International Volunteer Services
96% Rating
(11 Reviews)

International Volunteer Services

We are an international volunteer organization, with programs in South East Asia and South America, which differentiates itself, above all, along three lines:

- By offering a very personalized service in English, French and Spanish, of programs that we ourselves have either personally volunteered on, or have been involved with on-sight. This service is provided either via mail, skype or phone calls, or, when possible, in person.
- By offering quality programs starting from 9$ per day, including food, accommodation and orientation.
- By providing complete transparency of our organization; Volunteers pay a set registration fee to us and pay the local NGO fee directly to the NGO, of which we receive zero commission.

We provide information not just on the program tasks and schedule, but also on all necessary bureaucratic tasks that need done (visa, vaccines, travel insurance...), as well as in depth information about the region, its culture and history.

Most Recent Program Reviews

Josu
Male

A great time to remember

10/10

When I first decided to volunteer in Takeo I had no idea how much of a meaningful impact it would have on me. I discovered a very beautiful and charming country from a different perspective. I learned so much from their customs and from their lives.

Teaching English through music is a very amusing volunteering experience and as the kids learn the lyrics and the key words so quickly you feel very heart-warmed. I was there on my own but I would also recommend going with someone else. Even though the town is relatively small there is a long list of things to, for me it was playing football with the locals that kept me busy during the afternoons. Nonetheless, others may find more interesting experiences visiting pagodas, cycling around, finding a nice place to chill and read next to the lake or simply interacting with the locals, who are always cheerful and willing to help.

With regards to the teaching method, music is a very powerful tool, but you can also carry out complementary activities such as games and filling the gaps with alphabet soup exercises. I wanted the classes to be very enjoyable and the kids just help so much.

I hope more volunteers can go there on a regular basis in the future because there are more schools to cover and a huge work to do.

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Arturo
Male
23 years old
Barcelona

First capture

10/10

As the first week was coming to an end, as part of the volunteering program we went for green turtle capture. This consist on using a specific type of fish as bait to attract turtles and then capture them to take some measurement to see how the population is evolving. At first everything was calm, since any turtle came to eat the bait. But as soon as one approach everybody jumped off their seats and started to get ready. At first ,I did not know how we were supposed to bring the turtle up the boat, so I thought we might have a net or something similar. But NO, a staff from the volunteering program, who is an expert diver jumped on the turtle who was swimming and grab it. As soon as he approach the boat with the turtle we help him put it on the boat. I couldn't help since I was almost in shock, with everything, as it happened so fast. That first capture was something I could not forget since it let me amazed. After taking all the measurements and making sure we had gathered all the information we needed from the turtle we released it. As we did more captures I realized that was the procedure, and even try it myself (with no success since the turtle escaped) but was definitely an experience I wish everybody could live.

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Isa
Female
24 years old
Finland
Other

Amazing experince

10/10

Together with my boyfriend I went as the first volunteer to this program. As we stayed only for a week we couldnt, of course, make any huge differences. But I could see the potential, and I belive that once INTVS can start sending volunteers regularly and if the volunteers can stay a bit longer than we did this program will really make a big differnce for these kids.

Before we went I was a bit worried about that the program would be more like a tourist attraction, more for me to take pictures with cute kids than actually helping. But it was nothing like that, and if you want to help this is a really good program to choose. In the rural areas in Cambodia, like Takeo, the english level is really low. But still, english is a really important thing for the kids to learn. All this they explained to us when we arrived, and after that I felt really motivated. As I met the kids and saw how much they want to learn and how much fun we could have together during the classes I felt so happy that I went there. Both the kids as well as the teachers seemed to share my joy and I wish I could have stayed longer to see the childeren improve their english level.

Apart from making a difference and helping, it was a nice experience because we got to see something else than the typical touristic places most of people see when they go traveling. We got to see the countryside, parts of the everyday life, eat local food and meet local people and so on. The people at the volunteer house took so good care of us, showed us around and helped us with whatever we needed.

All in all, we had an amazing time and I would really recomend you to go. But remember, this program is young and for example the teachers in the schools are not yet used to voluteers coming. This means that the first days you might feel a bit lost and things can seem to be a bit unorganized, but have patience and everything will be just fine. If you are a person that can take initiative or if you maybe have some experience in volunteering/teaching/traveling that will help you. But dont worry, the people at the volunteer house will support you and after a few days you will understand how things work.

How can this program be improved?

Just for the local teachers and the rest of the people there to get used to have volunteers coming and learn how to handle it, so that the volunteers dont have to feel lost when they arrive in the school. But that will probably be fixed automatically when volunteers start going there regularly and the teachers find methods of how to help the volunteers know where in the english book to pick up after the one before etc.

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Daniel
Male
24 years old
Barcelona
Other

Amazing experience, glad to be part of the first ones to be sent there!

9/10

I apologize in advance for the long review but it is hard to sum up the experience in fewer lines.

Before starting the program we went to Phnom Penh and visited the prison museum and the killing fields which helped us to understand the dark past of the country. By knowing what Cambodian people have suffered and the impact it HAD on their education, we found the program even more needed.

Teaching English, why?

Before going to the program, I was wondering how useful I could be in a program based on teaching English, being Spanish, not A native English speaker and above all not having any kind of teaching background, but what I learned during this week is the following: The kids need to know how to speak in English, and we didn't need to be English teachers or native to teach them as their level and sometimes their teacher's is very low. Indeed, without English thESE countryside kids have a big disadvantage compared to urban children who have a better level.

Important side effects of not knowing English is that they cannot use Internet to learn by themselves, and they don't have access to any external source of information.

The people:

At the volunteer house, we could get very attached with some of the volunteer coordinators. They are all Cambodian from birth and always willing to teach us about their country, culture and help for anything we needed, I have hardly met people with such amazing smiles and I haven't laughed as much in a long time, believe me.

The kids in schools but also in the rest of the area are wonderful,willing to learn during the class and waving at me while I was riding back to the volunteer house.

I have only been on the program for a week so of course I didn't feel like I completely changed their lives back there. But I could really feel the need of volunteers. Me and my girlfriend were the first volunteers to be sent to the program, the first to meet the children and the teachers but hopefully not the last.

So one more thing I can do for the program is to write this review and hopefully convince some of you to follow our steps and make a real change on a long term. As our volunteer coordinator said: "it's all about sustainability"

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Alix
Female
22 years old
Lille, France

Volunteering in Vietnam

10/10

I’ve had the chance to live three months in Ho Chi Minh City, sharing unique moments with the children of the Pagoda orphanage.
I spent the day at the orphanage, taking care of children and playing with them. We stayed in a house with other volunteers; a very friendly host venue. Members of the association and the volunteers were always available and willing to listen. You can also visit Ho Chi Minh and its surroundings during the weekend, which allows you to discover the country.
I can’t find the right words to describe this extraordinary experience. I learnt a lot thanks to this volunteer placement, and I sincerely think this has changed my life. It’s an intense human adventure with regards to discovery, emotions and sharing. I thoroughly enjoyed immersing myself in the Vietnamese culture, a culture so different from ours. In particular, the children’s laughter, the long silent exchanges with the monks and the happiness of simplicity are my fondest memories.
I hope that with these few words I’ve given you the will to go there. You should live the experience in order to understand to which point it can impress you.

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