Volunteer 15 hours each week in Vietnam in exchange for free room and board.
Conversation Partners are placed in either Ho Chi Min City or Hanoi. Weekends are usually free for Conversation Partners to explore local sites. You can even choose to spend one month in Ho Chi Minh City and one month in Hanoi.
What is a Conversation Partner?
Volunteer to be a Conversation Partner and you will be speaking conversational English to the local police department, hotel staff, local business professionals, teachers, business importers and exporters, travel guides, students. You do not need to be a teacher or to have teaching experience to be a Conversation Partner. You just need to meet with the group each day (up to 15 hours each week) and converse in English with them. It's fun and rewarding.
You may live with a host family (free private room and 3 healthy home cooked meals each day) or you may live in a dorm in a private room or even a hotel (free private room and free meals each day).
Put in a couple of hours each day literally talking. The rest of your time is spent traveling and experiencing the culture of your host country in depth. "Meet" the group you will tutor in advance through email and phone calls. Each business or organization is interviewed and carefully screened by in-country staff.
Do you want to learn a new language or brush up on your current language skills? We can easily arrange optional language classes for you. It's up to you.
Placements in Vietnam as a Conversation Partner:
You can choose to be placed in Ho Chi Minh City. Work with college-age students at the Saigon Tourist Hospitality College. Live at the school or in a nearby apartment and have meals with the students and teachers at the school. This is a one-month placement.
Choose Hanoi for placement at a school that prepares students for overseas work in English-speaking countries. The school is operated by the Labour Overseas Deployment Corporation. You will work closely with English teachers. Students will be studying English, but need lots of help with conversation skills. In Hanoi, you will live in housing right at the school, as there are overseas teaching staff that live on site. This is a one-month placement.
Choose both placements for a 2-month stay.
Apply now for the opportunity of a liftetime and a very unique way to see Vietnam.
Volunteer 15 hours each week in Ecuador in exchange for free room and half board. Weekends are normally free to experience the culture by traveling around Ecuador. Conversation Partners can be placed in the Quito area and Galapagos Islands, as well as a few placements in Guayaquil and Cuenca.
- Cultural Exchange Agencies. Ecuadorians are very interested in learning languages and participating in programs such as work and travel, au pair, academic year abroad, etc. A tutor is needed to prepare the participants with their English communication skills before the Ecuadorian goes abroad. The tutor can also assist the cultural exchange agency staff. (Location: Quito, Guayaquil or Cuenca)
- Travel Companies. Due to the growth of tourism in Ecuador, there are many travel companies, mostly based in Quito. These travel companies promote tourism packages in the country and abroad. English language skills of the sales staff is always an area of improvement. (Location: Quito, Guayaquil, Cuenca, and Galapagos Islands)
- Ecuadorian Import/Export Business.
- Flower companies. Ecuador is the third largest flower exporter in the world. The flower companies are based mostly in Quito and surrounding areas. The companies take care of exports; quality control, distribution and commercialization. A GeoVisions Conversation Partner will help staff members to improve their communication with their international clients. (Location: Quito)
- Government Organizations. Due to the increased number of visitors to the Galapagos Islands, staff members want to improve their English skills in order to help with the tourists, mainly at the airport. (Location: Galapagos Islands)
- Spanish Schools. Tourism in Ecuador has been increasing annually with people coming to Quito to learn Spanish. Spanish teachers want to improve their English conversation skills in oder to communicate better with students wanting to learn basic Spanish. (Location: Quito)
Conversation Partner tutors can request a specific agency and location. While every effort will be made to meet these requests, placements are based on need and availability.
This is a high-energy and really fun position. GeoVisions provides the materials; you provide the personality to liven up an informal conversation class! Find out first-hand how Ecuadorians live and work day-to-day. Sometimes there are opportunities to take part in activities. Plus, the locals can show you landmarks and hidden gems.
Conversation Partner volunteers must be native English speakers. You need to have earned a high school (secondary school) diploma or certificate, and be in good health. Placements are available year 'round and range in duration from one to three months.
What You Get For Your Program Fee:
- Personalized Volunteer Placement with a host family (or dorm, hotel, or guest house) through our Partner in Ecuador, based on your skills and interests, including all the coordination, in-person visits and communication necessary with the local organization.
- Your orientation in Quito with a half-day tour of Quito.
- A comfortable, safe place to live in Ecuador, your room, half board (Breakfast and Dinner), and transportation from the airport.
- An experienced U.S. based GeoVisions Program Manager (and former volunteer with GeoVisions) who will serve as your coordinator and liaison with our in-country staff in Ecuador.
- In-country basic language assistance and (optional) language classes.
- Professional, locally-based staff to provide orientation, supervision and guidance throughout your stay.
- Extensive medical, accident and dental insurance along with emergency evacuation insurance.
- Important documents, including in-depth pre-departure packs, orientation information, and all in-country informational materials.
- Country-based airport transportation.
- A toll-free 24-hour emergency hotline in the U.S.
- Our own text book plus Premium membership at the esl-lounge.
- Two-months membership at Pongo.
- The President's Volunteer Service Award including a lapel pen, letter from the President of The United States and certificate.
According to Kathleen Crislip, who writes about student travel at About.com, food and lodging are the bigggest road trip budget busters.
Join The Conversation Corps and your food and lodging are taken care of if you will volunteer to tutor a family in conversational English up to 15 hours each week. Not only is your room and board covered, you have days free to learn a new language, volunteer in your new host community and you have weekends free to travel around your host country.
Here are those Top 5 Money Saving Road Trips Tips as reported by Ms. Crislip:
1. Eschew the drive through:
Running through Mickey D's racks up the road trip food bucks and it gets boring to boot. Stop in at Mom's Apple Pie Cafe sorts of spots for mega meals on the cheap instead. Look for early bird specials -- you and the old folks can find big dinners for a few bucks. Get off the main road for real cheap eats. Totally score on cheap street food at local celebrations like art-in-the-park type stuff -- look for balloons as you drive through towns.
2. Save on snacks:
Snacks are big budget killers on road trips -- racks of Cheetos and Fritos at 99 cents are irresistible in convenience stores. Pick up cheaper chips at grocery stores (like Safeway) in economy-sized bags instead and get roughly twice as much for your money. Bring a cooler (styrafoam varieties are cheaper at WalMart than convenience stores) and load it up with sodas from the Publix rather than 7-11.
3. Stay for free:
Camping for free is as easy as pulling off in a National Forest and stretching out under the stars. If you prefer a roof, crash free on a couch with a like-minded free spirit host in safety with Couchsurfing's database. Folks from 15 to 55 surf couches -- it's fun.
4. Find the cheapest gas:
Check out some likely choices for cheap gas in advance with these gas cost calculators. Once on the road, you'll probably forget specific stations... remember town names from your research, and pull off at big clover leaf exits to compare gas prices at several spots.
5. Save gas while driving:
Follow a few simple gas-saving tips to save a lot of road trip money:
- Turn off the AC -- it hogs the gas faster than you can say, "Four dollars a gallon?!" (Leaving four-wheel-drive engaged is also a gas-drainer.)
- Ease off the pedal well before a stop sign and coast to a stop; take off in a mellow manner. Burning rubber burns gas needlessly.
- Inflate tires to close to max -- carry a teeny tire gauge and read the tire's side.
- Avoid floors-it-for-you cruise control.
- Don't speed. Wastes gas and one ticket can destroy a summer road trip budget.