International Volunteer HQ
International Volunteer HQ Programs
IVHQ is the world's most trusted and affordable volunteer abroad organization with the largest range of top-rated programs, available in 40+ destinations year-round! We...
Volunteers are needed NOW through International Volunteer HQ's partner organization in Ghana! A wide range of volunteering placements are available in order for participants...
International Volunteer HQ has a wide range of volunteering opportunities available in working with children placements, sports programs, environmental placements, Carnaval...
International Volunteer HQ Reviews
I was humbled, challenged and blessed.
Submitted by Hannah - Victoria University | February 22, 2018
I’ve recently returned from a two week volunteer trip in Phnom Penh, Cambodia and I am in awe of my experience.
My accomodation consisted of living with ten other volunteers from across the globe in a shared house. The diversity of the shared house was an experience of its own as you learn from and grow with your fellow volunteers.
The staff at the shared house were outstanding as they provide you with routine (which is flexible), information, guidance and not to mention friendship.
I felt secure, loved, accepted and appreciated at the shared house.
For my volunteer work I was placed at a child care center which was a 15 minute motorbike ride from my accomodation.
The children who attend the child care are aged between 2-7 years old and come from families who live and work in the dump yards. The families who work in the dump yards search through the garbage in hope to find recyclable materials in order to sell for a small amount of income.
The child care staff pick up the children each morning from their homes in a van and take them to the center where they’d showered, fed, educated and entertained.
Not only does the child care provide the children with a safe refuge, they’re given unconditional love, compassion and patience.
When first I entered the child care I was overwhelmed with the amount of love and peace in the atmosphere. I was greeted by a young boy with an unless amount of cuddles and affection which was followed by more children.
The children were cheeky, funny and an absolute blessings to spend time with and to form individual relationships with. They were so appreciative of the smallest gifts including hair gel, hair ties and toys.
I was emotionally challenged from witnessing were the children live and the little to nothing they had. However, each of the children have a endless amount of joy in their hearts which overfollows. I am so proud of each of them.
My entire experience in Cambodia filled my heart with so much joy and love.
If you’re considering volunteering in Cambodia, JUST DO IT. You’ve more to offer the country then you’d believe and the country has a lot to offer you in return.
Chios, Greece Kindergarten Volunteer Program Through IVHQ
Submitted by Gabrielle Grove - Quebec | February 22, 2018
I had the privilege of being the first IVHQ member to go to Chios, Greece, let alone a volunteer from North America. Let me start off by stating that this trip went above and beyond my expectations and dreams. Between the check ups and preparation through the IVHQ website (which is so easy to work and well organized) to checking up on how my trip was going during my stay. IVHQ also emailed me after my trip came to an end to ask my thoughts on the trip. I booked the flights through IVHQ, well STA Travel, I called and paid and then was sent the itinerary and link to check in for my flights. Everything went smoothly and when there was boarding confusion, Theo Jones the STA Travel coordinator that booked my flights was there to answer my calls and fixed the issue in a matter of minutes. I traveled 8 hours from Montreal Canada Airport to Geneva Switzerland Airport, from there I flew 4 hours to Athens Greece Airport, and finally from Athens I flew 45 minutes before landing at Chios Greece Airport. Waiting for me eagerly were Maria and Marcos Psora the Local staff for my program. The local staff made sure my accommodations were comfortable, I had their information, and they were there for any and everything. Marcos helped to guide me towards places I might want to see, drove me if I had no ride, was warm and made me feel at home. The accommodation I stayed at was in the Village of Katarraktis and it was clean and overlooked the Aegean Sea, with a backdrop of Turkey in the distance. The local staff was all in all amazing and went above and beyond to make sure I had the best experience of their everyday lives. My heart was so full watching the sun set and sun rise with a cup of Greek coffee in hand. I loved my week long home so much, it was more than I could dream up. I thought to myself quite often, "I died and went to Greek heaven." I could live there forever. The people are so kind, I loved living like a local, taking in the culture, learning some Greek words, eating local authentic Greek food, walking around town, and walking the beaches of Chios. I got to walk to the village over every day to volunteer in the or if it was a bit cold the teachers would give me a lift on the way to school, which was very nice. I felt as if the feeling over overwhelming excitement I had for the trip never went away. I was smiling so much from arrival to departure. I learned a ton Greek culture, language, and the history of Chios Island. This was a learning experience so special it will remain close to my heart forever. The view on the walk up the mountain to the village over was absolutely lovely, the Aegean Sea with the view of Turkey the entire way up the mountain. When I got to the school i realized how small the schools are compared to North America, due to the small villages opposed to big towns and cities piled together. The kindergarten I volunteered worked with a class of 14-18 students daily. Class runs from roughly 8:30AM -12:30PM. During this time the children learn, pray, do craft, eat breakfast, sing, and play outside. The teachers were amazingly inviting and very appreciative for the volunteer help. The children were so welcoming and nice and understanding of language barriers. Because I volunteered in a kindergarten I was able to learn what they were learning since beforehand I knew very little of the Greek language. The week I went was a special one too because this week the schools had a field-trip that I got to partake in. We went to the village over to a museum and a puppet theater, it was so cool. I was as in awe and excited as the children, maybe more so haha. The children are so smart and wild, I enjoyed working with them. I am thankful to have been aiding in their learning experience, as they aided in mine without even realizing it. My trip was full of laughs, deep conversations, good food, smiles, and to mention again..TONS of learning. Learning culture and exchanging cultural norms and experiences is something i am so grateful for and appreciate through all my travels. I have all these wonderful opportunities in life, and I am so happy IVHQ lead me to this particular opportunity. I had the time of my life. The feeling I had is the feeling I think of when I speak traveling and what I wish to do with my life. While writing this review thinking of the memories and the feeling in the moment of this trip puts a huge smile on my face and fills my heart with a content feeling. Before my time in Greece came to an end I was already thinking my next visit or at least my next trip through IVHQ. I had my expectations for this trip set pretty high, because it's Greece and when you think of Greece nothing bad comes to mind. That being said, my high expectations were surpassed from the day I had arrived. I don't think I could of predicted just how it would be and just how perfect and wonderful the people, villages, learning experience, and culture would be. Leaving the village, the kindergarten, the people, children, and teachers was utterly bittersweet. I cried while saying goodbye and wrote thank you letters to the local staff and teachers that left a lasting impact on me. I will carry a part of Greece with me forever. This trip has inspired me, showed me so many things and taught me many life lessons I will carry with me for all time. I left Greece with a newly gained perspective on the beautiful world I share with the beautiful souls I had the pleasure to meet along the way. I am from Indiana, USA- but moved to Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, Canada on an open work and travel visa for one year. So upon my departure back to Canada I still carried the 'traveling to somewhere new that I get to explore' feeling. During my flights all I could feel was pure happiness, content/wholesome feelings. My heart is so full. My soul is at pure peace and I don't think I could ever write enough words to convey the raw meaning and true experiences this trip brought into my life. I give IVHQ a 10/10, the staff a 10/10 both local and international, and Greece of course a 10/10. I am so grateful. My first time overseas and solo traveling that is ... was a dream come true, a dream I didn't know I had until I pursued it. Thank you IVHQ!
IVHQ Ghana Childcare Program
Submitted by Jessica Paterson - Monash University | February 22, 2018
The only way to describe my month in Ghana was that it was honestly the best 5 weeks of my life. From the moment I booked my IVHQ trip I knew it was going to be incredible but I never knew that it was going to change my life so much. The kids at Olive Program were the most amazing kids I've ever met and I loved every second of it. There was support all the way through from IVHQ which was great - whether it was being met at the airport, coming and checking on programs or phone calls every now and again to check everything was okay. Evans from IVHQ also organised a trip to Cape Coast with all the volunteers from orientation for the first weekend which was great to get to know everyone so we could organise our own weekend travels with them for future weekends. My program was so good and I loved that at Olive we could really get to know each of the kids because we lived with them and there were only around 35. We also got to try other things like teaching, cooking and helping on the farm when the kids were at school which was so fun. Exploring Ghana was such an adventure yet I always felt so safe and the people there are so lovely and friendly. I can't wait to go back I miss the kids so much already and if you're thinking going you should definitely do it, it was the best thing I've ever done and you'll love it!
Program: Volunteer in Childcare in Ghana
Submitted by Ivy - Anhui University | February 21, 2018
When I first arrived the local center where I volunteered for, I was a little bit nervous. Because I can't speak Spanish, and I can't communicated well with the kids.
Suddenly, a little boy stood on a high railing and called my name "Please catch me!" He opened his arms hoping I could catch him.
Then I do what I should do. I realized that they trusted me, and believed that I can keep them in safe.
That's a good experience.
Submitted by Ella - Arcata United States | February 20, 2018
I rate this entire program 10/10! IVHQ did a wonderful job making sure all the volunteers were always safe and happy. The food was good and always on the table on time and I always felt like I was in good hands. The Cape Coast trip that was put together by Evans is sooo fun and I advise all new volunteers to go. Evans does an amazing job of always making the volunteers happy, and fixing every issue no matter how small or big. I also advise all new volunteers to not be scared to report any issues to Evans or another local staff member because he is so happy to help and won’t stop till everyone is happy. He definitely made my time in Ghana easy. Thank you!
Program: Volunteer in Childcare in Ghana