Reece Wilson has his Summer sorted - and he’s spending it 9,000 miles from home.
The Portadown lad is jetting off to Cambodia for three months, where he plans to teach English in a primary school. Reece will be volunteering with the global organisation, Projects Abroad, which offers volunteering opportunities in a range of exciting places across the world.
I always wanted to see other parts of the worldReece Wilson
“I always wanted to see other parts of the world,” Reece shares. “I knew a bit about Cambodia’s troubled history over the past thirty years, and had wanted to go to Asia for a long time.”
After finding out about Projects Abroad online, the eighteen year old didn’t waste time in signing up: “I make split decisions! I’ll get my A levels out of the way and then fly out on July 1st. I’ll be teaching English to children affected by HIV and AIDS in a school there.”
Reece will be teaching children aged between 7 and 13 years old, who speak Cambodia’s native language, Khmer:
“There’s about twenty or thirty children to a class. Although I don’t speak Khmer, I’ll have an assistant with me in the room - so they’ll act as a halfway agent! I’ve never taught before, but there’ll be a brief induction before getting started - I’ll definitely be thrown in at the deep end!”
Joining Reece will be volunteers from all over the globe, who share his desire to lend their time to people who are most in need of it:
“On the Projects Abroad website, there’s a list of all the people travelling to volunteer in the same school as me. There are people from Italy, Australia, France - you name it, there’s someone from that country! The majority of them are going for a month, but I wanted to go out and really enjoy the place. It’s going to be a once in a life time experiece, so twelve weeks should give me a good length of time to really learn about the country and get to know the people there.”
After his return in September, Reece hopes to take a year out before setting off to university - and his masterplan might just be making him the envy of his friends:
“Most of my friends are heading off to university in September. I think they’re a little bit jealous of me heading off to Cambodia. Some are studying in Belfast and the likes of Liverpool, but none are going quite as far as Asia!
“I’m really excited - now all I have to do is show up!”