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ByAffordable Volunteer Abroad

How to volunteer for cheap? A guide to low-cost volunteer trips

Did you ever wonder how to make a dream come true, volunteer for cheap and make this wonderful trip? It is not always easy, to cut the cost for your travel down, and have this unique travel experience. Therefore, we have selected some of the best and most affordable volunteer trips for you. We do our best, to keep your cost low and transparent, but at the same time, we have quality in mind. Simply, we want to deliver the best travel experience for you, meaningful and rewarding volunteer work and benefits both for the local people and for you.

Read about some of the best Travel Experiences of our Alumni

Colombia – Free Volunteering!

If you are looking to volunteer for cheap, there is nothing better than a free program! Teach English in Ibagué, and explore this fascinating country!

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Rio de Janeiro – Cidade Maravilhosa – An authentic trip to the wonderful city and unbelievable affordable

Iko Poran runs it’s own projects in Rio de Janeiro, and therefore is most affordable. The local staff is always available and will guide you through your volunteer experience. Nathan and Lindsey from USA, first went for a volunteer trip to Argentina and worked on a building for a community, and then to Rio, for sports volunteering.

First Time Volunteer Experience in Rio de Janeiro

First Time Volunteer Experience in Colorful, Festive Rio de Janeiro

Giulia Russo Walti from Italy went for her first time volunteer experience to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: My experience in ...
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Shaden Elgalaly Egypt Tijuca Forest

Planting Trees to Save the Tijuca Rainforest: Shade Elgalaly, Egypt

Shaden Elgalaly, volunteer from Egypt (in the center) together with Brazilian volunteer, ready to plant trees and save the forests ...
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Saving the Urban Rainforest in Rio de Janeiro

Saving the Urban Rainforest in Rio: Ecological Volunteering

Saving the Urban Rainforest in Rio de Janeiro is one of the most important ecological volunteer projects in Rio de ...
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Ecuador – Immersion in a Community in the Andean Cloud Forest – some of the cheapest volunteer trips!

Ming from China never will forget the smiles on the faces of the children at school. She has been teaching English and enjoyed her stay with her host family. There are also environmental projects in the cloud forest available, or you dive into an experience with local arts and crafts, developing your creativity.

Amazon Community

Save an Amazon Community in Ecuador: The People were Beyond Amazing!

Sam and his girlfriend went to  Ecuador, to save an Amazon Community, and found the people were beyond amazing: So ...
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Ming's Experience in Ecuador

Ming’s Experience in Ecuador: The Smile I will Never Forget

 I’m writing this review based on my experience as a one month volunteer in Ecuador. I was assigned with a ...
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Artisan Shop in Ecuador

Volunteer Work at an Artisan Shop in Ecuador

In the Artisan Shop of Renée and Mariana you can work as a volunteer in the arts and crafts, and ...
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South Africa – Make a Dream Come True, volunteer for cheap in this wonderful country!

A dream came true for Isabella from Brazil, when she first went to Cape Town, to care for the children at Doreen’s Crèche. A volunteer trip to South Africa is much cheaper, than you may think!

Wildlife volunteering in South Africa

Wildlife Volunteering in South Africa: The Most Wonderful Three Months of My Life!

I participated in a project in South Africa, during 3 months. These are the most wonderful 3 months I have ...
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Pedro Henrique Animal Volunteering in South Africa

Animal Volunteering in South Africa: Pedro Henrique with his new friends

Pedro Henrique de Cerqueira from Brazil, went for a trip for animal volunteering in South Africa. As you can see ...
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Rodrigo from Brazil makes children smile in South Africa

Rodrigo from Brazil makes children smile in South Africa

Rodrigo Lima Custowichi from Brazil made children smile at Doreen’s Crèche in Cape Town, South Africa. But where is Rodrigo on ...
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India – Exciting Volunteer Projects and a Week of Free Cultural Activities!

When Odette Crisp from Australia came to Jaipur, she was overwhelmed by the Indian culture. In the first week, she took part in many free cultural activities, including Yoga, learning Hindi, baking chapati. There was even a dance workshop! Having this in mind, this trip is really cheap regarding everything which is offered. Then Odette started teaching English to children and to women. Claire soon followed in the women empowerment project, and now even a woman from Colombia wants to come and help the women in Jaipur.

Joseph Guzman Teaching Children in India

Teaching Children in India: Joey’s Uplifting Presence

Joseph Guzman chose to volunteer teaching children in India. With his joy and dedication he was a great and positive ...
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Karen's Volunteer trip to India

Karen’s Volunteer Trip to India: Friendly People, Solid Organisation, Unique Experience!

When Karen from Norway planned her volunteer trip to India about six months ago, she wanted to travel together with ...
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Painting Signs for a School in Jaipur

Painting Signs for a School in Jaipur: Construction Volunteer Experience in India

Jakob and Aiden from Norway went to India as construction volunteers, in order to paint signs for a school in ...
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Argentina – Community Building, Football Coaching and more at very affordable prices!

In this last chapter, we come back to Nathan and Lindsey who started their trip in Buenos Aires. Read here about the exciting experiences. If you are into football, Argentina is the country! Coach boys and girls at school, and maybe, even discover a new Messi.

Lucy Thiess and Chakara Kan serving meals for children in Buenos Aires

Lucy and Takara serving Meals for children and families in Buenos Aires

Takara Chan and Lucy Thiess, volunteers from Australia, get their hands-on preparing and serving meals to adults and children in ...
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Adam Lese looking for a new Messi

Adam Leese, volunteer from UK, looking for a new Messi in Argentina

Adam is probably about to discover a new Messi in Buenos Aires! While he is coaching young football talents he ...
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Lindsey Willis and Nathan volunteering in Argentina

Community Development – Volunteering in Argentina and now in Brazil

My fiancé and I had an incredible experience volunteering in Argentina and now in Brazil. Our project in Buenos Aires ...
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Best Volunteer Programs in Peru

Many of our volunteers find Peru especially inspiring, as you can even get in touch with indigenous people. You can travel high up in the mountains and try out our Andean Immersion. In the Peruvian Amazon you can teach English and more, and live with the jungle community.

Albane Pourmin Kindergarten Iquitos

Volunteering at a Kindergarten in Iquitos: Albane you rock!

Albane Pournin from France had joined a childcare program in Cambodia last year, this year she is joining 4 programs ...
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Internship at a Healthcare Centre in Cusco, Peru

Internship at a Healthcare Centre in Cusco, Peru

At first I was feeling kind of afraid because of the distance and the new culture… But the experience could ...
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Gabriela celebrating San Juan with her students in Iquitos

Celebrating San Juan with her Students in Iquitos: Gabriela from Brazil

Gabriela Lopes, from Brazil, has been celebrating San Juan with students from her Teaching Program in Peru. San Juan is ...
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Sangeetha Agara Canada from Canada as a kindergarden teacher in Cusco

Kindergarden Teacher in an Amazonian Village close to Iquitos, Peru

Eduarda traveled to a small village in the Peruvian Amazon and worked as a kindergarden teacher. Read her testimonial here, ...
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Teaching English in Iquitos

Teaching English in Iquitos, Peru – Marco Fiorito

Over the last September, I volunteered for 2 weeks as a teaching assistant in Padre Cocha, a small community located ...
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Child Development in Peru - Kindergarten at Cusco

Child Development in Peru

Volunteer in Peru working in a special needs school in Cusco. This project locates volunteers in a special needs school ...
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ByAffordable Volunteer Abroad

A week of Cultural Activities in India for our Volunteers in Jaipur

During the first week of your stay as a volunteer in India, we have included cultural activities and incredible trips in Jaipur for you. Since we want to introduce you to the Indian culture,  we offer Hindi classes, Yoga classes, a dance workshop and more. You will even learn to bake chapati.

Odette Crisp from Australia took part in the cooking workshop, learned Indian dances and even made chapati for an elephant.

You will learn about religion as well, experience Holi and Diwali celebrations, and even draw Mandalas! With this short introduction to India and the “Pink City”, as Jaipur referred to, we believe, you are ready to go ahead with your volunteer project.

Have a look at some of the recent volunteer experiences in India

Joseph Guzman Teaching Children in India

Teaching Children in India: Joey’s Uplifting Presence

Joseph Guzman chose to volunteer teaching children in India. With his joy and dedication he was a great and positive ...
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Karen's Volunteer trip to India

Karen’s Volunteer Trip to India: Friendly People, Solid Organisation, Unique Experience!

When Karen from Norway planned her volunteer trip to India about six months ago, she wanted to travel together with ...
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Painting Signs for a School in Jaipur

Painting Signs for a School in Jaipur: Construction Volunteer Experience in India

Jakob and Aiden from Norway went to India as construction volunteers, in order to paint signs for a school in ...
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Find out more about volunteering in India

Visit our page with the volunteer projects in India, read about experiences of our volunteers and choose your project.

ByAffordable Volunteer Abroad

Claire starts her Women Empowerment Project in India

Claire Herbert is starting her Women Empowerment project in Jaipur. She has already made her observation visit to the school where the women empowerment project runs. Find here some of the pictures from her arrival, traditional welcome and project.

Claire is Donating Sewing Machines for the Project

She donated sewing machines to the project and will be teaching English and stitching to the women. Within stitching she will be passing her skills of making sanitary pads-a very common hygiene issue here in India as poor women can’t afford them.

Odette’s Experience with the Women Empowerment Project

Odette Crisp, from Australia, traveled to India, and worked as a volunteer on women empowerment in Jaipur with IKPVA. In this interview she tells us, how she had the idea to do something different, apart from tourist travel as usual. Before departure, she shaved her hair to raise funds for the women and the children who were her beneficiaries. When she arrived in India and met the women, she found out pretty soon, that what they wonted most, was to learn English. She ended up falling in love with India and had an amazing experience with the women in Jaipur.

Read Odette’s interview

Feel inspired to volunteer in India?

Visit our page with the full program information about volunteer work in India, and proceed with your application.

ByAffordable Volunteer Abroad

Women Empowerment in Jaipur – Interview with Odette Crisp

Odette Crisp, from Australia, traveled to India, and worked as a volunteer on women empowerment in Jaipur with IKPVA. In this interview she tells us, how she had the idea to do something different, apart from tourist travel as usual. Before departure, she shaved her hair to raise funds for the women and the children who were her beneficiaries. When she arrived in India and met the women, she found out pretty soon, that what they wonted most, was to learn English. She ended up falling in love with India and had an amazing experience with the women in Jaipur.

Interview with Odette Crisp

Why did you choose to come here to Jaipur India?

Odi: Originally I wanted to come to India to do a Yoga course, and I decided if I was gonna come to somewhat which is só different, from Australia to travel like a typical Westener and get involved with something that I’ve never really done before, like doing something meaningful with my life. And like helping people, and being envolved in community … and experiencing something you never had is really important. Spirit….

Odi, you have been here for two weeks already. How would you describe your experience here in India?

Odi: It is here, at first it was like such a (laughing) a culture shock and I wasn’t very well adjusted about things, like a baby. But it has been like the most amazing life changing experience.

Which project did you choos from Iko Porann?

I chose the women empowerment project.

How was it?

Amazing. Like, the women and girls have been supportive, and attentive, loving and nice…

Here are some of the women… What were you teaching to them?

At first, it was Art, but then, all they wanted to know was English. Yeah.

So, can you please share, what level of English you taught and, overall, what you found out about the background of the women?

Odi: So, I think, the most important thing is to engage and find, what different levels of skills, before you kind of start teaching across – there are some women, who are illiterate – tasks and things and challenges, like to fit to everyone’s level.

Tell me three words that would describe India that you’r experiencing here?

Chaotic, amazing and beautiful.

Feel inspired to volunteer on Women Empowerment in Jaipur?

Visit our page with the full information about volunteering in Jaipur, India and proceed with your application.

Read also about Claire’s beautiful experience with women empowerment in India:

Joseph Guzman Teaching Children in India

Teaching Children in India: Joey’s Uplifting Presence

Joseph Guzman chose to volunteer teaching children in India. With his joy and dedication he was a great and positive ...
Read More
Karen's Volunteer trip to India

Karen’s Volunteer Trip to India: Friendly People, Solid Organisation, Unique Experience!

When Karen from Norway planned her volunteer trip to India about six months ago, she wanted to travel together with ...
Read More
Painting Signs for a School in Jaipur

Painting Signs for a School in Jaipur: Construction Volunteer Experience in India

Jakob and Aiden from Norway went to India as construction volunteers, in order to paint signs for a school in ...
Read More
ByAffordable Volunteer Abroad

Teaching Young Monks in Nepal – Fernando Castillo

Fernando del Castillo, from Spain, teaching young monks in a Buddhist monastery in Nepal. Great work Fernando, thank you very much!!

Teaching young monks at a Buddhist Monastery

Buddhist monastery

You will be teaching at Buddhist monastery, located at Aarubari, Jorpati, Kathmandu. The athmosphere is very welcoming, and the young monks are highly motivated to learn English. While staying at the monastery with the monks, you will learn also about the Buddhist philosophy of peace and compassion.

Lammert Lettinga about his teaching experience at the monastery:

Teaching English to the child/junior monks at the Monastery has been an interesting, inspiring and educational experience for me. I only hope my pupils experienced it the same way. The atmosphere in the monastery was very welcoming, peaceful and enjoyable and so were the people in it. – Lammert Lettinga

English speaking skills will improve the professional opportunities

While learning English with you, the young monks will improve their English skills. For them, fluency in English will help bringing forward a brighter professional future. academic and professional opportunities.

Teaching English at a local school in Jarshing Pauwa, Kathmandu!

You may also choose to teach English at a local school, also close to Kathmandu. Your presence will open hearts and minds to life outside of a small village where ideas of life beyond their small corner of the world are seldom generated. Teaching the students and inspiring the teachers with new methods will leave your legacy in place.

Antonia Bozzolo: Amazing Teaching Experience

Antonia Bozzolo teaching English at School

Antonia Bozzolo

I spend a month teaching in a school in Kathmandu Nepal.
It is an amazing experience, especially if you want to put your teaching skills on the line.
I have learned not only that I love what I do, but also gained confidence and good experience.
You also get to understand a different culture and meet amazing people! – Antonia Bozzolo, Las Condes

Volunteer Work in Nepal

Find out more about volunteer work in Nepal and how to apply.

ByAffordable Volunteer Abroad

Teaching in Kathmandu – Amazing Experience!

I spend a month teaching in a school in Kathmandu Nepal.
It is an amazing experience, especially if you want to put your teaching skills on the line.
I have learned not only that I love what I do, but also gained confidence and good experience.
You also get to understand a different culture and meet amazing people! – Antonia Bozzolo, Las Condes

Volunteer teaching in Kathmandu, Nepal

This is a great opportunity for volunteers who want to gain teaching experience while improving learning environments in rural areas of Nepal.

Your presence will open hearts and minds to life outside of a small village where ideas of life beyond their small corner of the world are seldom generated. Teaching the students and inspiring the teachers with new methods will leave your legacy in place.

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ByAffordable Volunteer Abroad

Best Volunteer Programs 2018

The new year has begun, and we thought about some suggestions for the best volunteer programs. Since we found there are some volunteer projects, which our participants enjoy a lot, we made a list of highlights. Maybe, this can inspire you for your next volunteer trip. Have fun!

Teaching English in Nepal, Peru and Ecuador

Teaching English in a Monastery

Lammert in Nepal

Nepal has been a fascinating destination for our volunteers ever since, and there is nothing like teaching young monks at a monastery close to Kathmandu. Lammert with his own words:

Teaching English to the child/junior monks at the Monastery has been an interesting, inspiring and educational experience for me. I only hope my pupils experienced it the same way. The atmosphere in the monastery was very welcoming, peaceful and enjoyable and so were the people in it. At times, it was challenging to keep the kids in line by using only positive feedback and enthusiasm (because they see and undergo enough violence in their lives) but I think me and other volunteers have found a nice balance to make lessons entertaining, engaging as well as educational. It has been very rewarding to see how much progress they’ve made in the three weeks I got to teach them. – Lammert

Find out more about the teaching English Program in Nepal on our Homepage

Marco Fiorito took a trip to Peru, Iquitos in the Amazon, and found it one of the best volunteer programs:

Teaching has been an incredibly rewarding experience for me, as put me in direct contact with the local people, who really appreciated the time and effort I put into it and who truly believed in the benefits of the program. – Marco Fiorito

Find our page with all the Teaching English Programs

Medical Internships in Brazil and Nepal

Helping local people at a clinic and caring for patients is one of the most rewarding experiences.  Jason Simonides went to Brazil, and worked as a medical volunteer at a clinic in Rio. Besides his valuable experience, of course, Rio de Janeiro stands out for it’s charme. The people are very welcoming and soon you will feel at home in the Brazilian culture.

The program itself really allowed us to immerse ourselves in the culture and get a sense of the Brazilian healthcare system when we volunteered. It was a very good learning experience and a great opportunity to shadow doctors and learn some basic medical techniques, such as taking blood pressure. The doctors and nurses were all very nice and willing to work with us despite the language barrier. I was very happy with my experience with Iko Poran in Rio. – Jason Simonides

Magda Camaxide from Portugal traveled to Nepal, for a medical internship at the Kathmandu Pediatric Hospital. Her boy-friend went as well, and it was a unique trip for both of them! At the end of their journey, they visited the Annapurna region with it’s breathtaking mountains.

At the hospital I was able to exchange experiences and knowledge that was beneficial to both sides and was also extremely well integrated in the hospital routines. Thank You Manmohan Cardiothoracic Vascular and Transplant Center for this opportunity!!!

The final days in Nepal I spent trekking in the Annapurna region and was blessed with the most breathtaking mountain landscapes I have ever seen!

All of these things were perfectly orchestrated with the help of Ikoporan and FDIP, and I will always be extremely grateful for that!!! Keep up the excellent work!!!!!
Find our page with all the Medical Programs

Environmental Volunteering in Brazil and Uganda

Volunteer on Reforestion in Ecuador's Rainforest

Volunteer on Reforestion in Ecuador’s Rainforest

Elisa went to Brazil, and helped protecting the beautiful nature at the Tijuca Rainforest in Rio de Janeiro. At the same time, she worked at a community garden, where local people grow their vegetables.

So far I have had a wonderful experience volunteering in Rio de Janeiro with Iko Poran’s Urban Environmentalism program. I am half way through my two-month stay in Rio and I already know that it will be a very valuable experience for me. The project consists of work in Tijuca National Park and at a large community garden in a favela, where they grow almost every sort of common vegetable in Brazil. The people I work with in the communities are all incredibly kind and welcoming, not to mention they are doing work that makes a big difference for themselves and the environment. – Elisa

In Ecuador you can work with reforestation at the Ecuadorian Cloud Forest. With your volunteer work, you will support a community in remote village, where they grow vegetables, coffee and also plant trees in the forest. It is a unique opportunity to experience the culture of the local people and enjoy the nature.

In Africa , you can participate in our Biodiversity Project in Uganda, helping to preserve the environment of the host communities. Your volunteer work will also include alternative energies in order to create a sustainable future.

You can find all our environmental projects here.

Animal Conservation Projects in South Africa and Costa Rica

Camille Volunteering with Elephants in South Africa

Camille Clauss Marietti

In South Africa, we offer many different animal conservation projects.  You can work with endangered wildlife in an animal sanctuary near Port Elizabeth, or  save the Vervet Monkeys near Tzaneen. The African Big Five are fascinating, you can monitor the elephants, rhinos, buffalos and elephants in the African Bush. Camille from France wrote:

This summer I had an unforgettable experience in South Africa. Thank you Iko Poran for this exceptional travel! Sure, I will do it again! – Camille Claus Marietti

Gijs from Holland helped to protect the Vervet Monkeys, and enjoyed his stay a lot:

I’m having a wonderful time here and there is nothing that I don’t like. –  Gijs van Suijlichem

Last, but not least, you can go for a trip to the Caribbean beaches of Costa Rica, and protect the baby sea turtles. The program starts from March this year.

I had a fantastic time in Costa Rica with the turtles and I met many people and created memories I will never forget. I definitely recommend Iko Poran and the Sea Turtle experience in Costa Rica and I cannot wait until I volunteer with them again. Pura Vida! – Paige, 19 years old

You can find an overview of our Animal Conservation Programs here.

Childcare in Kenya and South Africa

One of the favorite projects of our volounteers is teaching children at Doreen’s Crèche close to Cape Town:

Best experiences of my Life

Mariane

On November of 2017 I had one of the best experiences of my life doing volunteer work with children in Masiphumelele Township, South Africa. The purpose was to help, but it was much beyond that. I had a life lesson, a very great personal growth. Everyday in the morning, when we arrived at crèche (me and the other volunteers), the children were waiting for us with a smile on their faces. Receiving those smiles, hugs, and kisses every morning was the best way to start the day. Playing, teaching a few words in English, helping in the distribution of snacks, it was a better way to brighten their lives because they need more love, affection and care. They need us!
I am very thankful to Iko Poran for the whole experience. They were always there from airport pick-up to accommodation, showing me the way and placing me at the project. It was unique experience without a doubt! My thanks to everybody who is part of this organization that has been helping all who need it. – Mariane

You can find all our childcare volunteer programs here.

 

ByAffordable Volunteer Abroad

Volunteering in a Clinic in Rio de Janeiro

From start to end, from coming off the airplane to leaving on the last day, we had the support of Felipe and his close friend, Regina. On the days that we volunteered at the clinic, one of them would greet us early in the morning at our hostel to pick us up and help us get there. On the days that we did not volunteer, they would still drop everything for us if we needed them. The program itself really allowed us to immerse ourselves in the culture and get a sense of the Brazilian healthcare system when we volunteered. It was a very good learning experience and a great opportunity to shadow doctors and learn some basic medical techniques, such as taking blood pressure. The doctors and nurses were all very nice and willing to work with us despite the language barrier. I was very happy with my experience with Iko Poran in Rio. – Jason Simonides

Learn more about volunteering in Brazil

Find here more volunteer programs in Rio de Janeiro. You can find more medical volunteer programs on our page about healthcare.

ByAffordable Volunteer Abroad

Volunteering with Children in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Iko Poran do an amazing job at putting you into contact with local communities and projects that need support. The work these projects do are extremely important in these communities and it was a privilege to be able to help with it. Everybody i worked with was very friendly and accommodating. I highly recommend others to pursue a volunteer project and believe it is just as beneficial to the individual as to the community you are working with. – Lisa

Find more testimonials from childcare volunteers in Brazil

Volunteers making children smile in Brazil

Volunteers making children smile in Brazil

Volunteers from all over the world unite to make the children smile in Rio: Mariangel Chaves Rodriguez, from Costa Rica, Iona ...
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Beautiful testimony from Paulina in Rio de Janeiro

Beautiful testimony from Paulina in Rio de Janeiro!

Paulina has sent us this beautiful testimony about her volunteer work in Rio de Janeiro. During her time in Salgueiro, ...
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Volunteering with Children in Rio

Volunteering with Children in Rio – Lucy

Iko Poran was value for money and I received ongoing support from Felipe, the project co-ordinator. I took part in ...
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ByAffordable Volunteer Abroad

Lea’s Volunteer Trip to India: Incredible, Unexpected and Beautiful!

Lea describes her volunteer trip to India. When asked, if she could describe her experience with three words, she would say: “Incredible, unexpected and beautiful.” She enjoyed her trip to India from the beginning: at the airport pickup, the orientation, and the volunteer projects. She has been teaching English to children and met so many friendly people – they are unbelievable friendly, she says, and want us to discover the culture.

From Lea’s interview:

If you had a chance to describe India with three words, what words would you use?

Incredible, unexpected and beautiful.

What made you smile in India?

The people are very friendly, especially to foreigners – sometimes they can be a little bit too friendly, but it’s OK. You get used to it, you can not like to be a star.

What makes us unique?

Listening to the people, they are giving us som tips and are helping us, they are very friendly, they want us discover the culture

What are the best Memories you take with you from your Project & us?

I would say everything, because it is very dificult for me to say, there is only one moment that is important, because for me it is all journey and I have a very big experience about it.

Lea discovered the culture during her volunteer trip to India

During her stay in India, Lea had Yoga classes, learned Indian dances and took part in a cooking workshop.

In order to introduce you to the Indian culture, we included some cultural activities, Hindi classes and incredible trips for you. You may choose, whether you would like to participate in Yoga classes, learn Indian dances or have Indian cooking classes, including to bake chapati, You will learn about religion as well, experience Holi and Diwali celebrations, and even draw Mandalas! With this short introduction to India and the “Pink City”, as Jaipur is referred to, we believe, you are ready to go ahead with your volunteer project.

Read More

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