Staff Spotlight: Sawang Thongdee

What position do you hold at ISV? What has been your career path so far?

Sawang Thongdee

Sawang: I work for ISV as a project leader, mainly lead projects relate with conservation. Not only working as a freelancer for ISV, I also work for a few other travel companies, too.

Did you volunteer abroad? If so, where and what inspired you to go?

Sawang: I used to be a short term volunteer (10 days) at Home of sick and dying people (one of mother Teresa 's houses) in Kolkata. I did this because I would like to be involved with this type of activity while traveling. Also, it was a good chance to meet people from all over the world, work together with them.

What inspires you most on a daily basis?

Sawang: I like it the most when everyone in the team is active / work hard. Also, host organizations are also a big part of motivation & inspiration.

What should volunteers know about Thailand when considering it as their next volunteer destination?

Sawang: Volunteers should know basic information about the country they are going to visit such as religions, population, seasons, food, etc. If possible, they should try to learn a bit of language and history. The more they know about the country, the more they appreciate their time in the country.

What makes the ISV volunteer programs in Thailand so unique and special?

Sawang: There are mainly 2 types of project; conservation and community development. I am mainly involved with conservation ones. One of them is working / helping in the elephant park. It is a very unique and good place to learn more about Thai elephants, problems happening to them, etc. Volunteers stay on site so they also can be very close to the animals too. For community development projects, volunteers usually spend their times with the locals in the villages. This gives them the opportunity to know Thailand outside tourist areas.