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Psychology student volunteers in Sri Lanka with help of international volunteering bursary


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Earlier this year final year BSc Psychology student Rebecca Parkin travelled to Sri Lanka to undertake a Mental Health Placement with SLV Global, a graduate-led volunteering organisation which runs psychology-focused placements in Sri Lanka, Bali and Indonesia.

Rebecca is pictured centre-back with fellow SLV Global volunteers.

The opportunity to undertake this unique placement was made possible by the University’s International Volunteering Bursary Scheme, which provides financial support of £200 in addition to access to the University’s free travel insurance and pre-departure briefings.

For the duration of her placement Rebecca lived with a Sri Lankan family and co-led therapeutic activity sessions in psychiatric facilities for individuals living with a wide range of mental health issues. She also worked at numerous schools and social initiatives for children and adults with disabilities and taught English in the local community. This immersive experience gave her a unique insight into mental health treatment in another country which will be a real boost to her future career prospects. Whilst on placement Rebecca had her weekends free to travel the surrounding areas.

Rebecca speaks very highly of her experiences:

“Sri Lanka was 100% one of the best decisions I've ever made! I adored my homestay, met some wonderful people and made some great friends. I loved all of my projects and gained some really valuable experience. SLV were great and were able to help me or answer any questions. Thank you SLV and Leeds Beckett for the amazing opportunity!”

Alice Turner, University Liaison from SLV Global says:

“For today’s psychology students who wish to pursue a career in the mental health sector, it’s important to gain worthwhile, hands-on work experience. Not only has Rebecca utilised and developed important skills in her chosen field of study but she has also developed an in-depth understanding of mental health from an additional cultural perspective.”

You can read more about Rebecca’s experience in Sri Lanka on the SLV Global website.

More information about the International Volunteering Bursary can be found on the website and is available to Leeds Beckett students and alumni. Alternatively you can email the volunteering team directly for more information.  


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