Visiting an island paradise is a dream holiday for most people. However, if you’d rather spend your time abroad making a difference to a small community, as well as lounging on the beach, try teaching in Samoa.
This small country in the South Pacific offers excellent opportunities to increase your skills and broaden your horizons. If you’re thinking about volunteering abroad, whether it’s during a gap year or career break, here are six reasons why Samoa should be your top destination.
1. Explore the beautiful landscape
When you’re not teaching, Samoa boasts a variety of spectacular environments waiting to be discovered. Whether it’s diving in the clear Pacific waters or hiking around extinct volcano craters, you’ll definitely find some stunning sights to write home about.
2. Get involved in the community
Located halfway between Hawaii and New Zealand, Samoa could be considered an isolated country. In fact, nearly three quarters of the population live on the main island of Upolu. Even if your stay is short, there’ll be plenty of opportunities to get involved in the wider community. Take home more than just teaching skills.
3. Converse easily with the locals
It’s scary enough going to another country. If there’s a language barrier, it can make you feel even worse. In Samoa, English is an official language alongside Samoan so you’ll be able to speak with those around you. In the classroom, all lessons are taught in English by midway through primary school, so you’ll have no problem chatting with the kids.
If you’re worried your lack of teaching experience might hold you back as well, don’t be. Many teaching projects abroad only need your conversational skills. This means you can teach there without previous qualifications or having undergone TEFL training.
4. See remote parts of the world
A gar year or career break is a great time to go out and see the world. There’ll be plenty of time for holidays in the future but now is your chance to travel to more remote places. Right next to the international dateline, Samoa is 14 hours ahead and pretty much as far away from the UK as you can get.
To reach Samoa, you can either travel from Australia, New Zealand or Hawaii. Whether you go via Asia or America, make the most of your trip by stopping off along the way to see more amazing countries and cultures.
5. Make a difference
It can be difficult deciding what to do on a gap year. Projects Abroad offer a variety of schemes to suit everyone. Alongside thinking about what your skills and interests are, consider how you can make a difference to a community.
The Samoan government wants all Samoans to be bilingual. By teaching here, you can help them reach that goal. In return, you’ll get to experience another culture and makes loads of new friends.
6. Experience a more relaxed way of life
As well as being famous for their hospitality, the Samoan people have a very laid back approach to life. This change in pace may come as a bit of a shock at first. However, after a few days you’ll wonder how you ever coped in the big city.
Can’t wait to start your journey? For more info about teaching in Samoa, visit www.projects-abroad.co.uk