Affordable NGO Volunteer Projects with IVHQ
97% Rating
(7 Reviews)

Affordable NGO Volunteer Projects with IVHQ

As an IVHQ NGO Support volunteer, you will be making a lasting impact, using your experience and contributions to help further the reach and goals of the local NGO. You'll have the choice of working in a variety of environments across 5 destinations around the world. The positive initiatives and impact made by Non-Governmental Organizations is often limited by their financial and staffing resources, particularly in developing countries. Volunteers may take on a range of tasks including general administration, IT, grant writing, research, fundraising and teaching English.

Discover below 5 NGO Support projects currently available to IVHQ volunteers. You can find the rest of the options on IVHQ's NGO Support page

  • Ecuador: The focus of IVHQ's partner organization is on improving outcomes for the children of Ecuador. Volunteers provide assistance with the operational workload, to enable them to widen their reach and help more children.
  • Italy: Volunteers working with NGOs in Naples have the opportunity to assist with work in the fields of community development, child and youth welfare, immigration and migrant support, and human rights. This project is well suited to volunteers who are highly motivated and self-driven.
  • New Zealand: Combine your passion for the environment and NGOs in this exciting NGO Support volunteer project! New Zealand is well-known for it’s natural landscapes and volunteers may help with organizing community events such as beach cleanups and tree plantings, education campaigns, networking and communication, organizational development and research.
  • Vietnam - Ho Chi Minh: As a motivated and resourceful international volunteer you will be working on placements in local NGOs in the following sectors: public health, community development, sustainable development, women's empowerment, economic empowerment and natural conservation.
  • Cambodia: IVHQ’s partner organization works with a network of over 40 local NGOs with volunteer placements available in the following fields: community development, human rights, health and HIV/AIDS awareness, gender issues, environmental issues, and education.
Europe » Italy
Oceania » New Zealand
South America » Ecuador
Asia » Vietnam
Asia » Cambodia
1-2 Weeks
2-4 Weeks
1-3 Months
3-6 Months
Starting Price

Questions & Answers

Program Reviews

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Program Reviews (7)

Default avatar
19 years old

Italy - 2017


This was the best first time traveller experience ever! I'll always remember it. As I was in Italy, Naples for 2 weeks I didn't expect it to be as good as it got, especially where I was placed to teach English. The placement was a perfect fit and I know two weeks was too short but connecting with those boys at my placement and other volunteers was very insightful and exciting. Everyday was different plus the weekends off, where I went to Rome and sight saw! The program overall was very interesting and the INN - where I stayed for my 2 weeks were caring and made sure everything was ok! This experience has impacted my life as seeing the placement I was put in, a refugee camp where the boys had basically nothing- made me realise more to living my everyday life and appreciation. The program of teaching English has also made me realise my career path could be heading in the direction of teaching. So much realisation in such little time!

How can this program be improved?

The prgram could only be improved in regards to where the placement would be, as for me I would have liked to know where so I was more prepared in terms of resources.

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Ordella, Thanks for sharing! We are stoked to hear that you had a great first time travel experience and enjoyed your placement and exploring Italy. We wish you all the best with your teaching career path and we hope you join us again in the future!
Kaila – IVHQ Italy Program Manager

Default avatar
62 years old
Perth, Western Australia
Australian National University

A message to prospective mature-age volunteers....


Through this I would like to encourage more 'mature age' volunteers to 'give it a go'. Volunteering can readily be appended to 'conventional/adventure' tourism and can make your experience so much more intense and meaningful.
I am a recent retiree, have time on my hands and a battery of (varied) experience. As a public servant, I learned about project management and mentoring - as a teacher, I learned to impart skills - as a mother, I learned compassion and patience. Perhaps through design - perhaps through luck - my skills were recently and powerfully matched with an NGO in Cambodia.
My life skills, as well as some specific academic ones, enabled me to be useful, effective and efficient to the NGO I was allocated to. Being 'useful' (and appreciated) made my time in Cambodia rewarding and fun. I look forward to returning in the New Year.
Data analysis, monitoring and evaluation as well as fairly sophisticated reporting are required of NGOs as they justify programs to their funders. I was fortunate to 'work' with a bunch of skilled and capable agricultural scientists - these men and women make their best impact (toward food security, ameliorating the effects of climate change, species diversity, home garden development and water, sanitation and health projects) through being in the field. Guiding, instructing, demonstrating, mentoring and teaching - they do this eloquently and well in their language (Khmer). Reporting (in English) is a necessary requirement that takes them away from what they do best. For me - and likely you too - this is an easy and practised skill. I did not write/report 'for' them, but was able to capacity-build on their ability and ease the time consumed by this requirement and so enable them to maximise their face-time with their clients - rural families in Cambodia who were facing food, education and life challenges.
Volunteer accommodation is more than adequate - and quite comfortable - meals are provided, often the 'lady next door' will do your washing for a very small fee. I always felt secure. And I was humbled to be so readily included in the social activities of the (very much) younger volunteers.
A challenge to career-break people and retirees - let's 'up' the average age; drink better coffee, enjoy a glass of wine and listen to better music in the context of a culture that we want to learn more about. Come join with me.

How can this program be improved?

Always tricky .....
While the requirement to be proactive (esp. in the case of Supporting NGOs) is stated - this probably needs more emphasis. Sometimes younger volunteers lack confidence and do not realise the impact their efforts can achieve. Enthusiasm and being 'on hand' leads to a much more positive volunteer outcome.

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Deborah, Thanks for your awesome review and words of encouragement! We love having volunteers with a background in a diverse range of experience on our programs. Younger volunteers often travel to our programs to gain experience, however mature volunteers with well developed skills and experience are extremely valuable to the local communities we work with. It sounds like you were allocated the perfect NGO for your skill set and we thank you for being an extraordinary volunteer. We would love to have you volunteer with IVHQ again.

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21 years old

NGO Support- Italy


Volunteering with IVHQ Italy not only had an impact on me, but I believe it allowed me to impact others. The migrants/ refugees I worked with daily had the most sad yet inspiring stories. All of them strived to reach their goals in life. Working with them side by side gave them the opportunity to open up with someone, and find trust within others. Leaving the program after my four weeks was very difficult due to the bond I formed with these individuals. This program has changed me only for the better, and I would recommend it to anyone!

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Jesse, You’re awesome. Thanks for posting such a great review and for choosing to volunteer with IVHQ. We would love to have you join us again in the future.

Default avatar
25 years old
Queensland University of Technology

Naples Volunteering


I honestly loved my program. The team at INN are really flexible and really tailor your experience to what you want to do. I wanted to take on two programs and they assisted me with this. They were really social and happy for them to talk to you about anything. Even if you are simply asking about a bus or train times or advice on cool travel locations. They school and NGO i was assigned to was amazing and so wonderful I truly loved the italians and how the city made me feel. If you go into the experience open minded and adaptable to the culture you will surely have an amazing experience. I found the volunteers who were not very keen to adapt to the neopolitan culture were the ones who were not enjoying themselves. The people, the program and the city was amazing and I recommend the International Napoli Network to everyone!


How can this program be improved?

During the colder seasons the accommodation was a bit cold. perhaps warmer blankets during these periods?
Perhaps clarification of the volunteers purpose at the Fondazione Massimo Leone site on day one of the project. Because there was not so many english speakers there to assist with this. But for me this was not a hindrance to the project.

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26 years old
Halifax, NS
Dalhousie University

Amazing Experience in an Amazing Town


My placement was in the city of Siem Reap, Cambodia, which supports around 20 volunteers at any given time. I cannot speak to the program in Phnom Penh, which I understand is where the majority of IVHQ volunteers in Cambodia are placed, so this review will be limited in scope in that sense.

First, the city. According to the 21st century travellers almanac,, Siem Reap is the 2nd (!!) best city in which to travel in the entire world (!!). There aren't enough good things to say about Siem Reap, so I will simply say that there are activities available to suit any type of traveller and enough of them to never get bored. Your lodging is located in the heart of the city, a 5 minute walk from any shop or service you may require and only a 30 minute drive to the world renowned Angkor Temple Complex.

Second, the staff. IVHQ's local staff are unbelievable. They are extremely polite (as is the Khmer way), speak fantastic English, and are truly committed to ensuring your experience is exactly what you want it to be. A continental breakfast is served each morning, and the cooking/cleaning staff prepare fabulous dishes for lunch and dinner each day, including vegetarian options for those so inclined. Administrative staff can arrange weekend travel, excursions to the Temples, and are available to help you with really anything that might be on your mind. They are also very keen to impart generally useful wisdom to new arrivals, such as how to barter in the markets, stay safe when ordering a tuk-tuk, and general information to make sure your trip is productive, fun, and secure.

Third, the programs. I cannot speak to the child-care or English language instruction programs, as I was placed in an NGO, but my compatriots who were involved in those programs seemed to be extremely satisfied with their daily work. I was placed with Vulnerability and Illiteracy Reduction (VIR), which was an NGO dedicated to poverty alleviation in the countryside. My role was to assist them in the day-to-day operation. A short-list of my duties would include: editing English language documents, such as work plans and annual reports; seeking out new grant-funding opportunities and drafting grant-proposals; maintaining a social media presence; assisting with basic IT infrastructure (not necessary – I only did this as I have experience in the field); and perhaps most fun, assisting in the delivery of aid in the countryside. The staff at my placement took hospitality to a new level by inviting me to their homes for lunch and dinner on a weekly basis, and by personally picking me up for work in the morning if the weather was bad or my bicycle (which they provided to me) was being repaired.

Four, the people. The people in Siem Reap are known for being polite to a fault. They make Canadians appear rude. This applies to the salespeople in the markets as much as the staff at the volunteer placements. This precedent certainly rubs off on the volunteers too, who come together to make the atmosphere in the volunteer house very collegial and supportive. During my two months, we had volunteers as old as 75 and as young as 18, and they would not hesitate to go out for a meal or drink after work and share stores as though they were old friends. The people may have been the best part of the trip, but it really is hard to choose.

Overall, I can't recommend this program highly enough. IVHQ's New Zealand Headquarters takes care of you from start to finish, and their local staff in Cambodia make sure you are always on the right track. The work is rewarding, the city is beautiful, and the people are an absolute treat. Don't miss out on this fantastic opportunity to travel responsibly and give back to the communities you so enjoy.

How can this program be improved?

The volunteer housing in Siem Reap exceeded my expectations in every way. That said, my expectations may have been unrealistically low, and I eventually realized there were areas that could be improved.

Specifically: 1) The water pressure to the upstairs units could be increased, as it was often so low that a proper shower was unavailable meaning upstairs tenants were left to bathe using a large bucket, and

2) the lane to the front gate was inhabited by wild dogs who, although harmless in practice, could behave very aggressively such that a few volunteers were afraid to walk by alone.

Context here is useful. Cambodia is a country with extremely rudimentary plumbing infrastructure, and the fact that volunteers even had access to western-style showers should be considered a bargain for the price of the trip. A room with a consistently functional shower in downtown Siem Reap (which is where the volunteer house is located) would cost much more per week than what IVHQ charges, and would not include 3-meals per day, as IVHQ's program does.

Regarding the canine-issue – the local staff were extremely sensitive to individual volunteers needs, and were quite literally always available to escort volunteers past the 10M or so distance that the one, particularly vocal dog inhabited. Additionally, there was really only one dog that scared anyone, and it would be very fair to say that he was "all bark and no bite".

All in all, improvements are always possible, but the IVHQ program in Siem Reap Cambodia tied off considerably more loose ends than I had expected them to for the price, and the fact that improvements could be made would not stop me from providing an enthusiastic endorsement for this program.

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi Iain, Wow! What a review, thanks so much for sharing such in-depth feedback and for your suggestions. It's great to hear that you felt supported and cared for by the local team when in Siem Reap. It sounds like you had a truly special volunteer abroad experience in Cambodia and we are glad that we were able to facilitate this for you. Thanks for being an IVHQer and we really hope to see you on another of our programs soon.

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31 years old
San Francisco
University of San Francisco

All You Need Is Ecuador and VCE


I have never worked anywhere in my career where the staff and management cared more about their workers than at Volunteer Connection Ecuador (VCE). Every time we entered the office we were greeted by name with a smile. Everyone was always curious to learn about how our day went, and if something did not go right they were quick to jump on the issue to make sure that the problem or issue did not persist. One example about how accommodating everyone is, is in regards to helping us plan our weekend activities. One weekend my roommate and I decided that we wanted to go to the hot springs at Papayacta for a day. We talked to the program Coordinator, Francisco, about how to get there and he let us know that a mudslide had washed out the road to the hot springs and we would not be able to get there. He then proceeded to go above and beyond his job description, by looking up additional hot springs in the area we could visit. He printed us out the bus schedule and showed us exactly how to get there, then called the place to make sure they were still open and to confirm the directions and cost. Everyone who works at VCE would have done this for their volunteers, and it made me feel very appreciated that they wanted us to enjoy every minute of our experience in Ecuador. I can not talk highly enough about the wonderful staff at this organization. They truly made my experience go from great to spectacular!!!

How can this program be improved?

I can not think of anything at the moment! The program is great, especially if you put the time and effort in to be involved. The more involved you are the better your experience!

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Hi there Whitney. We are so happy that you had a spectacular time in Ecuador and that you felt accommodated & supported by all of the staff. Thanks for being an IVHQer - we hope that you will join us again on another program on day.

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26 years old
Green Bay, Wisconsin
Saint Norbert College

Best Volunteer Program Out There For the Price


I was incredibly blown away by the warm welcome and reception I received from the IVHQ staff and the Napoli people. I have been raving about this program, it's affordability, it's sustainability, and the overall growth I felt I have undergone by volunteering abroad with IVHQ in Italy. The other volunteers were fantastic and I feel like I made some lifelong friends in the short time I was there. Not only that, the volunteer work -- I was in the environmental program -- was amazing. I volunteered with CleaNap and worked with the most amazing team to bring more awareness and sustainability to their bike share program. This was, by far, the best experience of my life.

How can this program be improved?

I think it would be nice to just be able to get my own food and have that part of the fee removed. I ended up eating out every day anyways as I wanted to immerse myself into the culture as much as possible.

Response from International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ

Ciao Nicole, Thanks for sharing a little from your experience volunteering with IVHQ on the Environmental project in Naples. It’s great to hear that you took so much from your time in Italy. We hope to see you on another IVHQ volunteer trip soon.

About The Provider


IVHQ (International Volunteer HQ) provides safe, unique, meaningful and extremely affordable volunteer programs in 35+ countries around the world, with a constantly expanding base. Programs are available in Asia, Africa, Europe, Central America, South America and the Pacific, where IVHQ works alongside local NGOs to