Most Affordable & Trusted Volunteer Programs in Cambodia from $360

Video and Photos

My last day
My last day
Angkor Wat around 6am
Angkor Wat around 6am
Royal Palace Phnom Penh
Royal Palace Phnom Penh
Cambodians in the Kratie Province celebrating Eid
Cambodians in the Kratie Province celebrating Eid
Who needs a snapchat filter when you have this little princess who makes you real flower crowns.
This little light of mine.
Only 4 out of our 30 kids who stole my heart.
Mr and Mrs Lim! Always offering support and advice

About

Trusted by 110,000+ volunteers, IVHQ offers the most popular volunteer programs in Cambodia and 50+ other destinations around the world.

You can choose from 7 volunteer project options in Cambodia and give back for periods ranging from 2weeks to 24 weeks. Your Program Fee includes airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support. You’ll be accommodated in a volunteer house or homestay with other like-minded, impact-focused travelers from around the world.

IVHQ is trusted to support the meaningful adventures of thousands of volunteers every year, so before you even depart for Cambodia, you’ll receive outstanding personalized service from your expert Volunteer Program Manager and exclusive access to superior pre-departure volunteer training.

With IVHQ, you can expect to establish real connections within the local community while supporting projects that make a genuine difference.

Highlights
  • IVHQ’s Cambodia program is available year-round, starting on the first and third Monday of every month
  • Highly affordable program fees starting from $360 for 2 weeks - IVHQ provides the most affordable and top-rated programs
  • You’ll be joining between 10-50 other IVHQ volunteers who start in Cambodia each month
  • You’ll be traveling with IVHQ, the volunteer travel experts, and joining a network of 110,000+ volunteers. Our outstanding safety systems and track record set us apart, we are the world’s safest organization
  • Your efforts will have a positive impact because our programs are community-driven with a focus on supporting long-term local needs

Questions & Answers

No not at all :) - the only language requirement for all of the IVHQ programs is being able to speak English. But in saying that, it is great to learn bits and pieces if you can, I really struggled but it didn't inhibit my trip and everyone was grateful if you tried and extremely helpful :)

Reviews

94%
based on 45 reviews
  • Impact 8.9
  • Support 9
  • Fun 9.5
  • Value 9.2
  • Safety 9.3
Showing 16 - 30 of 45
The boss monkey on my head. He almost broke my neck and I got a scratch on my face but he got his banana... It was amazing!
LAURA
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

HOME OF JOY

I can't describe with words how much joy my placement gave to my life in just a few weeks. I just want to say thank you to the sisters for their amazing special labour, to my wonderful colleagues Maria and Marita and all the volunteers for being part of this beautiful experience. To the staff at the volunteer house for taking care of us and being aware of all we needed, to IVHQ members and every single person who made this possible. But, I really need to thank the most to my nineteen beautiful angels for showing me how true love looks like and how simple happiness can be. I have in my heart those little faces and I will never forget them.
I totally recommend volunteering to anyone who has the opportunity, even if it doesn't give you the power to change the world, to put a smile on the kid's faces that's something of an achievement and it will be the most precious gift you will ever receive. I am definitely not the same person I was on my first day at the home of joy, because the funny part of all of this is that you go there to teach, but you are the one who learns.

What would you improve about this program?
I would say is important to give a better orientation at the placement, because, in my case I felt a bit lost the first couple days. They don't really speak english so, It would be good to have IVHQ staff giving a summary.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Laura, Thanks for sharing this beautiful review from your time in Cambodia. We are so glad to hear that you met wonderful people and had a joyous time at your placement. Thank you for your feedback and for being a fabulous volunteer, we would love to have you join us again in the future!
Sarah – IVHQ Cambodia Program Manager

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Diana
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Best experience ever!

Volunteering in Cambodia was one of the best things i've ever one. I highly recommend IVHQ as i had a very pleasant experience with them. Everything leading up to leaving for Cambodia was smooth and organized, any questions were answered in a timely manner. I felt like IVHQ as a company worked with integrity and genuinely want to help those in need. To those who are thinking of volunteering, go for it, you won't regret a second. My only advice is to go with a very open mind, especially if you are going to a country that has very different customs or culture. Cambodia is definitely still a developing country and some may experience some culture shock, but just take it all in and enjoy the ride! The country is a beautiful place filled with even more beautiful people (be prepared to shed a few tears if you volunteer in the orphanages, the children are the most beautiful souls and i never wanted to leave them!)
Thankyou IVHQ for providing me with this experience, i'm already booking my next trip with you guys to volunteer in spain!

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Diana, Thanks for sharing! We are so happy to hear that your time volunteering in Cambodia was one of the best things you have ever done – it has certainly been our pleasure to help facilitate this for you. Thanks for being an amazing volunteer and for your great advice for future volunteers. We can’t wait to have you join us in Spain!
Sarah – IVHQ Cambodia Program Manager

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Reegan
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Volunteering with IVHQ in Cambodia

Overall, spending 2 weeks volunteering in Cambodias capital city (Phnom Penh), was fantastic! Leading up to the volunteering adventure we had great support from the staff. They were always ready to answer any questions I had via email. Once arriving at the volunteer house in Phnom Penh, we were warmly welcomed by the other volunteers as well as the staff on site. I volunteered in with child care in an orphanage for special needs children. I would highly recommend this placement option as I have learned many life lessons and felt as though I left a positive impact. On the weekends there is lots to do in the city, as well as the close surrounding cities. If you're travelling alone, don't worry! All the volunteers are welcoming and often travel together on the weekends!

What would you improve about this program?
This program can be improved based on location and food. Traveling 40 minutes to an hour by tuk tuk was not enjoyable after a long day volunteering. In addition, we were given the same lunch everyday and had suggested more of a variety.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Reegan, It is awesome to hear that you had a fantastic time volunteering in Phnom Penh. We are so happy to have helped facilitate this trip for you and it certainly sounds like you made the most of your time on the program by having a positive experience at your placement, and exploring Cambodia with other volunteers in your spare time. Thanks for your feedback and for being a great volunteer!
Sarah – IVHQ Cambodia Program Manager

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Aldo
7/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Experience was great, but...

The program was amazing. Cambodians are one of the nicest people you'll ever encounter. With that, though, comes a level of consertatism, which is not over bearing if you're not used to that culture. You just have to understand that it is the way of life over ther . Needless to say, the kids are amazing, as always and the staff is very supportive. If you like experiencing ruins, buddhist culture, and a dialect that is nothing like English - in essence, a place and people that are not the "norm" to Westerners - Cambodia is your place.

What would you improve about this program?
Especially in May, it is HOT in Cambodia. That's obviously expected. But the coordinator needs to inform volunteers BEFOREHAND of the accommodations. The volunteer house we stayed in was great, but it was extremely hot in our room (about 90-100 degrees nightly), and we only had a fan blowing hot air on us. Such made it extremely uncomfortable and difficult to sleep, which, in turn, affected our performance at our volunteer placement. For people that are not used to the extreme heat, they need to be informed beforehand so to make arrangements or otherwise specify that they need air conditioning. I know "aircon" (air conditioning) is not the norm in Cambodia and non-revealing clothing goes with the custom, but diving into that custom can be unhealthy if one is not prepared or otherwise informed of it until the day of orientation.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Aldo, thanks for sharing your review. We are pleased that you enjoyed your time volunteering in Cambodia and I appreciate you sharing your feedback regarding the accommodation, as it's important to us that we are providing clear information to ensure that volunteers have realistic expectations. In response to your feedback, we have made updates to our accommodation and are ensuring volunteers are well informed of the weather conditions before traveling.
Sarah – IVHQ Cambodia Program Manager

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Chandupa
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Six Months in Cambodia

I went to Cambodia for a six month university co-op program to work for a local NGO. I went in with little expectations, and I came out with one of the best experiences of my life. I was able to help out with the NGO in a deep and meaningful way. In turn, I gained numerous skills that will help me be better at what I do in my future public health career. I was able to come across so many volunteers from so many different parts of the world and I have forged lasting friendships with them. Together we created memories that I still look back on, and that will last my lifetime. I was able to explore a country that does not get enough attention and is not understood by many. Talking with the local people, visiting the country's wonders and historic sites, and living their daily life have taught me life lessons that I carry with me to this day. I would encourage any future volunteers to volunteer for as long as you can (it needn't be for 6 months like I did), because many short term volunteers wished they could've stayed longer and several even lengthened their volunteer trip because they didn't want to leave. Also, come in with little expectations. It's hard to enjoy your experience when you have expectations of how things should be. Also try to explore as much of the country as you can. Doing this helps to understand the country as a whole.

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Chandupa, Thanks for sharing. We are so fortunate to have had you join us for 6 months in Cambodia! It is awesome that you took this opportunity to really engage the NGO you were working with in a deep and meaningful way and gained numerous skills for your own future career. We love your advice to come in with little expectations as “it's hard to enjoy your experience when you have expectations of how things should be” and to explore as much of the country as you can. Thanks for being an awesome IVHQ volunteer and we would love to have you join us again in the future.
Sarah – IVHQ Cambodia Program Manager

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Nicole
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I left my heart in Cambodia.

Day one: I was laying inside my bug net, in the 90 degree heat, with no AC and had just taken a shower from a bucket of water we filled ourselves, only after realizing that rice is the only food we will have for our entire time here. I couldn’t help but think ‘what am I doing here.’

It’s a bitter sweet thing knowing two cultures.

Living in the orphanage for the past month changed my life. These children believe in magic, they play pretend, there is fairy dust in their IV bags. They hope and pray and cross their fingers. They are the happiest, cuddliest, most amazing people on this planet.

If you asked me my first day, I never would have thought I would have missed living in the conditions mentioned above, now I can’t imagine not living like this. I just took my first hot shower in a month and all I can think about is wanting to pour a bucket over my head while the kiddies are calling my name to come play. Leaving here is the hardest thing I’ve had to do and I’ll forever be grateful for the time I got to spend at the Child Rescue Center.

One of the main things I learned here was they aren’t the poor ones on this planet. They may not have much money, if any at all, but they have more happiness with what little they have and that’s something a lot of western people need to learn from.

These children brought light to my world. A day didn’t go by the last four weeks where they didn’t have the biggest smiles I’ve ever seen.

We actually lived in the orphanage with the children, so we got to spend every second with them. Every morning at 5am the music would start playing and we would go stretch and then pray. Breakfast at 7am, lunch at 11, dinner 5 and prayer again at 7. We got into a routine. The kids became family.

Every day I couldn’t help but think to myself “I wonder if this is what it’s like to have kids”. Endless amounts of kisses, cuddles, hugs and love. I miss them so much.

This past month changed my life forever and I wish I could do it again.

What would you improve about this program?
Honestly, Im not sure. I had the best experience with IVHQ. I wouldn't have changed a thing.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Nicole, Thanks for sharing such a beautiful review from your time in Cambodia. It sounds like you learnt some incredible lessons from the amazing children at your placement, and from the stark difference in living conditions. We are grateful to have had you volunteer with IVHQ and we would love to have you join us again in the future.
Sarah – IVHQ Cambodia Program Manager

Natalie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Overwhelmed with Experiences

I honestly don't know where to begin, my entire experience volunteering in Cambodia was breath-taking in many ways. I set off on my first solo trip overseas as I thought it was time to begin what I always had the ambition to do which was volunteer as an English teacher. I came across this program and was NOT disappointed! I left my (overprotective) family, extremely excited (and hiding my anxiety) and headed for Phnom Penh, where I stayed with several other volunteers in a local family's home. Not only did I build lasting relationships with my fellow volunteers but also with the Lim's (Familiy I stayed with). In addition to this and possibly the most impressionable were the children whom I taught. As an aspiring teacher in Australia, I have never encountered nor expected such an experience to leave with. I have remained in contact with some of my students and director of the school and will most definitely return in the coming years. It was truly a beautiful and valuable experience which has left a lasting impression on me.
My experience did NOT end there, thanks to this program I spent my weekends travelling the unique sights of Cambodia with the new friends I made volunteering. From bathing rescued elephants in the Mondulkiri Providence to relaxing on a secluded beach in Koh Rong and visiting the temples in Siem Reap, I owe all of these experiences to IVHQ and their incredible volunteer program!!

Could not recommend this more, planning my next trip perhaps to Zambia to teach again?

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Natalie, It is absolutely our pleasure! We are so happy to hear that you had a breath-taking experience in Cambodia and are still in touch with many of the people you met while on your program. Zambia is an amazing country too, and we would be thrilled to have you join our program there in the future.

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Nicole
2/10
No, I don't recommend this program

Unorganised, unsafe and massively underwhelmed

Signed up for 3 months working with NGO's in Cambodia, I was super excited until my first day of placement when I was asked to do IT Support and the language barrier was so big that it became clear I would not get any experience or knowledge because we were unable to communicate with each other. On my first day they also told me they didn't need a volunteer and I shouldn't return until they called me. Well a week passed and nothing. The program coordinator was unsupportive, hard to talk to and difficult to get hold of. When I eventually spoke to him he suggested I wait until they had work or do another placement such as childcare. I then went to head office expressing how difficult communication has been and that email was forwarded onto the program coordinator with no personal response, this was obviously highly unprofessional and made being in the house even more difficult. I was told I could move city and go to another placement but would have to wait 3/4 weeks. After all this I was not refunded for the program, very little apology, they refused to see what they had done wrong and after I left I was basically forgotten about. Many volunteers that arrived when I did were also so unhappy with their placement and had to end up doing an alternative program to the one they selected, or experienced massively unsupportive and unprofessional situations with staff. A guy was placed in the same placement after I left and he was also told they had no work and had to end up doing an alternative program. They really don't care once you've paid and will not try to rectify any issues or recognise that they are lying to people when they register with them. There was common knowledge as soon as you arrived that if you had a problem it would probably not be sorted. I've heard many stories of success with IVHQ but I would definitely recommend staying away from their Cambodia program, there are plenty of other well priced companies who will not take your money and then forget about you.

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Nicole, thank you for your feedback. We are sorry to hear about your experience on the NGO Support project in Cambodia. This certainly does not meet the quality standards that volunteers expect from IVHQ projects. We recognize that there have been recent issues with some of the NGO Support placements and we are working closely with the local team in Cambodia to make improvements, so that our volunteers can be effective in the work they do. We understand that in your case there was a lack of support in finding an appropriate solution and the local team provided you with a partial refund of your program fee when you left the program. The local team are checking in with each of our NGO Support volunteers on a regular basis to ensure that they are happy in their placements and they are working with each NGO to support them in providing better structure and communications. Please contact your IVHQ Program Manager if you have any concerns that you wish to discuss further.

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Samantha
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Cambodia will be forever in my heart

For years I had been wanting to have a volunteer experience that enabled me to become independent, self reliant, experience the world and learn a lot about myself. This trip enabled me to do all of these things and more. Looking at the way these people lived and grew was completely and utterly inspiring. They were always so happy, friendly and had a heart of gold. They were all willing to share with you whatever little they had. I could see them look at me as a walk by in the streets, I would smile and they would instantly smile and say hello. I had never felt so happy in all my life whilst in Cambodia. My heart felt full of happiness and the amount of emotional I felt when saying goodbye to the beautiful children I volunteered with was overwhelming. In such a short period of time I had grown so close to the children I had volunteered with, I learnt that I could do things by myself and I don't think I have ever been more proud of myself for doing something like this. I knew when I was old and aged this would be something that I would remember and that it changed the way I felt about people. I realised you don't need to be unbelievably rich to be happy. These people were so grateful for what they had, it inspired me to be a better person. I am wanting to volunteer more with this amazing organisation and I urge anyone who has the slightest urge to volunteer with this amazing, affordable supportive company!

What would you improve about this program?
Possibly people could find out where they will be placed before they arrive to Cambodia? This may make booking tours and preparing themselves a little easier and I'm sure a lot of people travelling alone would have a big weight lifted off them if they knew where they were being placed.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Samantha, What a beautiful review! It is heart-warming to hear about the connection you made with the children at your placement. Thanks for being a compassionate volunteer and it would be our pleasure to welcome you onto another IVHQ program in the future.

Estefy
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I'm going back next year!

I always wanted to volunteer in Cambodia, and I'm so happy I did it with IVHQ. Everything was really well organized, the food was very good, the staff was friendly and helpful, and my placement was exactly what I wanted to do. I volunteered with disabled orphans in Phnom Penh, and it completely changed my life. I think back to it all the time and can't wait to go back. March 2016 I'll be going to India for another 4 weeks with IVHQ :)

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Estefy, You’re awesome! We are so glad that you loved your time in Cambodia and were supported by IVHQ and our local team – we are more than happy to help! We are excited to have you join the IVHQ program in India next year.

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Robert
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Volunteering - Not What You Would Expect

Volunteering in Cambodia was certainly one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I am totally satisfied with the end result of this placement after three months, even if it is not in ways I could have foreseen. Seeing the accumulative effect of my time effort spent on helping the organisation, but also those people who the organisation aims to help, was a feeling that didn't really manifest until the last few weeks. I started noticing that all the small ways in which I had previously helped had all helped the organisation in some way or another, albeit very small contributions. Then I began noticing how, over the previous two and half months, I had provided help, taken responsibilities on and produced work for my placement coordinators that left them open to tackle the larger goals and focus their attention. It then dawned on me, one volunteer doesn't save the world or impact in a gigantic way....but volunteers do. The work hours contributed, efforts expended and ideas shared and tested whilst I have been at my placement might seem to only provide a small effect in the short term but when considered in the larger tapestry of the volunteers who have worked at my placement, then consider the total volunteers in all of Cambodia, it actually makes an incredible difference. Volunteering is crucial to supporting those projects which matter the most, those aimed at improving the lives of others by any means possible.

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Analeigh
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Fantastic experience with IVHQ - I couldn't fault a thing. Thank you for a life changing experience at Phnom Penh's Happy School

I was fortunate to be placed at “Happy School” in Phnom Penh, Cambodia – The name says it all! The kids were always so happy, Friendly, enthusiastic, and eager to learn! They had a lot of respect for their teachers and volunteers – They were so grateful for each day. It was easy to fit in as everyone (Students and staff) made me feel to welcome. I encourage anyone, to take on the challenge and complete a stint volunteering – It is very overwhelming, confronting and challenging but so worth it. Be prepared to step out of your comfort zone 

The IVHQ staff in Cambodia were warm and friendly, it was easy to fit in. The accommodation was good – clean and tidy, the food was healthy and nutritious. We were told about the cultural differences/ scams/ the do’s and dont’s – we had several different ‘tuk tuk’ drivers to transport us around. I felt well looked after and sage. In no way did I ever feel uncomfortable, unsure about my decision.

I was privileged to take part in the Rice Ceremony, which was held on Christmas morning (2015). This is held at the School quarterly and is an incentive for the parents to send their children to happy school – If the student attends 80%+ of their classes in that ¼, the family receives a 25Kg bag of rice. Parents and caregivers were invited for the ceremony – The children sung Christmas carols and put on a show. The principal assured me that the funds I had raised in my home country will pay for the Rice ceremony in March 2016. This was really rewarding, as I know a lot of my family and friends in my home country want to help different charities, but are sometimes hesitant about where the money goes. Every little part helps. Cambodia still faces a number of development challenges, which sadly encourages children to work on the streets and get money for the family instead of attending school and getting a education.

The little ones have so much love to give and it’s heart-breaking that they don’t have the same opportunities as we do in New Zealand. If you are thinking about volunteering – Just do it. Do it now, as you may never get the opportunity to do it again.

A huge thanks to IVHQ (Head office + Local staff) for giving me the experience, it defiantly opened up my eyes and made me appreciate all the little things. It was an experience I will never forget.

Thank you
Analeigh

What would you improve about this program?
It was pretty close to perfect. All i could say is that it would be handy to have a weekly timetable - so we can see exactly what we are teaching each day (and because I like to be super organised) ha.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

"If you are thinking about volunteering - Just do it." Well said! We couldn't agree with you more Analeigh! Thanks for sharing a little about your time in Cambodia. It sounds like you had a really special time and we are glad that we were able to facilitate this for you. Thanks for being an IVHQer!

Sophie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

An experience of a life time!

I had the privilege to work at National Borey for Infants and Children for a week in January 2016.

It was one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of my life.

The children were all beautiful and unique in their own way.

My day commenced with twelve other volunteers from IVHQ. We all left our volunteer house at 830am and finished around 4pm.

The activities the children loved was face painting (mainly the volunteers!), bubbles, playdoh, drawings and dancing.

One of the most challenging experience for me was feeding the children. After a few days though you got used to the routine.

This program taught the importance of teamwork and communication with other volunteers, staff and the children.

A lot of the children did not verballing speak, so the communication I used was body language to get a message and conversation across.

It as at times very emotional and moving seeing the children with their disabilities. The most important aim for myself towards the children was to show them patients, empathy, respect their dignity and show them love.

The mama's and staff at the centre are incredible people. They had so much patience, love and respect towards the children.

I highly recommend National Borey for Infants and Children to people who have a kind nature and patients. These children just need to be loved and cared for individually as a unique individual.

Thank you IVHQ and Cambodian Volunteer Foundation for my incredible time in Cambodia.

What would you improve about this program?
Inform the volunteers which children have illnesses such as HIV so that everyone is aware and safe in the environmental settings.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Sophie, Thanks for your review. It's great to hear that you had an incredible time volunteering and it seems like you were able to have a really positive impact on these children's lives in the time you were in Cambodia. Thanks for being an IVHQ and we hope to see you on another program again in the future.

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Gena
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing!!! Already Rebooked!

I volunteered in Cambodia - spending my first placement in Pursat, with an amazing host family! I will never forget how kid they were and helpful even with a language barrier we had at times, my second placement was Siem Reap at the volunteer house. Both placements I chose to be a part of the child care program. My volunteer experience in Cambodia was unforgettable, eye opening and so inspiring. It was my first trip overseas on my own but not at one point did I feel unsafe, the staff prior to departure and when I was in Cambodia were so friendly and helpful. I felt supported and excited every step of the way. The placements IVHQ selects in the host country have been carefully picked and you can see the full impact they have on the community once you are there, and it is privilege to be a part of that. Not only is the volunteering experience absolutely wondrous, the entire time, with other volunteers, in country support team! and of course the people of Cambodia made the entire trip unforgettable, adventurous and addictive. I have already booked my next lot of volunteer experiences and hope to be able to give as much as I know I will get out of them.

What would you improve about this program?
Taking everything into consideration and the realisation that you are emerged in another culture, it is hard to note any relevant/serious improvements - as this would simply be trying to change the program to make yourself more comfortable - as it is nerving being out of your own environment - but the point is to immerse yourself and enjoy it.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Gena, It's great to hear from you! Thanks for sharing your thoughts from your experience in Cambodia. It sounds like you had a great time both volunteering and exploring the country with your fellow volunteers which we love hearing. We are looking forward to having you back on our programs later in the the year. Thanks for being an IVHQer!

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Jenn
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My Experience was unforgettable!

I was placed in Phnom Pehn, Cambodia for six weeks, and just as my title says, it was unforgettable!

The city is full of life and loads of things to do. It is a place to really experience true Cambodian life. You are away from most tourists (with the opportunity to partake in touristy things), but you are mostly amongst the locals and sharing in their day to day lives. Another positive of being placed here is that PP is close to many places such as Kampot, Kep, and Sihnoukville, which are fantastic weekend getaway places. But, aside from that, the people, the food, and the atmosphere that is in this city, can't be experienced anywhere else.

There are three housing option in PP, and I was placed in the homestay. This was fantastic, and I couldn't have asked for a better place to stay. The family treated us really well, and made delicious food each day. There was anywhere from 8-15 ish volunteers staying here. Full house which made for great conversations, and loads of people to go do things with.

I taught at a home for children who came from rough homes and such. I was the only volunteer from IVHQ at this placement. At first I was worried about that, but it was really a blessing. I had the opportunity to really take control of the education that these students were receiving while I was there. This was fantastic as I am in my final year of teaching. I only taught half a day as they went to Khmer school during the other half. I wish I could have spent so much more time in PP teaching. The longer you spend, the better connections, and the bigger the impact you have on these children.

Teaching in Cambodia with IVHQ was by far the best experience I have ever had. I keep in contact with my volunteer placement, and I am planning to go back again in the near future.

If you are considering Cambodia, do not hesitate. Sure there will be challenges, it is hot, schooling is different, the culture is different, but isn't that why we travel in the first place? To experience these differences, and to grow and learn from them.

I think of Cambodia everyday. I will never forget the people and things I experienced on this journey.

Don't hesitate, sign up and stay for as long as you can. Two weeks is just not enough to experience it all.

What would you improve about this program?
I think IVHQ needs to emphasize the importance of why we are there. Many volunteers skipped out on work, and that is taking away from the integrity of the programs.
Not in my placement, but some placements had an over abundance of volunteers, and those extra bodies could have been very useful in other organizations.
Lastly, IVHQ needs to make volunteers aware of transportation costs once in country. ie. to and from work each day. We were told to budget for water, but honestly in PP no one can drink the water so everyone has bottled filtered water which is super cheap and always available. The money that they suggest should be budgeted for water, should actually be budgeted for daily transportation. So just keep that in mind when planning your trip. Mine was about $4/day USD. I had other transportation methods available to me (pedal bike), however I had a great Tuk Tuk driver, and I felt good about supporting him and his family while I was there.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Jenn, Thanks for sharing your thoughts, advice and photos from your volunteer experience in Cambodia. It was great to have you volunteering with IVHQ and we hope to welcome you on another program again soon.