Vlaar’s contract expires on Tuesday and, although the 30-year-old has not ruled out remaining at Villa Park, he is reported to be of interest to several clubs across Europe and has even been linked with Manchester United.
Whatever he decides, Vlaar believes his best years are ahead of him.
“I feel that I have my best season still to come,” he told the Daily Mirror. “I am ready to rise to an even higher level.
“I can’t tell you how hard I work in training so that I can be really strong in every game.
“This is why the frustration in my mind took over a few times when I suffered a new injury a few times.”
Vlaar has been helping the Yojana Foundation, a Dutch charitable project working in remote areas of Bangalore to transform the lives of children brought up in districts where problems such as child labour and girls being denied basic education are widespread.
Vlaar said: “Focusing on the problems of these kids is something for a good cause and it helps me take my mind off my own troubles.
“Yojana are fighting against children being employed and exploited in India. I have been an ambassador for them for more than 10 years. I was visiting all kinds of projects and I connect with the kids.
“I really needed to get away. My body was absolutely knackered. My desire to play all the time is so big.
“I thought I had got my fair portion of injuries last season. So I decided to get my mind on totally different things. I jumped on the plane to India.
“Everyone in the Foundation works for free. We’re not just sending money so they can build a school. We go out to India and find people who really deal with the heart of the problems. It is not the easy way, but it works. It is fantastic that I can help lots of children.”