English Teaching Volunteering Projects in Ethiopia
- Placement locations: Addis Ababa
- Types of schools: Primary, Secondary, Language Schools
- Age of students: 5 - adult
- Class sizes: 30 - 40
- Role: Teacher or teaching assistant (English), teacher in Language Schools (French)
- Extra-curricular roles: Drama, Music, Sports
- Accommodation: Host families
- Price: From
- What’s included? Food, accommodation, transfers to and from our specified airport, insurance, personal webpage, induction and orientation, 24/7 support
- What’s not included? Flights, visa costs, spending money
- Length of placement: From 2 weeks
- Start dates: Flexible
No Prior Teaching Experience Required
Volunteering to teach English in Ethiopia is an ideal way to help out in some of the country’s most poorly resourced schools. You can gain work experience without a formal teaching or TEFL qualification.
It is also possible to teach French in Ethiopia, so please let us know if you're interested in this option when you apply.
Whether you want to volunteer during your gap year, career break or as an extended holiday, you will have a role to play on one of our worthwhile teaching projects. The impact you have on the lives of your students will be long-lasting. However, you will also be part of a much wider volunteer network, which is making a really positive contribution to the communities in which we work.
Some Background on Ethiopia
Only two decades ago, Ethiopia was ravaged by massive famine and cruel conflicts that left the population decimated and facing a bleak future. In the last few years Ethiopia's government has made both Education and Health its top priorities. New schools are opening all the time, and the aim is to dramatically increase the number of children attending primary and secondary school. However, there is a long way to go. Recent published reports estimate that 68% of children attend primary school and just 16% complete their secondary education.
The rapid growth of the capital, Addis Ababa and the emergence of a small Ethiopian middle class have made learning English a necessity for students wanting to enter into higher education, or to find a job with one of the capital's many international employers. English teaching in all schools is now being accorded increasing importance, particularly by the new generation of young, ambitious Ethiopians who are striving to improve their country's place in the world as well as their own.
The local language, Amharic, hasn't developed sufficiently to adapt to the wealth of new words used in fields such as science and technology, and as such, English is the main language used in business and education. As a result of this, all subjects are taught in English from grade 7 (age 12) upwards - so it's especially important in Ethiopia that children get a good grounding from an early age, which gives you some idea of how precious the gift of your time and enthusiasm will be if you chose to teach here.
Teaching Placements in Ethiopia
You will usually work with children aged between 10 and 18. Projects Abroad places volunteers in schools to assist local teachers and to give the children exposure to English spoken by a native speaker. Often the teachers will have limited English themselves and you will be popular if you're happy to spend some time helping them too.
You will make an important contribution by improving the students' conversational English; exposure to spoken English will advance their language skills and improve their future prospects.
Your students will be keen to learn all about you, your family and friends, and everything to do with a life that they may only have seen on television, so take advantage of this enthusiasm right from the start!
You can read more detailed information about the aims of the project in our Ethiopia Teaching Management Plan.
Participate in Teaching Workshops
Our team in Ethiopia organise a teaching workshop once a month in the local office. The workshop provides teaching volunteers with extra support and valuable teaching information and web-based resources. You‘ll also exchange ideas and receive advice on effective teaching strategies from your fellow volunteers and the Ethiopian staff.
As well as simply teaching English classes you can also get involved in extracurricular clubs, from singing clubs involving English songs to coaching football. There are many other possibilities, limited only by your own skills and interests. Be sure to tell us of these in your application.
Enjoy Warm Ethiopian Hospitality and Diversity
Teaching in Ethiopia will open your eyes to the diverse nature of Ethiopia's culture and its people. Volunteers work on projects in schools teaching English in Addis Ababa and live with local Ethiopian host families for the duration of their placement. You will find Ethiopian people incredibly warm and welcoming, and they will treat you as a member of their family, further enriching your experience.
In addition to this, you are likely to find yourself giving further informal English lessons to the members of your host family, who will be eager for you to learn a little of their own language in return, which is a fantastic way for you to get to know each other.
If you have qualifications or experience in this field then we can make use of your skills. Read more about the opportunities for skilled volunteers in Ethiopia.
Interested in other volunteering opportunities? What about teaching in Ghana?