Posts Tagged abroad
Volunteer abroad cons
Combining volunteering and tourism to have voluntourism gives a traveler to enjoy their holiday longer and make it more fruitful. Traditional tourism is where a tourist or a traveler goes to a beach, safari, and hotel. Volunteering abroad involves going to another country to help the local communities by working on worthwhile projects and programs. Volunteering abroad or voluntourism is new and exciting adventure that many people are getting to. Volunteering abroad is getting more popular with many travelers they are shifting from traditional tourism. As a result many organizations and companies are jumping into this new industry. The problems come in as the industry is not regulated as traditional tourism. There is no body that reviews the volunteer service organizations that provide the volunteer abroad programs. There are also no rules or guidelines that have been set to regulate the industry.
Apart from lack of regulations there are other problems in the volunteering abroad industry:
Not for profit vs. For profit organization.
Not for profit and for profit organizations basically provide the same services. They both have local and grassroots organizations that they are supporting. They both provide the same programs i.e. volunteer abroad teaching, health work; orphanage work; community work and conservation projects. The problem comes in choosing which organization to use. There are some which are affordable while there are others which are expensive. Both types of organizations could charge as much as $ 4,000 and as low as $ 1,100 for a month. These prices make it difficult to decide which companies are in it for the money or for helping the societies. It also hard to find out which of these organizations help the local communities or they help themselves with the money you pay them.
Volunteer abroad programs
One of the main problems is matching the volunteer abroad program with the volunteer. There are volunteers who come back after their volunteer work and they are inspired and changed for life. But there are others who come back without any benefit. Time should be taken on both sides to find programs that they will benefit both parties the volunteer and the organization. The structure of the programs is important. The programs should be setup by the local organization and should be made in order to meet the goals of the society. The programs should be made to meet the needs of the society. Other problems with the programs are that they are not sustainable. In that they sometimes lack continuity in that the work started by one group of volunteer stops when they leave. The work stops because there is no one to continue. For example building projects could be stalled when the volunteers leave. Programs should be made in such a way that they are effective, and are sustainable with or without volunteers.
Another issue to be addressed is that are international volunteers taking jobs away from the local people. The work the volunteer does can usually be done by a local individual faster and cheaper. Many local organizations look for international volunteers to fill up staff positions in order not to pay them. They have the capacity to hire local people but they choose to take volunteers. This reduces the effectiveness of the volunteer work and deprives the local job market.
The international volunteers many times do not know what they are getting into. They are not properly prepared by the volunteer service organization on what to expect when they volunteer abroad. When they arrive at the project location they are shocked and disappointed at the conditions. As they are not properly informed on the situation on the ground they don’t know whether to accept things or complain to someone. Before they get into a contract with the organizations volunteers should know what they are getting into and be fully informed.
Volunteer Abroad Organizations by MICATZ
MICATZ, a non-profit organization based in Tanzania, places volunteers from across the world willing to assist in various welfare projects in schools, hospitals, orphanages, monasteries, community/government organizations etc. with an aim to educate and help influence the life of the deprived people throughout Asia, Africa and Latin America.
We encourage students, professionals, businessmen, social workers and other organizations to step forward and volunteer in devoting some amount of time in the improvement of the life of the underprivileged. To support the enthusiasm in the volunteering, the volunteer is offered adventure holidays, wildlife Safari in Tanzania language and cultural experience programs such medical, teaching and orphanage.
We provide the foundations to Volunteer Abroad for volunteering their duty with loyalty by offering travel opportunities, exploratory expeditions and to train people in specific cultural or pragmatic aspects for the betterment of their future.
Each year over 1000 volunteers enrol in our programme to provide social services to the needy and take benefit of the offers offered in numerous countries such as Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, South Africa, Ghana, India, Nepal, Philippines, Malawi, Bolivia, Sri Lanka, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Peru – Cusco, Peru – Lima and Thailand.
Your programme fee contributes towards personalized volunteer placement, project donation, language instruction, cultural education, meals, accommodation and transportation to and from all MICATZ placements and programs, pre-departure guidance from MICATZ headquarters staff and 24 hour access to in-country staff.
Let us serve the poor, the unfortunate and the lonely according to the graces we have received.
Let us do the humble work adventurously with enthusiasm.
Whenever you think, you alone won’t make much a difference to the deprived
Remember: You alone matter MUCH to them.
Dates: Dates and durations are flexible and are available throughout the year from 4 weeks to over 3 months. You pick your start and finish dates.
Cost: Costs vary depending on length of stay starting at USD 0 – 0 for 4 weeks including accommodation, food, transfer from the airport, full pre-departure support, local in-country team support and backup and 24-hour emergency support.
The Benefits of Volunteering Abroad
Volunteer work means giving your time and energy to work in a project without getting paid. Volunteering Solutions provides program placement in different countries and in different fields. As you will be putting in your time, energy and money, the volunteer programs available are flexible. The flexibility comes by choosing the numbers of hours that you are willing to work in a day and the duration of the volunteer program.
Also most of the work that you will be doing does not need any academic qualifications, which means anyone can apply. So if you are willing to help and care you are most welcome to join our programs in 19 different countries worldwide. Most volunteer abroad programs involve a lot of traveling, so we don’t want you to go to another country and find yourself being ineffective. You should put considerable research in to the work that you will be doing abroad. In that, you want to choose a program whereby it emphasizes on your strengths, skills and abilities. Here are examples of the most popular volunteer abroad programs that are available with Volunteering Solutions: -
Volunteer Teaching programs
This is the most popular volunteer program. Volunteers will work in private, public schools, orphanages and community schools. The volunteer work involves working with kids who are 4 to 16 years old. The volunteer will be involved in teaching some of the subjects like English, Math, Science, Music and physical education. The volunteers will partner with local teachers and other volunteers to provide proper education to the children. The main duties involve Work as a teaching assistant: teaching classes, looking after administrative tasks, help in sports activities and playing with the kids. For this program, you will need to love kids, teaching and to be patient with the kids. Sometimes some training for this program is needed but it’s not mandatory. Schools are not open throughout the year; you should time your volunteer work in order to coincide with the school calendar. We have Teaching program in also all countries where we provide volunteering opportunities, so just be sure which program destination interests you the most so that you can start your program at the earliest.
Volunteer orphanage work
Working in children’s orphanages is very popular, and it’s the most fun and engaging. If you like kids and want to change their lives for the better, then working in an orphanage program is the best place. The kids are active and love the attention they get from the volunteers. A typical volunteer helping in an orphanage would help the children with their day to day activities such as: doing homework, making notes, playing with children, helping staff organize the orphanage, exchanging cultural views and teaching them about health and hygiene. You can also take the kids out for picnics and for excursions. Most of the programs activities are already arranged and you will have a supervisor to help you all the time. Orphanage program is also available in almost all countries where we provide volunteering opportunities, so just be sure which program destination interests you the most so that you can start your program at the earliest.
Volunteer Community development work
Volunteer work involves education, empowerment, construction, and vocational training; providing sex education to the girls and the local community which you can assist with. Volunteers working in the Women Empowerment program work along with women from poor areas within the capital city of Delhi. All the women come from poor family background and have poor or very little education level. In some projects volunteers also provide counseling and monitoring and help women by teaching English, helping in different vocational courses such as beautician work, stitching and handicrafts work. They make a big difference in their lives by sharing their love and warmth with these women.
Volunteer Health/ Medical programs
The volunteer work will be done in hospitals, clinics, dispensaries, and public health offices. The volunteer health programs target the poor and those who don’t have access to medical facilities. We have tie ups with different hospitals and clinics worldwide which offer medical help to the poor. Interns and Volunteers are placed in hospitals and clinics in the region where they work alongside the medical staff and attending to the needs of the patients. Students mainly shadow and assist the medical staff depending on their level of experience and the skills they possess. Other duties include filling in forms and charts, diagnosing diseases, giving out prescriptions and consultations. In this, the volunteer will need to have a medical background in order to work with the patients. This program is best for health professionals like: doctors, nurses, medical students and clinical officers. If you are interested in volunteering in Spanish Countries then we require intermediate level of Spanish knowledge.
Volunteer HIV/ AIDS program
As a volunteer you will be asked to help in the outreach programs to help educate the members of society and create awareness about the disease. The volunteer work involves supporting the infected and affected through provision of food and medical supplies. As a volunteer work, you will be counseling them, encourage and help empower them. For this volunteer program, you will need to be compassionate about the disease and understanding to those who are infected and affected. There are no academic qualifications that are needed to work in this program.
Obstacles to volunteering abroad
Many people want to travel and volunteer abroad. It is their dream to go, see and experience the world. Most of the potential international volunteers don’t leave home because of the obstacles they see. As they start planning their dream vacation to volunteer abroad, or gap year, round the world trip backpack and intern abroad they are overwhelmed by the obstacles that they foresee. They look at their problems facing them and say “if only” or “I wish” this wasn’t there or if I had this or that. Due to the obstacles they face, many international volunteers stay grounded and don’t leave their homes. Obstacles and challenges are there in everything we do, to get over them we need to look hard at them and come up with solutions. Here are some of the obstacles that many people face and their solutions: Fear Fear of the unknown is what scares most of us from leaving home. This is true especially for first time international volunteers who don’t know what happens while they will be abroad. They are afraid of anything and everything that they can think of. There are many questions we could be having and many of them don’t have answers that keep us from volunteering overseas. Also to increase the level of fear, many government bodies advice international volunteers not to go to certain parts of the world due to terrorist activities. We encourage governments to warn their citizens and we should heed terror warnings. We should use this advice but not to cripple us not to travel. To tackle this problem is by doing what we are afraid of doing. Another solution is to get as much information about where and what you are afraid. With more knowledge you will be able to make a more informed decision. We should follow this saying on our lives “I will go where fear won’t let me.” Responsibility Many international volunteers have certain responsibilities. It could be that they are in school, college, university; at work; and have family responsibilities. Many international volunteers could be parents or soon to be parents. These responsibilities keep many of us from traveling abroad. To travel abroad we could come up with solutions that keep us from abandoning our responsibilities. For student international volunteers they could travel during their summer breaks, or before and after they join universities or colleges. For career international volunteers, they could take a career break to volunteer overseas or use their short vacation period. There are short stint volunteer programs which run from a week to a month. For parents or soon to be parents they can volunteer abroad if they take their kids with them. This will involve looking for programs whereby they can volunteer with their kids. They can also travel during the summer vacations in order to make sure their children don’t miss out on school. Money Many people assume volunteering abroad is an expensive endeavor and they avoid doing it. There are many ways to make your money work for you in order for you to volunteer overseas. There are many volunteer service organizations that are expensive while at the same time there are other organizations that are affordable. To reduce the cost of travelling, one could take advantage of flight deals by booking in advance or during off seasons. Travelling in group also reduces the price drastically. If you don’t have the money available for your volunteer abroad program, you can fund raise or look for sponsorship. While you are abroad you can live on a budget to take care of the money that you have. Bureaucracies There are countries where by you can’t get in to easily because of your nationality. For example an American citizen could face extra restrictions if they want to travel to Cuba and some Middle East countries. When you are in one country and you want to move on to the next one you may not be granted a visa to go to that country. To tackle this, apply for visas early in advance, to take care of problems that you could face. In some occasions ask for an invitation letter from the volunteer service organization that you are using to help with processing your visa. Another alternative is to travel to another country as opposed to your first choice country. All in all we should not look for excuses not to travel but solutions to our challenges. Happy Halloween every one.
Volunteering Abroad And Relationships
Distance doesn’t matter if you really love the person, what matters most is your honesty and trust for that relationship to work out – Trish. The second international holiday celebrated after New Year is Valentines Day. History has it that Valentines Day came from St. Valentine a priest who lived around 270 AD in Rome and he attracted the disfavor of Roman emperor Claudius II who ruled during this time. He believed that marriage made the men weak. So he issued an edict forbidding marriage to assure quality soldiers. Although it was forbidden, St. Valentine being a bishop, held secret marriage ceremonies of soldiers and young men. This was in opposition to Claudius II who had prohibited it leading to his execution. Before St. Valentine was executed he wrote a letter to a daughter of his jailer with whom he had a deep friendship. In his letter he signed: from your valentine. When a volunteer goes abroad for a while it means they will be cut off from their loved ones for a period of time putting a strain on their relationship. Or when they are abroad they could fall in love with one of the local people and after their work is done will have to leave. The volunteers will be forced into a long distant relationship. Here are a couple of tips to help your relationships survive when you are abroad:
The volunteer and their partner should sit down and talk about the upcoming adventure. They have a meeting and define their relationships. They should define if they just have fun, if they are serious and if they are ready to go to the next level to engagements or marriage. For those who are already engaged or married should discuss the effect of the long distance will have on their marriage. One of the strains of the relationships will be lack of intimacy, no hugging or kissing or physical contact. Being miles away from each other compounds the problems that they could be having while they are together. Also while they are away they should promise to remain faithful to each other during the duration of the volunteer abroad work.
Due to technology the world has been made smaller and smaller. There are numerous ways to stay in touch with each other. The various ways of communications are through, calls, internet calls, text messages and the use of social media (facebook and twitter). These are great ways to communicate and they are also mostly inexpensive. In a relationship, quality and quantity communication is very important and it ought to be frequent. Written communication should be intimate and extensive to give the other partner a good picture of what the other is feeling. Although there could be nothing new to talk about just staying on the line while hearing the other person breathe does wonders. Due to the different time zones that the volunteers and partners are in they will have to schedule when to talk. They could talk once a day, three times a week or once a week, depending on the schedules.
If the volunteer is planning to go abroad for a long period of time like six months to three years, then they will have to schedule to meet with their partners. Extended absence could lead to the death of the relationship. They could organize to see each other after every two or three months. Visiting each other shows that you still care. The volunteer and partner could both go to a mutually exclusive place and enjoy each others company. It is said real connections are made through touching, feeling and smelling and has strong ties to memory; it will be easier to keep the relationship going if they see each other at some point. When the couple is away from each they could still schedule to do some things together, for example even though they are separated by distance they could still watch movies together, and listen to the same songs
The biggest killer of all relationships is the opinion of others. When the volunteers friends weigh in their opinions about the relationship they will often be negative. This negativity adds more strain in the relationship and the couple will lose faith that they can keep the long distant relationship. They could ask for advice from other people but be objective on taking the advice.