Alexandria, Egypt has always been a tourist hotspot. With its grand squares and beautiful buildings, the city has a unique charm that few can resist. Alexandria is known for its beautiful public and private beaches and also for its museums, in particular the Bibliotheca Alexandrina. Alexandria is a great city to volunteer in!Photo credit: A.Essmat.
As a volunteer in Alexandria, you will utilise your skills in the arts to work with Egyptian youth. Together with other volunteers from different nations, you will use your experience in visual artistic practices as an introduction for intercultural dialogue and to overcome cultural, religious, and political differences.
Work with the Intellectually Disabled
There are not many formal volunteer organizations in Alexandria, so if you want to volunteer in a different area, you have to work with an NGO. There are a few NGOs in Alexandria, and some of them work with people with people who are mentally disabled. As a volunteer, you will spend time with the individuals and help plan and conduct activities for them.
Know Before You Go: Egypt is an Islamic country as Islam is practiced by most of the population. Thus, there are certain cultural elements you should be aware of before visiting. Friday is the Muslim Holy Day, so shops and businesses are closed. You should also know that Muslims are required to pray 5 times a day at certain times. Finally, remember that if you visit Egypt sometime during July-August, it will be the month of Ramadan. During Ramadan, Muslims are required to fast from dawn to dusk. You do not have to fast, but you must remember to not eat, drink, smoke, or chew gum in public from dawn to dusk.
How to Save Money While Volunteering: Alexandria is a hot spot for tourists and there are thus a number of shops and restaurants that exclusively cater to foreigners and thus tend to be quite expensive. If you’re on a tight budget, try to shop and eat at places that locals frequent! Also, try to use public transportation as much as possible.
Health and Safety of Volunteers in Alexandria
As a volunteer in Egypt, you are recommended to be vaccinated for Hepatitis A & B and Typhoid. If you spend a lot of time outdoors, you are recommended to be vaccinated for Rabies.
Alexandria is a relatively safe city for tourists. Violent crime is very rare. However, tourists must beware of pickpockets and purse snatchers and must remember to not carry too many valuables around with them that are in plain sight.