Most Affordable Kenya Volunteer Programs in 5+ Locations from $280

Video and Photos

Orphanage
Orphanage
Fun during PE
Fun during PE
Always smiling
Always smiling
The sweetest kids
The sweetest kids
The children loved taking pictures. This was me and Daniela at lunch time playing with the children.
The children loved taking pictures. This was me and Daniela at lunch time playing with the children.
This is the group of 16 of us that went to Mombasa for the weekend. We got to go out on the boat and go snorkeling. It was an amazing experience
This is the group of 16 of us that went to Mombasa for the weekend. We got to go out on the boat and go snorkeling. It was an amazing experience
This was on my last day at the school. The kids loved doing the splits so they were all climbing on me trying to get me to do them too. This was my class and it was the hardest goodbye I have ever had to say.
This was on my last day at the school. The kids loved doing the splits so they were all climbing on me trying to get me to do them too. This was my class and it was the hardest goodbye I have ever had to say.
Saturday trip to the giraffe center!

About

Every year, hundreds of volunteers join IVHQ's highly affordable volunteer projects in Kenya. Based in Nairobi, Kibera, Nakuru, Mombasa and rural Kenyan villages, volunteers are welcomed to experience Kenya while assisting on a range of community-driven projects and gaining an understanding of the Kenyan culture and customs. Volunteers can choose to participate on projects for periods ranging from 1 week to 12 weeks and are accommodated in local homestays alongside other international volunteers.

Popular Programs

Childcare Program

Childcare centers in Nairobi can host between 15-100 children at any one time, making them unpredictable and busy places. As a result, there is a high demand for volunteers who love children and have the energy to keep up with the number of children in these centers. The children love interacting with volunteers and will be sure to keep you on your feet!

Teaching Program

Teaching volunteers in Nairobi are valuable additions in both local and rural schools, as outside influences open the minds and broaden the horizons of students, as well as provide valuable exposure to the English language. Volunteer placements are located in both community schools and government schools, where you will assist local teachers with lessons each day.

Music Program

Music is a universal language and a colorful representation of the rich cultural heritage of Kenya. The aim of this project is to support local children to embrace a positive form of self-expression and to let their voices and songs be heard.

Women’s Education Program

More than 1.6 million Kenyans live with HIV/AIDS, and women make up a disproportionately high percentage of that number. As a volunteer on the Women’s Education project in Kenya, you will work closely with centers that commonly support women affected by HIV/AIDS in providing companionship, guidance and sometimes childcare. The primary aim of this project is to empower women through income-generating projects, education and skills training.

Special Needs Care Project

Due to lack of support and education around disability awareness in Kenya, many disabled children and adults are hidden from public view by their families. As a volunteer on this project you will assist with providing daily hands-on support and disability education among families and local communities. This project is well suited to caring and open minded individuals, with an interest in helping those with special needs.

Questions & Answers

As long as you are 18 or over you can volunteer!

Reviews

95%
based on 40 reviews
  • Impact 9.1
  • Support 9.4
  • Fun 9.5
  • Value 9.3
  • Safety 9.2
Showing 31 - 40 of 40
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Marte
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A great experience in Kenya

This was the best company for me. It was affordable, showed me greatly how my experience would be, the local staff is amazing (and the host mums!) and the help there was needed. Kenya is an amazing place to do your volunteering, the smiles and appreciation given from teachers, children, students and locals are overwhelming, and you feel you're time there was appreciated. The local staff will go out of their way to make it the best time for you as well!

What would you improve about this program?
More information about projects and help that can be done before arrival.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Marte, Thanks for the small insight into your time in Kenya. It's awesome to hear that you felt supported by the amazing staff in country. Thanks for being an IVHQer and we hope that you will join us on another program soon!

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Danielle
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

2 weeks in Kenya

I had an amazing experience volunteering with IVHQ. I am already looking into the next trip I'll take with them. From the second we got out of the airport to when we went back to come home the staff made me feel welcome and safe. They were excited to share their culture with us. I have learned so much! When we got settled in they told us all about the things we could do at night and on the weekends. It was really easy to sign up for safari and take visits to fun places like a giraffe centre and an elephant orphanage. I loved seeing all the animals... It's an experience I'll never forget! Also, the teachers at the school I was volunteering at were so nice and helpful. But the best part of the trip had to be the children I had the honor of working with. They were so keen to learn and to play games! Overall, this was an incredible experience and I recommended to everyone to volunteer with IVHQ! :)

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Danielle, Thanks for the recommendation. We are stoked to hear that you had such a positive experience volunteering in Teaching on our Kenya program. We hope to see you on another IVHQ volunteer trip soon.

Default avatar
Tina
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A Kan-do attitude in Kenya!

The countries of Africa are very often perceived as politically unstable and unsafe for young woman travelers.The security that IVHQ offered me (and my family) during my trip was invaluable. My parents had the reassurance of a NZ contact if they could not contact me and we knew what to expect in terms of being collected at the airport and being placed in a relevant role within a reputable organisation.

The Fadhili and Marafiki community welcomed us with open arms and kicked off our orientation with a song. My friend and I were placed in the orphanage program and enjoyed every minute of it. We helped out with cooking, homework, entertainment of the children and cleaning of the house (african-mumma style!). We even had the chance to teach at the local school.

Through the partner organisation we even went on safari at a seriously discounted 'volunteer' price.

We had a private room and bathroom and had lots of opportunity for sightseeing during the day when the children where at school.

What would you improve about this program?
We expected three meals a day, however this is not common in Kenya. Typically you will just have a hot drink in the morning and a large meal for dinner. This was somewhat of a surprise to us but now after having visited Kenya twice, I realise it is a cultural difference.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Tina, It’s great to hear from you again :) Safety is of huge importance to IVHQ so it’s great to hear that your safety expectations were met when in Kenya with IVHQ and our local team. Thanks for sharing a little of your experience in Kenya. Looking forward to seeing you on another IVHQ trip soon.

Default avatar
April
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Kenya - Maasai Teaching

My experience with IVHQ was overall very good. They placed me at a great school in an amazing community. The price was the cheapest I could find for similar volunteer opportunities, plus we were still provided a good orientation and additional transport to our communities no matter how rural. They place you either with a local family or at a volunteer house in bigger cities.

I ended up returning to the community I taught in an additional three times, however I did this without IVHQ which saved me quite a bit of money. But, still, I would highly recommend them for your first trip since they can set you up in a program you likely wouldn't be able to be involved in if you just travelled to the country on your own for the first time.

What would you improve about this program?
They set you up with another in country organization, which is too bad that you aren't working with IVHQ the entire time. Although the in country organization was good, it would have been better had they not contracted out to in country organizations and it's my understanding that they do this in every country.
Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi April,

It’s great to hear from you and it’s awesome to read that your experience volunteering with IVHQ was just the beginning of your volunteer contribution in Kenya. As each country we work in is vastly different, we partner with local organizations in each volunteering destination who are in the best position to identify opportunities for volunteers to provide valuable contributions that address the needs of the local community in a sustainable way. Thanks for your feedback and for volunteering with IVHQ.

Default avatar
nicolette.rae
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Get ready for your life to be changed.

Karibu Kenya. Welcome to Kenya. I signed up for an 8 week volunteer program and I ended up extending it to 12 and still didn't want to leave when that was over. I absolutely fell in love with the country and, as it turns out, that happens quite often. The Kenyan people are all so warm and friendly and always anxious to talk to new people. The food is simple, but hearty and all delicious. The staff at the volunteer office are all amazing and fun and offer amazing support and truly are some of the best people in the world. To do what they do, they have to be. This is one of the most popular programs in IVHQ and for them to be able to organize and coordinate with all the volunteers, all the host families, all the volunteer placements, and all the outreach projects all without missing a beat - they are amazing!

So! My typical day would start with a breakfast of toast and chai with my host family in the morning, waving goodbye to my host brother as he trotted off to school, then leaving to walk to the orphanage around 8:30. It was about a 30 minute walk. I could have taken a matatu or a bus for about 25 cents, but and I loved the walk. Always something interesting to see along the way and I met some great people along that route. I would get to my work placement at the orphanage and would usually be greeted by one of the girls who were too young to go to school and then we would hang out with the ladies either chopping vegetables or sorting rice. Most of the girls who lived there were usually off at school when I was there, but there was a primary school on the property so I would get to hang out with the kids during break time. So! I would chat with the ladies, help with the food prep, and listen for the littlest baby to let us know if she needed anything (they don't have baby monitors, they have open windows). As soon as I would hear that baby cry I would race upstairs and get my baby-time. She was 2-weeks old when I got there. The most precious thing you can imagine. Once she was settled, I would go back and help until lunch time. I would have lunch there (with this program, all meals were included if you were at home or work) and then depending on the day I would hang out with the kids for a little while longer or get a head start with the food prep for the next day or sometimes I would just head out from there.

After work my options were endless and I made so many local friends who were so happy to show me around and there were always volunteers either at my house or at other home-stays nearby who would be up for hanging out too. I always tried to stay aware and assess the situation whenever I was being taken somewhere I hadn't been before and I never felt unsafe. Sometimes I would take the bus into Nairobi town centre and meet up with a friend for a drink, or I would wander around the local markets and do some window shopping, or there was a local pub that I would go to with one of my boys to play pool. There were internet cafes all over the place, but for internet I would usually go to the big mall that was about a 10-minute matatu ride away. I ended up becoming friends with a couple of the guys at the Wine Bar and the Nairobi Java House there so it was a combined social visit/wifi stop for me. I would usually make my way home when it started getting dark which was when dinner would be ready. I would eat with my host family and the other volunteers and usually catch up on whatever soap opera series was on tv.

The weekends never allowed for a dull moment either. Between Safari and Outreach (a weekend where we visited 3 slums, doing a feeding program for 2 of them, and rode bicycles through a national park where zebras and water buffalo and gazelles would just stare at you as you rode by) where you will really get to know the volunteer staff and your fellow volunteers. I did Outreach twice, it was so incredible. The whole experience of being in Kenya will change your life, but Outreach is where it's most intense. Driving up to these slums and playing with these kids, you really have to fight back tears sometimes, but it's so eye-opening and really puts things in perspective.

On the flip-side of that, there are endless travel opportunities to any number of the diverse locations in East Africa and all of these trips can be done on your own, but the volunteer staff is always happy to help you make arrangements or even chauffeur, depending on where it is that you want to go. If you find yourself in Nairobi for the weekend, get ready! The Nairobi nightlife is so much fun! It starts late and ends late so make sure you are well rested or just have a red bull or something. If you're going out in a big group it's worth it to arrange for a driver for the night, but! Make sure that all of the volunteers and the driver are on the same page at the beginning of the night about payment. There is always room for negotiation, but that should always be done before you are taken anywhere. Also, keep in mind that yes, things are cheaper in Kenya than in western countries, but they are not free! Gas is expensive, cars are expensive to buy and maintain, not to mention the time that the driver is sacrificing for you. Most of the volunteers were cool when it came to this, but it was SO frustrating for everyone else when at the end of the night one person would throw a drunken fit because he felt like he was being ripped off by 2 dollars! I will step down from my soapbox now.

Anyway, this is an amazing program with tons of support locally and through IVHQ. All of the volunteers I met loved their host families and their placements. On the rare occasion that they didn't love them, they were quickly moved to a place that was better suited to them and then everyone was happy. Endless opportunities to help and do good and every effort that you make is so greatly appreciated. And the people. If you let yourself be open to it, the connections you will make will be with you for life.

Default avatar
C
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Great value

Tremendous opportunity, great experience, reasonable rates. Supportive staff, great community of volunteers to be a part of. Amazing safari opportunity as well.

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Jake.morgen13
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

The best two months of my life

This program was exactly what I was looking for in a volunteering experience. I never wanted to be on a program where I had a set schedule for every second of my trip. With IVHQ you live with your host family and have your program close by, but its very much up to you to make sure you accomplish what you want to at your program. Nonetheless you are there to volunteer so everyone makes sure to go every day and give assistance however you have free time to hang out with your host family, hangout with the other volunteers, travel, explore your area etc. It was incredible, I could honestly live my life volunteering with IVHQ going from country to country. It is such a great program and you get to know the staff on such a personal level, where you can just text the people you met at orientation to ask questions.

Default avatar
Ray
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Life Changing.

I have done my share of trialling and this trip to Kenya was by far the best one . I met so many kind and friendly people from the natives to the fellow volunteers who are now close friends . The most touching moment was at one of the biggest garbage slums, I have already seen so many pictures of these places before coming to Kenya , but being there , breathing the polluted air , touching the little kids dirty hands , just being totally immersed changed the way i think and live my day to day life. all in all it is an experience that is highly recommended for everyone of every age. International Volunteers HQ made this experience perfect with its organized trips and its care for the well being of their Volunteers.

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Domonique
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Overwhelming hospitality

Nick and I have just returned home after an amazing couple of months volunteering in Kenya. We were teaching at a slum school in Kajaido, about 2 hours south of Nairobi, in the heart of Masaai land.

We were welcomed with open arms by the Fadhili community (IVHQ's program parnter on the ground in Kenya), our host family and a horde of happy kids every morning. Their smiles were infectious and their zeal to learn was inspiring. We taught years two to six every subject from english to creative arts, and singing and baking.

Simply spending time with the kids was our biggest highlight. During our month-long stay they never asked for anything - only that we stay longer, continue to share our stories of home and play more games!

There was no running water and limited electricity where we lived. Breakfast and lunch consisted of plain white bread and chai, milked straight from the cows, and dinner was usually white rice and potatoes with goat, beans or cabbage. Ugali was also on offer, but we never took to this like Kenyans!

Every weekend Nick and I travelled including trips with IVHQ to other programs offered across Kenya and road trips with Fadhili staff and other volunteers to Mombasa. So many good memories!

It's true that relationships run deep in Africa and we look back so fondly of our time there. I can't recommend IVHQ & Fadhili highly enough - they were supportive, prompt and genuinely amazing people!

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afontana
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Volunteering in Kenya Changed My Life

I went to Kenya the first time through IVHQ in May of 2009 and I have returned every six months thereafter. I went there looking for a chance to travel, volunteer, and step outside of my box. Well, I got that and much more, more than I could have ever asked for. I was placed out in Maasai land where i lived with a family. The family and community took me in whole heartedly, and I now consider them apart of my family. I taught 5th and 6th grade at Olmararoi Primary school five days a week for several months. I cant say enough good things about the children and the staff at the school. Where lived was literally in the middle of nowhere, it was amazing you would see giraffes roaming around, and millions of stars at night.
Aside from my direct placement i became close with all of the IVHQ employees in Kenya, some of whom i still keep in touch with at home. They made me feel safe and welcomed from my very first day abroad. They were extremely helpful with helpng us set up activities for the weekends, like safari, river rafting, bungee jumping, and more. I would reccomend IVHQ to anyone who wants to travel, volunteer, and have an experience of a lifetime on a budget!