Projects Abroad Programs
Our special spring break volunteer trips are perfect for college students looking for an alternative way to spend spring break this year. Instead of doing the usual spring...
Interning abroad in Medicine & Healthcare in Tanzania is an excellent way to gain experience combined with the chance to help people in some of the most under-resourced medical...
Projects Abroad offers the opportunity for volunteers of all ages to join our Care project in Costa Rica, This childcare project is based in day care centers and kindergartens....
The coral reefs and mangrove swamps on the coast of Thailand are stunning places and they're doing well. They are threatened though. Threatened by fishing, by tourism, by...
Ecuador has been named by ecologists as one of the world’s “megadiversity hotspots” and is one of the most species-rich countries on earth. The Galapagos Islands are...
Projects Abroad is one of the largest international volunteer organizations in the world, sending 10,000 volunteers abroad every year. Each volunteer who joins one of our...
Projects Abroad Reviews
What an Expierence
Submitted by Eric - Union College | January 13, 2017
Overall my experience in Arusha, Tanzania was unbelievable. I studied midwifery, but mostly I was used to take the heavy burden off of the limited staff by weighing babies and intaking patients. I was also able to watch and assist with several births and help for extensive hours in the baby clinic. Although I only saw a small number of births, I am leaving the experience much more knowledgable about women's health and skilled at managing large groups of individuals. In terms of my accommodation, everything was great. My host family was very traditional but respectful if our cultures didn't exactly align. The food was very good and whenever I didn't like something the maids were willing to make me something that I would like. Probably the thing that made the experience run so smooth was how available and helpful the Projects Abroad staff were. I arrived very late at night yet I was greeted at the airport by a projects abroad staff member who answered all of my questions and followed up numerous times while I was in country. Overall my experience was remarkable and I am coming out of the experience much more prepared to go into the medical field.
A life changing two weeks
Submitted by dgosselin - Hobart and William Smith Colleges | January 12, 2017
My time spent in Nepal as a medical intern was invaluable. Despite only being there for two weeks, I was able to both gain a wide array of medical knowledge, as well as be immersed in such a beautiful culture. I found the Projects Abroad staff to be very helpful, whether it be in regards to placement, weekend independent travel, or just questions about the culture. My host family, too, was very caring and willing to teach me, despite the at-times difficult language barrier. Also, I feel incredibly lucky to say that I met two very close friends through Projects Abroad! The three of us arrived in Nepal on the same day and instantly clicked; I attribute a large part of enjoying my trip to the fact that I formed such close relationships with these volunteers, and others as well. As a whole, the group of volunteers in Chitwan made me feel welcome and comfortable. While I was absolutely terrified to leave the comfort of the United States and set off on this journey, I am incredibly thankful that I did. I not only gained medical knowledge much different from that at home, but I made great friends and got to explore a magnificent country.
Projects Abroad responded to this review January 13, 2017 at 1:19 PM
Sounds like you had a wonderful time in Nepal! Apart from the volunteer work and the cultural immersion to a new country, your fellow volunteers definitely contribute to a more culturally rich experience, don't they? It's great to hear you all become such good friends! As you accurately point out, Nepal's medical practices can be different from the ones we might be used to in the West, so it's great you enjoyed learning about new techniques. Thanks for sharing!
Medicine In Cusco, Peru
Submitted by Lily Bell - Springbank | January 06, 2017
I did the High School Special Medical volunteer trip during my summer break in August. It was a great experience filled with a diverse range of learning opportunities. Not only did I expand my knowledge in the Medical field itself, but I also improved on cooperation and communication skills. In addition I learnt all about the culture and way of life within Peru, and how the medical system there differs from my own. I would recommend this trip to anyone who loves to travel and experience new cultures. But also for people who want to get a taste of a career in medicine. The planned activities in addition to the volunteering help you make the most of your time within Peru. Salsa dancing, hands on medical clinics and weekend sight seeing trips furthermore add to the overall experience. Creating a truly unforgettable trip!
Projects Abroad responded to this review January 10, 2017 at 5:46 PM
Dear Lily. Thanks for sharing! Our Medicine
Marine conservation experience of a lifetime!
Submitted by Serena Gill - Wilfrid Laurier University | January 05, 2017
Volunteering has become so ingrained into my daily activities that I knew that I wanted to volunteer abroad for a second time. When I researched and discovered Project's Abroad's Marine Conservation Project in Thailand, it seemed like the perfect opportunity for me and I knew I couldn't pass it up. Not only did it allow me to travel to a country that I've been wanting to visit for years, but I was able to use my time to learn about the marine life of the country while volunteering my time to better the environment for the future.
My entire experience with Projects Abroad in Thailand was unforgettable. From the moment I stepped off the plane and met the staff member ready to pick me up and take me to the placement, to the moment I learned how to dive, to the moment I said goodbye and continued on with my travels across SE Asia, I couldn't have asked for a better experience. I was fortunate enough to celebrate my birthday during the placement and the staff and volunteers ensured that I had a memorable birthday by moonwalking on the sea's floor, receiving an extra brownie on the dive boat, and being sung happy birthday between dives.
Coming from a background having never died before, the staff taught me how to dive and I received both my open and advanced open water diving certifications through PADI while with Projects Abroad in Thailand. After learning how to dive, I was able to study the coral reefs in the Andaman Sea, survey the reefs, observe and properly identify marine life, and help collect any debris and garbage that we saw while we were diving. In addition to diving three times a week, we conducted other activities in the community such as educating students at a local school, did shoreline cleanups, transplanted mangrove trees, etc.
I received my own bed and shared my bungalow with two other volunteers. We also had our own washroom in our bungalow, storage space to store our clothing and belongings, and fans to help keep us cool at night and during the day. All of our meals were prepared by staff at the placement and they were delicious! Each day we would all sit at the table together and enjoy our meals together. I became friends with the friendly, welcoming, and knowledgeable staff and by the end of the placement the staff felt more like friends than staff members. In addition, I made lasting friendships with the other volunteers at the placement as we spent all hours of the day together and really got to know one another. It was great volunteering with other individuals from all parts of the world who have a similar mind-set and interests as me!
On the weekends, which were our off-days, we often went into town to sightsee, souvenir shop, and visit nearby attractions to see more of the area and experience more of the Thai culture. Some of the things we did include: visiting Tiger Cave Temple, kayaking through the mangroves, going to the nearby hot springs, hiking to an incredible viewpoint in the area, attending a Thai cooking class, etc. I found the placement to be the perfect combination of volunteering as well as the opportunity to see and experience other parts of Thailand during our down-time.
Overall, I had an incredible experience, from the diving and volunteering, to the people I met, to the food and cultural activities I participated in, and I wouldn't change my experience for the world. I only volunteered for four weeks in the summer of 2016, and I only wish that I could have volunteered longer to learn even more from my placement and take even more away from the experience. I'd suggest to new volunteers to volunteer for as long of a time frame as you can to really feel that you're making an impact!
Projects Abroad responded to this review January 10, 2017 at 5:43 PM
Hi Serena! It does sound like you had the time of your life in Thailand! The beautiful scenery and wonderful Thai people makes that easy. Marine conservation in a very important aspect in life in Thailand, so we are always happy to have enthusiastic volunteers such as yourself helping out! Thank you for deciding to spend your summer abroad with us, we were happy to have you!
Health, development and women's rights in Togo
Submitted by Victoria Heffron - University of Vermont | December 16, 2016
Togo and its inhabitants stole my heart. My volunteer experience in Togo was education, rewarding, and fun. Of course, there were some difficulties mixed in there, but those are what make unique experiences such as volunteering abroad so amazing. First of all, my workplace was welcoming and motivated. All of my coworkers, all local, were focused on their jobs at the NGO and were constantly working on their respective projects. Jumping into a work environment in which you have no experience was a bit daunting and confusing at first, but Projects Abroad helped me develop a plan of action to help me be the most effective in the workplace. I, just like many other international volunteers, expected to hop on a plane, work on a few projects and visibly see the huge impact I made on a community. It does not work like this. Development happens slowly, and the change isn't really notable as it's occurring. I found this a bit difficult at first, but it ended up motivating me to do as much as possible during my six weeks there. I think this is important to note as I noticed other volunteers struggled with this reality as well, but we ARE making a difference in the long run.
Projects Abroad also led me develop strong friendships with the other international volunteers in Togo. We had several organized activities each week in which we could eat, drink, laugh, and vent. Having a support system behind us throughout our stays in Togo was extremely helpful, and it was nice to have a touch of our familiar Western culture every now and again. It made it much easier to not get overwhelmed with the extreme change of lifestyle. I also became close friends with my co-workers and host family. When volunteering abroad, get used to being asked "Why don't you just stay?" You'll probably even consider it a few times. Overall, my experience volunteering with Projects Abroad was entirely worth my time and money as I felt safe and secure during my entire stay abroad as a 17 year old girl. I would definitely recommend Projects Abroad if you're looking to make a difference!
Projects Abroad responded to this review December 19, 2016 at 11:01 AM
Hi Victoria! Thank you for sharing your experience! Indeed, the impact that volunteers such as yourself have in the community may not be noticeable right away, but your effort and help is very much appreciated by the community in which you serve, and it plays an important role in the big picture. It seems like you really took advantage of your volunteering experience as a whole, and that's what it's all about!