“It's incredible how much you can do just giving some of your time and love to help people, it is truly a wonderful experience and I would recommend it to everyone.”
Herpreet Uppal is a student at London University’s Royal Holloway College who volunteered with the Cambodia Community Project in July 2015.
Looking for the right organisation
I learnt about Globalteer through my university as there was a Globalteer stand at a volunteering fair. I looked Globalteer up online and the programmes they offered looked very interesting, and the whole process seemed organised and well explained. As Globalteer is a registered UK charity, this also helped with my decision making as I knew that the money donated would be going to the right place.
I was extremely excited to go to Cambodia as this was the first time ever that I had travelled without my family. Globalteer made me feel very well informed, and I received everything I needed to know before I went. I also really appreciated having a Skype chat with the volunteer coordinator in Cambodia before I left, and I was given a very useful handbook about the project and my time in Cambodia.
Making a difference at the project
All the staff at the project were very friendly, which allowed me to settle in quickly and be open about any ideas I had.
While at the project, I assisted the English teachers in helping the children with their pronunciation, sentence structures and spelling. I played games with the children and sang nursery rhymes with them, including teaching them Baa Baa Black Sheep, which they all thoroughly enjoyed.
It is very hard to pinpoint the best thing about volunteering as every part of it was extremely rewarding and it opened my eyes to how much the little things in life matter. If I had to choose one thing, however, it would be the smiles on the children's faces when they would get a high five or a 'well done'. Although I was only there for two weeks, it was amazing to see their progress in the smallest of things such as pronouncing 'sh' or spelling a word correctly.
Exploring the sights of Cambodia
I loved everything about Cambodia! It's such a beautiful country with very welcoming people and I cannot wait to go back someday. Visiting the landmine museum in Siem Reap was an especially memorable experience, and seeing and learning about the history of Cambodia put a lot of things in perspective. I also visited many temples, which were breath-taking and had unforgettable views.
For anyone thinking about volunteering in Cambodia …
I would tell people that no matter what reservations they may have, or how scary it may seem, to definitely travel to a totally different country and do something out of the norm. It is honestly the best thing you could ever do. It is incredible how much you can do giving some of your time and love to help people – it is truly a wonderful experience and I would recommend it to everyone.
You too can have a rewarding experience like Herpreet by getting involved at the Cambodia Community Project today!