Finding the perfect volunteer abroad program

giving back volunteer abroadI love learning new things, no matter how small or simple. What matters to me is that if I didn’t know it before, I’m glad to learn about it now.

And that’s my current state with finding the perfect volunteer abroad opportunity this year. My husband and I are interested in volunteering abroad and I’ve been doing a lot of research to find us the perfect fit. We initially applied with Habitat for Humanity but most of its programs are for about a week and a few days and we’d like to volunteer for up to 6 weeks. We started the process with Habitat and were waiting to hear back about extending our stay to up to six weeks. Unfortunately that wasn’t possible so now we need a plan B, which equals a lot of researching in the last few days.

There’s A LOT of information out there on volunteering abroad and it’s becoming a bit overwhelming to digest. There’re legitimate non-profits and bogus ones; for profits companies that can carve up the perfect travel volunteer program; and the list goes on. Another interesting fact I learned is that these things cost money (a lot of money for someone who’s already giving up six weeks worth of salary). So not only will we not be getting paid at work while we’re away, we also have to pay (preferably a non-profit) to help out. I’m still wrapping my head around this financially lose-lose situation, especially since the longer you volunteer the more expensive the cost of the program.

I’m trying not to lose sight of the bigger picture, the reason we wanted to do this in the first place. I really do enjoy giving back and helping out in any way I can. My type of volunteer opportunity is the chance to really be hands on and contribute in a way that directly impacts the community and the people that call that place home. That’s a great motivation and extremely rewarding for an instant gratification junkie like me. It’s a feel good feeling you can’t go wrong with. Also, it’s like I said before in another post…this can’t be it—that’s why I volunteer.

So back to the drawing board for a plan B. We’ll be going to Edmonton’s Mission Fest this month to check out potential non-profits we can volunteer with. I’ve also found the following websites/non-profits helpful so far. Check them out if you’re also interested in volunteering abroad or just want to learn more about them.

~ by omonaij on February 9, 2014.

2 Responses to “Finding the perfect volunteer abroad program”

  1. hey, Did you attend WOFC benin

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