Thursday, August 23, 2012

Volunteer Positions to Teach English to North Korean Defectors

I was away from the internet last week and didn't get a chance to post this:
Applications for Volunteer Positions to Teach English to North Korean Defectors

The Embassy of Canada in Seoul, in cooperation with Citizens’ Alliance for North Korean Human Rights, will continue our program whereby Canadian English teachers would volunteer to teach North Korean defectors English here at the Embassy.

We would like to offer those interested the opportunity to apply for this program. Our program has received rave reviews from the Korean government, NGOs and most importantly, the defectors themselves. This program aims not only to teach the young North Koreans English, but also to help expose them to Western culture, including Canadian values and global perspectives. The time commitment will involve teaching one two-hour class per week, held weekdays during business hours, for twelve weeks from September through December.

If you are interested in participating in the program, please forward your CV and a cover letter, which explains why you would be an ideal candidate, to by Friday August 31.
I taught for the pilot program (there's a little more on that here), and it was certainly worthwhile. The students came from varied backgrounds (some came from the northeast, others from Pyongyang) and were at different levels (from one student who just received a scholarship to study in the U.S. to another who had only arrived in South Korea 2 months earlier and had no English background at all), but the progress made by those who attended regularly was pretty impressive. It's well worth looking into if you have the time.


The Sanity Inspector said...

This is a great-sounding program, I hope it is successful.

Anonymous said...

I really want to get involved in doing something like this but 1. I'm British and 2. I'm living in Daegu. Do you know if there are plans to roll this out or let other nationalities take part? Does it only happen in Seoul?

Anonymous said...

I would be really interested in doing this but 1. I'm British and 2. I live in Daegu. I think i'd happily commute once a month if the opportunity arose though.

Do you know if other nationalities can get involved with this?

How was it teaching beginners? Were they adults? How was that?

matt said...

Currently the program only takes place in Seoul at the embassy. I imagine there must be some kind of program for defectors available in Daegu...

matt said...

Currently they're planning intensive classes during winter vacation in January, but that's every day for a week at a time (and I think they've found teachers for most of the spots that are open). Teaching adults was good - they ranged in ages from early 20s to mid 30s, and were all university students. They were appreciative of our efforts and many of them made great strides in a short time, which was rewarding to see.