Where can I volunteer in Africa that won't cost an arm and a leg?
Since money is starting to run low we wanted to find a place where we could volunteer for 2-3 weeks. Most places I found on the internet are "volunteer vacations" that cost thousands of dollars. I'm looking for something cheap or free. Anyone know of a place that needs a couple of volunteers? Or where I can find one? Thanks!
I'm sure you're aware that many organizations will want people who specifically want to volunteer - I'm not trying to be rude or say you shouldn't do it because I think volunteers motivated by a variety of causes can still be effective - but if you're mainly interested in saving money and still kind of want your time free to do as you'd like, it may still work out in the end to focus more on budget travel. But you may well come across something short-term and low cost that could work searching or in person.
Anyways, for those who are in the same situation I was in here's what I did. We are currently volunteering at El-Shadai Family Foster home in eastern Uganda. It is run by one man and he has 33 kids he is the foster parent of. He is a community leader and is involved in several other projects that help the local community. Since getting here we've worked on building sponsorship profiles for the kids, setup a financial tracking system for the house, talked to women's groups who are starting small business and playing with little kids at all hours of the day. My girlfriend and I have business backgrounds so we help where we can be most useful.
There is an application on the Kids Worldwide website which costs $30 each. Then you take the rest of your fees/donation in cash directly to the home and give it the founder. It goes to good use and there are no admin layers skimming off dollars other than the application fee.
We've had an excellent experience so far. The kids have been welcoming and so warm and open. I would recommend to anyone. Check out www.friendsofelshadai.com for more info.
Grass-roots (read Free) volunteer opportunities are difficult to find on the Internet, the same 'placement agencies' come up time and time again.
I know its to late for the OP, but these sites list free
and low-cost volunteer opportunities:
Have you refreshed your screen?
But if you have a heart for service, and can still afford to pay room/board(as other wise you are costing them $),
I cannot say enough good things about www.hostelhoff.com in Tanzania. I've mentioned it before, but it always deserves mentioning again. Good luck! gigirtw
This is another late post, but I am currently volunteering in Cameroon for BERUDEP, a local development NGO. They don't charge any fees, you just pay for your living expenses. This is a small NGO that is accomplishing incredible things, and they appreciate any help they can get from international volunteers. For more information, you can send me a message or see www.berudep.org.
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