I met patients who I will never forget and have learned valuable lessons on how to interact with people with mental health problems
I heard about SLV Global from a friend. After researching about the company online, I decided it was perfect for me as it combined practical psychology experience with traveling to a new country.
We would take part in 6-7 projects a week. These varied from going into psychiatric hospitals, running sessions for people with special needs and doing community outreach projects, which involved teaching people of all ages English. It was our responsibility to plan what would be done in these sessions as well as provide the resources.
The wider impact of the work we did was to change people’s perception of mental health, and remove the prejudice and negative connotations that surrounds it as well as promote positive mental health. My experience with SLV allowed me to fully immerse myself in the Sri Lankan culture
We saw some eye opening things, with only 16 registered psychologists to 21 million people, the mental health sector in Sri Lanka is severely underfunded, understaffed and misunderstood. There are few therapeutic treatments available, instead medication is the treatment of choice.
The wider impact of the work we did was to change people’s perception of mental health, and remove the prejudice and negative connotations that surrounds it as well as promote positive mental health. My experience with SLV allowed me to fully immerse myself in the Sri Lankan culture.
From Monday to Friday I lived in a Sri Lankan family’s home, ate around their dinner table and got a tuk tuk to work every day which was an experience on its own!
Weekends were dedicated to traveling around Sri Lanka to see the many sights it has. It is a truly beautiful country with spectacular scenery, as a travel destination I couldn’t recommend it enough, I will certainly be back in the future to visit the places I couldn’t fit in.
Whilst out there, SLV provide a range of practical talks and workshops. I attended an addiction clinic, creative psychology workshops and a talk from a Sri Lankan psychologist. This gave me an insight into how psychology differs across cultures, which is hard to appreciate when you study it from a western perspective.
Overall, my experience has been absolutely amazing, it has certainly opened my eyes to how lucky we are to have the mental health system we have in the UK. I met patients who I will never forget and have learned valuable lessons on how to interact with people with mental health problems.
You can truly see the difference we make to people's lives, and how grateful the people of Sri Lanka are to us for giving up our time to help them.
SLV are a fabulous company who support you every step of the way, they provide a unique way for psychology students to gain practical psychology experience and give them something incredible to put on their CV that will stand out from the crowd.
Discover what sets Sheffield apart at our undergraduate open days on the Saturday 21 October or Saturday 18 November.