Hungary instills a deep love in the hearts of those who live in and visit it. The breathtaking countryside and gorgeous old-world cities have something for everyone. Yet even with the country’s economy on the rise, many Hungarians live in poverty and are in need of support and education. Oftentimes children and women are those most in need of assistance. If you’re looking for a fulfilling, European experience, consider volunteering in Hungary.
Looking to make an impact with children? Working at a summer camp as a counselor is the perfect way to positively affect a child’s life. Bátor Tábor is a 10-day camp in Hungary for children with lifelong illnesses such as hemophilia, tumors, chronic arthritis and diabetes. Counselors are responsible for the children’s activities and organizing games. Speaking Hungarian is a requirement, so if you have a big heart and know the language, consider applying!
If you want to work with kids for longer than a summer, United Way Hungary is a firm advocate for nurturing children. They believe that strengthening the children of today leads to a brighter future for everyone. One of United Way’s goals is to help every child discover what they’re good at and support them on that path. If you’re interested in being a part of this organization and their refreshing goals, contact them about volunteering.
If human rights is an issue close to your heart, there are volunteer options for you in Hungary. The Human Rights Film Network is a group that organizes film festivals around the world, including Hungary, that emphasize the struggles people face in the world. If you have a passion for film and being a voice for the voiceless, consider applying.
The future of the world’s resources is the responsibility of each and everyone one of us. Do your part by volunteering with AIESEC in Hungary. AIESEC is an organization that provides opportunities for young people to get out, see the world, volunteer and make a difference. Programs range from six weeks to 18 months with emphasis on sustainable living, health and sanitation, eradicating poverty, human rights, education and improving literacy.
Planning Your Trip
What to Pack
Packing for Hungary is dependent upon the season and what activities you’ll be doing. Summers are warm and sunny while winters are cold and rainy. For office work, clean, business-casual attire is sufficient. If you are spending time outdoors, be sure to prepare appropriately for the weather.
Punctuality is important to Hungarians, so plan to be ten minutes early to all gatherings. It is a traditional sign of respect for a man to kiss a woman’s hand in greeting. Hungarians are fiercely loyal friends and believe in investing time into relationships.
Health and Safety
Routine health care is easy to find in clinics. If spending time near lakes and rivers in the summer, come prepared with insect repellent, as mosquitos are prevalent. Those spending time in forests should be aware of ticks, which can spread Lyme disease or Tick-borne encephalitis.
Contributed by Alecia Weaver