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Paula Rajala

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Here, I would like to share my volunteering experiences in Nepal:

I worked as a volunteer in Everest Innovative School, which is a private school located in Bafal Kathmandu. In the school, I taught students from grade 1 to 7 for three months. After that I started working in kindergarten, nursery group. I had worked at Kindergarten for 5 years in Finland. During the first few weeks, I shared basic introduction about me and my country as my home country Finland wasn’t familiar with the students. I explained that that supercell and Nokia are from my country and they were surprised.  Also, I had taken Nepali language class on-arrival training that helped me a lot to tackle the daily activities during my stay in Nepal.

I got an amazing opportunity celebrate and learn about unique and fascinating local festivals. I also taught them about some western festivals and the students were very happy knowing about the western ones. However, I felt like, it was me who did most of the learning. My colleagues in the school were amiable. They always wanted to share their food with me and talked about their lives. As the kids in the nursery group couldn’t speak English, I had to learn Nepali language. I studied Nepali numbers and alphabets with the kids and it really helped me a lot.

child care project

I find vast differences in the education system between Finland and Nepal, but regardless of which country, the children are the same. Their joys and worries, their need for support and to have someone who pays attention and listens to them are always the same. I feel very lucky I had the chance to be that person for many kids while working in Nepal.

I got to learn so much with the kids and my colleagues. This precious teaching time in Nepal made me more mature. I got to develop my interpersonal and communication skills. Besides, the children and the teachers got to know many surprising things about my country. I got to experience several unique and fascinating places and things. It was indeed an experience of a lifetime.