MSc War and Psychiatry Graduate
Education: BSc Psychology - University of Leeds, UK, MSc War & Psychiatry - King's College London, UK.
SLV.Global Placement: Graduate Mental Health Placement, January 2014
Current Role: 'During my MSc course I had a part-time role as a SEN Teaching assistant which I would never have been able to manage with out my SLV experience. The SLV placement prepared me for working with children and young adults with a range of different abilities and needs but also how to be enthusiastic to keep everyone engaged! Since graduating I have started to work here in the SLV London office, so now every day I can speak to past, present and future volunteers about how amazing Sri Lanka is!'
Tell us about your SLV.Global experience: 'I went away to Sri Lanka for 3 months on the Graduate Mental Health placement during my gap year before I started my MSc course as I wanted to get more hands-on experience in a whole new culture. My favourite part was just how integrated you become within the community through living in a homestay with a Sri Lankan family, travelling on public transport and working with the Sri Lankan National Team. I loved how varied the placement was too as the teaching, special needs and mental health projects all really helped cement my ideas of what I wanted to do with my life. It was one of the best things I have ever done!'
Tell us what you gained from the placement: 'Previously I had a few different part-time roles whilst I was doing my undergraduate degree which prepared me for my placement, but being able to say that I have lived in Sri Lanka for 3 months and worked in some really challenging environments is invaluable!! It shows potential employers that I am willing to step out of my comfort zone and has given me such a range of experience working directly with service users rather than simply shadowing or observing.'
'My confidence has increased so much since my time away in Sri Lanka but I think the main thing that I took away from this experience is the international aspect. Being able to experience a completely different culture and how that culture affects the mental health sector there was so eye-opening. It helped me with my MSc and thesis on cross-cultural issues but also helped me decide that I would love to pursue a career in international development. I would recommend SLV placements and this opportunity to everyone!'