Affordable Volunteer Programs in Cambodia from $360 for 2 weeks!

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About

Volunteers are needed in Cambodia to join a range of highly affordable projects for durations ranging from 2 weeks to 24 weeks. Based in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and surrounding provinces, volunteers are welcomed to assist on a range of community-driven projects. Volunteers are accommodated in volunteer houses and local homestays alongside other international volunteers.

IVHQ Volunteer Projects Available in Cambodia:

  • Teaching English
  • Childcare
  • NGO Support
  • Computer Support
  • Special Needs Care

Highlights

  • Programs available year-round, starting on the first and third Monday of each month
  • Program fees include airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support
  • Highly affordable program fees from $350 for 2 weeks
  • Community-driven projects focused on supporting local needs and delivering sustainable positive impacts
  • Superior support services both pre-departure and while volunteering
  • Free online volunteer training for all IVHQ volunteers
  • Between 30 and 50 IVHQ volunteers start in Cambodia each month
  • Weekends are free to explore Cambodia with fellow volunteers - visit the Royal Palace, Angkor Wat and more!

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 38 reviews
  • Impact 8.9
  • Support 9.1
  • Fun 9.5
  • Value 9.2
  • Safety 9.3
Showing 31 - 38 of 38
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Jo
10/10

Inspiring and Rewarding - Loved it! Planning my next trip

I have now volunteered through IVHQ twice, in 2011 and 2013. In 2011, I was placed with Maryknoll organisation in Phnom Penh for 4 weeks teaching English along with computer skills to children aged between 8 to 16 years. This organisation provided free education and accommodation to these children who were all affected by AIDS. My placement was within walking distance with my day starting at 8am to midday and then back at 2pm- 4pm. On this occasion I stayed with a host family which was fantastic. The meals were great and really enjoyed the experience as I got to experience their family life and got to go visit their home province. I don't think this would of been possible if I stayed in the volunteer guest house.

In 2013, I went to Siem Reap and was accommodated in a volunteer house for approx. 4-5 weeks. I was placed with MOC which is an organisation that takes in children at risk because of family situations for a period of time until the family is in a situation to care for the child. I attended MOC in the morning for approx 3-4 hours. I helped with the washing, folding the clothes, cleaning, feeding the children and playing with them. MOC also supports these families with rice etc. In the afternoon I taught English at AOO, an organisation providing free English and computer lessons to underprivileged children. The children ranged from 3-16 years.

Some of my favourite moments would have to be the eagerness of the children to learn and they are absolutely inspiring. They were always so appreciative, friendly and welcoming. Arriving at MOC each morning and seeing those smiling faces was something I looked forward to each day. I great way to start the day!

Make sure you experience the culture, the people, respect their traditions and religion. You definitely leave a different person.

The IVHQ staff and the local volunteer organisation staff are just fantastic, nothing is a problem. It may not happen like you are used to in your own country but this is Cambodia and things are done differently. Relax and enjoy the experience.

How can this program be improved?
In Siem Reap, I would recommend a policy of acceptable behaviour in the volunteer house be implemented more strictly, in particular going out partying to all hours and returning late / early hours of the morning.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Jo, Thanks for the feedback, it’s great to hear about both of your volunteer experiences in Cambodia. We are looking forward to having you back for a third time.

Yes, I recommend
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Dianne
10/10

A most amazing experience

My partner and I, both in our sixties, volunteered for the Cambodian program in September 2013.
Having never done this sort of thing we left Perth with a mixture of excitement, anticipation and a sense of nerviousness. We should never have worried as the whole experience was both sobering, exciting and gratifying.
We stayed in the Volunteer House with about 20 young people who, I have got to say, were some of the most amazing young adults I met in a long time. They embraced their volunteer jobs with enthusiasm and joy and it was fabulous at night, around the dinner table, to all be able to talk about our wonderful (and sometimes sad) daily experiences.
I was lucky enough to be placed in a PIO school near the old dump in Phnom Penh and my partner was the "handyman" for the school and the shelter. These children had very very little but the joy from attending school and also knowing they would be fed daily was a joy to behold.
Even with no teaching experience, this was a wonderful 2 weeks spent with about 32 truely beautiful 8-12yolds who, did not have very much, except their beautiful bright smiles and their thirst for knowledge.
Brian made a huge difference with the things that could be fixed and mended.....a huge list...and the children were so grateful for running water and to be able to watch a newly fixed, very old TV. Things that we, in Australia, just take for granted.
We were sad when our time finished but consider ourselves so lucky to have done what we did, meet the amazing people we met, along with the staff, and I honestly can say I came away learning a lot more than I actually taught.
With all the excitement of our experiences and stories now being told at home I have had at least 3 people...one my 22 year old son, wanting details of the IVHQ program.

How can this program be improved?
The safety issues at the Volunteer House, but these have been reported and I have been assured are being looked into.
Yes, I recommend
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Sarah
10/10

Some of the most amazing weeks of my life

The three weeks I spent volunteering at an orphange in Phnom Penh are some of the most amazing weeks of my life. IVHQ made the experience a great one with their low cost and supportive staffing. I met other volunteers during my time there and made some great friends. I miss the kids and the workers at the orphange every day and I really hope I can go back one day. I didn't experience any problems, it was smooth sailing, and the in country support was always there.

Yes, I recommend
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Nadine
9/10

Fantastic experience, Cambodia is now one of my favourite countries

The program I signed up for was computer support, I had no idea what I was going to be doing when I arrived but that was fine. The Cambodian agency that was organising everything was only 2/3 months old and they wanted me to help them create a few databases for their records of staff and volunteers. I was expecting to get out and into the 'field' but helping them was very rewarding as well. The staff were awesome and so helpful. They were very accommodating to the other volunteers and actively sought out new positions if the first one wasn't right for them. The food was great at the house and I felt very at home there. I would recommend this program to everyone I talk to... and I have :)

Yes, I recommend
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Eduard
6/10

O.K. but some room for improvement

My girlfriend and I did the IVHQ-Program for 20 weeks.
The IVHQ-Program was quite cheap and altough I never meet a direct employee of IVHQ they know more or less whats going on.
I'm not unsatisfied with my stay in Cambodia but there are a few things I was not particular happy about.

1. IVHQ didn't tell us where we were going to stay ( name and address of the guesthouse ect.) beforehand. They told us that this wasn't possible because of the local organisation. That was not true. They rather want to avoid further work when people want to change accomodation beforehand.
This made us feel unsafe and wortied bofore we left for Cambodia.
The guesthouse they brought us to was ok but not that great either.
We changed it because we didn't want to stay there for 4 months.

2. The partner organisations are not always that great. We were lucky and worked with CCOLT. A really good orphanage. But some were less fortunate.

I am sure that IVHQ is one of the better programs and it's not unsafe or so but there is much you could improve.

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Thank you for your review. In Cambodia, IVHQ have a number of home stays and more than one guesthouse that our volunteers could be placed in. Volunteer accommodation is organised close to your program start date and is done entirely by our local staff. This is because it is not until close to your arrival date that our local staff will know where you will be working due to demand and availability and in turn what accommodation options are available to that placement. We are glad to hear you enjoyed your time on your orphanage placement and appreciate you taking the time to post your feedback.

No, I don't recommend
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solberer
10/10

Life changing

Cambodia changed my life. Since I have been home, I long to go back each and every day. The country and people and experienced so much heartbreak, yet they still live each and every day to the fullest. I would recommend this program to everyone, however, don't expect to leave Cambodia behind; it will become part of your life forever.

Yes, I recommend
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hannah_
10/10

Went in '11... already planning to return '12

Going to Cambodia was the most incredible experience of my life. Everyday my friend and I were able to teach english to every child in our orphanage school because of the way it was set-up, which was both challenging (alot of kids and classes) but so amazing because we were able to see every child every day.
It didn't take long to get into a nice rhythm of breakfast, class, lunch (and considerable hang out time) class, dinner and more hang out time.
Living in the volunteer house with everyone in Phnom Penh was definitely a highlight, I met so many lovely people and shared so many great experiences of temples, markets and beaches with them.
My expectation of this trip went from being completely daunted in the first 2 hours of landing, to feeling happy at 2.5 hours, comfortable wandering around the city in 2 days, and fine going to the market by myself in 2 weeks.
Bottom line... I want to go back, the people are generous, the children are so joyful even though they have very little and the country is beautiful!!!!!!!!

Yes, I recommend
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Tegan
10/10

The most amazing experience of my life!

I spent 7 weeks volunteering in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. I was placed in a school through an organisation called the People's Improvement Organisation (PIO). PIO provide free education for underprivelaged children, particularly the children living in the slums and working on the garbage dump.

Each day starts at about 7:30am when the children arrive until 11:00am when there is a 3 hour break for lunch. The children then come back to school for another three hours. At first I hired a tuk tuk to take me to my placement and back home each day. After the first week I wanted a cheaper and more flexible option so I chose to rent a scooter for the remaining 6 weeks of my stay. This gave me greater flexibility, meaning I could leave the school for the three hour break and return for the afternoon shift.

I spent my days teaching the children how to read and write English. I taught children from as young as 3 years to 13 years. We played games, read stories, created artwork and did a lot of reading and writing. The children were amazing and inspiring, I didn't want to leave!

My highlights were:
- Meeting many inspiring people and making some amazing, lifelong friends in the fellow volunteers, the volunteer coordinators, the family owners of the guest house, the children I taught and the teachers I worked with.
- Experiencing the culture of Cambodia; the people, the language, traditions, religions, history.... it was all so amazing, eye opening, heart wrenching and inspiring.
- Travelling! I had a lot of time to travel around and see the sights! Every weekend I caught a bus with other volunteers... we travelled all around Cambodia and experienced so much!

Yes, I recommend

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