Nepali school for the deaf

Nepal (N9) | View map
PRICE FROM
£161 p.w.

Price is based on 3 months
MINIMUM DURATION
1 month

Volunteer to support deaf students in Nepal

  • Teach English and maths to children needing your extra support
  • Support local speech therapists working in English sign language
  • Based in Pokhara, the most popular trekking and rafting centre in Nepal

Project summary

The deaf school is based in a lovely village community 8km from Pokhara. Beyond the school playground the massive, snow-capped peaks of the Himalaya glisten dramatically, whereas the immediate surrounds are gentle gardens with flowers spilling over the school wall.

The school serves approximately 200 children aged between 5 and 25. Students living in Pokhara are brought in by bus each morning and those living further afield stay in the boarding hostel. The older ones attend school part time and also study at the vocational training centre. Currently they can learn tailoring, computers, typing, and secretarial skills. The children can all read and write Nepali and English.

The commitment, care, dedication and professionalism of the staff are superb. Some of the staff are deaf but they all communicate in sign language. If volunteers have a knowledge of British sign language it would take approximately two weeks to learn basic Nepali sign language, which the project staff are happy to teach.

Most of the staff also speak good English. They care enormously about their work and would offer the highest possible level of support to volunteers interested in working with deaf children. What the deaf school doesn’t have in money it certainly makes up for in terms of care and attention.

Volunteer roles and responsibilities

The children all receive speech therapy in English and also study written English. It’s hoped that you would be able to help teach them English by assisting the speech therapist and by taking your own classes in written English.

Your responsibilities would include teaching maths and other academic subjects, as well as a range of extra-curricular activities, including sports; volleyball, basketball, netball, table tennis, and football in particular. You could also teach art and handicrafts, dance or drama. Wherever your strengths lie!

A volunteer interested in working with deaf children and deaf adults would find this incredibly rewarding. It would also suit an experienced or newly qualified speech and language therapist.

How you can make a difference

There is a prejudice against disabled people in Nepal. Students at the deaf school are aware of this and realise how difficult life/employment might be when they have finished their education. Teaching English skills and helping improve their ability in maths gives them a better chance of securing future employment.

The positive energy that international volunteers bring to a project boosts the self-esteem and self worth of the students.

What is distinctive about this project:

At long last a positive project for disabled people in Nepal. Well run, with good, well-educated staff who provide a thoroughly supportive, forward thinking project. Oh, and it is in the most incredible setting in Nepal.

Blue Tiger Features:

You may be the only volunteer at the project and will need to demonstrate a proactive and flexible approach to your placement. The staff are very supportive of volunteers, but cultural differences will play their part as you find the best way of making your personal mark on the project.

The facilities are decent by Nepali standards, but volunteers need to recognise that living and working in Nepal takes a degree of stamina as well as enthusiasm.

Season:

There are school holidays and numerous Hindu festivals that need checking up at the time of application.

Languages:

Learning a modest amount of Nepali is both helpful and courteous but volunteers will be able to work largely in English

Experience required:

It is not a requirement for volunteers to have experience prior to attending the project, although experience of working with deaf people and knowledge of sign language in particular will help you make a bigger difference. Those studying or practising speech therapy can bring useful knowledge on the latest techniques for dealing with hearing impairments.

Good to know:

Pokhara is probably the best centre for trekking, white water rafting and canoeing in Nepal. The skyline is dominated by the summits of Annapurna and Machhapuchhre. It is one of the liveliest Nepalese towns but infinitely more tranquil than Kathmandu. There are beautiful day walks and longer treks into the Himalayas, the best known of which is probably the trek around Annapurna.

Price table

4 weeks8 weeks12 weeks16 weeks20 weeks6 months
£1,281£1,612£1,933£2,245£2,573£2,872

Includes: Comprehensive travel insurance (supplements may apply to older travellers). Accommodation, food, airport transfer, travel to projects, in-country support
Excludes: Flights, visas, vaccinations

Things to see and do

  • Trekking
  • Tea & Temples
  • Go safari in Chitwan
  • Everest Base Camp
Ram Hari Basnet

Country co-ordinator

Ram Hari Basnet

Ram Hari is a respected businessman based in Kathmandu, with a wealth of local connections. Ram Hari built up 17 years valuable experience working in the prestigious Kathmandu Guest House and so has an excellent cultural understanding of foreign travellers. He used this platform to successfully start his own business and he now supports a number of charitable projects, including funding his own private school in his home village.

About Nepal