Help the teachers and assist during lessons, play with children and help organize activites.
The institutions and schools for disabled children in Costa Rica are dedicated to children with physical and or emotional problems who do not attend regular school. These schools help children with a range of disabilites such as autism, hearing and vision problems or Down -Syndrome. Autism is a psychiatric disorder of childhood characterized by deficits in communication and social interaction, preoccupation with fantasy, language impairment, and abnormal behavior this can include excessive attachment and repetitive acts. Autism is usually associated with intellectual impairment.
The schools lack profesional staff and equipment to help the children. This is why volunteer help is crucial for the schools to assist with care and teaching in the classes.
There are no specific skills needed when dealing with disabilities in Costa Rica, however if you do have any skills which can assist the institutions they are very welcome.
There are two schools where we place volunteers, these are attended by between 250 and 560 children from babies to teenagers as well as young adults between 18 to 21 years.
Your work tasks
On a day to day basis you will be expected to help teachers during classes by assisting the pupils, you will also be expected to prepare teaching materials for the classes. As English is becoming more and more important in Costa Rica you will be expected to teach the children English on a regular basis. You will also help with the operation of the schools, doing day to day tasks.
Here a little overview of the tasks that you might have to do:
At work you will be surrounded by other volunteers and teachers who all strive for the same goal as helping children this creates a good safe atmosphere which is vital for the children.
Volunteers are also encouraged to be as creative as possible and bring a fun atmosphere to the schools.
Being in the vibrant city of San Jose there are many activities to do in your spare time with regular concerts on and a range of sports to participate in, weekends are a good time to do hiking within Costa Rica
Airport pickup is provided and will drop you off with your host family
You will be living in a single room with a host family sharing a bathroom and living spaces which will allow you to indulge in the culture of Costa Rica it is also the perfect way to learn spanish. Living with a guest family will allow you to become part of the local society helping you experience this new culture.
Half board is provided by the guest family (breakfast and dinner)