With the negative effects of climate change, pollution and irresponsible development being seen around the world today, it is becoming increasingly important for students to engage in projects that work with communities to counter these with positive actions.
GROUND’s environmental programs often include an element of service learning that supports some of the social innovation already being done in communities in South East Asia. When paired with our outdoor adventure options, students are able to fully experience the geography of their host country and how little changes in human behaviour can both positively and negatively impact it.
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WHAT TEACHERS AND STUDENTS SAY ABOUT OUR PROGRAMS
Our project in Chiang Mai was well executed by the local staff Nat and Wan. They were always on top of things. They did a remarkable job to assist our students at the site and the welcome from the community, in particular, was simply wonderful!
We had a wonderful time in Thailand and it was such a great experience all around. We learned so much about Thai culture, people and their food, I now realise what it is like to get out from your comfort zone and appreciate and value new experiences.
Great trek. Great guides. A reasonable challenge for the fitter students yet not too difficult for the less active students. Some did find it very hard but pushed through to complete it which, even if they don’t see it immediately, this will be a great lesson in perseverance for them and patience for me.
It is a great way to see students grow and learn outside of the classroom and also a real opportunity to build strong relationships. It is a real privilege to be part of the students becoming more aware of the world around them and the benefits that they take for granted. It’s also nice for the students to see you in a different environment and as a real person.”
I love the jungle trek in Banlung! Since childhood, I loved being outdoors and spending time with nature so this was a great experience to be surrounded by the sounds of the jungle for a few days.
Len was one of the best guides for the program. He was very understanding of students’ abilities and was very aware of the importance of regular breaks to hydrate. He was very patient in teaching tasks and coordinating meals, etc with the homestay.
The community project was my favourite part of the trip. It was really nice to actually see the differences we were making in these kids lives; playing with the locals and eating their food really gave me a taste of the culture and the kind of lives they live, which made me really grateful for what I have back in Australia.
Being able to fully experience another culture from the perspective of someone who has lived their entire lives there is an irreplaceable experience.
The students had a really wonderful time working at the project site and the highlight was interacting with the local students. They are a lively bunch and everyone had so much fun playing together.