International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ


IVHQ (International Volunteer HQ) provides safe, unique, meaningful and extremely affordable volunteer programs in 30 countries around the world, with a constantly expanding base. Programs are available in Asia, Africa, Europe, Latin America and the Pacific, where IVHQ works alongside local NGOs to provide meaningful volunteer opportunities. Currently, IVHQ has programs in Bali, Mexico, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Colombia, Argentina, Ecuador, Peru, Brazil, Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, South Africa, Morocco, China, Nepal, India, Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, Victoria Falls, Madagascar, Sri Lanka, Laos, the Philippines, Romania, Italy and Fiji!

Whether you're taking a volunteer vacation, a gap year, or on a career break, IVHQ has a wide variety of programs ranging from 1 week to 24 weeks to fit anyone's schedule. Browse through the programs below and visit the IVHQ website for more information.

Programs from IVHQ

Program Reviews

    Age: 25-30
    University of Auckland
    Opportunity to leave your mark

    The Philippines program is relatively new for IVHQ in the sense that it is now managed by Green Lion - this is a critical point as the Philippines program does appear to require a greater focus by the volunteers themselves as there is less structure to each of the placements (I only did teaching, but was told about the other placements by other volunteers).

    You should only volunteer in the Philippines if you are willing to take ownership for your placement and put the effort in - do not expect everything to be done for you, because it won't be. Another key thing - don't bring any expectations of the placement with you.

    I was fortunate in that I received a lot of support from the co-ordinator (Kim), as well as from the staff at the school. I was afforded the freedom to dictate my own hours and classes to attend, so I sought assistance from the head teacher to make a timetable of classes to be involved in.

    In the weekends, you have the opportunity to explore - #1 tip is to book early. Flights in particular increase in price the closer you get to departure; other things may sell out.

    Finally, always remember - you only get out what you put in.

    How could this program be improved?

    Increased structure and funding - The Green Lion foundation needs more funding/support to improve the Philippines program.

    At the end of the day, drawing down of the national flag.
    The school at a farewell assembly.
    With the head teacher and her advisory class
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  • Snowing
    Age: 25-30
    Shanghai, China
    To Delhi with Love

    Chaotic, colorful, enchanting...I'm totally in love with this country. Had a blast with the host family and all the amazing friends here. I felt loved, thankful and lucky in the journey. However, for the first time in my life, I'm feeling blessed. Thanks to Rohit and Rashimi for the host. I enjoyed every minute of it. I wish I could stay here longer. India is such a magic country that it worths your time exploring more than once. Hope more and more people from all parts of the world will join in IVHQ and make a difference to the world as well as to themselves.

    How could this program be improved?

    I wish there's air-con in the accommodation.

    With two awesome American volunteers
    With the kids I'm teaching in the slum school
    My first henna experience
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  • Mikaela
    Age: 19-24
    I dont want to leave!

    This was easily the best experience of my life! I came here all alone but never felt alone! I was welcomed with open arms into everyones family that i meant, i truelly feel like i am apart of them now! The host family, Chandni and Mohit are the best! The volunteering was eye opening and the kids are beyond cute and so smart! They are very eager to learn, and you will leave feeling very rewarded. As i am sure they have impacted me more than i could have impacted them! You will not be dissapointed by doing this, and i would highly recommend everyone doing this! It really is simply the best! Oh, and also do orientation week, because it is sooo helpful and a great time! My only regret is that i couldnt stay longer. :(

    How could this program be improved?

    It really was great! And i cant really think of much to change. Maybe just know that you will have plenty of free time in the afternoons, so plan on going around and seeing as much as you can!

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  • Jade
    Age: 19-24
    New Plymouth, New Zealand
    Amazing experience!

    As it was my first time travelling overseas alone I was very apprehensive about it, however volunteering was the best decision I made!! Prior to leaving IVHQ offered a lot of support and the information they provided covered everything I needed to know. The local company we worked with once in Peru were also great, they were very supportive and the orientation was extremely helpful. The accommodation was excellent, the food was delicious and there was always more than enough, we were provided drinking water and the facilities were always clean. It was a great way to meet new people and I feel I have made life long friends even though we live on opposite sides of the world. At my placement the nurses were welcoming and it was a very eye opening experience for me. Due to my spanish not being very good I feel it was a bit of a language barrier to doing more at the project, however I was warned of this by IVHQ prior to leaving and I expected it. The patients were very grateful for my help, which made me feel like it was all worth it! My only regret is not volunteering for longer!

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  • Alvaro
    Age: 31-50
    Teaching in Northern Thailand

    I volunteered with Mirror Foundation, IVHQ's local partner in Chiang Rai, Thailand.

    Accommodation: all volunteers lived at Mirror Foundation's premises, in a rural area, approximately 40 min north of Chiang Rai. I was placed in a bamboo house, where sleeping bags were put on the floor. We also had squat toilets and bucket showers, which is part of the experience. Wifi barely worked, which made difficult to plan lessons. Some volunteers were not mentally prepared to live in such different conditions they were used to, and keft the program early. In the beginning it was tough (mainly due to insects, reptiles, etc), but I managed to enjoy the experience.

    Food: breakfast, lunch and dinner were provided during weekdays. Delicious local food!

    Transportation to/from placement: provided by the local organizationin pickup trucks.

    Weekends: during weekends, almost all volunteers leave the foundation and travel to other cities in Thailand or simply stay at a hotel in Chiang Rai.

    Volunteering: indoor volunteers were taken to a different school, every week. It was a great experience teaching at public schools in small villages, tasting local food, talking to the local teachers. In my opinion, all volunteers should be fluent in English and have some teaching experience.

    How could this program be improved?

    Quality of wifi at the foundation could be improved. I know it is difficult to do, but there should be some kind of screening process while accepting volunteers who choose to teach English.

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