Frequently meeting and providing training for our host families is something that we at Volunteer for the Visayans hold with high regards. Not only does such frequent contact enable us to sustain a healthy and appreciative relationship with our homestay families, but also offers us the opportunity to provide training that our homestay mothers might not necessarily be exposed to should they not be involved in our programs.
This July, volunteers Alyssa and Jamie conducted a comprehensive seminar for our homestays which instructed them on the use of basic international sign-language. Over the years, VFV has accommodated a number of deaf volunteers and preparing our host families to have the ability to understand and execute a few friendly greetings will not only make our homestays feel comfortable, but will also be a pleasant surprise for our volunteers upon their arrival.
At the same time, this additional activity has only happened because Jamie and Alyssa have chosen to go over and beyond their regular commitments and is a prime example of the successful well-rounded program that VFV offers for individuals who want to make a difference.
Jamie and Alyssa are both currently working on our Deaf Education Project which sees them volunteering at some of the institutes that cater for deaf students in the local area. There is a real severe lack of local professionals who can effectively use sign language and as a result the schools and special education department look for overseas volunteers to augment support when possible.
Jamie is currently assigned at the Special Education Department of a local Elementary school and is assisting local students with their daily classes. Being deaf himself, Jamie is able to act as an example to the children and show them that they can continue to live full and interesting lives despite being deaf. As for Alyssa, she is assigned at a local High School which has an extremely under-resourced special education department. Alyssa is responsible for translating oral English lessons into sign language and providing educational support for the children.
These projects are a remarkable example of how international volunteers can make a real difference and provide needed support to local institutes when they decide to Volunteer Abroad in the Philippines on a Deaf Education Project. If you’ve got some expertize in international sign language, or would like to request more information about this project or any of our other projects, then don’t hesitate to contact our friendly staff.