Projects

Volunteering

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Do you have a desire to lend a helping hand in this world we share? Pack your bags for the countryside of Thailand! Education and entertainment can be fun and eye opening for all those involved. Join us today!

Founder

Dustin Watchman has helped teach, lead, and councel children to adults on how to proactively take control of their lives and make positive decisions in accomplishing their goals. He has worked with over 76 nationalities, in 26 countries, including exotic locations such as Hawaii, Dubai, Bangkok, Saudi Arabia, and Oman. In 2008, Dustin was looking to volunteer overseas. He landed his eyes on a charity in Thailand and decided to volunteer with a local charity that placed him in Khon Kaen, Thailand. Since his first time volunteering, he decided to start his own charity in collaboration with his host from 2008, Joop. He is always ready to assist in helping others grow and develop through life changing volunteering experiences, and volunteering with Volunteaching is one way he gives back to his global community. If you are looking for a low cost volunteering experience where you will be stepping outside your comfort zone, then Dustin Watchman has made it possible for you to live out your dreams.

Volunteaching Charity Mission

Volunteaching is a grassroots charity aimed at providing low cost, genuine, volunteering experiences for volunteers of all ages. Volunteers in collaboration with the lovely Thai hostess, Joop, can be placed throughout the stunningly beautiful Northeast part of Thailand, known as Isan. Our mission is to strip away all the red tape and overhead costs of larger charities and to only ask for the appropriate amount of donation money to be mutually beneficial to everyone involved.

How to volunteer with Volunteaching

You can volunteer in schools in Thailand in a few easy steps. Dustin Watchman has set up a low cost alternative charity for you to get the most experience for the least amount of expense.

1. Read about Volunteaching Charity on this page. If you have any additional questions contact us at dustin_watchman@yahoo.com

2. Research Khon Kaen, Thailand and the surrounding areas in Isan, Thailand. Decide if this is truly a journey that you want to embark on. There are options of where you can be placed, but the first option is about 35 kilometers outside of Khon Kaen.

3. Understand the FAQ’s  report listed below if you are interested in Volunteaching Charity.

4. Discuss an appropriate donation for the host to provide you meals and housing each day to make sure you are properly taken care of and motivated during your stay.

 

dustinwatchman volunteaching

FAQ’s – Frequently Asked Questions

1. What will I be doing while I am there?

You will support Joop inside the classroom. If you are comfortable enough with teaching, she can give you an actual schedule of classes to teach by yourself, in which the Thai teacher would be present to assist you with any translation issues. The students have books that you can teach from, or if you are creative you can come up with games to help them teach and have fun. Education is very relaxed here and is very much about having fun. The kids will love you if you attempt to have fun with all your lessons. You can also play sports with the students after school and just have general fun and interactions with the students. They don’t meet a lot of foreigners so your presence is welcomed and appreciated.

2. What will my accommodations be like?

If you choose to stay with Joop, you will stay in a house, with your own private room and air conditioner. The shower may consist of a large bucket of water in which you use the smaller bucket to bath yourself with. This is common in the countryside of Thailand, and more often than not the cold water shower is quite refreshing in the warm Thailand weather. Most of your meals will be outside the home as food is quite inexpensive and very delicious from the market place. There is a kitchen if you need to store some snacks or bottled water for anytime you may find yourself hungry.

3. Does anybody speak English around there?

The school is located about 35 kilometers outside of the larger town of Khon Kaen. Few people speak English here, but Joop is always there if you need assistance. This is a great time to use that Lonely Planet phrasebook to learn some Pasah Thai ( Thai language). Locals can speak a few words here and there and half the fun in volunteering is piecing together conversations with others. Inside the city of Khon Kaen there are more English speakers. Some evenings or weekends you can go into the city to cut loose and enjoy some nightlife, night markets, and big malls if you want to.

4. If I have any problems, who can I talk to?

Your first option would be to try and fix it yourself. If something is dirty, clean it. If there is to much downtime in class, then start up an activity. If there are geckos or frogs in the house, well, it’s the country and Thai people are very close with nature. Your second option would be to speak to Joop about anything that maybe she can help fix. She knows sometimes being in a new country is more than you expected and she will do her best to accommodate you. Need a drink? She can take you to the bar. Need to speak more English? She can get you to Khon Kaen for your English fix. If you have any issues beyond this then you can contact Dustin.

5. Can I get a refund on my donation?

Fortunately, yes you can get a 50% refund if you have not yet arrived. This is due to the preparation that will have already occurred once you commit to volunteaching with us.

Unfortunately, once you have arrived the donation is non refundable. We expect you to take into all considerations and possibilities of volunteering in Thailand before coming. Once you arrive, if you feel that you can’t handle the environment, your donation will still be distributed as stated above to Joop, to Volunteaching Charity, and as scholarships for the students. In all honesty, most issues can be resolved for you to enjoy your entire stay and leave knowing you made a true difference in these kids lives.

6. Does the charity provide a visa for my stay?

We cannot provide an extended visa for the duration of your stay, but most visas are valid for 30 days. You can also file for a 60 day visa in advance of showing up to Thailand depending on your country of origin. If you decide that you want to stay longer you can cross the border and come back easily in one day. (Officials have not allowing this time to time so please do your research on this topic. Generally it is quite easy to do with no problems at all crossing over to the Laos border and back.

7. How much money will I need while I am there?

This highly depends on you and your spending habits and vices. You will need to buy your airfare to Thailand, a hostel for a night in Bangkok can be found for about $18/night or less. The taxi to the bus station will cost under $10usd. The bus ticket to Khon Kaen, where Joop will meet you will cost under $20usd. Once you are there, housing and meals is included depending on your donation choice. You may want to eat out sometimes on your own and therefore will need extra money, but meals usually cost $1-$3usd if you eat in the local markets or the infamous “street food”. If you eat at a western style restaurant you should expect western style prices as well. If you enjoy the nightlife of Khon Kaen, a drink will cost you approximately $2-$4usd. So it is truly up to you on how much you spend, but typically $100 will go very far if you are on a budget.

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Agriculture

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About Farmup

Farmup is an urban farming consultancy startup and a social business. Our vision is a city in which farming has become an integrated part of urban development. Our mission is to turn unproductive urban spaces into productive agricultural systems.

Urban Farming

Whereas conventional farming is located in rural areas, urban farming consists in doing agriculture in the city. The advantages of urban farming are numerous:

  1. Logistics are simplified and costs reduced;
  2. Losses through transport and storage are avoided;
  3. Product freshness is at its maximum;
  4. Trust between producer and consumer is strengthened;
  5. Symbiotic relationships with the city can be created;
  6. Carbon footprint is minimal and green jobs are created.

In short, urban farming is sustainable, social and positive for urban development. It does not replace, but rather complement conventional agriculture and it will undoubtedly become the norm of tomorrow.

Check out this infographic for more details:

Benefits of Urban Farming

What We Do

Farmup builds and cultivates farms in the city, bringing the producer close to the consumers. Our farms serve nearby customers, such as restaurants, hotels, developers or business requiring agricultural supply.

Our Farms

Our farms are either built in-house at the consumer’s location (hotel, restaurant, factory) or independently (rooftop, land), strategically located to service consumers within a 1 km radius. Technologies we use are aiming at the safety of our consumers and of the environment as well as resource efficiency, including hydroponics and aquaponics as well as vertical farming. These technologies, combined with the principles of urban farming, contribute to maintaining the highest quality standards for our produce.

Our Produce

Farmup’s systems are able to produce vegetables and greens as well as  fish and mushrooms. Importantly, we guarantee the quality of our produce: Farmup farms are environmentally sustainable (no carbon footprint, water saving, space and energy saving), and treatments are non-poisonous to protect the consumer’s health.

Our produce are not certified, because we rely on the proximity of our farms to build a relationship of trust between producer and consumer. Indeed, Farmup is the certification itself. When delivering our products, we guarantee:

✔ zero toxicity: we do not use pesticides potentially harmful for consumers.
zero environmental damage: we use environment-friendly technology.
zero kilometer: our produce traveled less than 1 km and logistics did not generate CO2.
✔ water saving: we use approximately 20% the amount water conventional farming does.

If you would like to partner with Farmup to provide fresh produce for your needs, please contact us.

Import/Export

dunawi export

Dunawi Group works directly with factories in China and Thailand to provide high quality items catered to your business needs to provide a memorable experience for your clients.

Currently we supply pleasantries for your Air BnB guests to use during  their holiday in your up scale Air BnB locations across the globe. We suggest the following items, that can be custom made with your logo or company name of choice, that allow a personal touch as well as a faster turn-around time on the house-cleaning responsibilities.

  • High quality shampoos, conditioners, and body washes in travel-regulation friendly sizes.
  • Cloth bottom slippers for your guests to comfortably relax indoors while leaving their footwear at the front door.
  • Standard tissue boxes for everyday use and minor clean-ups.
  • Soft-to-the-touch bathroom towels and washcloths for the guests that choose to leave room in their luggage for more souvenirs.

Education

(insert name of language center here in English and Chinese characters) is proud to present the first-ever high quality language center in the small town of (insert town name here) that sits in the picturesque (mountains?hills?fields?) near Guangzhou, China.  Our aim is to provide local students with quality teachers that will help them succeed in their future by providing targeted lessons in the English language that cater to each students individual characteristics and needs.

We understand that students learn differently and that education is not a one-size-fits-all product. Individualized lesson plans involving multiple authentic learning materials are offered to best suit the student and the individual ways that they learn.

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