In keeping with the tradition of helping people in distress, Canadian International School IB1 (Grade 11) student Rohan is enabling students and teachers of a Myanmar refugee centre, Zotung Refugee Catholic Learning Centre (ZRCLC) in Kuala Lumpur, and a city-based autism centre, Academy for Severe Handicaps and Autism (ASHA) in online learning and taking academic classes for them using technology. Rohan is a volunteer with both centres and uses his skills learnt at school to empower the two learning centres. Rohan’s mother, who volunteered as an online teacher for the refugee centre and taught students, inspired Rohan to take up the same.
Rohan who has a passion for technology explained the activity that he undertook for the Myanmar refugee centre in Malaysia: “Through my own academic experience and use of Google Classroom at school, I realized that the Myanmar centre could use Google Classroom that would streamline academic activities for both students and teachers. I put together a PPT using my ICT and presentation skills that I learnt at school and pitched the idea to the refugee centre. They readily agreed and I helped the staff in the use of Google Classroom. I also took classes for 12-13 year olds on responsible gaming. I got the opportunity to help students learn skills that we have access to and I really enjoy doing work like this. I believe that training students and teachers in technology is important and i am glad to help make a better future for these kids.”
The Kuala Lumpur centre’s goal is to provide a safe learning environment for refugee children between the ages of 3 to 15 and prepare them with applicable life skills when they are resettled to their new adopted country, or when they are required to continue to wait in Malaysia and when they return to their native country.
Rohan also uses his spare time to volunteer for Bangalore-based NGO, ASHA, which provides education and support to children with severe disabilities and autism. Rohan helped to prepare class notes and simplify them to supplement the academic studies of the children. For over two decades, the Academy has been providing education along with a comprehensive set of therapies to individuals with autism spectrum disorders. Each classroom in ASHA has a student-teacher ratio of 2:1 to make learning effective.
Commenting on Rohan’s initiative to volunteer for NGOs, Ms. Shweta Sastri, Managing Director, Canadian International School, Bangalore said: “I truly appreciate Rohan for taking up social work in the form of teaching skills to students and teachers online which is the need of the hour. This is particularly helpful to refugee children as well as children with special needs. I hope more students would join Rohan in his noble endeavour to help people who are in need of skills.”