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Special education teachers

Volunteering opportunities overseas for special education teachers

Disabled children in many countries face discrimination. They’re excluded from family and community life. Inclusive education can change that, by transforming attitudes and supporting disabled people in exercising their rights.

Roles are generally longer term, ranging from one to two years, but we also have occasional short-term assignments for up to six months.

You’ll be a qualified teacher with at least two years’ experience of working with children who have special education needs (five years for short-term roles). In some placements it would be helpful to know braille or sign language.

Opportunities in Rwanda

In 2013, the VSO Rwanda Disability programme was awarded a three-year funding investment from DfID to continue its rights-based programme targeting three core elements: national advocacy for inclusive national developments; strengthening civil society; and, improving the quality of specialist services.  As part of the programme, we have volunteer placement opportunities for deaf movement and sign language education advisors. Roles are posted on a regular basis, please visit the search and apply tab below to see what roles you can apply for.

What you’ll be doing

You’ll be advising teachers in mainstream schools on how to identify, assess and include children with special needs. You’ll also train teachers in producing effective teaching materials. You could work in countries such as Ethiopia, Rwanda,Tanzania and Uganda.

Example placement

Placement for: SEN teacher trainer

Country: Rwanda

Working at the Butare Centre for the deaf you’ll strengthen teacher capabilities by providing training on inclusion and innovate the content and approach of training programmes.

What does the role involve?:

  • Conducting an assessment of special educational needs in the region
  • Training staff in identifying, assessing and handling children with special educational needs and providing training on inclusion
  • Training faculty staff in the planning, preparation and delivery of lessons with a focus on children with special educational needs
  • Assisting teachers in organising workshops for parents to increase understanding of the importance of early intervention.

Skills, qualifications and experience required

You’ll be a qualified teacher with at least three years’ experience in working with children with special educational needs. Experience of developing inclusive teaching methodology is essential, and patience and adaptability are key to living and working in a developing country. You’ll need to be able to adapt your knowledge and skills to a new cultural context, be able to work effectively as part of team as well as individually using your own initiative.

And the rest...

Known as the ‘Land of the thousand hills’, Rwanda is one of the smallest and most beautiful countries in Africa. You’ll be based in the small town of Mushubi in the south of Rwanda, which has a cool and pleasant climate all year round. As for food, the staple Rwandan diet is beans, rice, grilled bananas and fast food favourites such as spicy fried meatballs and goat shish kebabs.

We’ll ask you to commit to 12-24 months to make a sustainable contribution to our development goals. In return, we’ll give you comprehensive financial, personal and professional support. We'll provide you with extensive training before your placement, and our financial package includes a local salary, return flights, accommodation, insurance and more. When you return to your home country, we'll help you to resettle and many of our returned volunteers stay involved with us long after their placement ends.

Next steps

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