All Hands and Hearts purple and white logo

All Hands and Hearts

Why choose All Hands and Hearts?

All Hands and Hearts provides community-inspired, volunteer-powered disaster relief.

With both the frequency and intensity of disasters on the rise around the globe, there’s an urgent need for a more thoughtful approach to the way we respond and help impacted communities recover. When a disaster strikes, All Hands and Heart arrive early and stay late to address the immediate and long-term needs of disaster communities. We work alongside the local residents and deploy our unique volunteer model to enable direct impact — helping families and communities recover by building safe, resilient schools, homes and other community infrastructure.

Thanks to passionate volunteers, donors and partners, we’ve provided nearly 20 years of disaster relief support to over 1.2 million people.

Join us on our global volunteer programs where we provide:

- Three meals a day
- Free accommodation
- No program fee to volunteer

Reviews

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Abby
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Loved the experience!

This is a special experience.
Difficult physical work, led by kind & helpful team leaders/ site supervisors who are always willing and wanting to teach you a new skill.
Followed with sharing a spectacularly cooked meal alongside volunteers and staff!

(Sleeping arrangements are very accommodating and comfortable. Shower trailers are surprisingly spacious and accommodating. They have little bikes you can borrow, for adventures or getting around.

Florida Sunset 10/10
Overall experience 15/10

Pros
  • Different work is always available for the volunteers physical capabilities
  • The connections you can make, are life long and beautiful.
  • Directly see, & feel the impact of each work day.
Cons
  • The heat and humidity can be very difficult
  • You will have to go back to normal life :/
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Roger
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Poland

I volunteered with All Hands And Hearts in Poland to help displaced Families from Ukraine. We constructed a living space in the unused attic o a school near the Ukraine border. This work involved waterproofing, installing steel studs, installing fireproof sheetrock painting, and installing flooring. This work was completed by our volunteers, some of whom needed to be trained to complete the individual task. Working together to achieve this goal makes one's heart sing. Meeting, living with, and working with volunteers from all parts of the globe gives you an understanding of who you are and what's important in your life. There is no greater feeling than when you can help someone in need.

Pros
  • Good Purpose
  • Great food
  • Great people
Cons
  • Covid
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leslie
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Great Experience

As an architect, it is great to work with those they need our help. If you have never volunteered, you should try it , but bring your energy ( you will need it by day 2 ) , your spirit, and your assets. Communal living at night and early morning , mean being polite and respective of everyone's needs not just yours, and our group was very thoughtful and cognizant of everyone's needs from showers to who could help others, even back at base. Someone asked, if you felt better after what you did, and I always reply, I felt like I could not do enough. You go to bed a good tired, you get up early ( but I do anyway ) and get rolling .
The safety on site is very good, and we had a great team leader, Tony. Please bring your organizational skills to keep tools in place and cleaned up for everyone as well as yourself. Tools are expensive everywhere, but more difficult to obtain in certain parts of the world
The team could rotate thru different areas and objectives, for building, you learn how to do things better as a person and as a group.
I would go again and again, the people we are trying to help , actually teach you as well, we are so privileged in our countries , where we do not have bombs dropping on our heads, or where we can obtain food anywhere and everywhere. The people you meet will teach you the grace and dignity of survival, we are performing just a small task in the chain of their events and life. No matter where you go , the experience you come back with will stay with your forever in your mind and soul.

Pros
  • Working as a Team, with people from all over the world
  • Serving Others
  • Meeting the People we serve/assist
Cons
  • Wish I personally had more time for the program
  • Trips to these places, generally take 24-30 hours to get to ( but worth it)
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Jordon
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Grateful

I have been to the Ft Myers program two different times for two weeks each. It was an amazing experience and I plan on joining All Hands for more programs as I'm able to. I am blown away by the work that the program and all the volunteers that I have met. I have met some amazing people who really care about other people and it's great to work as a team. This is more fulfilling than anything else that I have done in my life. The staff that I had the pleasure to meet really go above and beyond in everything I have seen them do.

Pros
  • Helping others
  • Make self feel better
  • New friends
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Amy
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Hard work, but lot's of fun!

I've been to many All Hands and Hearts program, and always walk away feeling a refreshed faith in humanity! It was lovely to meet some dedicated volunteers and staff who work hard day in day out to repair homes impacted by the devastating Hurricane Ian. There's a small team in Florida, which made it easy to get to know everyone and felt like family straight away. Not only does this team repair homes, it also builds community. I was there for one week, some were there for just a day or two, and others for months. There is such a nice mix of people from different backgrounds, but all there for the same purpose.

Pros
  • - Meet like minded people
  • - learn new skills
  • - work makes an impact
Cons
  • - I was only there for one week

Programs

Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Chloe Wheeler

Job Title
Volunteer Engagement Coordinator
To promote and facilitate fundraising for the program.

What is your favorite travel memory?

My favorite travel memory was when I was given the opportunity to come out to Los Angeles. Despite there being a pandemic, I have been given the chance to travel and be a part of the solution. I have gotten to see a new part of the world while providing COVID-19 relief. Most people are not given that opportunity, especially with free airfare.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

The way I have changed/grown since working for All Hands and Hearts is that I have become much more confident due to the support from the organization and coworkers. They fully believe in me and my capabilities which empowers me to remind myself that they're right and I can do this. I have accomplished more than I ever expected in this position.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

I just love that so many people have volunteered before and multiple times. For example, one volunteer here on the program currently is their 6th project! People fall in love with All Hands and Hearts and will jump from one project to the next. What I also love is that people who may have not had the best time on a certain program still give others a chance. They don't let one bad experience ruin All Hands and Hearts for them.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I would go on any of the programs that All Hands and Hearts however, I am interested in helping out with the Australia wildfires. That was a dream opportunity for me, personally. Traveling to a new part of the world and helping that community out is all I want to do with my life. I am so thankful All Hands and Hearts allows for me to actually achieve this goal of mine.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

I do happen to live where I work which can be difficult but most of the time, I love the opportunity to gives to connect with your coworkers and volunteers. I'm especially proud my team for being so resilient. Lots of ups and downs, yet we have always stuck together and found solutions for any situation.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

Networking and support are absolutely crucial to being successful. Especially in my specific role of fundraising, those connections are what actually gets people to raise money for the organization. That just boils down to the people. The people are the ones that make this a successful organization.

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Jessica Thompson

Job Title
All Hands' Director of Volunteer Coordination
Jess Thompson is All Hands and Hearts' Training and Development Manager. She helps make sure staff and volunteers have the training they need to be efficient and effective in the field.
Director of Volunteer Coordination

Did you volunteer abroad? If so, where and what inspired you to go?

I volunteered with All Hands for 16 months in Indonesia and Haiti before becoming staff. Like all of our volunteers, I was driven to help those who need support following the impact of a natural disaster

As with a large number of our alumni I signed up for just a couple of weeks but the work was so meaningful, my fellow volunteers so inspirational and the communities so welcoming I found I didn't want to leave. In the last five years I have now been to 17 projects, and a part of many more from my desk at home, and seeing communities being supported on the road to recovery is as satisfying as it was my first week on the ground as a volunteer.

What does the future hold for All Hands Volunteers - any exciting new programs to share?

As a disaster response organization it is impossible for us to predict where and when our next project will be. We have cleaned up after floods, rebuilt after typhoons, cleared debris after tornados and shoveled snow after the historical snowstorms that hit the Boston area this year.

If local mechanisms, agencies and individuals are overwhelmed by the scale of the damage All Hands will look at ways that volunteers can plug in and fill the gaps, whether this mean winterizing homes in Colorado or building boats in Samar. We're always looking for unmet needs in the communities we serve and how we can use the motivation and dedication of our volunteers to address them.

Do your volunteers require certain qualifications or go through a training process?

All Hands is committed to enabling motivated people to assist communities affected by natural disasters. We try to remove as many barriers to participation as possible so that our volunteer population is as diverse and innovative as possible.

We do not require our volunteers to have any special skills or previous experience, and there is no minimum or maximum amount of time you must sign up for. If you have the time and ability to travel to the location of our of our projects, and we have space, you're in! Our Team Leaders will share their expertise with you, making sure you have all the information and techniques you need to have a positive and productive time in the field.

What is the level of cultural immersion your volunteers receive?

All of our projects involve lots of interaction with the local community. We welcome local residents as volunteers, and many projects hire a large local workforce to help us with highly skilled tasks such as translation and construction.

You'll also work side by side with the homeowners and beneficiaries you're assisting, clearing basements of debris, building houses, cutting down and removing fallen trees and so on. Outside of the workday, you are free to explore the area as much as you'd like, eating in mom and pop restaurants, riding local transport and getting roped into the local sport of choice - your skill level is irrelevant!