Kaya Responsible Travel
81% Rating
(18 Reviews)

Kaya Responsible Travel

The idea behind Kaya is to bring together the quality and impact of grass roots projects with the breadth of choice, quality of structure and organization and level of service that enables everyone the opportunity to contribute to positive action and enjoy traveling the world more responsibly.

Kaya offer a variety of volunteer placements in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Projects include working on wildlife conservation, community development, marine conservation, teaching, healthcare and many more options. Kaya also have various internships in Africa, Asia and Latin America in areas such as business, graphic design, journalism and medical work, enabling people to get hands-on work experience in specific fields.

Kaya are committed to matching the volunteer to the right project. We match your skills and interests with the needs of our projects to ensure that they are meaningful placements for all.

Most Recent Program Reviews

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Margaux
Female
32 years old
Townsville, Australia
James Cook University

Kaya Marine Reef conservation Program- a life changing experience

10/10

I volunteered for 3 months with Kaya in Koh Tao, Thailand. Not only did I make friends for life but it also triggered my interest in coral conservation and pushed me to pursue a career in marine biology.

Chad Scott and his team are amazing teachers and advocates of marine conservation.

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How can this program be improved?

Limit the number of volunteers during busy months

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Josie
Female
32 years old
London, England

Working on a Women’s Empowerment Project in rural Nepal

10/10

I spent 2 weeks in Neapl. Originally I had signed up to work in a Kathmandu project, for a school which catered to "at risk children". However at the time of my arrival, a big festival was occurring and schools were closed for the holidays. I was therefore taken to a women’s farm cooperative which is also a part of another project with Kaya, situated in a rural part of Nepal outside Kathmandu. It was an 1&1/2 bus ride & 2 hour trek to the village. When we arrived at the house I was greeted with music and dancing and instantly fell in love with the place.

The village itself has a school where the children attend schooling and the women's farm also has a classroom where extra English is taught, the classroom is basic however that doesn't stop the children's keenness to learn. They always attended with smiles on their faces, spoke in English as much as they could, and were always in the mood to learn new things. The biggest challenge I had with teaching, was trying to cater the needs of all the children who were at different stages in regards to their ability to learn and understand. Classes will run a lot more smooth if there's at least two teachers working there.

The volunteer house had a couple women who live there with their children. A girl, who the project on the ground had "adopted", Plus girls and guys from the village and Kathmandu who worked and lived there on a daily basis. everyone was so loving and welcoming and treated me like family, keeping me involved in their daily activities. And if you ever wanted to go off the farm and do other activities for a few days, like trekking, the staff were always happy to help organise it for You.

Overall I enjoyed my time on the project. Things ran as smooth as they could, and when inevitable changes were made; I wasn't left in the lurch. I will definitely go back again in a few years!

How can this program be improved?

Communication between the staff at Kaya and Nepal, e.g when the schools were closed for the festival, I found this out only after I arrived.

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Charlie
Female
24 years old
United Kingdom
University of York

Teaching English In Peru

7/10

I spent 3 weeks in Cusco, on the 'Teaching English in a Rural Province' project.
I would meet the other school teachers in central Cusco in the early morning, to be driven half an hour to the school is a smaller district. The facilities were limited there, with most classrooms only having a light as the electricity in the room. I would teach English to a class of 21 9-12 year olds for around an hour, though this varied depending on the day. To do this, I was expected to develop my own teaching syllabus and all my own materials - which was a struggle as I hadn't been told this prior to my arrival and did not have access to a computer. Still, the lessons went well and the kids were all very enthusiastic to learn. Another thing to note, was that I had been told only a basic level of Spanish was needed, which didn't turn out to be the case - future volunteers on this programme should be proficient, as no other staff members at the school speak English.

My homestay family were lovely and very welcoming, and luckily another volunteer with a different project lived very close to me, so we did lots of after work things together. Had there not been another volunteer it may have lonely though.
Over all, I enjoyed the project, but hope some minor changes have been made to make it easier for future volunteers.

How can this program be improved?

I would change the level of Spanish required from a volunteer to be accepted as part of the project, as it would make it easier for everyone involved.

Response from Kaya Responsible Travel

You will be happy to hear that we have reviewed the Spanish level requirement for schools teaching and have already put in place a short language test that helps us evaluate better the levels of Spanish prior to finalising the placement. Our home-stay families, as you experienced, are friendly and helpful and get consistently great feedback, and they love hosting Kaya volunteers. We also have a new coordinator who we welcomed onboard this month who is expanding the reach of our Kaya projects in Peru as it grows in popularity. Thank you again for sharing your experiences and inspiring others to join in our great work.

Heilwig Jones - Director, Kaya Responsible Travel.

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Marissa
Female
24 years old
Oak Lawn, Illinois
University of Illinois- Urbana-Champaign

You're In Good Hands With Kaya

10/10

Booking my volunteering trip with Kaya Volunteer was such a great experience! The staff was very helpful and friendly, and they were able to address all of my questions and concerns through the booking process. They also provide you with plenty of information before you depart, which is extremely helpful to provide a better understanding of the location you are going and what your days may typically look like. I participated on the teaching and community project in Livingstone, Zambia.

We would teach every weekday in the mornings, then have a break for lunch, and then volunteer for a few hours in the afternoon at various places such as after school reading clubs or the old people's home. We had the weekends off to participate on any adventures or excursions that we wanted to!

Volunteering abroad was an amazing life changing experience that opens up your eyes to other parts of the world. Don't be discouraged if you don't have any teaching experience. I didn't either and I was able to catch on quickly with some help from the on-site staff and other volunteers. I volunteered for just 2 weeks and was able to meet tons of lifelong friends from all over the world. The people in Livingstone were so friendly and welcoming, and it is a joy to work with the kids and see how eager they are to learn.

How can this program be improved?

More packing tips or talking to someone who had been on the program already would have been useful before leaving.

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RTWALTON
Female
24 years old
SW ENGLAND

Nepal with Kaya

5/10

A great experience in a small school for children. An incredible homestay in a rural placement. A fantastic welcoming from the rural family and a great friendship was developed.

A negative experience with the 'on the ground' team in Nepal. For the price paid one would most certainly have expected clear organisation of transport to rural placement. It would be very easy to organise this on Tourist type buses which enable you to have your own seat, as opposed to travelling in a bus designated for 8 people with 30 actually travelling on it.

A well travelled individual I am very understanding of the transportation methods and what is deemed as normal in Nepal however an organisation which caters for paying customers I would expect that their safety is paramount in the organisations mind, even before the volunteering itself. How productive can one be if one does not make it to the placement because of poor quality of care for individuals.

This was further highlighted when on more than one occasion there was a significant amount of confusion over individuals being picked up from the airport. If your volunteering includes airport pick up, don't count on them being there. We had a number to call as part of a volunteer pack, but again what use is this when you have just arrived in country, great if you have a mobile, but then what use is the organisations number if no one answers! Luckily I was travelling with someone but there were individuals who arrived during the middle of the night and struggled to find the volunteer house.

While working in the education establishments was rewarding I also experienced that other individuals who were promised micro-financing spent one afternoon of a 4 week programme doing excel within a community. I personally feel a few things need to be made a little clearer to individuals so their expectations are not so high. Sustainable travel maybe?! Safe volunteering, questionable.

Program Listings

Nepal

Kaya Responsible Travel
By volunteering in Nepal you will see a sharp contrast between some of the most beautiful landscapes in the world and some of...

Thailand

Kaya Responsible Travel
Join Kaya on one of our many unique volunteer and travel programs in Thailand. We operate in a wide variety of capacities inc...

Peru

Kaya Responsible Travel
Volunteering in Peru with Kaya is a special experience. It was home to the ancient Inca Empire, but now life is hard in Cusco...

Belize

Kaya Responsible Travel
Explore and volunteer in wonderful Belize! This is a great opportunity to work on the beautiful Belizean reefs or lend a hand...

Ecuador

Kaya Responsible Travel
Join Kaya as a volunteer in Ecuador to help fight against threats on the country’s natural, environmental, cultural and wildl...

Bolivia

Kaya Responsible Travel
Kaya Responsible Travel is looking for volunteers to join them in Bolivia. Sadly, Bolivia is one of the poorest countries in...

Kenya

Kaya Responsible Travel
Kaya volunteers in Kenya are given the opportunity to volunteer on a Masai Mara Lion, Wildlife Research and Conservation proj...

Zambia

Kaya Responsible Travel
Volunteers in Zambia will experience one of the most spectacular environments in the world. With the Zambezi river, Victoria...

Vietnam

Kaya Responsible Travel
Kaya is proud to offer a number of important community based volunteer projects and internships in Vietnam. Experienced volun...

Tanzania

Kaya Responsible Travel
Join Kaya as a volunteer on the island of Zanzibar, located just off the coast of Tanzania. Our volunteer teaching and commun...

Philippines

Kaya Responsible Travel
Kaya is looking for special volunteers to join them in the Philippines to help on a variety of projects. In The Philippines,...

Mozambique

Kaya Responsible Travel
Kaya volunteer projects in Mozambique are primarily focused on Marine Conservation. This is your chance to have a lasting imp...

Namibia

Kaya Responsible Travel
Volunteer with Kaya in Namibia and experience what life is like in such an arid climate and live in a base camp with open top...

China

Kaya Responsible Travel
Volunteer on an Internship with Kaya in China for the opportunity to gain a priceless insight into work and life in this inno...

Cambodia

Kaya Responsible Travel
Volunteer in Cambodia with Kaya on a variety of projects from healthcare and education to business and arts. Our projects are...