Volunteering abroad means investing the time and energy to work on a project for no pay.
There are many volunteer opportunities for anyone interested in volunteering, especially abroad. Where some people go to the volunteer world just for their simple experience, others go to it as a professional calling or as a stepping stone to their future careers.
It is best to choose a volunteer program that is most beneficial for you and those you want to help. Our The Guide to Volunteering Abroad will help you choose the volunteer program that works best for you!
The Complete Guide to Volunteering Abroad
When considering volunteering abroad, you will know what options are available to you and what programs are right for your skills, preferences, and time available. Our guide to volunteering abroad will help you decide.
First, what is volunteering abroad?
Traveling is a passion for some, while others do it to break away from their routine.
There are many volunteer programs abroad to choose from, for example: teaching; Orphanage work; HIV / AIDS work; Community develops; Health / medical work; Teaching extreme sports, music lessons; Conservation projects; and research projects.
Volunteer travel is a more rewarding experience when you want to sit more in a hotel and see museums and animals. Volunteering overseas is a life changing experience for anyone doing it, whether you are in your teens, in college, on a career break, and have retired.
The experience you have is worth more than the money you spent on your volunteer vacation.
Now to our guide to volunteering abroad.
What Are Some Good Options For Volunteer Abroad?
The programs of the voluntary work are created by the organization in which you will volunteer.
Most of the volunteer programs abroad are flexible. Because you are investing your time, energy, and sometimes money, the volunteer programs available are flexible. The flexibility comes from choosing the number of hours you want to work in a day or week and the length of the volunteer program.
Also, most of the work you will be doing does not require any academic qualifications Anyone can apply. Most volunteer programs abroad involve a lot to travelYou don’t want to go to another country and find yourself ineffective. You should do a thorough research of the work you will be doing overseas. You want to choose a program that focuses on your strengths, skills and abilities.
Here are examples of the most popular overseas volunteer programs that are available:
Volunteer Education Programs
Volunteer education programs are the most popular volunteer programs. Volunteers will work in private, public schools, orphanages and community schools. Volunteering involves working with children between the ages of 7 and 18.
The volunteer will be involved in teaching some subjects such as English, math, science, music and sports.
The volunteers will work with local teachers and other volunteers to provide the children with adequate education. The main tasks include working as a teaching assistant: teaching, grading books, working as a social worker for the administrators, helping with sports activities and playing with the children. For this program You need to like children, enjoy teaching, and be patient with the children. Sometimes training is required for this program, but it is not mandatory.
Those who have taken TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) courses have an advantage. The schools are not open all year round. You should schedule your volunteer work to match the school calendar.
Volunteer Health / Medical Programs
Volunteering is done in hospitals, clinics, pharmacies and public health offices. The Voluntary health programs target the poor and those who do not have access to medical facilities.
In such areas there are many clinics and volunteer organizations that offer medical help to the poor. Working with the clinics and health centers (pharmacies), the volunteer will work with them to provide medical services. Other tasks include filling out forms and diagrams, diagnosing diseases, distributing prescriptions and consultations.
In this, The volunteer must have a medical background to work with the patient. This program is best suited for health professionals such as doctors, nurses, medical students, and clinical workers.
Voluntary HIV / AIDS program
As a volunteer, you will be asked to help with the outreach programs to educate members of society and create awareness about the disease.
Voluntary work includes supporting the infected and affected by providing food and medical care.
As a volunteer, you will advise, encourage, and help empower them. Other voluntary tasks include: advancing advocacy; Demystify HIV / AIDS by encouraging people living with HIV to speak for them and work for a better understanding of society; Design, develop and disseminate materials to combat stigma and discrimination.
For this volunteer program You have to be compassionate with the disease and understanding for those who are infected and affected. There are no academic qualifications required to work in this program.
Volunteering in the orphanage
Work in children’s orphanages is very popular and the most fun and exciting. If you like children and want to change their lives for the better, work in an orphanage is the best place. The kids are active and love the attention they get from the volunteers.
Volunteering includes: spending time with the children; Work as teaching assistant; work as a social worker; Help with cooking and cleaning; Help with organizing sports activities and playing with the children. This program involves little mental work and organization. Most of the program activities are pre-arranged and you have a supervisor to help you at all times.
Here is a volunteer opportunity to work in an orphanage in Buenos Aires.
Volunteering includes education, empowerment, development and professional training; Providing sex education to the girls and the local community that you can help with. It’s also about that Empowering women through activities that make them financially independent. It does this through the marketing of their products, skills development and access to information.
Global Work & Travel offers volunteering in Tanzania, Cape Town, Zanzibar and Buenos Aires.
What is your volunteer opportunity abroad?
We want our Guide to Volunteering Abroad to help you choose the right volunteer opportunity. Here is a deeper dive into some of the programs to look at as you try to make your decision.
Relatives read: What you should know before volunteering abroad
To start with, let’s take a look at volunteering as a teacher
This is one of the most fulfilling avenues a volunteer can take. Volunteering as a teacher has long-term results in the community in which you volunteer. If you can help raise only a few people in a church that has suffered less fortune than you have, those few people will, in turn, elevate the entire church in time.
If you have a qualification as a teacher this is better, but you don’t have to teach exclusively in the classroomClasses can take many forms, including showing a community how to build a latrine to make sure their water is not contaminated. Everything is worth it in the end.
Let’s look at those who might be interested in volunteering in healthcare
You can therefore help all over the world in this regard. Those interested in healthcare have a choice between Working in places where a disaster has occurred or choosing a specific location around the world to help.
How you help doesn’t necessarily have to be medical. You can do your bit by simply distributing mosquito nets in areas where malaria is common or launching a campaign to make sure every household in an area has cholera outbreaks has a means to boil or purify their water . The end result of all of this effort is this You’ve helped keep a community healthier.
The saying goes that children are our future. So let’s look at those of us who want to volunteer in children’s homes or with orphans
In this area, you can shape a person who will one day go into the world and make something of yourself because you have had the courtesy to be involved in their life.
At an orphanage, you can take care of health care, teach, cook in the kitchen, build a dormitory, clean up the grounds, or even do missionary work while there. And the nice thing about it is that above all you can address one or more of the causes at the same time; So you can touch a life on multiple fronts.
If you like animals and the environment around you, you can also volunteer for nature conservation
Here you can work with all types of wildlife, from those that live in the savannah to marine animals. You can also interact with the environment if you spend a lot of time in the field and sometimes even nights outside. depending on how adventurous you are. Here is a clear example of where you can have fun volunteering.
There are many other potential volunteer programs available, including church development, construction, or even missionary work.
Once you’ve made a clear decision on what to work on, the next step is to get your hands dirty and join the volunteer community around the world.
Global Work & Travel offers volunteer programs for nature conservation in South Africa, the protection of sea turtles in Costa Rica, the rescue of elephants in Thailand and an Amazon animal shelter in Peru.
What do I need to be able to volunteer abroad?
Choosing the right volunteering program is important when planning your volunteer trip. There are many voluntary service organizations that offer many volunteering programs abroad.
All volunteering programs abroad are not created equal. They are different and require different skills, costs, training, internship types and quality of service.
The following tips in our Guide to Volunteering Abroad are designed to help you choose the right volunteering programs abroad and the requirements for volunteering abroad.
Qualifications and skills
Many voluntary service organizations hire volunteers who have no special skills other than being able to speak the language in which you are working.
If you are an independent traveler, grassroots organizations also want volunteers with no skills or requirements to come and work for them. Most programs do not require any special skills or academic qualifications, with the exception of a few e.g. healthcare and medical work where you will be asked to provide relevant skills or background experience.
One of the reasons they don’t need skills and qualifications is because they attract young people who have no previous academic and professional experience. That means anyone can apply for any program and be accepted.
Although you will be accepted into any program, it is better to choose a program where you can apply your skills and experience. This makes you more effective in your volunteering. If you love children and treat them well, you can work or teach better in an orphanage. If you are a marketer, your skills and abilities are best suited for a marketing position. Even if you want to learn new skills Choose a volunteer program where you teach and learn new skills.
Find out how much time you have on your volunteer leave. There are programs that range from a week to three years.
Some programs are suitable for short-term volunteering, which, like orphanage work, lasts up to a week to a month. On the other hand, there are long-term projects like community development, construction projects that take anywhere from 6 months to 12 months. The volunteer programs are open all year round.
But Some programs are time specific because they do not run at certain times of the year. The choice of volunteer length and timing is important, e.g. For example, if the selection of teaching programs takes into account that the program does not run at certain times of the year because schools are closed.
If you are going to volunteer abroad, it is important to get special travel insurance for volunteers abroad.
Selection of volunteer organizations abroad
There are many options for those who want to Volunteers abroad.
If you put volunteers on Google Abroad, you get about 481,000 results and about 21,600,000 on Yahoo. There are approximately 270 organizations or more that offer volunteer programs abroad. These organizations offer a Variety of programs in different countries.
The reason for this is that the volunteer service industry is new and growing rapidly. Over the past decade, the number of organizations offering voluntary service abroad has increased. Many are made up of previous volunteers and want to make volunteering easier for the next volunteer. All of these organizations market themselves well, they have really good websites, brochures and recruiting campaigns.
Finding the right organization will cost too much time and energy. Usually all of the information that is out there overwhelms you, making your decision difficult.
We recommend Global Work & Travel. They offer volunteer work in South Africa, Costa Rica, Tanzania, Thailand, Peru, Nepal, Myanmar, Namibia, Ecuador and Argentina.
When choosing which volunteering organizations to use, keep the following in mind in our guide to volunteering abroad:
Now that you’ve made the decision where you want to go, you can refine your search for the organization you want to use. If you search Google and type in volunteers in Cambodia, you will get 200,000 results with a lot fewer organizations.
There are many organizations that offer volunteering abroad in different countries. There are problems all over the world and lots of places to volunteer. Deciding where to go shouldn’t be difficult as you would already have had an ideal place to volunteer. After choosing the location you want, sort the list and find out which organizations work in that area.
Also, when choosing where to go, the language they speak is important as you don’t want to be in a place where it is difficult to communicate. You should also pay attention to whether you prefer a rural or urban setting.
How long you want to stay depends on which organization you choose. There are several organizations that offer you the option to volunteer for a week and others that offer 2 to 3 years.
Short volunteer programs are for those who are on vacation, which can be up to a month. While those who go 6 months and longer are the guys who are in a gap year. Very few organizations offer you short term as well Long term volunteer Times abroad.
The short term projects could be teaching, working in a hospital, and childcare. Long term projects include building and community development programs. The time of year is also important as some programs do not run in December, e.g. B. when schools are closed. The time of year also depends on the time of year of your volunteer vacation. You could travel to another part of the world and find winter.
Choosing the right organization depends on your budget. There are some organizations that charge thousands of dollars for a month long volunteer program while others charge several hundred for the same amount of time.
They charge different fees depending on the motivation of the organizations. Some are not for profit while others are for for profit organizations. The fees vary depending on the services they are going to offer you.
Some organizations offer travel insurance with their package as well as airfare and other expenses. When choosing the organization, ask what services they offer, such as: Room catering, health insurance, emergency evacuation, on-site support and transport to and from the site.
Ask how the fees are spent and whether they go to the program projects or the community. There are some organizations that help with fundraising and some offer scholarships for the high cost. There are some organizations that offer paid volunteering, and they help reduce the cost of volunteering abroad by providing a grant and expenses. Finally, you will find out whether there are financial sanctions if you cancel your trip or whether you want to leave your program place early.
This is the overseas volunteer program that you participate in while in the host country. Selection of The right program that suits your skills and interests determines which organization you will be working with. Once you decide what to do, you can find out which organizations are providing the services you want.
If you have teaching experience and want to teach, look for organizations that offer voluntary teaching programs. If you want to improve your skills by doing something you have no experience in, choose an organization that can help you do this.
Look for an organization that has 24/7 support in the host country. Ask if they have representatives at home and abroad. Just in case something happens, you have someone to help you with your problems.
Look for organizations that have a Representatives in the host countries. If you have a problem, there is no need to call home as they cannot help you, and neither can someone on site. There is also support in training They will give you information on culture and language, information and orientation before departure.
How much does volunteering abroad cost?
“Volunteers are not paid not because they are worthless but because they are priceless.“~ Sherry Anderson.
Despite the fact that volunteering means giving up time and energy to help others in need, volunteering abroad is not free.
Wherever you go to help the flood victims in Australia, Brazil and the earthquake victims in Haiti, you always have to pay a price to volunteer abroad. Many volunteers work with small community organizations or non-profit organizations, and the organizations do not have the resources to pay to host and feed those organizations. Volunteers do not pay for their volunteering abroad. They pay for the costs they incur abroad.
There are basic costs that everyone has to pay, such as airfare, visa, travel insurance, and vaccinations. In addition to these costs, there are other expenses such as Accommodation, meals and transport within the country. If you are using a volunteer service organization or traveling independently, these factors need to be considered.
Here are a few more things that are included in the cost of volunteering abroad:
Length / duration
The period in which you voluntarily register abroad determines the costs. Wherever volunteers go abroad, they have to pay for food and accommodation for the duration of their stay. Even if they leave their hometown for a nearby city, they will have to pay these two expenses.
Food and accommodation depend on the length of stay. As an independent traveler, the cost of living will be charged per day. For those staying in a hostel or hotel, they will need to charge for rent, food and transportation. Those who volunteer with tour operators will be charged per week.
The Program fees depend on the number of weeks you will be in the country. Your fees are used to pay for accommodation, meals, and sometimes transportation. The price varies depending on the voluntary trip. They can range from $ 99 to $ 1000 per week.
The cost of volunteering can be influenced by the type of volunteer programs in which he / she works. Some programs don’t cost too much because they require minimal risk and resources.
Volunteer programs like classes, orphanage work, and community service don’t require many resources and the volunteers can improvise with what they have.
Other programs are more expensive because the volunteers are at significant risk, need more resources and positions are limited. Examples of such programs are wildlife, marine conservation, and some sports programs. In wildlife programs, they work with wildlife and need to be protected during their work. This means that they must be assigned rangers to assist and protect them in the field.
In marine conservation programs, volunteers must take diving lessons and have diving equipment. These increase the cost of volunteering.
This is primarily intended for volunteers who choose to work with a volunteer service company. While the volunteer is in another country, they could request that someone take care of everything else so that they can focus on the volunteer work. They would require someone to be there just in case there was a problem and resolve it for them.
The price charged by the voluntary travel organization determines the amount of support the volunteer receives in his host country.
The organizations that have high fees charge the following: Training and orientation in the volunteer’s home and host country; Language training; 24/7 support and backup; Weekend trips; Emergency precautions; and in some cases a college loan.
Those who have lower fees do not save on these services, but offer them in limited capacity.
These are expenses incurred by the volunteer. This includes purchasing amenities the volunteer would need while volunteering abroad, such as a bottle of water, snacks, and curios. In some cases the volunteer wants to do a local tour that is not included in the volunteer package.
That’s it for our guide to volunteering abroad. By now you should have enough information about volunteering abroad and which program is best for you.