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Institute for Field Research Expeditions IFRE


IFRE Volunteers offers one of the most-affordable, safe, successful and fastest growing volunteer abroad programs program in the world. Our volunteer programs are highly regarded for safe projects based on attention to detail, affordability, professional field volunteer support and diverse opportunities for cultural immersion.


United States


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I was placed in Moshi, Tanzania by IFRE. I had the most incredible experience. I was originally signed up to work in an Orphanage, but I would have had to walk 45 minutes every day by myself to get to the job. I decided to join the people living in the volunteer house that were teaching at a local school, and in the afternoons I went to the local orphanage that was just 5 minutes away. It was truly life changing, and I could not have asked for a better experience. I am young, only 17. I had been trying to get myself to Africa for about 3 years but the teen programs were always too expensive. I found IFRE because I was trying to find an affordable way to travel to Africa and volunteer, yet still be safe. During my trip I never felt unsafe. Deo, the in country coordinator and owner of the house, was awesome! He was super nice and funny and helped me get set up as soon as I got to Africa. The only complaint I have is that I didn't get my insurance until I was already in Tanzania, when I should have gotten it before. Other than that it was amazing. I created incredible bonds with the children I worked with and with some of the local people in Tanzania. Currently I am still connected to those people through Facebook and email! Because I enjoyed my trip so much, I am planning to go back to Tanzania! I wanted to thank IFRE for giving me the opportunity to have the incredible experience I had.

Yes, I recommend
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I volunteered in the Himilayas and it was AAAAMMMMMAAAZZZZZIIINNNGGGG. Staff gave me excellent support in preparation for my trip and the coordinator was great. I spent time in the monestary teaching English to Buddhists. However, they were more interested in science and mathematics. The scenery was amazing and seeing Mt. Everest from base camp was inspiring.

Thanks again for the great experience IFRE.

Yes, I recommend
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I volunteered with IFRE on another project not the orphanage one and while its a different experience as there are no reviews on the orphanage project, I´d like to give potential volunteers an idea of IFRE my experience and the staff.

Carnival is difficult time to volunteer and Rio is not really the same, unless the volunteer is here just to see carnival but if like me they want to appreciate Rio for all its beauty maybe carnival time isnt good – all depends. Brazil is stunning, it’s beautiful and the people are so warm – I do recommend the volunteer learns some Portuguese first though before coming as everyone loves interaction and are so friendly so in order to make it easy on the volunteer Portuguese is a plus!!!

Life in a favela is amazing – I preferred it to a hostel simply because you get to be part of a community, a family, get to know the Brazilian way of life and culture and not be a gringo (tourist) – just look like one!!!

Blake did a terrific job!!!! Big thanks to him!!! He meet me at the airport, took me to my digs and I got a great introduction to my new surroundings. He went out of his way to help in any way he could and if I had any problems I could call him he was definitely approachable and friendly– he. He suggested new projects I may be interested in places to see, he really knows Rio well and has many contacts.

Thanks Blake for making my experience more amazing, it really did rock!!!!

All smiles

Good luck with your research and planning!!
Have the best experience ever!!!!!

How can this program be improved?
I would ensure volunteers speak at least basic portuguese, or encourage them to learn a bit before they come out here.

Some volunteers will not take the intiative of learning the language themselves beforehand, I think it should be highlighted to them in an obvious way the importance of doing so.
Yes, I recommend


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