Education is the foundation for one’s future. It’s key to achieving one’s dreams and living happily and securely.
Yet access to education remains a problem. According to UNESCO’s 2017—18 Global Education Monitoring Report, 264 million children aren’t attending school. Moreover, a lack of resources and staffing shortages mean hundreds of millions of other students face obstacles to success. What this equates to is that lots of people aren’t provided the proper opportunity to learn crucial skills, such as reading, critical thinking, and communication.
The good news is that all kinds of work is being done to ensure people gain access to better education. One way you can help is by promoting literacy abroad through education initiatives. From teaching English in Costa Rica to offering after-school support in Romania, there are plenty of volunteer teaching opportunities abroad.
Let this article serve as your guide for finding high-quality volunteer teaching programs abroad. Read on to learn more!
Ways You Can Promote Literacy Abroad
English teaching programs are the most popular ways to teach abroad. This is because knowledge of the English language can open up doors for individuals. After all, as the world’s lingua franca, English literacy presents economic opportunity for people.
Moreover, there are literally thousands of English teaching programs across the world, from Peru to Kenya to Madagascar. So, you can really choose a program based on your budget and location preferences.
Beyond teaching English, there are other ways you can promote literacy. Remember literacy, traditionally speaking, is defined as the ability to read, write, speak, and listen. Many education experts have now expanded the definition to encompass having adequate skills to meet the demands of modern life.
That means you could teach the following:
Music Literacy: The ability to read and write musical notations and/or play an instrument has been shown to benefit language and math learning. If you know music well, volunteer to teach music abroad. International Volunteer HQ for example has many good music education projects, such as their initiative in New Orleans, USA.
Digital Literacy: Also called information literacy or computer literacy, digital literacy is absolutely a necessary skill to have in the 21st century. Unfortunately, a digital divide exists, and it’s preventing too many disadvantaged people from being able to break the cycle of poverty. You can bridge that gap by helping with computer training projects like this one in Cambodia.
Environmental Literacy: Environmental issues, such as pollution and resource depletion, could greatly impact our ability to build a sustainable future. You can promote environmental literacy through conservation initiatives that raise public awareness about local issues. By doing so, you can empower people with the skills and motivation to make responsible decisions about their environment. There are lots of great programs, from a dolphin conservation initiative in Australia to a lake preservation project in Russia.
Math literacy: Along with language literacy, numerical literacy is essential. When you volunteer to teach math abroad, you’ll help provide students with a foundation for using math to solve problems, not just in the classroom but in real life. For instance, you could teach math in Peru through GVI—and play a role in improving the quality of math education there.
Additionally, other ways you can promote literacy abroad include through childcare volunteering, special needs volunteering, and community development volunteering. For such programs, you’ll teach reading and writing, in addition to other subjects and skills.
So, are you ready to travel? Below, we’ve compiled a list of some of the top organizations for teach abroad programs. Take a look and see what captures your attention!