Travel to the tropical Andaman area of southern Thailand, a region famous for its white sand beaches, lush jungle, stunning waterfalls and ancient sites. This internship is an excellent opportunity for you to begin or continue a career in teaching while making a huge difference to both the children you will teach and to the wider community.
Your first 12 weeks will be spent working alongside other volunteers on our project in Thailand whilst also undertaking TEFL (Teach English as a Foreign Language) training for your full certification. Upon completion of your training you will start your work placement, using your new found skills as a professional TEFL teacher, becoming further immersed in this friendly and fascinating culture.
After a successful internship, qualifying candidates may be given the opportunity to work for GVI or selected partner organisations in Thailand or in other countries around the world where GVI operate. Teaching positions can be paid or unpaid, range in duration from one month to one year, and availability varies. Qualification for possible GVI positions is at the sole discretion of Global Vision International.
GVI is real volunteering
Our projects are constantly evolving according to the needs on the ground at any given time. All the information displayed here will give you an overall feel for the project, but you should be prepared for any changes in the field when you travel. An evolving project means that we can constantly meet the needs and requirements of our partners, who dictate the work that we do. The way it should be.
Before becoming TEFL-certified you will begin with training with a qualified instructor, focusing on teaching and lesson planning techniques, practicing new found skills as you teach English to students in the evenings in a small and personal classroom setting.
The 100-hour course is run in the first four weeks of the initial teacher training . The end result provides high quality teachers who can use their skills to teach in a range of environments, from communities with few resources to commercial TEFL posts. GVI is listed as an Institutional Member of the International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language (IATEFL), and the 100-hour TEFL course complies with the UK’s College of Teachers code of conduct (CoT).
Once you become a qualified TEFL teacher you will have a two week break where you will have the chance to get involved in other projects, such as teaching in local schools and on environmental education projects, before teaching an additional four week term in the local community. You will then begin your work placement* within the community, where you will take and lead your own English classes, further building upon the skills you have learned. Those interns placed at the GVI base will have the opportunity to help further develop our community classes, take on extra lessons within the community, and use their knowledge and experience to assist new volunteers through their training. Although rewarding, your days can be long as you learn and develop alongside your students.
Your accommodation for your first 12 weeks will be at our base in basic but comfortable surroundings with cold running water and electricity. Rooms are dormitory style with shared amenities and duties around base. During your placement your accommodation will depend on where you are placed; it may be at the GVI base, in a homestay with a Thai family, a guesthouse or your own independent rooms.
* Please note, during the school holidays (March, April and October) all work placements will be at the GVI base.
As tourism has developed in the area, many local communities have lost natural resources, altering their way of life and causing many traditions to be lost.
GVI works directly with communities in Thailand in order to; provide free English lessons to the community; train local teachers; assist in the development of sustainable local business; and, develop lesson plans to highlight important issues in the wider community.
Our overall goal is to support local communities to develop with tourism that blends into their lifestyle.
How this project makes a difference:
For local people in Thailand, English skills open doors for future educational and professional opportunities. Children starting at a young age will learn the language quicker that will prepare them well for their future.
By putting skills and knowledge into the hands of the local community, we are able to provide the tools to improve their own lives, livelihoods and future opportunities.
The TEFL course itself is fairly intense, especially in the first week or two, but as I progressed through it everything began to click and I could see how the theory applied in the classroom. It was a bit nerve-wracking being thrown in the deep end and teaching on day three, but it was a lot of fun! The students were so enthusiastic and keen to learn and I’ve loved teaching them. It’s been challenging and I’ve definitely been taken out of my comfort zone but I feel like I’ve learned a lot about myself.
The fact that we are teachers in a town, which for the moment at least, has very few tourists, means that we are able to see the real Thailand. We go to villages not tourist visits, we explore caves that have yet to be frequented by foreigners, we swim in places that are totally deserted but for the GVI team, and we play basketball and drink beer with the locals. This place is amazing if you want to see unseen Thailand as well as actually making a difference I would definitely suggest GVI in Ao Luk.
Volunteering with GVI not only allows you to participate on programs assisting disadvantaged communities or endangered ecosystems but it also offers wonderful opportunities to travel in the local area in your down time or further afield either before or after your program. Many decide to travel after volunteering, solidifying the lifetime friendships established on program.
Our long term field staff are a great source of advice and are here to help you make the most of your time abroad. Remember to ask about discounts on local activities and side trips through your association with GVI. Our Phang Nga field teams have helped us put together the following information on trips and travel options in Thailand!
Optional Side Trips
Take advantage of the amazing sites and scenery the Andaman region of Thailand has to offer. There are endless opportunities to visit islands, beaches, parks and caves and many can be done on weekends. While on the ground, we are here to help so make sure to ask our field staff to assist you with planning trips.
Explore the amazing Khao Sok National Park, including the stunning Cheow Larn Lake and 740km² of rainforest and which is home to elephants, leopards, tigers, deer, monkeys, lizards, birds, and the Rafflesia - the largest flowers in the world, 90cm across with a unique aroma…of rotting flesh! Take a day trip for a quick sample of the park’s delights or stay overnight and discover even more – perhaps in one of the jungle tree houses, or even on a bungalow that floats on the lake. Trek through the jungle, kayak around Cheow Larn lake visiting spectacular limestone caves, swim in idyllic waterfalls or just relax and see what you can spot!
Khao Lak is a very popular tourist spot close by, with beautiful, seemingly endless beaches, so many dining options you’ll be spoilt for choice and hundreds of spas offering massages and treatments at reasonable rates. With a wide range of accommodation options, from luxury resorts to hostels, Khao Lak offers you the chance to spoil yourself for a few days, whether you’re on a budget or looking to splurge a little.
The Similan and Surin Island groups, both under the protection of their Marine National Park status, are home to some of the best diving and snorkelling spots in the region. You can take a day trip, stay on a live aboard boat or even stay overnight on the islands themselves.
Phuket Island, about 90mins south of Khao Lak and renowned for its colourful night life is also a great stop-off for divers and snorkelers, but if you’re not the diving type you can explore Phang Nga Bay by speed-boat or sea kayak, stopping off at James Bond Island, made famous by the 1974 film ‘The Man With the Golden Gun’ before visiting the floating Sea Gypsy village. Phuket is also very popular with surfers, playing host to annual surfing competitions, though there is a great ‘secret spot’ near Khao Lak…if you’re interested GVI staff will show you the way!
Neighbouring Krabi Province is a treasure trove for intrepid travellers; from the crystal clear Emerald Pond to the epic 1,237-step climb up to the Buddha image and stunning views at the Tiger Temple Cave to the enchanted scenery and pools of Than Bok Khoranee National Park to the shopping and late night bars of Ao Nang to the chilled out beaches of Koh Lanta Island to the parties of Phi Phi, where ‘The Beach’ was filmed - the options are truly endless!
Further Travelling Opportunities
Thailand is a country with a whole range of fantastic places that you could visit. If you have the time and budget, you could consider going to see the following; the waterfalls of the picturesque Khao Yai National Park, the mountain town of Chiang Mai, the local tribes of Nam Province, the beaches of Ko Tao and Mu Ko Chang Marine National Park, the golden kingdom of Ayuthaya, the temples and nightlife of Bangkok and many more…
Build Your Program
- Pre-departure support and discounted services
- 24-hour emergency phone
- Airport pick-up (unless otherwise stated)
- Arrival orientation
- Long term experienced staff
- Safe and basic accommodations (usually shared)
- All meals (unless otherwise stated in field manuals)
- Welcome meeting
- Location orientation
- All necessary project training by experienced staff
- All necessary project equipment and materials
- 24-hour in-country support
- Teamwork and leadership experience
- 100 hour TEFL course
- Training and materials
- Basic Thai lessons
- Immersion in a traditional Thai community within a beautiful tropical paradise
- First Aid & CPR training and certification
- Weekly evaluation
- Final evaluation
- Certification and summary of training and experience received
- Confidential professional reference
- Work placement
What's Not Included
- Medical and travel insurance
- Visa costs
- Personal kit
- Additional drinks and gratuities
- Extra local excursions
- International and domestic airport taxes