Uplift Humanity India Summer Volunteer Program

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About

Our mission is to empower juveniles in India to break the cycle of recidivism and achieve their full potential through education. The benefits of UHI's impact have an incredible ripple effect. In India, we touch children who are in tough situations and have little begin with. Volunteers full their life with education, love, and everlasting memories. For our volunteers, they have a unique opportunity to be an important stop along the journey for these children, learn about recidivism and bring that home to further spread awareness.

Our summer rehabilitation program remains the core of efforts; each year we take students from the United States over to one of our four rehabilitation facilities in India. Our volunteers teach orphans and juveniles life skills such as moral decision-making, self-esteem development, self–maintenance, daily etiquette, and public speaking. Spend 16 days in one of four locations: Gujarat, New Delhi, Mumbai, or Hyderabad. Join our journey and leave your mark.

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Reviews

99%
based on 16 reviews
  • Impact 9.9
  • Support 9.9
  • Fun 9.8
  • Value 10
  • Safety 9.9
Showing 1 - 15 of 16
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shama
10/10

Uplift Humanity 2016

This trip was the best 2 weeks of my life, and I am even continuing this year. Yes it is about $2-3k but every dollar is worth it. You even have the chance to get $2K back in scholarship form with the video contest and the application is easy and everyone has an equal chance! It opened up my eyes about the world. It is also so safe that for the people that don't like traveling to India, it is perfect for you. I wish I could go every year. Please go and change the a life.

Yes, I recommend
Ravi
10/10

Life Changing and Unforgettable!

The summer of 2016, I was given the opportunity to make a difference in a child's life. I did not even think twice and I accepted the opportunity I was given by Uplift Humanity. Uplift Humanity was by far the greatest experience I have ever had in my life. Everyone was treating us so well. When we were on our way to our hotel, I had assumed that it would be dirty and unsanitary. Guess what? I was completely wrong. The hotel was actually very clean. The rooms were nice and the bathroom was nice. As we all started to settle in, it was so fun being with the other kids, even the advisors! The joked around with us, they were open with us, and they were just so polite and kind. I felt as if I was home to be honest. All the other volunteers were so friendly and it was just a blast. Some of the days, we went out and had dinner together, we watched the movie SuItan together, and we even went bowling!

I made so many new friends in and out the facility. The kids at the Ashram were the nicest kids you would ever meet. They were so eager to see us and play with us. Many of the kids opened up to me immediately to me, but some did not. One of my kids who was named Bhavesh was one of the juveniles that did not talk at all the first week. He kept getting distracted and just looked so confused. When I tried to ask him something he just shrugs his shoulders or nodded his head. Eventually, I started understanding what he was into which was that he loved to draw. While teaching him the curriculum, I gave him a few breaks to let him draw whatever he wants. I learned that I had to be playful with him and just make him laugh. One of the days, Mona, the head director of Gujurat for UHI, read us the story, “Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon." Molly was funny looking with buck teeth. Bhavesh suddenly laughed because of Molly had buck teeth, so from then on whenever I saw him, I bit down on my lower lip to try to look like Molly. It brought a smile to Bhavesh’s face every single time. By the time we had to give the kids an exam, he was so open and started being so blunt about everything. Everything that came to his mind he just started spitting it out. I felt like tearing up because it is just such an unbelievable change. One day, he does not talk and the next day he is the most talkative kid. At that point, It hit me straight in the chest how a normal high school kid like me can change another kids life just like that. My story is one of many, if you attend this program you will never ever forget the experience you had. It is truly amazing.

Yes, I recommend
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Janki
10/10

Uplift Humanity: One Child at a Time

My experience with Uplift Humanity truly shaped me into who I am today. In a matter of two and a half weeks, I learned new things about myself and about the world in which we all live in. Everyone knows that third-world countries, such as India, do not have the same amenities or necessities that the rest of us do. However, it is impossible to truly understand what that means until you immerse yourself into a community where food and water are limited and education is inadequate. By educating the orphans in Nadiad, Gujarat, we were able to instill values in them that they will hopefully remember for the rest of their lives. We taught simple yet important lessons dealing with anger management, peer pressure, expressing emotions, sharing, etc. that any of us in the United States would consider to be common sense, but for children living in poverty-stricken areas, these unfamiliar concepts are of the utmost importance.
On a personal note, I returned from this trip with memories that I will remember for a lifetime and best friends that I can count on. I was not expecting to connect with the other volunteers, but we all found a way to relate to one another and became a family within the first couple of days. I was reminded of who I am and what it means to be an Indian. Along with that, the children there taught me to be appreciative and grateful for anything and everything that I have because there are others in the world who yearn to have the same luxuries that we have in the United States. The orphans and juveniles taught me to be sincere and genuine, which made me rethink my priorities and what I value the most. Over all, I returned from India with a better understanding of myself and of the world around me. I definitely recommend volunteering in India with Uplift Humanity because it appeals to anyone looking for an opportunity to reconnect with their roots while contributing to a great cause.

Yes, I recommend
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Atmaja
10/10

Thank you Uplift!

I have no words to describe how thankful and fortunate I am to have been given the opportunity to travel to India with Uplift Humanity. I am indebted to this program. Not only has it changed my perspective on life, but I have truly observed a change in myself. I went on this trip a quiet, timid girl whose life revolved around school and sports so that I could get into a good college. I left it with so much more: with some of the best friends in this entire universe, gratitude, and determination to find whatever my passion is so that I can help others with it. The children I met made me realize how we often miss the fact that the lives of poverty and posh can be silent neighbors, and that we need to stop being so self-involved. These kids were absolutely amazing and it broke my heart that I could not do more to help them. They have nothing, literally nothing, and they could not be happier. I am not sure if we succeeded in educating the children as efficiently as we could have, but we were able to put a smile on their face, and that was more than enough for me. Taking a break from the bustling lifestyle and stress back home (in the US) and immersing myself in this culture that I forgot how much I loved really helped me reconnect with myself. The food, the staff, the living, the places of the Nadiad that we got to experience made this trip even more enjoyable. The other volunteers and I bonded into one family, who I hope to be in touch with for the rest of my life. Learning the stories of the orphans and juvenile inmates, their hopes, their worries makes you reconsider you priorities - it makes to hone in on what is really important. And, the only thing bigger than their smiles are their hearts. I am so glad I made the decision to attend this program, because I am some of the most hard work, driven, and kind people! I went their to make a difference in their lives, but I left with them having made a bigger one in mine.

Yes, I recommend
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Aahna
10/10

The Experience of a Lifetime

Uplift Humanity has completely changed my life in so many ways. When I joined Uplift, I was not so knowledgable about the hardship that children in India go through. There are so many uneducated orphans in Gujarat alone, and we were able to make a difference and actually help them. It was amazing to see how these children can remain strong and kind, even when they life such hard lives. The best part was that we were able to see the difference we were making. We made these kids smile, laugh, and brought a little more happiness into their lives. I made a tangible bond with some of the kids that will never be broken or forgotten.

I am forever grateful to the Uplift Humanity India organization for allowing me the opportunity to go to India. I was able to learn more about my language and culture when I went to the Gujarat location to teach these kids. I made lifelong friendships with the other volunteers, who were Indian teenagers like me. Leaving these kids on the last day was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do. However, watching smiles light up faces after each lesson made it all worth the tears. I came back to America with the knowledge that I actually did make a difference in a child's life, and I would heavily recommend volunteering in India or donating to the organization.

Yes, I recommend
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Tanvi
10/10

Uplift Humanity 2016

I joined Uplift Humanity last summer not knowing anything about it. All I knew was that I would be visiting India after so many years. However, little did I know that this experience would completely change my life. I made some unforgettable memories and lifelong friends that I will never forget. I volunteered at Mumbai at an orphanage where I met 20 amazing girls. I saw the kids and how little they have and it made me realize how fortunate I am. I am really glad that I got to volunteer my time to these kids because they deserve a lot more than what they have now. Uplift Humanity has provided me with a kind of passion that I have never felt before. I want to dedicate my time to help these children prosper in life. Uplift Humanity is an amazing program that gives children the hope that they need to be successful in life. I would definitely recommend this program because it let's you immerse yourself into the Indian culture while experienced something life changing. Uplift Humanity is truly an amazing experience and I would not trade it for the world.

Yes, I recommend
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Sanjana
10/10

Once in a Lifetime Experience

Participating in Uplift Humanity India was the best decision I have made in my life by far. Going into this experience, I had no idea what to expect. As part of the Hyderabad leg of the program, my group was the only one working with children in juvenile detention centers. I was already nervous and scared about opening up to and teaching kids I had never met before, and my preconceived notions about juveniles only added to that. I walked into the center on the first day expecting the kids to laugh at me for my broken Telugu, act disrespectful, and not be receptive to what we were teaching them. However, they were the exact opposite of this. I was shocked. These kids are some of the most driven, hardworking, and tremendously talented people I have ever met. Their poise and grace never failed to amaze me, and I only ever saw smiles on their faces, despite the conditions they were living in. These kids are nothing like the media portrays juveniles: uncontrolled, impolite, and reckless. Rather, their lifestyles forced them into these situations as a way to survive, and they are amazing people. I will never forget the feeling of going to the facility every day and being bombarded with love, warmth, and even hand crafted personalized drawings. I truly feel like our work there made an impact on their lives, and if I had the chance, I would go back in a heartbeat. While I was the one there to teach them, they taught me so much more than I could have imagined. They taught me what it is like to work hard and how to have a positive outlook on life. This is a once in a lifetime experience, and I would highly recommend Uplift Humanity to anyone who is looking for a volunteering abroad program.

Yes, I recommend
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Prerna
10/10

Uplift Humanity 2016

Working this summer in India with Uplift Humanity was one of the best decisions of my life. I came in not knowing anything about the summer program except for some online research I had done before, however, Uplift Humanity exceeded my expectations. Working with the children was amazing and I have learned many valuable lessons from doing so, making unforgettable connections with each child. The program also gives you the opportunity to speak Hindi, although it was not required for the Mumbai location. My Mumbai team was awesome and we all got along really well with each other. The apartment complex that we stayed at was comfortable and very conveniently located. The cook was excellent and made some of the best food Iv'e ever eaten. As for safety, our counselors took precautions, making sure we were safe throughout the whole trip. The program is a great way to explore India as well since we were given the opportunity to see some famous landmarks in Mumbai and eat at local, approved restaurants. Overall, I would recommend this program if you are interested in immersing yourself in the Indian culture while helping the orphans/ juveniles of India understand their true potential.

Yes, I recommend
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Raj
10/10

An Incredible Experience!

I had a great experience with Uplift Humanity. I didn't really know what I was about to venture into when I first signed up for this cause, but I soon realized what a huge purpose it served. The purpose of Uplift Humanity is to rehabilitate juveniles/orphans who do not have the resources or proper influences to help them contribute and thrive in society. Going to India and helping these unprivileged kids really is eye opening, and it is simply amazing to see how happy they are despite having next to nothing. I am so happy I was given the opportunity to make a difference in their lives, and will forever remember this experience! I would definitely recommend this program to anyone who wants to make a difference in a child's life!

Yes, I recommend
Pratik
9/10

My experience and take on Uplift

I chose to do uplift because I felt it was unjust that these kids who made a mistake out of dire poverty or poor moral guidance would be stuck in the trap of recidivism. Growing up incredibly privileged in a telugu family, it only felt fair that I give back to the community that raised me. The personal interaction with the kids and the tangible bond you form with them are why I chose Uplift specifically. This closer interaction is what differentiates Uplift from other community service projects in India which are commonly building projects, fundraisers, etc. On the more practical end, Uplift is one of the few organizations with direct outreach in Hyderabad making it an easy choice for me.

My experiences throughout my 10 days of working with the redefined my perception of “Juvenile Delinquents”, reconnected me with the place my roots are set in, and improved my command of Telegu. Often when people hear “juvenile delinquents”, they think of rowdy teenagers who have little respect or regard for others. My perception was the same until I actually met the kids, who treated us with the utmost respect and kindness. These kids opened up about their lives, telling us about who they are, how they were raised, and unfortunately what they did. Learning more about them, you see that these kids are not inherently bad, but, their situation was a result of poverty and lack of a proper upbringing. Furthermore, living in America for all my life leads to a disconnect with your roots, traveling to Hyderabad alone and seeing so many aspects of the city gave me the opportunity to see for myself how the city has changed and developed. Lastly, communicating solely in Telugu for a little over two weeks has strongly improved my command of the language which is incredibly useful for life in Hyderabad. My experience doing Uplift has possibly been one of the best in High School through the friends I made, appreciation I gained, and the new skills that I aquired.

How can this program be improved?
If the food was a bit better. But even the food wasn't bad.
Yes, I recommend
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Harshita
10/10

Uplift Humanity... it accomplishes exactly what's in the name

The Uplift Humanity Program wasn't just great-- it was absolutely exceptional. However, I must say that as a part of the Hyderabad chapter- the only chapter that was working with juveniles our age, I was quite nervous at first. After all, the extravagant films and exaggerated news stories of modern media portray juveniles to be obnoxious, unworthy, and rebellious teenagers. This gave me all-the-more of a reason to be utterly shocked when the juveniles greeted us with warm smiles and friendly handshakes the first day we visited them. Everyday as we kept coming back and teaching them life skills, they grew closer with us. At first, it was a friendly yet robotic exchange of broken Telugu . Before we knew it, we were freely exchanging our cultures. They were absolutely fascinated when we showed them some of our "common necessities" like the plenty of dollar bills in the back of our wallets, our smart phone games, and the clear luxury displayed in the pictures on our phones.

Our mission was to teach them life skills, but I believe that the care we gave was more important. Most of the juveniles came into prison because of circumstances surrounding their parents: parents who simply did not care, parents who could not afford to care, and parents who were not alive or known to care. And yet, despite their desolate circumstances, they taught us Telugu when we messed up instead of laughing. They packed up our belongings without us asking so we had less work to do. They waited patiently in their seats for two hours when our bus got stuck in traffic. They showed their gratitude by giving us drawings or wired flowers every day, painstakingly made with little time, limited resources, and lots of love. Ironically, we were the ones with the bigger money, and yet, we couldn't gift them anything that rivaled their presents. It really proved that love has no bounds.

More so than the content we taught, the fact that people like volunteers came and gave them individualized attention is what made them feel loved and worthy, something they don't feel often. And by the tears streaming down every seemingly reserved teenager, I knew that not only will they miss us but also the care we gave that they have so long awaited for- and the care they will likely never get again.

This trip was supposed designed for me to teach the juveniles life skills. But in fact, I learned plenty and grew as a person. It opened my eyes to the poor and unfair judicial system in place that forced countless kids into prison. It made me realize that no one is simply good or bad like in a superhero movie because unforeseen and uncontrollable circumstances can put one in unthinkable situations- just like the juveniles. As cliche as it may seem, this experience was so life changing for me that it made me realize what I'd like to pursue in the future as a career: Public Policy. To set policies that would represent the unrepresented and value the undervalued is what these amazing teenagers taught me. Like rejecting a lottery win, I see no reason to pass up a beautiful chance like Uplift Humanity.

How can this program be improved?
more often so those who cannot make the program in the summer have another oppurtunity
Yes, I recommend
Raj
10/10

An unforgettable experience that everyone should be a part of

Attending Uplift Humanity's UHI's Summer Program was easily the best decision I have ever made. Teaching, playing different games, and interacting with these kids made me feel like I was really making a difference in their life. Most of these kids do not have families so for them to smile and be able to really reach out to me made them feel like they had a brother to look up to and there's no better feeling for me. In 2 weeks I was teaching them about sharing, body language, bullying, and much more but I really though they were teaching me. I felt like their stories and seeing their everyday life taught me to appreciate the little things in life and that will change me forever. The most touching moment of my trip to Nadiad was the last night at the hotel. It was when the orphans rode 30 minutes on their bikes after school, at night, just to visit me and the other volunteers for the last time. At that moment I knew that I would never forget them and the impact the volunteers and I had made.

Yes, I recommend
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Gagana
10/10

Unforgettable Experience

The two weeks I spent teaching, playing, and learning with the juvenile children were some of the most eye opening two weeks of my life. The minute I stepped into the facility, I was blown away. All my preconceived notions on what an Indian "juvenile" meant were proven false. These kids were some of the most respectful, kind, and determined people I ever met. Everyday I spent with them, the more I learned about them, their stories, and their lives. Sure, I was there teaching them about life skills and morals, but more than that they were teaching me. Teaching me about hard work, dedication, never giving up, and truly looking at the glass half full. As the two weeks flew by, our bonds became stronger and every second spent with each other was cherished. I would have never gotten this life changing experience without Uplift. And for that, I thank them. If you are looking for a volunteer abroad program, Uplift Humanity India is without a doubt the way to go. I promise, it will change your life for the better.

Yes, I recommend
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Swathi
10/10

Incredible experience

My experience in Uplift Humanity absolutely amazing. The day we got to meet the juveniles/orphans was quite possibly the best day of my life. I think what makes this organization so unique is that through our program, we get to actually form real bonds with each child. They have all become like my little brothers. I also know that by working them and becoming their friends, we have given them a strong foundation that will help them succeed in the future.
Furthermore, it is completely safe, from food, housing, water, etc. However, we also do have a good amount of freedom to explore India and truly immerse ourselves into authentic Indian culture. We also have tons of fun when we go back to the guest house, and all the other volunteers will end up becoming your best friends.
Overall, doing Uplift was one of the best decisions I made and I think everyone else should apply so they can also be able to have this life changing experience! :)

Yes, I recommend
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Dharani
10/10

Best Organization Ever

When we finish our lessons, we were allowed to play with the kids for almost an hour every day. This was where we could connect with the kids on a different level. It was nice to see the children as both students and friends. My first day with the kids we played ice breakers but there was still something that separated us from them, but after playing with them in their playground, the next day of lessons was so much better. I personally was able to understand the kids more and talk to them more comfortably.The lessons became less like lectures and more like discussions. The children began to open up more and more each day. At the playground, every day a new story would enlighten me. One day it was about one's days acting in a circus and another day was about being kicked out of their home by the age of 7. Despite all of these hardships that the kids had to face in their lives at such a young age, they were the most happiest people I have ever been around. Their contentment with life is something that I will always remember and cherish. This is a one of a kind experience that I was very fortunate to have gained with Uplift Humanity.

How can this program be improved?
I think the program should last longer.
Yes, I recommend

About Uplift Humanity India

Uplift Humanity India brings global volunteers from the US to India to work with children in orphanages and juvenile facilities with the goal of educating them, raising awareness of their situation, and ultimately reducing the rate of recidivism. Our...