Teaching in Sri Lanka

As I stepped off the plane I wondered why I had chosen to volunteer in Sri Lanka. It has no Taj Mahal, pyramids or Grand Canyon - so why do I travel to the other side of the world, to a little island nestling in the shadow of India? Ironically, it is now - at the end of my two month stay - that I know exactly why.

I got on really well with my school children and it was so satisfying to see their English progress I decided to continue here, rather than transferring to the montesorri (as was my original plan) - which, again, was no problem to Projects Abroad. To fill up my day, I went with other volunteers to tsunami camp three times a week and garden school on Wednesdays (all in the afternoon); here, we taught English and did fun activities.

I have been really happy with my host family, with so much laughter in the house, never feeling as if anything is an inconvenience. The food in general is excellent, although I have a suspicion they may go easy on the spices in the curry for the benefit of Emma (the other volunteer living with my host family) and I!

So, in hindsight, I realise Sri Lanka is a perfectly logical destination. A beautiful, small country but not without its problems: beggars on the street, littered and hectic towns, houses still demolished from the tsunami, an upturned train carriage as a ghostly reminder. Jumping into a packed bus with the other guys, anticipating the weekend. An elephant amidst cars and lorries in Wadduwa. Eating roti with Emma. A night at Mambo's beach party. A Buddha statue. A smiling child. By being faced with all these images each day you not only begin to evaluate Sri Lanka's strengths and weaknesses, but also your own.


Vacancies within 20 miles of Colombo

Review added by: Projects Abroad