10 tips to volunteer abroad

Volunteering abroad or in your community is a rewarding experience for you and the community/project you support. But, before you start this incredible journey, you have to make sure the organisation you will be volunteering through is a responsible one.

Every summer, hundreds of students finish high school or university, or are during summer vacations. This is the perfect time to dedicate some time to contribute and give back. This is why today we share with you ten tips to find a responsible volunteer organisation to arrange your project!

1. Do some research on what the organisation does

It is always good to know what the organisation you will volunteer through does. Get informed about who they work with, how old the organisation is and what projects they support in the area or its surroundings.

2. Make sure the organisation has the same vision and mission you have.

For example: They work towards a cleaner and better environment, or they cooperate with projects to provide better education in the community. If you find a volunteer organisation with values you agree with, it would be easier to work with them.

3. Make sure to receive information about your volunteer work.

It is important to know what the day-to-day activities are and how you will be contributing the these.

4. Get informed about the local situation of the place you would like to do volunteer work.

This includes the country’s economic, social, and political situation, as well as how this will affect the volunteer organisation.

5. Ask the volunteer organisation whether you need to received information

Ask the organisation if you will be receiving any relevant information before your departure. Any responsible volunteer organisation should send you important information before you leave your country. This information will include details about your project placement, activities, background of the project, and a separate handbook with information on the country/community’s safety, history, and sanitary details. This is key when it comes to volunteering abroad. You will be going to a different country with different costumes than your own.

6. Make sure you will have someone you can talk talk to in the volunteer organisation

Every volunteer organisation should have a staff member supervising the projects and volunteers. This person should also be the go-to-person in case you have a problem in your project, feel sick and need to go to the clinic, or if you just need to talk to someone. In Proyecto Peru, we have two staff members doing this job, a female a male Volunteer Coordinators available 24/7 just to help you.

7. Talk to your friends and family about your interest in volunteering abroad

They might be interested as well or they’ve done it in the past and can give your advice on responsible volunteer organisations.

8. Check the volunteer organisation’s reputation

Make sure the organisation is responsible, works according to the country’s laws. Check its website and social media channels for past volunteers’ reviews.

9. Get in contact with other volunteers

This can be done through forums or group chats. Have them tell you what their experience was and any other relevant advice. Here’s the experience of Grace, a medical volunteer in Cusco.

10. Budget

Budget all the expenses you will be having while volunteering abroad and compare prices from different volunteer organisations. See which one adjusts to your budget.

These are a few tips that will help you find a responsible organisation to volunteer abroad. If you have any other tips, don’t doubt to post them in the comment section!

Proyecto Peru offers volunteer and internship opportunities if you want to give back to our community as as volunteer or if you need university credits by doing an internship in Cusco.

We work with medical, educational, organic, and archaeological placements as well as animal shelters, so you have varied options!

Also, check our website to learn more about our volunteer and intern projects!