Most Affordable & Trusted Volunteer Programs in Madagascar from $550

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About

Trusted by 90,000+ volunteers, IVHQ offers the most popular volunteer programs in Madagascar and 40+ other destinations around the world.

You can choose from 6 volunteer project options in Madagascar and give back for periods ranging from 2 weeks to 12 weeks. Your Program Fee includes airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support. You’ll be accommodated in locally built huts, with other like-minded, impact-focused travelers from around the world.

IVHQ is trusted to support the meaningful adventures of thousands of volunteers every year, so before you even depart for Madagascar, you’ll receive outstanding personalized service from your expert Volunteer Program Manager and exclusive access to superior pre-departure volunteer training.

With IVHQ, you can expect to establish real connections within the local community while supporting projects that make a genuine difference.

IVHQ Volunteer Projects Available in Madagascar:

  • Marine Conservation
  • Forest Conservation
  • Teaching
  • Construction

Highlights

  • Programs available year-round, starting on the 1st and 3rd Monday of every month
  • Program fees include airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support
  • Highly affordable program fees from $500 for 2 weeks
  • Community-driven projects focused on supporting local needs and delivering sustainable positive impacts
  • Superior support services both pre-departure and while volunteering
  • Free online volunteer training for all IVHQ volunteers
  • Between 5 and 20 IVHQ volunteers start in Madagascar each month
  • Weekends are free to explore the islands of Nosy Komba or Nosy Be with fellow volunteers!
Highlights
  • IVHQ’s Madagascar program is available year-round, starting on the first and third Monday of every month
  • Highly affordable program fees starting from $550 for two weeks - IVHQ provides the most affordable and top-rated programs
  • You’ll be joining between 5 and 20 other IVHQ volunteers who start in Madagascar each month
  • You’ll be traveling with IVHQ, the volunteer travel experts, and joining a network of 90,000+ volunteers. Our outstanding safety systems and track record set us apart, we are the world’s safest organization
  • Your efforts will have a positive impact because our programs are community-driven with a focus on supporting long-term local needs

Impact

Questions & Answers

The weather in December was generally pretty good. Generally in the high 80s for the temperature and varying clouds and sun. It is the transition period into the rainy season though, so towards the end of the December expect a bit more rain especially at night.
Go snorkelling, read in the hammocks, visit the towns and villages, do a long walk on the island, play cards, wash clothes and learn Malagasy
For forest conservation you will be trekking through the jungle but it is very safe if you just watch our step over rocks and roots. There is only one dangerous animal on the island and it is the hognose snake, I saw two and both times they fled. The camp is very clean, there are toilets and cold showers, the food is all prepared in the kitchen and no one seemed to have had any issues. Do expect...

Reviews

91%
based on 17 reviews
  • Impact 8.5
  • Support 8.5
  • Fun 8.7
  • Value 8.5
  • Safety 8.8
Showing 16 - 17 of 17
Default avatar
Venesia
8/10

AMAZING EXPERIENCE!!!

My stay in Madagascar was amazing! Madagascar is more touristy than I expected but I loved every minute. Although I would have liked to stay with a local family, the volunteer house was great too... the volunteers and staff made it fun. We were like a family watching movies together and playing interactive games we made up that involved everybody. I felt comfortable sharing my thoughts and feelings with these people... I didn't think I would be being more reserved and shy.

At first I was a bit skeptical about leaving my stuff around but you soon learn to trust... No one would steal your stuff at camp and even in the village we taught at, the locals make sure your stuff is safe... they are so happy we're there. Everyone I have met in Madagascar has been nothing but nice and welcoming! Even the construction workers building the bungalows are really friendly and helpful and they work to make sure that the surroundings are safe and that there isn't material lying around.

We did only have one bathroom during my stay but it usually worked out... it's part of working/living together. It was a bit tricky walking down if you have to go the bathroom at night but I know more bathrooms were being built and there would be one closer to the bungalows that were higher up. As for the water, I don't think it's an issue... no one has ever gotten sick from it. In terms of power, I actually liked the fact that we only got it for a limited time... it is more environmentally friendly anyway and that's kind of the point if we believe in conservation efforts. The food was fine and we got zebu sometimes... It would help to have some more food on some days but I think the local staff realize that are working on improving the situation with the many new volunteers that are headed there.

I participated in the teaching project. It was very interesting to come up with lessons after assessing the needs of the students, the teachers and locals who also wanted to learn English. We had lots of time to plan, explore and engage with local people.

You can really tell that the students wanted to learn. They never act out and thanked us with songs, hugs, smiles and lots of little gifts. Because their level of English is very basic, being able to speak and write in French was really helpful. Our lesson plans aren't necessarily the most fun but the students were still eager to participate. I hope the lessons can get more interactive and be more discovery-based as they progress and improve in English.

Working with local teachers allowed me to learn a lot of Malagasy. I also found out that they sound things out quite differently so if we were to help students remember pronunciation of words in English, talking to the local teachers would definitely help. The teachers there are so nice and even invited us into their homes, shared their honey and snacks and one even played us a tune on his keyboard. I also played him a song... it was like a sharing of culture.

I am hopeful that we can have a huge impact on the students' learning. I loved teaching there... it was a very rewarding experience that solidified my desire to finish up my Education degree and teach. The students again are awesome and are happy for what we may think of as little things... like when we showed them funny moves, like when I decided I wanted to learn their jump rope game thing. They are excited for pictures and were super happy when I brought them stickers, supplies, a soccer ball and a basketball.

As a volunteer teacher, I was able to not only teach them but really interact with them outside of the classroom setting during recess and the sport sessions by the beach. I would have loved to stay longer and teach them some sport or tag games. Teaching is so community based there. I know we were making a difference just by being there and the locals have told me time and again how grateful they are. It makes everything worthwhile. I even ended up enjoying our walks to the village from camp every morning. The scenery is gorgeous along the way.

I also got to help out with the construction project also taking place in the same village during our free time. Students and locals also helped a bit and it became like a group effort to give the school a lift. The new blue paint gives the village more liveliness and energy. Even the tourists commented on how nice it is and asked us about the volunteer program. I am happy that we were helping the community in a variety of ways. The forest and marine conservation groups also talked about what they have done and I think it's great!

I loved Madagascar and the island life... learned to take things slowly and be in the moment. Many new experiences... got to see wonderful sunsets, swam with turtles, touched a jellyfish, of course there are the lemurs... I also liked how we could walk almost anywhere barefoot! Loved the weekend trips. All the volunteers are awesome people with different backgrounds and personalities but all wanting to help in their own way. We were really kind of like a family: looking out for each other, sharing clothes, fixing stuff for each other, joking around... I love them! I also love the kittens and I have learned to love the chickens that visit us and lay eggs in our bungalows.

Yes, there are some minor things that could be improved on but I think overall the program was great. I learned a great deal about myself. I found out I really don't need as much as I think... I don't need a lot to be happy. I also found out I was a lot more capable of doing things on my own than I give myself credit for and that positive thinking is really important and can lead to great changes. It was an amazing experience... I would go again in a heartbeat...

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Veneisa,

Thanks for sharing your review - we are pleased to hear that you enjoyed the opportunity of living alongside other IVHQ volunteers in the volunteer house and felt very welcome in Madagascar with the friendliness of the locals.

It’s great to hear that you were able to learn a lot of Malagasy during your Teaching project and that the support of the local teachers enabled you to communicate more effectively with your students.

We are happy to learn that your time in Madagascar has solidified your desire to pursue a career in teaching too! Thanks again for sharing your experience.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Cinzia
1/10

An absolute scam. Don't go there!

Everything is still under construction, including the so-called 'conservation programs' managed by an obscure organization Madagascar Research & Conservation Institute. The premises are messy and hazardous with construction material scattered everywhere and power for only 2 hours a day. Hygienic conditions are appalling with 20-30 people sharing a single toilet/shower and no proper cooking and washing facilities. Food is scarce and inadequate with only rice, instant noodles, salad and beans in canned tomato sauce dished out every single day. Drinking bottles can only be filled from a tap inside the toilet and the water is not treated. Hardly a coincidence that after two weeks more than 50% of all volunteers (including myself) and the zoologist tested positive with salmonella typhi (typhoid fever). A very sick US volunteer was treated in hospital for three days and has been repatriated today.

IVHQ should immediately cancel this program and only resume it if and when the minimum standards will be met. In any case they should tell people about the real conditions on Nosy Komba. Unsuspecting and full-fee paying volunteers are presently financing MRCI's still non-existing conservation curriculum, as well as the construction of some ruthless businessman's private 'corner of paradise'. Totally unethical and unacceptable.

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Cinzia,

IVHQ prides itself on providing high quality volunteer programs and although it is never nice to receive feedback like this, we do appreciate you expressing your concerns as this helps us to ensure we are providing the best possible service to our volunteers.

Our partner organization in Madagascar provided you with a program fee refund and as you are aware, your IVHQ Program Coordinator has been in communication with our partner to discuss your concerns to ensure these are addressed.

Our Madagascar program has proved very popular, as such the accommodation facilities have needed to be expanded to accommodate a growing number of volunteers. These renovations are scheduled to be completed shortly and we are sorry you felt these were hazardous to your stay.

During your stay, 3 toilets and 4 showers were available at the volunteer accommodation and it is stated on the IVHQ website that power is delivered to the volunteer accommodation by an on-site generator and there are pre-specified times in the mornings and evenings during which volunteers have access to power to charge their laptops and cell phones.

In regards to the meals, volunteers are informed via our website that meals will have a rice base with a serving of beans, usually cooked in a sauce with vegetables. The one volunteer who fell ill during your time in Madagascar received immediate medical attention through the support of our local team, however the illness has not been linked to program provisions. It is strongly recommended by our local team during the program orientation that volunteers should avoid foods and beverages from street vendors, as it is difficult for food to be kept clean on the street.

We understand that the outcomes of the Marine and Forest Conservation projects may not have been apparent to you during your few days on the program, however the ongoing efforts of volunteers within these projects are contributing towards global research and conservation efforts. Dr Mario Lebrato, a well respected Oceanographer and Environmentalist, will be leading a seminar and field research activity in conjunction with MRCI this November.

Thank you again for sharing your feedback.

No, I don't recommend

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About International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

IVHQ is the world’s most trusted and affordable volunteer abroad organization, offering the largest range of safe and impactful volunteer programs in 40+ destinations around the world.

Over 80,000 travelers have volunteered abroad with IVHQ over the...