Student Volunteers Report from Oman: Clara Anderson


April 16 2024

My trip to Oman was one of the most enriching and interesting experiences an 18 year old can have and I am extremely grateful to have been able to have this opportunity and for all the people I was able to meet. Travelling to such an interesting, hospitable, safe and welcoming country for free is an opportunity no 18 year old should say no to.

This gap year scheme gave me the opportunity to learn about the Omani/Islamic culture whilst travelling around the country visiting Oman's mountains, beaches, deserts and wadis. As a gap student in the Sultan School, I worked during the week as a teaching assistant for English, maths and science and on the weekends we toured around Oman's amazing landscapes. Personally, the highlights were getting to know the students in the school and traveling around Oman, the weather is also a big plus! You end up spending a lot of time with the students and thus you create bonds with them and friendships form quickly making it an enriching experience. Living in a completely different country with a completely different culture is something I deeply enjoyed.

This scheme helped to broaden my horizons by learning about the Omani culture, simple things like the way they eat, the way they structure their day and how they get ready to go out. Experiencing this stark difference in culture as a white christian was challenging at times, I was away from home and out of my comfort zone and many things felt alien to me, however, you quickly settle in, make friends and the Omanis are very welcoming and therefore you are able to get so much out of the experience. The opportunity to learn Arabic was also a challenging yet interesting experience. After a lot of practice, (I was a total beginner) I learnt the alphabet and could read and write a bit. I want to continue with my Arabic and hope to keep improving. Being a teaching assistant made me realise that being a teacher could be something I would want to do in the future, especially an international teacher traveling the world. Next year I have a place at Exeter University and I will study History and a Modern Language.

Overall, I would highly recommend this experience for anyone taking a gap year pre or post university if you enjoy spending time with children, outdoor activities, meeting new people, learning about other cultures and travelling because you certainly won't be disappointed then! If the aim of the scheme was to provide friendship and understanding between the British and the Omani, it's certainly been the case for me.


Student Volunteers Oman Scheme Further Information:


The British Omani Society's Student Volunteers Oman Scheme (previously called the Anglo-Omani Society Gap Year Scheme) runs twice per year. The next Scheme dates are:

  • 2024 dates: Fri 13 Sept (arrive) - Thurs 12 Dec (leave)
  • 2025 dates: Fri 10 Jan (arrive) - Thurs 10 April (leave)

Deadline for applications: 30 May 2024

Find out more and apply here.

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Apr 02 2024 BOS

2024 marks the 100th student to have taken part in our funded scheme for young people to volunteer at the prestigious Sultan's School in Muscat. This series of blogs showcases their experiences.
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