At UWC Thailand, community engagement is an integral part of our educational model, fostering a commitment to sustainable development and promoting shared humanity.
Through participation in community projects, our students develop empathy, leadership skills, and a sense of social responsibility. We provide opportunities for students to apply classroom knowledge to real-world challenges, supporting local and global communities through initiatives like beach clean-ups and sustainability projects. Community engagement is not just about helping others; it is a catalyst for personal growth, cultivating essential skills and deepening understanding of the world. We encourage students to become active agents of positive change, making a meaningful impact both within and beyond our school community.
There are three ways of trying to win the young. There is persuasion, there is compulsion, and there is attraction.
You can preach at them; that is a hook without a worm. You can say ‘You must volunteer’; that is the devil.
And you can tell them ‘You are needed.’ That hardly ever fails.
~ Kurt Hahn, UWC Founder
The Global Concerns fund is a crucial component of our school's commitment to community engagement. This fund provides support for student-led community engagement programmes that address a variety of issues that our students are passionate about. Throughout the year, students plan and execute fundraising initiatives, including the Primary Marketplace, the middle school student stalls at the Festival of Light, and the student-run Shaka cafe. The money raised is used to purchase necessary equipment and supplies, support construction programmes, or provide emergency relief, ensuring that the projects are sustainable and appropriate.
Our students work directly with partner organisations to make a positive impact on the communities they serve. By working with local organisations, we can better understand the community's needs and develop more meaningful and effective community engagement projects. The Global Concerns fund is a testament to our school's commitment to community engagement and our belief in the power of student-led initiatives to make a difference in the world.
Project Week is an integral part of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme, specifically within the Creativity, Activity and Service component. Project Week provides students with a dedicated timeframe to plan, execute, and reflect on a collaborative community engagement project that addresses a need or social issue.
During the Project Week, students have the opportunity to apply their knowledge, skills, and talents in a meaningful and impactful way. They work in groups or teams, typically consisting of fellow classmates, to identify a project of interest or relevance to their local community or beyond. The project could focus on areas such as education, environment, healthcare, poverty alleviation, advocacy, or any other social cause. Nevertheless, students have an opportunity to organise their project week around Activity or Creativity components of CAS.
The planning phase is a crucial component of Project Week. Students are encouraged to conduct thorough research, consult with community stakeholders, and develop a detailed project proposal. This involves setting clear goals and objectives, outlining tasks and timelines, and considering the available resources and logistics required for project implementation.
Once the planning phase is complete, students actively engage in executing their project during the designated week. They collaborate with community organisations, Non-Government Organisations, or other relevant entities to implement their initiatives. This could involve activities such as organising workshops, fundraising events, awareness campaigns, volunteer work, environmental initiatives, or any other form of community engagement that addresses the identified need.
Throughout Project Week, students apply their creativity and critical thinking skills to overcome challenges, adapt to unexpected situations, and effectively collaborate with team members. They also develop leadership qualities, communication skills, and an understanding of the ethical considerations involved in community engagement work.
Reflection is a key component of Project Week. Students are encouraged to critically evaluate their experiences, identify the impact of their service work, and consider the broader implications of their projects. Reflection can take various forms, such as written reflections, group discussions, presentations, or multimedia documentation. It allows students to deepen their understanding of social issues, gain self-awareness, and recognide the personal growth that comes from engaging in meaningful community engagement.
Project Week not only contributes to the students' personal and social development but also aligns with the IB's mission of fostering responsible citizenship and encouraging students to become active contributors to society. It provides an opportunity for students to make a positive difference in their communities, develop a sense of empathy and social responsibility, and develop lifelong skills and values that go beyond the academic realm.