Voluntario Global - Volunteer Abroad in Argentina
80% Rating
(16 Reviews)

Voluntario Global - Volunteer Abroad in Argentina

Voluntario Global is a registered charity and non- profit social organization that promotes education and training as a means to enhance the future of individuals and organizations based in Buenos Aires. We work with local communities and grassroots organisations in the city as well as in Northern Argentina and Bolivia. Our main objective is to make a lasting change in the lives of the families that live in underprivileged communities, by providing education, training and support.

Volunteer projects:
- Volunteer with Children
- Teaching English
- Healthcare & Medicine
- Community Development
- Sustainable Development
- Media & Communications

Locations
South America » Argentina » Buenos Aires
South America » Argentina
Length
2-4 Weeks
1-3 Months
3-6 Months
Language
English
Housing
Hostel
Hostel
Starting Price
$0.00
Currency
USD
Price Details
We receive no financial assistance from the government. Our resources are distributed according to local needs under the strict supervision of our local coordinators. With this in mind, the donations we request from participants in our programs are fair and accessible to all.

Questions & Answers

Program Reviews

  • Impact
    83%
  • Support
    80%
  • Fun
    80%
  • Value
    83%
  • Safety
    77%

Program Reviews (16)

Default avatar
Jiyan
Female
19 years old
Deutschland
Other

4 months volunteering with Voluntario Global

9/10

My work together with Voluntario Global started when I was searching for a organisation in South America that provides different projects in the area of volunteering. The website of Voluntario Global was well structured and it it was easy for me to understand what their work is about. My last few questions were replied a few hours after I've sent them an e-mail, so I decided to apply for volunteering with VG. Only one day after I received an accaptence. I was very happy and I was ready to start planning my stay in Argentina.
The good part about travelling with an organisation is, that you receive help if you need it. They answer your questions, book your residence, organize a transfer from the airpot and you are able too meet new people instantly. If you are leaving your homeplace the first time for such a long time it is always usefull to have people who receive you on your first days and tell you what will happen in your next weeks. Furthermore you are able too get to know people from Argentina who live there and you get an idea of their kind of lifestyle.
Of course it is not always easy to work in these places. They are not the usual kind of touristiy places that you would visit normally, but in the end this is what volunteering is about. Of course you won't work in the best parts of the city but you will help these people to improve their lives. This is an experience that is worth it too pay maybe more than you would usually pay for a trip to South America. Your not only visiting the city, you are living the city. You truly become a part of the popuation.
I would definitely recommend VG for people who are willing to experience how it is to help people in need, get in touch with people, be involved in new situations and leave their comfort zone. It is a chance to learn more about different cultures, about solidarity and last but not least about yourself!

How can this program be improved?

There could be organised more reunions where the volunteers are able to talk about their experiences between eachother and with the coordinators. I think talking to eachother about good or bad experiences is always the best way to improve the situations in the projects. It is a fact that the volunteers always have a different point of view on the projects they are working in. Maybe they will have some good ideas to improve the situation of the projects. On the other hand the coordinators can explain why the project works the way it does. Sometimes a limited budget or too little help can limit the opportunities but it is important to get to know the background to understand this.

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Emma
Female
21 years old
Leeds, UK

An incredible 3 months that I will never forget

10/10

My time volunteering as a communications volunteer for Voluntario Global has been amazing and I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity. The close-knit organisation is more like a family and I’ve met the most wonderful people- other volunteers, Voluntario Global’s coordinators and local people from the projects- who I will never forget! As a communications volunteer, I really got to know the organization, how it works and the amazing work that it does with local organizations. I helped Voluntario Global with the websites and social media sites, writing blogs, taking photos of projects and volunteers and interviewing people. I was able to visit loads of different projects which really opened my eyes to how much we take for granted and I learnt so much about the Argentinian culture and language. I would recommend this experience to everyone who has the possibility to take it because of the things I’ve learnt, the people I’ve met, and the way it changed me as a person. An amazing way to fully live the life in Argentina’s amazing capital city and help local, less-fortunate areas to grow and develop.

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Leo
Male
24 years old
New Jersey
William Paterson University

Awesome time

9/10

Being part of Voluntario Global communication's team was or is still great. I was involved in many events, either from Voluntario Global or the city of Buenos Aires. I experienced the culture of Argentina and lived what the people of the country live through; met and talked to people with different social statuses and exchanged experiences and information about life. I was assigned to different roles, either writing for the website, taking photographs and shooting and editing video. It may seemed like a lot, but you can choose if you want to stick to one area. The team is very open, you can do propose ideas to create content. I did all these tasks because I wanted to be more involved in the organization and at the same time I had free time to get out and know the city. Everything was coordinated great.
I acquired experience in areas of a writer, photographer and videographer. Media production overall.

Overall, it was an awesome experience. Sure, there were technical problems, but as a whole, Voluntario Global and the volunteers managed to solved it quickly.

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Valentina
Female
32 years old
Spain
Universidad Católica San Antonio de Murcia

Great experience for my life!

10/10

It was amazing to have the opportunity to talk, exchange and sahre with local people. I learnt a lot about thier lives and how they found solutions to their problems. I was not so usefull during fisrt week bout after 2 immersion weeks everything changed and I was able to share my knowledge and improve my skills.
Another Voluntario Global goal, you can share your experience with a lot of volunteers who are assisting to differest projects and then you can feel involver in all th network projects. You can share with other volunteers in debating meetings or social activities.

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Ramon
Male
42 years old
Xalapa, México
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

I'll do it again!

10/10

I never thought the impact that my work as a volunteer would have, in the community and myself. The experience was so satisfactory in so many ways. The community, the people that work in VG, the places, the friendship, everything. I recommend 100% this experience. Thank you VG.

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Linda
Female
42 years old
London
Birkbeck- University of London

A true learning experience

10/10

Personally I got ver positive feedback while I was at the teaching english project, both from the locals and other volunteers working there. I enjoyed the interaction with the students and teachers, and I learned about their lives, interests and aspirations as well as how to teach them. So I felt it was a two way experience.

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Hanna
Female
32 years old
Österreich
Other

best experience!

9/10

I spent one month helping in a Community kindergarten. My spanish wasn't the best but everyone there was kind and patient. The tasks there weren't always the same so I enjoyed taking care of the children, playing with them and also helping at the kitchen.
The volunteer's house has a very nice mixture of international flags, volunteer's signatures and also from members of different projects. Kind of a normal hostel but different! and there was always one or two members of Voluntario Global's Staff able to drink some "Mate" share ideas and so on. Also was nice at the end of the day talking with volunteers from other projects and neighbourhoods.

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Alice
Female
42 years old
Barcelona
Other

A real deception

2/10

I planned to volunteer at Voluntario Global and live in the Volunteer's house during my trip to Argentina on october 2014.
Even if I tried to collect as much info as I could about the organization before leaving, I felt deceived when I arrived there.
I arrived on a friday morning and nobody was there: I tried to contact my referees by phone and they didn't answer then finally a girl came to open me the door and took me to my room. The conditions at the Volunteer House were not good: a few people were disinfecting one room because of a bedbugs infection. Nobody showed off for the whole morning, until a girl from the association came in in the afternoon and told me that if I had questions I could write an email...even if she was right there in front of me! They gave me an appointment 3 days later to talk about the project I was assigned to, the kinder garden. Since nobody from the association was talking or even writing to me, I made questions to the other volunteers in the house: they were all really young girls in their early 20, in a gap-year mood. They explained me that the kinder garden project was nice but they felt like left alone from the association, and the neighbourhood they had to go every morning was kind of dangerous. Same thing confirmed me the taxi man I asked to when I arrived to Buenos Aires. Their life at the Volunteers House was more similar to the life in a common backpackers hostel.
I realized that I had in mind a whole different idea of Voluntario Global and I was not willing to participate to their project: what they explain in their web site does not reflect reality and they are not going to accompany the volunteers during their projects. I cannot say anything about the reality of the project in itself because I preferred to leave before starting: I don't like make people loose their time, and I thought I was not the right person to volunteer with them.
Better option for really young people looking for travelling and thinking to do something good while paying an association that doesn't really care about them.

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Mel
Female
24 years old
Tallahassee, FL
Florida State University

VG is a true NGO

10/10

Volunteering with Voluntario Global was one of the best things I have ever done. The impact that VG has on not just its' volunteers, but in BA and it's surrounding neighborhoods of is absolutely incredible. Everyday I woke up excited to volunteer and meet with the staff of VG. Each and every person on the team made me feel welcome and a part of the VG family. VG has an incredible vision, and I encourage you to jump on board.

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Giuliana
Female
24 years old
Bristol, England.
University of Manchester

My experience of volunteering with children

8/10

My four month experience as a volunteer at an orphanage not too far from the center of the city was undoubtedly the most incredible and invaluable one of my life. I could not have been happier with my experience there and I was truly devastated when the time came to leave. At the risk of sounding very dramatic, my experience at Voluntario Global proved to be the best decision of my life and made me realize what it was I want to do with my life. I of course cannot account for everyone who works with the organization, but I cannot stress enough the impact my time at the orphanage had on me. My memories there will stay with me forever and I am absolutely determined to go back.

My duties at the home involved cleaning and helping to maintain an ordered and safe environment for the kids aged between 5 to 13 to live in. The idea was that the orphanage mimic as much as was possible a home for these kids and the educadores (adults) who worked there were some of the kindest, most patient and hard working people I am yet to meet. They made me feel more than welcome and extremely comfortable and confident with my surroundings and significantly helped to make my experience as fulfilling and positive as it was. Once the kids were back at school following the summer holidays (whereby they were doing recreational activities most afternoons), I was expected to help them with their homework and whatever other extra work they needed support with. I also helped to dress and clean the younger children, carrying out regular head lice checks, particularly during the very hot months. I always ate lunch with either the children or the staff, I was fed extremely well!

The most difficult challenge for me was detaching myself emotionally from the kids and what they had individually been through. I encountered no major problems at the orphanage itself as I was very impressed with the high standard of living and how the place was run.

The most rewarding aspect of the work was simply playing with the kids and giving them my time and full attention. I was passionate about what I was doing meaning I made the very most of every situation or opportunity I was faced with. Although if I had to mention a particular highlight it would be the relationships I formed with the children and staff.

How can this program be improved?

If I really had to change one thing it would be have perhaps been my hours, although I am fully aware that I had to work with the schedule that suited the staff, not me! I also would have liked for the kids to be taken out of the home more however I again realize how difficult this was to do considering the number of children and how challenging many of them could be.

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Ana
Female
24 years old
Amsterdam
Other

Very good experience

7/10

I had a very nice time working for Voluntario Global. Since I was in the Communication Team, I mostly worked from the office. Every once in a while I went to visit the projects or to do an interview and I was always welcome.

I have good memories of the work experience and of the interaction with the other volunteers as well. It is a nice way to meet new people in a part of the world that is unknown to you!

How can this program be improved?

Maybe it would be a nice idea to show the volunteers a little more about what previous volunteers have managed to establish and what the current volunteers could establish, even though this is a tough job.

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Arpine26
Female
32 years old
Irvine, CA
University of California- Los Angeles

Voluntario Global

10/10

I had a very enriching experiencing volunteering with Voluntario Global in Buenos Aires. My entire experience was fulfilling, educational, fun, impactful and incredibly inspiring. Voluntario Global is a relatively small organization run locally by a group of passionate and hard-working staff members and volunteers. From the first email I had sent to the day of my departure, the staff was extremely warm and helpful. I can tell that they wanted the program to be not only impactful for the children and community members they were working with, but also for the international volunteers. On a typical day, I would take the train to the after-school center I was volunteering at and I would assist with English lessons to a group of very sweet and eager-to learn students. I would then return to the city and maybe go out with some other volunteers who were staying in the volunteer house (which is a sort of private hostel). The staff members did a great job matching me with a community program that matched my interests and my experience. Another thing I really liked about the program was that it was very affordable and the donation went directly to maintaining the organization. They also helped me find affordable housing and to adjust to a new country and environment. Overall, the experience felt very warm and personal, maybe because we were able to work closely with the staff members, who helped us feel connected to the community and to each other.

How can this program be improved?

Traveling abroad always come with some challenges, which is where most of the growing and learning happens. I had a great experience with the children I was working with, but I know some volunteers faced minor challenges in their volunteer roles (unruly children, hard to manage classrooms, etc). However, the organization did a great job placing volunteers in positions that matched their skill levels and experience and I think everyone gained valuable skills in their roles. Every volunteer I spoke with completed their volunteer placements on a very positive note, felt that they made a difference, and felt that they grew from the experience as well. I hope Voluntario Global can expand so that more of the world can benefit from the great work that's being done!

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C20
Female
24 years old
UK

Don't pay to volunteer

3/10

After volunteering with Voluntario Global for 4 months I learnt that you should not pay to volunteer, unless the money is being spent on materials for the project. I was very disheartened to learn that around just 30% (roughly) of what I paid went on my project. So where does the rest go?

I am also disappointed that large companies like STA travel are involved, charging volunteers a ridiculous amount to go via them instead of direct through VG.

I myself am involved in another project in Bolivia and know that such costs are unnecessary. Of course some fund raising may be involved, we did that at first to pay the wages of the local women in Bolivia making blankets for the homeless people until they could find a sustainable way of making money themselves. But we as volunteers do not pay to work. As soon as we pay, we become customers rather than employees. Surely that's not fair. And if money is required, surely a donation of however much the volunteer feels necessary would be more appropriate. Or, even better, the volunteer buys necessary materials upon arrival.

Those children I taught that never brought the textbooks to class, not because they forgot them, but because their parents couldn't afford them. The kids that always borrowed my pens because they didn't have any. Not to mention the break-times with no snacks to eat.

I really enjoyed the school I worked in and received support whenever needed and always felt welcome. I just wish people could go and volunteer just for that school and not Voluntario Global as a whole.

I must mention the fact that I had discussed hours before I arrived and been told I would tell them when I could work when I arrive. Yet when I arrived I was told I had to work Monday to Friday 2-9:30 including the 3 hour return commute. I was upset that I had been lead to believe that I would choose between morning and evening shifts and in the end had to work all evenings. Luckily the teacher let me negotiate a day off, for me to allow time for my Year Abroad studies at University (this was part of a placement).

The fact that there were no longer morning shifts was not the teacher's fault, but rather the lack of communication between the team and the fact that they had not told me about the change beforehand. Unfortunately, one night I was mugged on the train which I could not blame Voluntario Global for in any way, but, inevitably, having to take that train every night for 3 more months hardly made me comfortable. Luckily the teacher I worked with was always very helpful and understanding and travelled with me as far of the journey as she could.

I was also surprised that volunteers were told that they did not need a reasonable level of Spanish as many turned up without even knowing basic Spanish and this just prevented more problems rather than helping us out. An important part of teaching the children is having the ability to communicate with them and understand them, so unless you only teach the one class of 15 year olds, the necessary teacher-student rapport is not going to be built up at all without knowing Spanish.

All in all, I could not recommend Voluntario Global after seeing how well run other free or actually low-cost organisations are. I would suggest Conviven perhaps who my friend volunteered for and loved. I really enjoyed my role of teaching and loved the children and teacher I worked with. I could not fault the small school I worked in but rather the running of VG. I am very grateful for the help the teacher gave me at all times and this review is absolutely no reflection of working with her & the kids, but rather, my overall experience. If there is a way for her to run the school independently, I would completely recommend volunteering for her; but until then, find a smaller organisation.

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jessicabarnfield
Female
24 years old
Edinburgh
University of Edinburgh

communications placement

9/10

The Voluntario Global professional placement is different to any I have done before. Working in the communications and marketing department was great because it really was a case of getting out of the experience what you put in- with smaller charities there are less rules and so there are more possibilities for putting forward your own ideas and feeling like an important part of the team rather than just another intern.
When I got to Voluntarios Global I was immediately made to feel at home, everyone was really friendly and I met other volunteers from all over the world. On top of getting involved in the workplace you have plenty of time to go out and explore the city, and going through Voluntario Global means you have a ready made group of fellow enthusiastic tourists!
As for the work, it was really varied which I enjoyed. Sometimes doing tasks such as updating the social media links to keep the charity fresh and interesting, other times going out to interview people working at the charity’s various projects to write articles for their blog. I was also involved in helping to organize fundraising events and social events for the other volunteers. The good thing was I felt like all my ideas were listened to and that I had the freedom to act upon them and get really stuck in.
I’d recommend the program, and living in the Voluntario Global house is great from a social point of view but, as most of the volunteers speak English, a homestay is a good idea for those hoping to practice their Spanish!

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Aurora
Female
32 years old
Vancouver, Canada
Other

Not worth the time if you are looking for a professional internship

2/10

I spent 3 months with Voluntario Global as an intern. The internship position was in the area of communications. Though some linked websites such as Global Nomadic claim that Voluntario Global offers other internships in NGO management and other professional sounding placements, they unfortunately do not. The only internship that was offered during the time frame that I was in Buenos Aires (January 2012 - April 2012) was in the Communications "department".

Basically your work will be very basic. You will be updating facebook and twitter and recruiting volunteers from other universities around the globe (so sending e-mails with quirky subject lines etc.). Alternative volunteer positions on the "field" that are offered through Voluntario Global will have you pealing onions in a soup kitchen (work that could very easily be done without you) or other such menial tasks, which will likely not exceed 2-3 afternoons per week (meaning 7-10 hours a week).

If you are looking for a mature and professional internship placement, I would strongly advice choosing another organization. If you are looking to do the bare minimum, you have found your place.

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Tom
Male
32 years old
Birmingham, England
Aston University

The best 6 months of my life

10/10

I did i long term placement with VG over 6 months both in their communications dept and working in an orphanage in one of the suburbs of Buenos Aires.

I arrived with almost no spanish language skills, but the support from all the VG team was amazing in helping me get settled, although I lived independantly across the city I was regularly involved in the social activites set up for the volunteers by the team, including weekly dinners to introduce new volunteers to the rest of the group.

Talking to other volunteers made me realise how diverse the different projects are, i loved my work at the orphanage but i'm sure there is a project for everyone. The donation you make to support the community project you are at is so low compared to other organisations i'd looked at and you can see the difference your involvment makes in the lives of the people you work with over the time you are there.

I'd love to go back, and as soon as I'm able to i'm sure i will

About The Provider

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Voluntario Global, a non profit organization in Buenos Aires, offers meaningful volunteer experiences throughout Argentina. By creating long-lasting and important volunteer projects, Voluntario Global plays an important role in increasing social awareness in youth and raising the quality of life of Argentinians in underdeveloped towns.

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