Volunteering roles overseas usually count towards the "Make a Difference" part of the Manchester Leadership Award.
Volunteering internationally is an exciting and rewarding way to make a difference in communities overseas. It may be for you if you are someone who is happy to try new things, go out of your comfort zone and deal with the unexpected (and sometimes uncomfortable!). It’s a great opportunity to share your skills and knowledge and work alongside others from different backgrounds whilst learning about another country and culture.
The University's flagship overseas volunteering project Team Uganda is in it's fourth year and we will be looking for 14 volunteers and an Assistant Project Leader to spend a month in Uganda with S.A.L.V.E. international in summer 2018.
We are also advertising our Trusted Partners; organisations with ethical and sustainable international opportunites that we have checked out and can highly recommend.
If you are interested in finding your own volunteering overseas our advice is to be open minded, think about what you’ve got to offer and do your research. We have lots of advice and guidance to help you navigate the organisations out there and finding the opportunity that's right for you.
You could find yourself running activities with children and young people, helping with social work projects, developing business and enterprise initiatives, running climate change campaigns, supporting health promotion and more, anywhere in the world! Lots of students volunteer overseas to make an impact on poverty or an issue that they are passionate about. You'll need to think carefully about where you want to go, what you want to do and what you have got to offer. Whilst it's likely you will make a difference overseas many students come home from overseas volunteering projects and find that they have also learnt a lot more than they expected.
If you do go for it, be prepared for it to be demanding but hugely rewarding and enjoyable too!
Caitlin volunteered in summer 2016 with SLV Global, a graduate-led volunteering organisation that provides opportunities for psychology students to gain valuable, practical experience in the mental health sector in Sri Lanka and Bali. Caitlin ran therapeutic activity sessions in psychiatric facilities for individuals suffering from a range of mental health concerns, spent time at schools and centres for children with disabilities and taught English.
“I loved every minute of it and I've learnt so much! We worked on a variety of projects so I learnt a lot of different skills, trying out art, music, drama and movement therapy and teaching English. As volunteers we really were responsible for every aspect of a project. I haven't heard of any other kind of psychology experience quite as hands on as this.”