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Rai’s three weeks of volunteering

I will start talking about my experience with Openmind projects, saying that I did not have any particular expectations. Being my first experience of volunteering, I was ready to expect anything, so I would have accepted even a possibility of a not positive situation. It wasn't too easy to find the right association. The internet world is full of false non-profit organizations and / or other companies whose main purpose is to gain money. Most of them will charge you a lot of money also for short period of staying.


The message

that openmind transmits from its website, reassure their visitors and rightly promotes the three -days training course at their main center in Nong khai. I highly recommend to all new or hypothetical interested in taking part in this brief tutorial that introduces you not only the experience and the volunteer activities that you will carry out , but also allows you to have an overview about the mentality,  the culture, traditional ways of doing of Thailand people. In these three days you will also learn a few but fundamental notions of Thai language that allow you to interact and explain yourself with all people around. That's why i will recommend the three days training also to people that go in Thailand just to visit the country. 

As far as my personal experience

I am very happy about the people I met, the things I've learned about the culture and the way of thinking of Thais. I am also pleased to be helpful teaching at the school to the youngest children. This is certainly the memory that I'll bring more in, every smile or laughter of those children, every little effort they had trying to learn a new language. I also have great memories from all the people i met at the center, all of them were really helpful and kind with me and other volunteers. We had a great time following the end of the three-days course, when there was a welcome dinner for new volunteers followed by music with local dances. Certainly a moment of joy, intense, a way to further appreciate some aspects of the local culture and feel more part of a big family.

Generally

I have not had difficult moments except living with the mosquitoes or the humid heat for a few days .. otherwise everything was perfect. The hospitality and courtesy of the guys of the center, the kitchen and the dishes tasty and delicious cooked by the girls, the volleyball games in the evening, in general always the availability of everybody to share everything from a smallest thing like a fruit juice or some ice cream, to something bigger like a council, a suggestion with English language, a thrill. 

Rai and his students playing around after class

I think I was lucky

having this experience, I believe that the association work for an important cause. Giving a chance to young people who have none, to improve their ability to speak English and knowledge of computer use. I met fabulous people with whom I will stay in contact. I hope i could repeat a similar experience one day, is certainly something that i will keep in my heart.

Rai from Italy Volunteer at Openmind Projects during July/August 2015

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