention is given to appropriate care and support in these cases and you will be advised of the procedures on a weekly basis to ensure that each volunteer and staff member is clear on how to effectly care and work with these vulnerable children.
Each day, for each child attending they are provided with (bottled) drinking water and a healthy snack – fruit, vegetables, eggs, high fibre biscuits etc. They also receive soap and water so each child can wash their hands before eating.
There are regular workshops delivered along with local professionals on different aspects of health – dental hygiene, healthy eating, personal hygiene etc.
The are also regular sessions with the kids aimed at preventing violence and other forms of abuse. The kids should know their rights and responsibilities and should know what to do if they feel their rights are being infringed upon.
The staff team also act as a watchdog. They monitor physical, emotional or behavioral changes that might indicate a problem and intervene if they feel that a child is in need of professional help. They maintain a local network of health and legal professionals who will offer services without charge and there is an emergency fund that will pay for essential medical and other services that the families cannot afford.