Did your son or daughter just come tell you that they’re considering traveling abroad with us? Or are you looking for a meaningful experience to suggest to them? We put together information about the questions we get asked the most below, but always feel free to give us a call if we missed something you’re wondering about: (801) 374-8854.

ALL ABOUT VOLUNTEERING

What happens first? Each volunteer will be in touch with their specific representative (who works from our office in Orem, Utah). They will help them with requirements such as scheduling an interview and turning in paperwork. They can also help answer questions since they’ve already volunteered abroad and can share their experience.

How long is it? Most semesters are about 4 months and follow fairly closely to university semesters.

What are the costs? The tax-deductible fee for our Exchange Program is $2,520 and for our Humanitarian Program is $3,720 and $5,470 (depending on the location). It covers expenses such as meals, housing, and roundtrip international airfare. We suggest volunteers also plan to spend $1,500-2,000 on travel during vacations and personal purchases throughout the semester.

How does it work? The majority of our service focuses on helping children learn English, as well as 1 location where volunteers work to help nurture children in an orphanage program. Volunteers do not need teaching or foreign language skills. Lessons are more like play using a skill they already have – speaking English!

Will they succeed? Head teachers provide training each week as well as team-teaching, coaching and offering feedback to ensure their success as well as the student’s.

HEALTH AND SAFETY

Safety and political stability. ILP uses 3 watchtowers to determine current stability of each location: other organizations and universities, state department, and local coordinators.

Nearby facilities. Medical care is available in every city.

High standards. Do you wonder about the values of the other volunteers your son or daughter will be with? All ILP volunteers agree to follow our code of conduct.

In country support. We don’t just send volunteers abroad and abandon them. There is a local coordinator in country to take care of needs. A group head teacher communicates weekly with the office in Utah and the directors visit the volunteers and the school once each semester.

Safe living arrangements. The type of housing depends on the location, however volunteers live either with a local host family or with a group of other volunteers. Dorm living is located either on or near the school and with the other volunteers. Host families are picked by a local coordinator and often are parents of the students.

PARENT INTERACTION

Stay connected. Communication is easy! All volunteers have access to Wi-Fi either at their home, their school, or cafes around the area. Many volunteers opt to purchase an affordable unlimited data and texting plan from ILP (through T-mobile) if they don’t already have an international plan, but it’s also completely possible to stay in touch for free via Wi-Fi calling apps, social media, email, and more.

Make the trip. You’re welcome to visit your daughter/son in country. Enjoy the sights with them!

What can I do? Volunteers need support from home. Keeping in touch with phone calls and care packages when able makes a difference.

WHO IS ILP?

How did ILP get started? Duolingual Education is a methodology developed by the late Dr. Trevor McKee, Ph.D., professor of human development and psycholinguistics at Brigham Young University. Several students put this methodology to work during their semester abroad in Russia. Using the Duolingual Education methodology, teachers implement developmentally appropriate activities entirely in English with the children. Those students realized the great potential of this and later formed International Language Programs.

How does it work? In each Kindergarten program, enrollment is limited to groups of eight children so that teachers can spend more one-on-one time with their students. Each group is taught separately by ILP volunteers who speak English as their native language. Each lesson (a fun activity planned by the teacher) is around 25 minutes. During ILP time, a group of children will rotate through several teachers to receive multiple short lessons, all using our immersion teaching methodology.

What if my son/daughter has never taught before? We do not require experience and in fact most of our volunteers have never taught before! We train the volunteers to use our methodology and provide support as they learn how to be most effective in the classroom. The learning environment is similar to that of a birthday party: children will play games, sing songs, hear and act out stories, or participate in creative expression in each of the teaching areas, using activities designed by ILP for teaching language. A child may make a cake in the kitchen, or make a clay elephant in art all while speaking English.The social environment created by exciting activities, loving teachers, and a peer group is ideal for learning language. Children learn English similarly to how they learned their native language: through experience and activity while interacting with a loving adult.