Volunteers from many countries share their personal experiences while being a volunteer in Thailand a a daily basis. The volunteer experience is not alone about dealing with Thai culture and it’s differences. By being around volunteers from other cultures intercultural communication is an important factor. And ones ability – or inability – to deal with the difficulties is part of what makes volunteering abroad a challenge well worth to take.
Volunteers usually discover fast their own strengths and weaknesses in their intercultural communication skills. It can be frustrating. By shared daily tasks and experiences awareness develops naturally. Good intercultural communication skills do not come without effort. Identifying the variables that influence intercultural communication is as essential as regular practice.
If the process is successful, volunteers end up going home with the ability to express themselves in a way that is understood by people from various cultures and backgrounds. And they are able to communicate sucessfully interpretations, meanings, and expectations to someone from a different cuture. A first step towards global understanding.