Pod Volunteer | Animal care, Conservation & Diving in Belize

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Spaces to join in 2018, 2019 and 2020!

The lovely Pod Volunteer team will support you from from helping you to prepare for volunteering and travelling overseas, to providing 24/7 back up while you are away, we are here to support you every step of the way.

Visit our website today and we can help you start your own volunteering journey!

About

Pod Volunteer supports a number of projects in the beautiful tropical destination of Belize including the following projects -

Wildlife Centre:
Assist keepers with the care of over 150 native animals at the Caribbean Wildlife Centre including jaguars, tapirs, howlers monkeys and many more. Educate the local community about the conservation of local habitat and wildlife.

Reef Conservation:
Join an award-winning project and become part of an active Reef Conservation research team whilst living on an idyllic private island in the Caribbean. Your primary role is to contribute towards the projects' ongoing surveys, data collection and conservation work.

Caribbean Conservation:
Help the local award-winning conservation team monitoring and collecting data on native mammal, amphibian and bird species. Research findings are used to guide the management of these areas.

Questions & Answers

Hi, thanks for the question! This provider offers a variety of programs to appeal to different ages. Here is a helpful link that breaks down the different program options by age group: https://www.podvolunteer.org/who-volunteers .

Reviews

95%
based on 4 reviews
  • Impact 9.5
  • Support 9.5
  • Fun 9
  • Value 9
  • Safety 9.5
Showing 1 - 4 of 4
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Thomas
9/10

Belize

My family volunteered in Belize and the experience couldn't have been more rewarding. The POD and TIDE organizations were first-rate in every way. We learned about the history and culture of the country and its people, the vital and wonderful work these groups are doing, and the value of hard work. This isn't a cruise ship excursion. You're gonna sweat and get sunburned and get blisters. And at the end of the day you'll sit back, have an authentic local meal, and look at the stars and feel good about yourself and the work you just did. Everyone involved are knowledgeable, supportive, and extremely friendly. You marvel at the beauty of the country and experience the genuine nature of the villages. We are better people in several ways from this experience. I would go back again and recommend anyone else to do so.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Suzie
9/10

Volunteering in Belize with TIDE

I spent 2 weeks volunteering for TIDE in Punta Gorda, Belize. They do a lot for conservation and education in Belize. They work together with scientists and the community to come up with solutions that benefit the environment and the people. We spent a lot of time using machetes to clear trails and land for reforestation. We also planted trees, painted signs, did roost counts of endangered Yellow-headed Parrots and checked a crocodile nest.

The work can be challenging in the heat and humidity. Drink LOTS of water! There was a good balance of physical work and other activities like helping to monitor birds, paint signs, etc. I LOVED all of the birds that we saw and the level of expertise of the rangers and guides is amazing.

There is very little to do in Punta Gorda. Many of the places are closed a lot of the time. One of the best things to do was relax and eat some local food. However, my homestay overfed me so I found myself not very hungry much of the time. I had fun wandering around and talking to some of the local people too.

I was surprised that even though the national language of Belize is English, almost everybody speaks Creole with each other. By the end of the 2 weeks I was starting to understand what people were saying. Otherwise I could not easily engage in conversation with others.

For me Payne's Creek National Park was the most amazing part of the trip. The habitat is so varied, and the location in remote. I love that! The wildlife was incredible! Even though it was very hot, the cabins had fans and good ventilation, so it was very tolerable.

The only issue I had was the availability of doing activities on my free time. Since I was the only volunteer I was first told that they could not do any tours for me. They needed a minimum of 2 people on tours. It was also not possible to snorkel from our location. I ended up paying extra to do private tours, and had to fly to Placencia to snorkel. The tours were great, but if I had know ahead of time I would have slightly changed my plans a little to accommodate time on my own to explore the country a little more.

Overall this was a fantastic trip!

How can this program be improved?
Communication ahead of time to arrange tours and activities would be better.
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Jessica
10/10

Experience of a lifetime: Belize

I spent 4 weeks volunteering at the Belize Zoo through Pod Volunteers and it was a life changing experience. The amount of time I got to spend working with the keepers and animals hands on was much more extensive than any kind of volunteering or interning at zoos in the US. It was fascinating to see how things are done different in the zoo there versus zoos I've been to in the US. I learned a great deal from the keepers, the bonds they share with their animals is incredible. It was a lot of hard work in the heat and humidity but I was excited to get up and go to work every day. The staff at the TEC is amazing and do everything they can to make your stay comfortable. Free time on the weekends is fantastic since it gives you plenty of time to explore everything Belize has to offer. I made friendships in Belize that will last me a life time. The people of Belize are so kind and welcoming to visitors. It made traveling solo as a woman much less scary. I would go back in a heartbeat to spend more time with the people and the animals.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Bonnie
10/10

Happiness is.....

Bonnie – 2015
“It was a privilege to volunteer at Liberty Children's Home. Liberty offers a safe, healthy environment for children that provides them with the opportunity to grow both physically and emotionally. The children are well cared for and are really happy. There is a real sense of family and as in any family, the children are learning the skills that they will need when they become independent. The children were all very respectful, polite and receptive to the volunteers.

What an amazing opportunity to share both skills and love with those who have had a difficult start in life. Happiness is....volunteering at Liberty Children's Home.

What was a typical day at the project?
A typical day at Liberty would start at 7 a.m. with providing assistance in the kitchen to serve breakfast to the children. After breakfast, I would walk with the children to their bus stop and then return to the dining hall to do the post-breakfast clean up, i.e. washing dishes, cleaning tables, sweeping and scrubbing the floors. At midmorning I would assist with packing and delivering the hot lunches to the schools. I would also work one-on-one with a young boy who was unable to attend school and help him with homework and additional skills training (phonics/reading).

After lunch, I would assist with clean up and then assist where needed. (Washing the kitchen walls was necessary at this time as they were preparing for renovations to the area.) After school I would help the children with their homework and if time permitted, play with them before preparation for supper. Supper routine was the same as other meals. I also assisted with laundry and shampooed the dogs. Unless there was something specific to do, my day usually ended about 6:30 p.m.

What did you find most rewarding?
I found the interactions with the children most rewarding but I also found it fulfilling to be able to assist with the 'hands-on' tasks, i.e. helping with the cleaning. Getting to know the staff was a real privilege as well.

What did you find most challenging?
I can't really say that I found any part of the placement challenging. I liked Agatha's approach – not micromanaging but letting us seek out where we could best fit in.

What advice would you give others considering doing this placement?
My advice would be for them to be prepared to jump in right away and start helping. Don't wait for someone to tell you what to do. There is plenty of work to be done and the folks are really appreciative of any help they get. Get to know the kids and the staff, laugh, have fun and work as hard as you can in the time that you are there.

Why do you think others should volunteer abroad?
Volunteering abroad forces us to have a reality check. What are the most important things in life?

Why did you choose PoD and would you recommend us to others?
Yes! I found Pod on line and I liked the history of the organization and also the fact that it was based in England. I have great respect for the British and their morals and work ethic. I wasn't disappointed. I hope to be able to return to Liberty.”

How can this program be improved?
Provide volunteers with more information on what to do on their "down" time.
Yes, I recommend this program

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About Pod Volunteer

Pod Volunteer is an award winning non-profit organisation arranging ethical, inspiring and supported volunteering opportunities around the world.

We work with long term projects that we have visited personally and where there is genuine benefit to...