Travel Teacher | Our top five tips to help you decide on the right volunteer program for you.
Here are our top 5:
Set your self goals and ask yourself why?
It is important that you know your reasons and your own intentions for wanting to embark on a volunteer abroad expedition. It could be that you wish to broaden your own horizons as you gain insight to the wider world, you may want too improve your own confidence and self esteem, or simply that you have a selfless desire to support communities faced with certain hardships. Knowing your reasons for wanting to volunteer provides you with a sense of purpose as you embark on your project, not forgetting this is not a typical holiday. Volunteer projects have meaning and can be pivotal to personal and professional development. If you are clear on your outcomes this will assist you in achieving your overall aims and objectives, making your time away both fulfilling and memorable.
Doing your research on the organisation is really important and will provide you with piece of mind. There are many organisations that provide opportunities for volunteering overseas, however you must ask yourself the following questions:
Are you getting value for money?
How are you going to be supported, before, during and after your project?
Does the organisation deliver an ethical approach to travel abroad?
What impact will you make?
Where does your money go?
After you have established answers to these questions, this will help you make an informed choice as to how you will choose a suitable provider of volunteering abroad.
Ensure the project has good intentions
This also links to the above tip of doing your research. It it important when you are considering a project that you are aware of the impact that you will be making when you step out into the field. Not only this but how is the particular project impacting wider communities, businesses and society? If you have any concerns about the overall legibility of the project please make sure you make your concerns clear to the provider before you sign up.
Hear from the horses mouth! What better way to find out about a project / provider than from participants who have already embarked on the journey. Reading a volunteer testimonial will provide you with a non - biased insight into real life experiences. Many organisations will tell you how good they are (and they properly are) however it is great to sample some qualitative feedback before making your decision.
Contact the provider and ask questions
If you do have any questions or concerns about the program you are applying to, please be sure to contact the provider of your volunteering abroad program. Many providers will answer your enquiries very swiftly providing you with support and guidance in making your decision to volunteer abroad.