A: Volunteers gain more than just job satisfaction from working for the Cosmopolitan program. Though the experience of seeing young people growing and developing as they experience a different culture can be very fulfilling. Volunteering for the Cosmopolitan program gives professionals a chance to use their work skills in the voluntary sector to promote intercultural learning.
But volunteering also offers people a chance to do something new and to gain new skills and experience which may prove to be invaluable later in their own work. Finally, volunteering for the Cosmopolitan program offers volunteers a chance to meet like minded people and to make new friends not only in Russia but around the World.
All volunteers have an excellent opportunity to attend Russian languages classes taught by well-educated native speakers trained to teach foreigners. No previous knowledge of Russian is required to get enrolled in the Russian course.
We organise an exciting cultural, social and excursion program for international participants of the camp, which is a very enriching experience. You will be involved in interaction with the Russian children, youth and adults all the time. This is the kind of experience you will never get if you come to Russia as a tourist. You will gain a first-hand experience of the Russian culture and life style, and particularly the Siberian one. They say if you want to know what real Russia is like you should come to Siberia.
Siberia has been opening up to the West and offers a range of still unexplored experiences and opportunities. As the cultural, scientific and educational center of Siberia, surrounded by picturesque wooded and field areas, Novosibirsk is an excellent place for immersion in the Russian language and culture, and provides many opportunities to experience the hospitality and cordiality Siberians are famed for.
A: If you have any favourite textbooks, please bring a sample of these, as we like to share resources. Please also do bring small gifts and souvenirs for the students, as it is a Russian tradition to exchange small gifts. Most of our former international
participants always had some small nice presents for children. These included post cards, pens, markers, small books, badges, small toys, cookies, some souvenirs related to their country, etc. Some small and inexpensive stuff. This is of course optional and is certainly not a must but we just wanted to let you know what have been done in the past. There are always returning teachers at the camp who will be bringing gifts for the children so it has become a tradition already.
On the first day of the session all international participants will do their presentations. It's a presentation of the country/culture as well as a personal presentation for which you can bring some items related to your country and the area you come from such as flags, posters, national symbols, maps, leaflets, picture books, or even some small traditional food items such as sweets, cookies etc., that you can demonstrate to the students of the camp to introduce the students to some aspects of your culture (we also arrange a display of the items which belong to different cultures and we will really appreciate it if you could contribute something about your country and culture and the area you come from). You can bring over a video/music tape or a computer presentation. If you are coming to participate in the winter camp it is always recommended to bring some items related to Christmas and Christmas traditions in your country.
As far as the teaching materials are concerned, each teacher is free to choose and bring over the materials he/she considers to be appropriate and informative for each topic. These can be course-books, textbooks, exercise-books, grammar exercises, magazine and newspaper articles, video, educational and music tapes, questionaries for discussion, quizzes, role-plays, fun games and activities, etc., all related to the theme of the day. Daily themes will be sent to each prospective volunteer teacher at least two months prior to the starting date of the session.
It is useful to bring glue, scotch tape, coloured pencils and pens for use in class. Some teachers like to bring their notebook computer in order to give presentations, it is recommended but not necessary.
A: Yes, of course! Many of our volunteer teacher and students return year after year and are always glad to give recommendations of our programme. In particular, Stephen Beet, who attends regularly and helps to coordinate the volunteer teachers, is always willing to help in any way. He is able to provide e-mail addresses of teachers and students who would be glad to help. Stephen’s e-mail address is
To receive a list of contacts for some other former participants please
You can also click here
to see what our former participants have to say about the Cosmopolitan programs.
A: We do have some teaching materials that can be used: course- books like "Headway", The New Cambridge English Course", etc., other textbooks, some educational video and computer CDs. We also prepare a selection of printouts to be used for each topic of the day which our prospective volunteer teachers are free to use.
In terms of the supplies, we have some basic resources such as paper, card, markers, paints, selotape, scissors, glue, etc. There is a copying machine available. There is also a computer, and teachers will have an opportunity to use it to print out some assignments if necessary. There is also a VCR, CD-players, DVD-player, tape-recorders available.