India is a country that has an almost mythical status among travellers and those taking a gap year. It is such a vast country in just about every sense. Geographically it is huge, the seventh largest country in the world, whilst when it comes to population only China is home to more people. India also offers enormous cultural, religious and topographical diversity.
From the captivating chaos of the surprisingly modern cities of Mumbai, Chennai and Bangalore to the remote foothills of the Himalayas; from the boundless beaches of Goa and Kerala to the dense jungle that accounts for around 20% of India’s mass, and the vast deserts around Jaisalmer, India is a country that offers something for all tastes.
For those on a gap year it has many obvious advantages beyond the seemingly endless opportunities for exploration and culture. Perhaps chief among these is the low cost of living. Despite huge growth in the economy and advancing modernisation and westernisation, India remains a very affordable country in which to travel, volunteer or study.
We found 8 programmes in our database that matched your search. Choose one below to learn more.
You'll work closely with children of varying disabilities on this physiotherapy internship in India. You'll work as an assistant to the existing physiotherapist, helping her treat the children. The centre is dedicated to helping the children obtain the best quality of life possible. They are passionate and enthusiastically share their knowledge with international interns.This is a great way to observe experts in your field and learn how they work in India and you?ll get a wonderful sense of achievement from helping these great children. The experience you gain will be an excellent entry on your CV or R?sum? as well as being invaluable to you in the future.
Teach drama to children from the ages of 5 to 12, mainly at matriculation schools where English is taught as the main language. The Principals at the schools are very keen for the children to develop their acting skills and you'll have free rein to devise your own lessons. You may even be able to put on a production at the school.Teaching Drama is a great way for children to practice their English in a creative way. If you have a passion for acting and a love of children, this is an excellent project for you!
You can coach cricket, football, tennis, volleyball, badminton, basketball and table tennis to many age groups, mainly in secondary schools in the bustling city of Madurai. You may coach between 10 and 30 children at a time (aged between 7 and 16), but sometimes the children are split into smaller groups with the PE teacher taking half of them.Children in India are passionate about sport; everywhere you go you see them on the streets playing games, sometimes with imaginative makeshift equipment! Although resources at the schools can sometimes be scarce, the children are enthusiastic and wonderful to teach.Coaching is only available from June to February as from the beginning of March the children have to concentrate on studying for exams.
Help children to improve their football skills in secondary schools where you'll normally help out with all age groups. You'll usually coach for 3 to 5 hours at one school, but you may coach in two sessions and at two different venues. You'll work in secondary schools and you will normally help out with all age groups.Indian children are wonderful to coach and very enthusiastic about learning sport. They turn up for training eager to learn new skills and play a game. Although materials and resources may be scarce, the enthusiasm of the students than makes up for any hardships!
You'll teach English and, if you'd like to, you can combine this with Art, Science, Drama, Maths, Computer Science, Art & Crafts, or Sports. You'll assist a teacher for up to a week and once you gain confidence and feel comfortable in the classroom, you'll be able to become involved in lesson planning and take classes on your own.Teaching in India is a sheer joy. The children are enthusiastic, polite and eager to learn! We provide you with a Teaching Guide and suggestions on inexpensive resources to take with you. You can teach a range of subjects in combination, or teach English or Art only. The choice is yours. This is a completely flexible project; we place you in the most suitable school depending on your specifications and interests.
Gain experience in a private dental practice where you'll help take care of the patients, work with the dental hygienist and help with dental counselling. You'll be exposed to Orthodontic, Endodontic, Periodocntics, Oral surgery, implantology and lots more.This internship is an excellent way to observe experts in your field and learn how they work in India. And you?ll get a wonderful sense of achievement from helping these great children. This will be an excellent entry on your CV or R?sum? as well as being invaluable to you in the future.
Gain insight into the workings of a hospital in a different country. Generally, your day will start with accompanying the doctors on ward rounds to see the in-patients. You'll also be able to sit in on doctor-patient consultations. You'll be assigned to a doctor or nurse who will supervise you. You'll have more in-depth or less in-depth hands-on experience depending on whether you're studying medicine, are qualified, or have not yet started your studies.We work with many different hospitals and clinics which have a variety of departments. All of our medical placements work extensively with the local community and some offer free services to the poor and needy of Madurai; one of our clinics visits a local church once a week to treat the underprivileged and also hold a free clinic once a month
Work with a large institution based in Madurai that cares for and educates approximately 130 children ranging from 2 to 18. The children mainly suffer from Downs Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Microcephaly, Autism, Epilepsy, Deafness and some of the children are slow learners and dyslexic.You'll help with arts & crafts, hand-eye co-ordination skills, yoga sessions, sewing and embroidery, music and dance classes, and lots, lots more!About 100 of these students are provided with residential care; the others are brought to the school each day by their parents.
The vast majority of trips to India are enjoyable, exciting and trouble-free. Apart from a few areas of the country, such as Jammu and Kashmir close to the immediate border area with Pakistan, where tourists rarely venture, most places in India are safe and secure. Those on a gap year are far more likely to experience warm Indian hospitality than they are to experience any form of crime or harassment. All travellers, but especially those travelling alone, should follow the normal rules of common sense and, of course, respect local dress code and etiquette.
However, if you are happy to pose for a selfie with the locals (expect to be asked a lot, especially at tourist hotspots like the Taj Mahal!), then dealing with beggars is likely to be the only hassle most visitors to India will experience.
When it comes to the available gap year programmes in India, there are, unsurprisingly, many options. Those wishing to volunteer may be able to help in the fields of medicine, the environment or education. If self-improvement is more your aim then there is a plethora of possibilities, with cooking schools, yoga and meditation retreats and language learning placements just some of the available opportunities.
Of course, volunteering and learning are superb ways to spend time but those just wishing to gain enrichment through travel also have decisions to make. India is the birthplace to four of the major religions of the world: Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Jainism, and it has a commensurate number of temples, shrines and monuments. Agra’s Taj Mahal may be the most famous, but there are literally hundreds of thousands of others.
Nature lovers can spot tigers and leopards in national parks such as Ranthambore, whilst sloths, rhino, elephants and hyenas may also be seen. Birdwatching is also spectacular, with Bharatpur a highlight and easily accessible for those heading to Jaipur, New Delhi or Agra.
Most travellers to India will need a visa and you can find more information about this at the relevant page of the GOV.UK wesite. You’ll also find information there about general safety, health and local laws and customs.
When it comes to vaccinations and medical precautions such as malaria prevention, much will depend on where in the country you travel. However, most people will need at least some vaccinations and the NHS Scotland site FitForTravel is a great port of call. Alternatively, visit your local travel clinic.