Starfish Volunteers
88% Rating
(10 Reviews)

Starfish Volunteers

We offer the very best volunteer abroad experiences in Thailand. We have been bringing eager and enthusiastic volunteers and curious adventurers to Asia for over 10 years, so we know all there is to know about volunteer travel and adventure tours in this part of the world. Whether you are thinking about volunteering with animals on our elephant conservation projects, teaching English to some very excited children, or building and community support in a small community – we have a project for you!

Our volunteer programs are fun, exciting and make a lasting impression on both you and the communities we assist. Take a look at our volunteer abroad holidays and find your perfect volunteer adventure. Not sure where to start? Why not take our volunteer quiz to find out which of our volunteer programs suits you best? Don’t wait, your adventure is waiting for you, book your holiday with a difference!

Most Recent Program Reviews

Mandi Schmitt
Mandi
Female
Berkeley
University of Maryland

2 Weeks with Elephants and Kids

7/10

I didn't know until after my volunteer trip how common it is for elephants to be mistreated for the sake of tourists. Luckily, I am confident that elephants I worked with were happy and healthy. We rode them to a lake each day to let them bathe and drink. Then, we rode them to the fields where they were allowed to graze and eat for as long as they wanted. I never saw them hurt or nervous. It was really incredible interacting with these gentle giants.

I also spent time at a nursery with 40+ toddlers. This was a bit less organized, and I didn't feel like I was helping much, merely maintaining order. I wouldn't participate with the kids again.

The staff was great and conducted tours of Bangkok. They were all friendly and helped the volunteers adapt to the new culture. I was very sick when I went to volunteer, and one of the staff came to the hospital with me and stayed the entire time, translating and comforting me. I really enjoyed getting to know them.

How can this program be improved?

Though I loved working with the elephants and playing with cute Thai children, I felt this organization was more about giving the volunteers an experience rather than truly contributing to a sustainable project. This was in part my fault, because I only had two weeks to commit. There were other volunteers staying for longer and doing different projects (like working at a medical clinic and doing construction) who did feel like they were contributing in a more meaningful way. For the kids program, I would change the minimum length of the project to at least a month so that volunteers could have a chance to become more involved.

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Marvin
Male
24 years old
Toulouse france
Baylor College of Medicine

Disapointing

2/10

I'm a 5th year medical student and i found the medical project quite disapointing from a medical point of view,i don't think it suits advanced medical students,it will be first quite raging to see under qualified people refusing to do what you say( i had to argue and prove them with internet that you were using amoxycilin in triple therapy in gastric ulcers and yet she deliberatly wouldn't want to give it, or see a nurse do stitches( i couldn't fit in the gloves) trying to join both sides of the wound at once and get her needle lost in the patient's foot).and spending a whole week looking for mosquitoes larvaes in water and sticking papers to sticks,it's not what i expect to do as a "medical project".also food is not included,it's not for the 4 euros it costs/week,but for the principle.also the cleaning lady at the house can wash your clothes for 100 bahts...it's 20 bahts across the street,they charge you 800 bahts to ride the elephants,and don't expect a refund if you leave early.this organization is only about money and that's sad.(but the staff is lovely).i wouldn't call it medical volunteering,and i think it only suits young(1st,2nd max) nurses students who will do a lot of wound dressing,but if you have some medical training,don't do this project.

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Nat
Female
32 years old
Johannesburg
University of Johannesburg

Loved it!

10/10

I was in Thailand for 3 months volunteering on the elephant and the turtle project and loved every minute! You give a lot to the communities and people you work with, but you receive so much in return! It was one of the most memorable experiences of my life, specifically the elephant project! Feeding the ellies, getting to the know the character of the ellies and the mahouts, planting food for them, masheteeing trees for them, walking them to the river to "bath" and play, having fun with the local kids, the food, the weather, the peace, the fun, the whole experience was awesome!! :)

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chester
Female
24 years old
England
University of Chester

volunteering january 2012

10/10

I was part of a group of 7 student nurses from England volunteering in Surin hospital in Thailand. We all thouroughly enjoyed our experience with starfish and can not fault them at all. From the moment we landed in Bangkok airport a member of their team has been with us to answer any queries we may have, nothing is too much of a problem for them.
Arranging the trip was simple as the staff in the office in Bangkok are extremely efficient.
The staff in Surin province, were the hospital and other volunteering projects are based, are very welcoming and you instantly feel at home.
We will defintely be returning to Thailand amazing place!

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Bradley
Male
24 years old
Brisbane, Australia
University of Queensland

Great experience!

10/10

Volunteering with starfish volunteers in Thailand was an incredible experience! I worked on the elephant project for two weeks and had the time of my life. The staff were fantastic and went Beyond their job requirements to ensure our stay was safe, including organizing our weekend activities. The village we stayed in was welcoming and gave us a great insight into rural thailand life. Starfish staff were easily contactable both before and during our trip which made the experience run smoothly and safely. I recommend volunteering with starfish, and further encourage people to work on the elephant project as it is an incredible experience, being up and close with elephants every day.

Program Listings

Thailand

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Thailand

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