Volunteer Abroad in New Delhi

Back to Programs

Volunteering Abroad in New Delhi

Individuals who volunteer abroad in New Delhi will find their new home to be all at once inexplicably confusing, intensely humid, and overwhelmingly chaotic. India has a curious tendency to change travellers, enlightening them about the ways of a completely different world through a range of new experiences. Volunteering in New Delhi allows volunteers to make a positive impact on large, diverse communities in true need, while also providing the definitive experience of a lifetime.

Projects & Placements

New Delhi is the capital of India, a hugely populated developing country. Among the city’s people, you will find millions of individuals struggling through the challenges of poverty, many of whom have migrated their families from rural areas in search of economic opportunity. The city’s poorest often live in crowded slums where access to basic infrastructural necessities and social benefits is greatly lacking.

Due to the immense need in these areas, it is quite popular for international volunteers to volunteer in New Delhi in the areas of community development, education, health care, urban planning, and orphanage work. Volunteer opportunities in New Delhi will likely consist of a combination of behind-the-scenes planning and hands on community engagement.

There is a large variety of volunteer projects in New Delhi that are continuously running throughout the year, so research carefully to find the opportunity that suits your interests and schedule best. Volunteer programs in New Delhi also tend to vary in length, accommodating every volunteer’s individual preference and availability, from as little as two weeks all the way up to year long programs for volunteering in New Delhi.

When planning your volunteer abroad experience, keep in mind that Delhi’s temperatures tend soar to over 100 degrees fahrenheit in the summer months, followed by the monsoon season in August and a more temperate climate for the rest of the year. The weather may profoundly influence you while volunteering in New Delhi, so plan accordingly.

Most volunteer placements in India will not expect volunteers to speak Hindi, so don’t let the possibility of a language barrier deter you from volunteering abroad in New Delhi. You will find that the educated class of New Delhi speaks English fluently, as this is typically their language of instruction in school. However, working as a volunteer in New Delhi, many beneficiaries of projects will not be highly educated, so it will be beneficial for volunteers to pick up some Hindi while volunteering in New Delhi. Learning even a few basic phrases will take you further than you think in India.

Life in New Delhi

Every day is an adventure in the streets of India’s capital city. Rickshaws darting around at high speeds, horns blaring, millions of people bustling about – suffice to say life moves at a fast pace in the big city. A huge part of Delhi’s economy is in the informal sector, meaning that many daily transactions will involve some form of bartering. Poverty is intense and prevalent throughout the city as well, and as a foreigner you will often be approached for money.

Volunteers will need to learn to take a deep breath. Though it will take time, soon volunteers will adjust to their new lifestyle and take joy in navigating the chaos of the city independently. The infrastructural and social woes of New Delhi are part of what makes the experience so valuable for Westerners not exposed to such realities of life. And as a volunteer in New Delhi, in whatever field of work, every day you will have the opportunity to lend a helping hand.

The city also happens to be one of the most interesting and enriching in the world. From ancient monuments to colonial architecture to ultra modern malls, history is written in the streets of New Delhi. Along with India’s continued development in the economic and social spheres, there is also a growing countercultural movement taking place in the city, which makes it an even more exciting place to visit for young people from all over the world.

Costs & Affordability

New Delhi is ranked as one of the cheapest cities in the world for foreigners, so money need not be a concern for most individuals volunteering in New Delhi. Meals will rarely be more than a few dollars, and rickshaws can transport you door-to-door anywhere in the city very cheaply as well.

Since many transactions take place via bartering, it is likely that as an international volunteer you will be ripped off more than a few times. So it goes. The difference is generally only a matter of a few rupees (60 rupees equals $1), and odds are that money is more valuable to the person with whom you are negotiating. Be patient and do not take offense to special treatment – but at the same time be smart and do not fall for scams.

The most expensive part of your volunteer experience in India will likely be the upfront program fees (which tend to cover the costs of flights, housing, etc.), so take the time to find a program which best suits your financial situation.

Accommodations & Visas

Homestays are a popular option individuals who decide to volunteer in New Delhi. Many volunteer programs connect with local families to offer international volunteers a more intimate experience of Indian culture through daily life with a local family. This can be a very enriching experience and will also give volunteers the opportunity to enjoy frequent home cooked meals along with regular invitations to festivals, family gatherings, and the like. Apartments are also typically made available to volunteers, but consult your program of choice before departure for more specific details on housing options.

You will need to obtain a visa in order to volunteer in New Delhi. Most volunteer programs and host organizations will help you through this process. It is important to get an early start on the visa process to avoid any late inconveniences (Check out GoAbroad’s Indian Embassy Directory for more information on India’s visa policy for your home country and to locate an Indian embassy in your home country).

Benefits & Challenges

Volunteering in New Delhi will be a challenge, but one well worth the effort. India will reshape many of your perceptions about how the world works. The city is a melting pot of cultures from across the Indian subcontinent, which will expose you to the infinite wisdoms and enriching manifestations of sub-Himalayan civilization.

If you are considering volunteering abroad in New Delhi, but are worried for whatever reason, then let go. Take the leap, and it will be the most rewarding experience of your life.

Read More

A Guide To

Volunteering Abroad in New Delhi


 Find Volunteer Programs in New Delhi Now


This listing has been saved 519 times

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ) is the world's leading volunteer travel organization, providing affordable, safe and responsible volunteer programs in over 30 different destinations around the world. With program fees starting from just USD 10 per day, IVHQ is the volunteer organization of choice for thousands of volunteers every year. Established in 2007, IVHQ has supported over 55,0...


This listing has been saved 92 times

Play an important part in helping communities of New Delhi through Cross-Cultural Solutions. Have a meaningful experience in India while making a sustainable impact on the lives of locals. A wide range of volunteer placements are offered to international participants in such areas as Health Education, Community Development, and Drug/Alcohol Recovery.


Sign up for our volunteer projects at PMGY. Placements are offered in a wide range of areas - all ensuring affordable, safe, and meaningful travel from two weeks to six months in Asia and South Africa: Vietnam, Sri Lanka, India, and Ghana. Joining us lets you contribute to projects aimed at providing much-needed assistance to local communities. Previous experience isn’t necessary. You just h...


This listing has been saved 3 times

Take part on the trip of a lifetime in New Delhi, India through Frontier volunteer abroad program. International participants can engage in a month long program while exploring the cultural riches of India. Available placements include childcare, teaching English, and working with street children.


This listing has been saved 9 times

This amazing 'real India' experience takes place in the beautiful coastal city of Cochin in Kerala, South India combined with the Golden Triangle Tour of Delhi, Agra and Jaipur in North India. So if you’re looking for the ultimate volunteering experience abroad with a real taste of India, this program is the perfect combined trip. This 3 week summer volunteering experience is ideal for anyone w...


The India experience begins the moment you step off the plane and stays with you long after you depart. The mixture of India's languages, religions, spectacular architecture, and distinctive cuisine will rattle you, and leave you wanting more. New Delhi is a multidimensional metropolis where evidence of a layered history and modern society abound. Be sure to note each and every smell, sound, an...


This listing has been saved 12 times

When you study abroad in India with us, you'll spend 3 months traversing the diverse ecological and spiritual landscape of the Himalayas, the Indus River Valley and the birthplace of 3 major world religions. Experience how these diverse belief systems live and work side by side in tolerance as you, too, live and work alongside them. Challenge your engagement with your own life as you voluntee...


This listing has been saved 1 time

Throughout the year, Child Family Health International offers community work programs abroad. Have the opportunity to work side by side with professional physicians through VENU Eye Institute and Research Center. Volunteers worldwide can provide health service and eye-care treatments to the locals of New Delhi, India.


This listing has been saved 7 times

Under this program our volunteers work at the various contact points or shelter homes, being run by various organizations, which serve as day care centers for these street children. Volunteers can assist in providing love, care, basic literacy, recreation and most importantly spend time and shower affection on them. Volunteers mainly spend time with them and educate them as well. Volunteers can...


This listing has been saved 3 times

Volunteering India provides meaningful programs to help the community of New Delhi. A variety of community service opportunities are offered, such as orphanage assistance or working with children and women. This India volunteer placement is offered to families, couples, and individuals from across the world.


This listing has been saved 5 times

Partake in a two-week long volunteer program in New Delhi through Rustic Pathways. International volunteers can live side by side with the locals and help improve the living situations of rescued sloth bears. This volunteer work includes Animal Welfare, Conservation, and Environment Preservation.


This listing has been saved 8 times

Join in a meaningful volunteer project with Knowledge Must. Touch the lives of local people in the communities of New Delhi, India. Volunteers worldwide can choose from an array of community works such as Sports Volunteering, Youth Development, and Health Care.