Environment, Teaching & Living on the Perhentian Island

Length
1 to 4 weeks
Housing
Guesthouse Hostel
13 travelers saved this program

Hosted by

Azeeza Nasir Profile Picture
Fuze Ecoteer Outdoor Adventures
Project Coordinator: Azeeza

About This Program

The Ecoteer House Project is unique in Malaysia. The aim of the project is to spread environmental awareness among the village children, adults and the tourists while improving their English. Your participation will support the local economy and help the local Ladies Group - Perhentian Islands Ladies Association.

You live in a traditional Malay village on the paradise islands of Perhentian. During the standard week you will assist with three school clubs - Computer, English and Environmental Club.

Highlights

  • Help build lessons and run Eco School Clubs
  • Help raise awareness and clean up beaches
  • Enjoy local homestay meals
  • Explore the Island's beautiful beaches

Volunteers arrive at Safe Park Holidays on Monday and take a boat transfer to the village. The day begins with briefing and orientation, a tour of the village, and a water confidence session, followed by dinner and a marine presentation.

Throughout the week, volunteers will participate in various activities including preparing lesson plans and teaching the English club, jungle trekking, beach cleanups, light construction work, and community development. Your typical day at Ecoteer House might start with house or mural painting, eco snorkel briefings for tourists, lesson planning for our three weekly School Clubs or conducting a beach clean.

Through community tourism, environmental awareness and community interaction, we aim to teach and support the islanders to care for their islands whilst offering volunteers first-hand experience of community life in a traditional Malaysian village.

Volunteers also gain experience in the classroom teach groups of ten to twenty young children (generally ages six to ten), doing various DIY jobs, composting or managing the Recycling Competition. The School Clubs include Roots and Shoots clubs. Fuze keeps doors open in the afternoon to give students the opportunity to stop in and learn with our volunteers. There are endless ways to inspire and teach these children, with no teaching experience required! We are looking for bright, fun and creative people to work with and inspire the students around them.

The volunteering activities run from morning until evening with a lunch break in between. For volunteers staying longer than one week, Sundays are usually free days.

On off days, volunteers can enjoy relaxing on some of the most beautiful beaches the world has to offer (ranking 13th in the world). Take a surf lesson, snorkel, or simply soak up the sun.

What's Included
  • Dorm accommodation
  • Return boat transfer from Kuala Besut
  • Weekly snorkeling tours, kuih making sessions, and Malay dinners.
What's Not Included
  • International/Domestic Flights
  • Travel Insurance
  • Some meals
Housing

Dorm-style accommodation is provided in the volunteer house and includes cold showers, Western-style toilets, lockers, and bunk beds. Kitchen facilities, laundry, and WiFi can be found nearby for volunteer use at specific times.

Meals

Volunteers can sample local delicacies and Malay cuisine at restaurants and food stalls. Once weekly, the ladies from the village will welcome you into their homes for a traditional Malay dinner with their families.

Food is an important part of Malaysian culture and you will be able to sample various delicacies at local restaurants and food stalls in addition to sharing some communal cooking and dining with fellow volunteers. For a true taste of Malaysian cooking you will enjoy one meals per week with a local family who will welcome you into their home.

Video and Photos

Pricing and Availability

Reviews

96%
based on 18 reviews
  • Impact 8.8
  • Support 9.7
  • Fun 9.1
  • Value 9.2
  • Safety 9.6
Showing 1 - 15 of 18
Default avatar
Yu
8/10

My first trip to Maylasia

The trip is funny.I met about 10 persons from different countries.Through communications,I know some cultures and customs of their country.During the program,we done some meaningful works together,like teaching kids English, cleaning beaches,playing games with kids,learning how to make doughnuts,visiting the Local etc.Besides,you can enjoy beautiful scenery.The people there are kind and friendly.Trust me,you gonna love it.

How can this program be improved?
Maybe organize more activities .
Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Sophie
9/10

Great week

I had a really great week at Ecoteer House. It is a really unique experience, living in the village and being able to learn about the culture. I really enjoyed Malay dinner where we went to a local's house and ate with them and their family. Although I was the first and only volunteer, all of the interns were really friendly and welcoming so I still had a really fun time. The islands are absolutely stunning, the corals were beautiful and I saw 3 turtles! The accommodation was nice, particularly because o had volunteer house to myself, and the food was always really yummy. It is a very chilled project and a lot of the time I spent just relaxing.

How can this program be improved?
I was disappointed there was no teaching involved at all. I felt that although the reason, that the headmaster needed to approve the plans, was valid, the plans could have been sent in advance to prevent this happening. This disappointed me as this is what the project is marketed to be focused on. I also felt, because of this it was overpriced as essentially I was just getting food, accommodation and snorkelling when I had signed up for a teaching project. I didn't really feel like I made any impact. The one snorkel briefing that we did was a surprise so I didn't feel prepared to get involved and speak to the tourists. Still all this in mind I still had a really lovely week and a great experience so I am glad I did it and would still recommend the project to others, maybe arriving in mid season is a better option!
Yes, I recommend
Shariza
10/10

Schooling with the fishes

We went there as a family last year; my kids were then 12yo, 9yo and 4yo. They had a blast! Learning about the ocean and sea creatures, conversing with the locals and Ecoteer staff and volunteers, and enjoying each other's company as our own family unit. We were amazed at how much they learnt and grown without being in school (they missed school for about a week or so).

Accommodation and food were excellent too. Perhentian has a lot to offer; the immense beauty under the sea, white powdery beaches and cool waves, the authentic local scene with friendly villagers and yummy food, to top it all, excellent Ecoteer team coupled with great activities!

We would definitely be back for more great time! Money and time well spent...

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Sheau
8/10

Exceptional experience!

This program opens up my horizon of experience in terms of diversity of culture, communication with locals & international participants. Eventhough I am born & breed in Malaysia, there's some activities that allow me to re-live sweet memories with fellow Malaysians especially the lovely Malay community in Perhentian Island (love the authentic Malay dinner & kuih making session!) The staff in Perhentian are warm & hospitable, Sheryn makes me felt like home almost instantly. It's my 1st time traveling solo & getting a taste of voluntourism, it's definately priceless! Mixing with diverse group of participants from China, England, Indonesia etc, breaking the language barriers, sharing about our culture & stories, making new friends, learning & tutoring the kids, embracing the raw environment in Perhentian Island - It has made travelling taste differently!
Big shout out to all the staff, interns & new friends for the great adventure :)

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Amina
10/10

Amazing Experience!

In summer, my friend and I volunteered in the Perhentian Islands Community and Conservation Project. The team took us on jungle treks to the most beautiful beaches (no joke, the most peaceful and stunning beaches ever), delicious food places, snorkelling adventures (where we could see the sea turtles) and also allowed us to experience life on the island by inviting us to Malay dinners. The locals welcomed you with a smile and made you feel a part of their community by preparing lots of delicious food. The team gave you a Sarung to wear which added to the experience. Working with the children was great fun too, we learned a lot from them as well as having the opportunity to teach them. We had opportunities to meet with people from other projects too and had a great time together. My best memory would be the jetty jump! The island has a great atmosphere and the team make you feel at home. This was an amazing experience and I would definitely go back! Thank you to everyone in the team for helping create such a great memory.

Yes, I recommend
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Smirah
10/10

DO IT!

My friend Amina and I volunteered in the Perhentian Islands (community & conservation project). During our stay, we had the opportunity to work with the children and participate in lots of other fun activities (malay dinners, jungle trek, snorkelling etc). It was also great to be able to learn some of the malay language. The locals were so welcoming. I have never met such heart warming and friendly people. We stayed in the volunteer house in the village which was a great experience. A big thank you to the interns ( (El, Sheryn, Imran & Ainn) for making us feel so welcome and making our trip so memorable. You are all amazing!! :D I wish we had stayed longer, it really is an experience like no other! We hope to visit the beautiful Perhentian Islands again soon!! p.s the food was amazing (SEDAP!!)

Yes, I recommend
Evon
10/10

For those who are looking for more than just a vacation

I had a amazing week volunteering in this program. Short, but meaningful. First, the people are really great and welcoming! Friendly locals, helpful staffs.. not just staffs but friends! Every night we will pick a movie, get our snacks and pillows ready, dim the light and it's movie time! Missing those days already. Also, jungle trek, monitor lizard encounter on jungle trek, freak ourselves out but still managed to tiptoe pass it, taking a dip at Teluk Keke (no joke, paradise on earth), jetty jump with the gang, beach cleaning, educating the locals, fun time with kids and more jetty jumps... Oh one of the highlights of this program will have to be the Malay dinners at local family home, you get to dine like a local! Put on sarung, sit on the floor and eat with your right hand. (Even though I'm a Malaysian, I barely have the chance to do that). It was truly a very worthwhile experience I'm so glad i joined. If u want to get involved in all aspects of village life, join this project and be prepared to fully immerse yourself in the community and culture! Come on Malaysian, we all know Perhentian is beautiful, but this project is way more than just a beach vacation, you get to connect with this beautiful destination! ;)

*The only downside is that I didn't stay long enough to get more involved. Keep up the good work Fuze Ecoteer! :)

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Suzy
10/10

What a blast!

An amazing two weeks spent with amazing people! Definitely would have regretted staying for less, and if I didn't have to return home for work and university I would have stayed a lot longer!

Although the amenities are a bit basic (cold showers, wooden house with gaps everywhere for the creepy crawlies to come in - ahh!), I felt very safe and it was well worth it for the experience. As long as you're prepared to get into the activities and don't mind some hands on action then you will love this.

Activities are well thought out, prepared and the staff are always checking that you are happy and having fun. I love knowing that I was part of something bigger, if only for a short time, because the difference Fuze Ecoteer is making in this community is truly tremendous! I would love to come back in a few years and see what it will have become.

How can this program be improved?
The accommodation definitely needs a bit of DIY work, as it remains very basic, particularly the Volunteer House where all volunteers stay.
Yes, I recommend
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Janneke
9/10

The whole package!

Teaching, eco-snorkeling, beach cleans, Malay dinners, kuih sessions, painting, gardening and so much more... Volunteering at this project gives you a total view of island life, while making a small difference. And if you don't make a difference on the island itself, it's you as a person that changes. I don't think I've ever stayed in a village that is more welcoming than Kampung Pulau Perhentian. And that's exactly the reason why I decided to come back for a couple of months in 2015, after volunteering here for just two weeks in 2014.

How great was it to have neighbours sending over the most delicious meals through our window; to save marine life while picking up so many pieces of rubbish; to run camps; to guide school groups; and to inspire travellers to care just a little bit more about the crazy world we live in. On top of that I was blessed to meet heaps of people that inspired me and taught me lots of different things. It the place to be with like-minded people... A big hug to everyone I met during my stay!

Yes, I recommend
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Sophie
10/10

Teaching & Conservation: Perhentian Islands

I only volunteered for 2 weeks, but wish I was able to stay for longer! What struck me was that straight away, I felt like I was part of the community. I was involved with so many activities; awareness campaigns, teaching English, kuih (dessert making), computer class, beach clean-ups, school clubs, snorkelling tour etc.! Everybody was so friendly and welcoming, the Ecoteer Staff were great and I settled in quickly. It was amazing to see how this project runs so well with the locals.
The Perhentian Islands are simply stunning. Words can not truly describe the views we saw every day. I loved the whole experience and would highly recommend it to anyone! :)

Yes, I recommend
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Isabelle
9/10

Amazing experience in an island experience

I loved every part of this experience. The ecoteer team are so incredibly friendly and the children at the school are fantastic to work with. There are so many parts of this project to get involved in - English club for local women, school clubs, beach clean ups and awareness campaigns. You can really see the difference this project is making within this small community and it is great to see a project working so closely side by side with locals.
The island itself is honestly gorgeous - clear, turquoise waters make for wonderful snorkeling in free time as well!
Thanks to the ecoteer team for everything and well done for all the incredible work you do!!!

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Susanna
10/10

Great for families

We stayed with the Ecoteer project for a week in September 2014, as part of a six-week holiday in Malaysia, and really enjoyed our time there. We went as a family with our 7-year-old daughter, and for her it was one of the highlights of our trip to Malaysia, as she was able to move around the volunteer house and surroundings fairly freely, met local kids, and all the staff and volunteers made a real effort to include her in activities and spend time with her. We stayed at the volunteer house, were we had a little private section to ourselves; the accommodation is pretty basic, but clean and functional; it's also probably as close as we got to the way a lot of Malaysians in rural areas live. The activities were fun, particularly meeting the local children and doing research snorkeling, and it was wonderful to be accepted so easily into the local community. The Malaysian dinners, where you go to private homes for a traditional meal, were particularly memorable.

Yes, I recommend
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Bridgette
10/10

Perhentian

We had a great time at the perhentian islands! And where very sad to leave after two weeks. The people from the island are amazing, so friendly and the children are so engaged in learning from the volunteers. The programme is so diverse from mural painting to snorkel trips, teaching Eco tourism and gardening. As well as educating the village people and sharing your skills to improve lives, and also educate yourself in various fun lessons such as making donuts (an eating them) with the PiLA ladies and becoming involved in there lives. The island is beautiful; so after teaching children who almost become friends, everybody can go together to the jetty to make the famous 'jetty jump'. Volunteering at the perhentian islands really was a special experience. To bond with the local people, having dinner in family homes and to share education about cultures and the environment. You become enriched. As well as the island people we made very good friends with the staff and other volunteers and enjoyed havin BBQs at the beach on an evening. The perhentian village really was a wonderful experience and we hope to return !

Yes, I recommend
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Anne
10/10

Great week on perhentian

I was very happy during my time on perhentian. The ecoteer staff was really friendly, supportive and believed in what they were doing. They try to give as much background information on the social situation of the locals, and helped us to get in touch with them so that afterwards we could understand their values and culture better. This is something that a normal tourist could not get. Other than that we were accommodated in an authentic malay wooden house, which I really enjoyed!
I can recommend this program to everybody who is looking for a volunteering activity with cultural elements and a picturesque setting.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Afie
10/10

4 days of Amazing Natures and People

I love that we get to interact with the village people(the children were AMAZING!!!). The food was so good I manage to gain weight despite there was so much physical activity. We have the opportunity to talk with the school children about the importance of conserving the health of the sea(some of the children even thought us a lesson or two), we paint a mural for the school library and we learned how to prepare traditional food from the ladies of PILA. And the Jetty Jump was EPIC...I have never been so scared but yet so EXCITED to do something. It was wonderful and I hope to go there again soon.

How can this program be improved?
The room they prepare for us to stay is poorly maintained. Maybe if they can just do a little bit of sprucing up(cleaner and functional toilet, secure door, and of course clean mattress)
Yes, I recommend

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About Fuze Ecoteer Outdoor Adventures

Fuze Ecoteer Outdoor Adventures is a travel company with a bite!

Our team are all experienced and passionate, with two of our project staff currently studying for their PhD and a third planning to. Our business model utilizes revenue generated from...