When I first got to the Thailand orphanage volunteer program, I had absolutely no idea what to expect. I had never been on an airplane by myself, nonetheless been that far away from home.
When I first got off the plane, I was extremely excited and relieved to see a sign with my name on it next to another young girl traveling by herself. A Thai woman directed us to the train we would be taking to meet Korn (one of the main coordinators). After a long train ride, taxi ride and then a somewhat frightening ride in the back of a truck, we arrived at the Greenway Twin house.
Breakfast was at 8:00 a.m. every morning and we would leave for the orphanage at 9:00 a.m. Breakfast, along with lunch and dinner was rice with tofu and fruit.
I loved being a part of the Thailand volunteer program and living at Twin house. I was the only American, so at times, the language barrier was a little bit tough. Most of the volunteers were either French or Dutch and spoke a good amount of English but at first I talked too fast and used difficult words. With time, I got a lot better at it and the language barrier was not a problem at all.
Working at the Thailand orphanage was one of the best experiences of my life. The children were so incredibly sweet and eager to learn. The younger children barely knew any English so we had to find ways to communicate with them through pictures and hand motions. The first day left me exhausted and I felt like I would never excel at teaching English. The next day was so much better and with time, I got really good at teaching. After this experience, I really think anyone can learn to be a teacher.
It was interesting to see what it was like to have 100 sisters and brothers. It was really amazing to see how close they all are and how grateful they were just to have us visit them.
The weekends were free time, so a lot of people took day trips to Sing Buri town or they went to Bangkok.
The staff were very helpful when organizing safe, cheap and worthwhile weekend trips. It was really awesome to spend the week working with the kids but also have the weekend to explore Thailand.
My only regret about the trip is that I didn’t spend more time there! The kids and the program are wonderful and I would do it again in a second!