Mental health and community volunteering in Sri Lanka

Krisztina Egeto-Szabo Start Date: Mar 26, 2017 - End Date: Sep 8, 2017
  • Leadership/Training Program
  • TEFL/Teach Abroad
  • Volunteer Trip
  • Sri Lanka

My Travel Story

by: Krisztina Egeto-Szabo Start Date: Mar 26, 2017 - End Date: Sep 8, 2017
  • Leadership/Training Program
  • TEFL/Teach Abroad
  • Volunteer Trip
I am Krisztina, a psychology student and I am going to volunteer with the organisation SLV.Global this summer. Sri Lanka is still recovering from a 25-year civil war, and with the wounds of the 2004 tsunami not yet healed, Sri Lanka’s population is in need of more psychological support than current resources can provide. I will be working at mental health facilities, psychiatric units and rehabilitation centres to help individuals with complex mental health issues in their recovery, whose traumas often result from human rights violations and war crimes. I’ll be running activities for patients using sensory, music and creative therapies. I will also be running activities for people with special needs and teaching English to young adults and children at development centres and primary schools, who are often marginalised by poverty and circumstance. I’ll be attending workshops run by Samutthana, the King’s College London resource centre for trauma, displacement and mental health. The main aim of Samutthana is to train and support organisations and individuals to respond to the psychosocial needs of trauma sufferers i.e. tsunami survivors and those who have experienced civil-conflict in Sri Lanka. These workshops include wide-ranging topics, such as ‘Psychological Healing Related to Tsunami and Post-War Reconciliation’ and ‘Creative Therapy and Meditation and Mindfulness’.

SLV is a voluntary organisation which started in 2010. The brainchild of Lucy Nightingale, a psychology graduate from the University of Manchester and Yasintha Rathnayake, a youth worker in Sri Lanka. SLV runs projects to help the local community while simultaneously helping students and graduates to gain valuable experience in a totally different culture. I’ll be loaning my skills to this organisation and am really looking forward to getting stuck in to a new culture. I’m fundraising, as I’ll be joining SLV in Sri Lanka for 12 weeks from June to September on the Psychology placement. I will also be a Peer Mentor which means I will help other volunteers settle in, giving them support and dealing with any problems that they may encounter in their volunteering role.

I will be working 5 days a week living like a local, travelling on local transport and staying with a Sri Lankan family.

My placement fees are £1550 and I appreciate every little contribution.

Thank you in advance for your generosity and support.
  • Sri Lanka