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 Reasons for volunteering abroad

People decide to do volunteer work for a number of reasons, of course. However, looking at the people who are doing volunteer work at Humana People to People projects in Africa or Asia we can see some patterns. So – who wants to be a volunteer?

Type 1: Has a degree but needs relevant experience

Typically, this type of volunteer has a university degree under the belt – but no experience. Therefore, their reason for doing some long-term volunteer work at a project in Africa or Asia is quite simple: They need the experience. 

In addition, they often value the opportunity to practice teamwork with local partners, and lastly: they cherish the idea of putting their hard-acquired knowledge into practice.

Type 2: Feels too young to commit to higher education

Some are young but haven’t embarked on higher education because they have no clue about what they would like to study.

Therefore, they are smart enough to take a year off, to get more experience, to have a look around to see what is possible and to explore different avenues than the “normal”. 

This means that some of the younger volunteers choose the Take 10 Volunteer programme because it is well-structured, with clear goals for the different months of the programme.

Furthermore, as a Take 10 volunteer, you do the whole volunteer experience as part of a team with like-minded people. For some, the safety of being in a group feels better than travelling solo.

During the preparation period, the team has a teacher to guide them, and during the project period, volunteers are placed in duos or trios and work closely together with local project leaders.  This means that less experienced volunteers are supported throughout.

Type 3: Mature person looking for new challenges

Typically, this type of volunteers have had a professional career of some kind, or have reared children who are now grown up and independent. 

Also, some are seniors who have retired – but are still very energetic and eager to be active. People who enjoy this kind of maturity may feel ready to take on new challenges. They often have a lot of experience to share. So, they decide to embark on a volunteer adventure.

Type 4: Cannot stand the rat-race any longer

Some people tell us that they “have had everything”: A job, a flat, a car, a gym membership and even a partner. But somehow, they’re thinking: “Is this it?” Basically, they are tired of the “rat race.”

Therefore, some people in this kind of situation decide to take a mid-career break. In fact, this is becoming more common, at least in countries with a low unemployment rate where you don’t risk too much be putting your career on hold. 

So, they press the PAUSE button and take some time to reflect and to re-assess their life situation before deciding on which path to take.

Type 5: Backpackers looking for more purposeful travelling

Some volunteers have travelled extensively before joining the programme, but tell us they cannot ignore any longer the stark reality they have witnessed with their own eyes in a number of countries. 

Therefore, they feel compelled to do something about it. They are also experienced enough to realise that a few weeks of volunteering here and there isn’t really going to have any real impact.

Another reason we sometimes hear is the fact that travelling independently on your own can be pretty taxing in the long run. Recovering backpackers tell us they cherish the idea of being on a team. 🙂

Want to know more about volunteering abroad?

Let’s stay in touch!

 

 

Volunteering abroad can change your life.

The Take 10 Volunteer programme

3 months:
Preparation – training, practical skills, teamwork, setting goals

6 months:
Project work – in Malawi, Zambia, Mozambique or India

1 month:
Conclusion and information activities – reflection, bringing the good message out

Travel tips for volunteers

"The Dos"

Do be respectful towards the people you meet.

Do learn greetings and polite phrases in the local language.

Do get the permission of parents to take photos of children.

Do listen to what needs and wishes are expressed by the people you meet.

Do listen to local experts.

Do dress appropriately and respect local culture.

Do taste the local food, even if it is termites.

"The Don'ts"

Don’t volunteer for a short time in an orphanage. Children need stable, long-term relationships with carers, not random volunteers who come and go.

Don’t pose with children to make “cute” social media posts

Don’t impose your own well-intentioned “good ideas” in communities who didn’t ask for them.

Don’t assume you know better by default. Investigate.

Don’t walk around in a skimpy shorts just because the sun is out.

Don’t smoke cigarettes in public unless everyone else does.

Don’t plant trees in the dry season.

There are 1000 reasons for volunteering abroad.
How can I join the Take 10 Volunteer programme?

In order to enrol, you need to meet the following requirements: 

    • You are 18 years old or older.
    • You are ready to leave your home for 10 months to volunteer in a community environment 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
    • You have decided not to drink alcohol or take drugs for the entirety of the program.
    • You are eager to experience a multidisciplinary and collective training programme, which includes theoretical and practical activities.
    • You are ready to immerse yourself in a multicultural and diverse community.
    • You are ready to volunteer where you are most needed.
    • You look forward to engaging with the Humana People to People projects in a spirit of cooperation, mutual learning and respect.
    • You are committed to learn about people, cultures, values and traditions, and to share your knowledge and stories with the public after your travels.

Reasons for volunteering abroad

People decide to do volunteer work for a number of reasons, of course. However, looking at the people who are doing volunteer work at Humana People to People projects in Africa or Asia we can see some patterns.

One thing is clear: Age doesn’t matter. Apart from that, we can see that people who go to volunteer abroad, do it for a number of reasons. Let’s examine some types of volunteers.

Who wants to be a volunteer abroad?

Type 1: Has a degree but needs relevant experience

Typically, this type of volunteer has a university degree under the belt – but no experience. Therefore, their reason for doing some long-term volunteer work at a project in Africa or Asia is quite simple: They need the experience. 

In addition, they often value the opportunity to practice teamwork with local partners, and lastly: they cherish the idea of putting their hard-acquired knowledge into practice.

Who wants to be a volunteer abroad?

Type 2: Feels too young to commit to higher education

Some are young but haven’t embarked on higher education because they have no clue about what they would like to study.

Therefore, they are smart enough to take a year off, to get more experience, to have a look around to see what is possible and to explore different avenues than the “normal”. 

This means that some of the younger volunteers choose the Take 10 Volunteer programme because it is well-structured, with clear goals for the different months of the programme.

Who wants to be a volunteer abroad?

Furthermore, as a Take 10 volunteer, you do the whole volunteer experience as part of a team with like-minded people. For some, the safety of being in a group feels better than travelling solo.

During the preparation period, the team has a teacher to guide them, and during the project period, volunteers are placed in duos or trios and work closely together with local project leaders.  This means that less experienced volunteers are supported throughout.

Some people prefer to volunteer abroad and work in a team.

Type 3: Mature person looking for new challenges

Typically, this type of volunteers have had a professional career of some kind, or have reared children who are now grown up and independent. 

Also, some are seniors who have retired – but are still very energetic and eager to be active. People who enjoy this kind of maturity may feel ready to take on new challenges. They often have a lot of experience to share. So, they decide to embark on a volunteer adventure.

Volunteering abroad is popular with senior citizens who can use their experiences.

Type 4: Cannot stand the rat-race any longer

Some people tell us that they “have had everything”: A job, a flat, a car, a gym membership and even a partner. But somehow, they’re thinking: “Is this it?” Basically, they are tired of the “rat race.”

Therefore, some people in this kind of situation decide to take a mid-career break. In fact, this is becoming more common, at least in countries with a low unemployment rate where you don’t risk too much be putting your career on hold. 

So, they press the PAUSE button and take some time to reflect and to re-assess their life situation before deciding on which path to take.

Getting out of the hamster wheel to volunteer abroad.

So, they press the PAUSE button and take some time to reflect and to re-assess their life situation before deciding on which path to take.

Type 5: Backpackers looking for more purposeful travelling

Some volunteers have travelled extensively before joining the programme, but tell us they cannot ignore any longer the stark reality they have witnessed with their own eyes in a number of countries. 

Therefore, they feel compelled to do something about it. They are also experienced enough to realise that a few weeks of volunteering here and there isn’t really going to have any real impact.

Another reason we sometimes hear is the fact that travelling independently on your own can be pretty taxing in the long run. Recovering backpackers tell us they cherish the idea of being on a team. 🙂

Want to know more about volunteering abroad?

 

Let’s stay in touch! 🙂

Travel tips for volunteers

"The Dos"

Do be respectful towards the people you meet.

Do learn greetings and polite phrases in the local language.

Do get the permission of parents to take photos of children.

Do listen to what needs and wishes are expressed by the people you meet.

Do listen to local experts.

Do dress appropriately and respect local culture.

Do taste the local food, even if it is termites.

"The Don'ts"

Don’t volunteer for a short time in an orphanage. Children need stable, long-term relationships with carers, not random volunteers who come and go.

Don’t pose with children to make “cute” social media posts

Don’t impose your own well-intentioned “good ideas” in communities who didn’t ask for them.

Don’t assume you know better by default. Investigate.

Don’t walk around in a skimpy shorts just because the sun is out.

Don’t smoke cigarettes in public unless everyone else does.

Don’t plant trees in the dry season.

Volunteering abroad can change your life and add valuable experience.