Make the Difference for English Language Students in Sicily

Video and Photos


Experience Italy as a volunteer with Global Volunteers - for one to two weeks! Our mutually beneficial relationship with teachers and administrators in Castelvetrano, Sicily gives volunteers first-hand teaching experience. Volunteers assist with the daily planning of classes and lessons through reputable texts, lesson plans, and revision of students’ work. Volunteers are welcomed as sources of information on American culture, from history and lifestyle to sports and school. Volunteer activities range from teaching American songs and games to educating on conversational and written English.

This is a new Global Volunteers program in 2020!

Global Volunteers has served in Italy since 1995, and began a new partnership with the municipal government of Castelvetrano, Sicily. Here, we are providing volunteer assistance to English language students of all ages. You can help youth and young adults improve their English and gain new skills to enhance their career opportunities.

  • Complete immersion in Sicilian culture.
  • Assist eager Italians in learning the language of the internet.
  • All logistics (except for international airfare) arranged by our staff, so you can focus on volunteering.
  • Global Volunteers' policy: safety trumps everything. Volunteers are well taken care of by their Team Leader while on a service program.
  • Discover Castelvetrano, Sicily, famous for its olives and olive oil, cobbled streets, narrow passage ways, and unique architecture reminiscent of the past.


Local leaders believe that learning English is a necessity for their children and young adults’ future success in a globalized world and an increasingly integrated Europe. The demand is high for English-speaking volunteers in the region. You can be a valuable resource in Castelvetrano where it is essential for young people to learn and practice this critical skill to get ahead. The focus of the conversational English program is the students. Most young people have studied English in school, but few have the opportunity to practice with native English speakers. As a volunteer providing your time and dedication, you can help Italian students improve their English and, therefore, their career opportunities.

You will make a difference! By providing the community members the opportunity to expand and improve upon their varying levels of spoken English you can help change the arc of a young person’s life. This is a chance to lead discussions on interesting and enjoyable topics. A typical day might include conversations on subjects ranging from current events to cultural differences. There's no limit to your creativity in the classroom!

Questions & Answers


9.71 Rating
based on 7 reviews
  • 9-10 rating 100%
  • 7-8 rating 0%
  • 5-6 rating 0%
  • 3-4 rating 0%
  • 1-2 rating 0%
  • Impact 9
  • Support 9.7
  • Fun 8.9
  • Value 9
  • Safety 9.9
Showing 1 - 7 of 7
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Global Volunteers Celebrates 20 Years of Service in Italy

We just celebrated 20 years of teaching conversational English in Monopoli, Italy. During this past year, volunteers engaged in English conversation with over 900 high school students and 35 local adults.
Many former students and community members who, thanks to the experience of practicing their English skills with the volunteers for a number of years, have been very successful in their university studies and professional careers. Some examples include:

• Fausto, at a very young age of 8 years, attended our Ostuni English summer camp in 2003. For the remainder of his schooling, he benefitted from classroom time spent with volunteers throughout grammar, middle, and high school. He now attends the University of Nottingham in Nottingham, England, where he is studying International Economics. I recently heard from him and he expressed gratitude for the opportunity he had to converse with volunteers to practice his English throughout the years.
• Marco, distinguished classical guitarist, an adult student always expresses his appreciation for the many hours volunteers have spent with him over the past five years. He performs worldwide, often in the United States, and his ability to speak English has been instrumental in his success

Yes, success stories and valuable volunteer experiences abound.

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Wonderful people, accomodations and work environment

Monopoli is perhaps one of the nicest "creature comforts" locations in Global Volunteers. We stayed right on the Adriatic and walked to school on most days. The city opened their arms to us and we were know everywhere we went. Our students were varied and enjoyed learning so it was a delightful teaching situation.

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Ostuni, Italy

It was something like ten years ago that we were there, so memories are less than distinct. But we surely enjoyed our experience hugely -- loved working with the kids. They loved it when Dick sang "The Star Spangled Banner" and when we played the Hokey Pokey and Heads, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes. We loved traveling around the area. Our accommodations were very nice, and our fellow "English Conversationalists" were great. Altogether a delightful experience. Can't say for sure how much the kids benefited from our "teaching" but we surely did! Dick and Maryan Schall

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program


I had a wonderful experience in Ostuni. The faculty at the high school were very supportive and the students so eager to learn "American" english. Spending 2 weeks in such a beautiful area allowed us to really explore and immerse ourselves in the communities.

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Feeling more at home in te world

I have participated in 6 volunteer trips to Puglia with Global Volunteers, so that it feels now, each time, like going home again! The program attracts a wide variety of volunteers all of whom want to combine an interesting travel adventure with a chance to give something back to the people and places they visit. This program is a great way to make new friends both home and abroad. I've kept in touch with many of the students and teachers in Italy, as well as with many of my fellow travelers. Puglia is relatively unspoiled and the local population is very welcoming. There is no safer place to travel in Europe. There is ample time to enjoy the experience, sample the local cuisine and take side trips. The staff is well-organized and extremely helpful. I speak some Italian, but knowledge of the language is not a necessity, since the focus of the program is to allow the chance for students to converse in English with native speakers.

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

A wonderful experience!

In 2005, I worked with Global Volunteers, teaching English in Ostuni, Italy. Most of the volunteers worked with school children, but I taught conversational English to two adults who needed to improve their English for professional reasons. I very much enjoyed working with them and we have kept in touch since then.
We were housed in a lovely hotel with great views, great food, and a pool in which we could relax when the school day was done. Each day, the group leaders took us out to lunch at a different type of restaurant to sample the cuisine. The other volunteers were intelligent, caring people and good company. Several of the volunteers were teenagers who were there with their grandparents. Our schedule left us time for some exploring of the Puglia region of Italy.

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

wonderful people, program, country

I spent 2 weeks volunteering at a IT school in Mawala, a small village an hour south of the capital. The school was a single room with 12 computers where children came to take 3-month classes on how to use Microsoft, the Internet, and other basics like how to turn on/off a computer and how to use a mouse. Since they have no computers in their homes or public schools, this was the only place that most children had any chance to learn about computers. I found almost all the children to be extremely receptive and very excited to learn. I had a great time interacting with them and learned just how much I take for granted when it comes to computers. For example, it never occurred to me that I would need to teach someone what it means to "click" with a mouse - but then I realized that these children couldn't know such a thing because they had never observed someone using a computer before.

The Projects Abroad staff was very supportive and checked in frequently to make sure everything was okay. They showed me how to get in contact with other volunteers and gave me lots of information on how to get around the city/country. They placed me with a good host family that had had numerous volunteers before (although I was their first American volunteer!). My host mother was an excellent cook and I learned to enjoy her spicy cooking.

The other volunteers I met were extremely friendly and were from all over the world. We became fast friends and I had a great time traveling with them during my free weekend. Sri Lanka is a beautiful country with very friendly people, and my one free weekend turned out to be nowhere near enough time to see all the exciting places I wanted to see! This small island is packed with beautiful beaches, temples, and mountains and I recommend a longer stay if you have the time. But on the whole, I had a great time traveling and volunteering and would highly recommend the program!