Insight Nepal: Volunteering in Nepal

Video and Photos

Himalaya, Morning Hikes, Morning Walks, Insight Nepal
Himalaya, Morning Hikes, Morning Walks, Insight Nepal
Trekking in the Annapurnas
Trekking in the Annapurnas
Volunteer teaching English
Volunteer teaching English
A volunteer celebrating a Hindu festival with her host family
A volunteer celebrating a Hindu festival with her host family

About

Insight Nepal believes that serving others is one of the most worthwhile human endeavors. The main objective of the program is to provide opportunities to those who are keenly interested in gaining a cultural experience by contributing their time and skills to benefit worthwhile community service groups. The second objective is to help those who are looking for an opportunity to reach people and community groups who are in need of their skills.

There are three primary phases during the course of the programme. Orientation Phase : In this phase the participants will have ample opportunities to learn about Nepal, gaining both theoretical and practical experiences by observing and participating in the family and community. All these activities and experiences will help them build self confidence and develop the cultural understanding necessary for starting the placement phase. Placement phase : The participants will work at their placements site according to their interests.
Highlights
  • Experince Nepal as a Volunteer with unique cultural interactions
  • Stay with a local Nepali family
  • Go trekking in the Annapurna mountains and experience a Buddhist meditation course.

Related Programs

Questions & Answers

Reviews

97%
based on 10 reviews
  • Impact 8.6
  • Support 9.9
  • Fun 9.6
  • Value 8.5
  • Safety 9.8
Showing 1 - 10 of 10
Yen
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Experiences

I volunteered with Insights Nepal back in 2017 and till today, I still considered my trip as one of the best work/travel experience that I've ever had.

One great thing about this program is that they can customised your experience based on your skills, background and interests. I work in Tech industry so upon registration, I indicated that I'm interested in working with children or teaching basic computer skills. I ended up spending 2 weeks at a local Montessori kindergarten. I helped out with teaching English and taking care of kids from 2y.o-5y.o. The headmistress, the teachers and all the kids were very nice to me even though they don't speak English. The kids there were so cute and I'm sure at some levels they did communicate very well :)

During my time in Pokhara, I stayed with my host family, who were also very kind hearted and caring. They cooked local meals and took time to show me around the city. They provided WiFi and I could use their computer if I need to. My host are vegetarians and they only cook vegetarian meals. I'm not vegetarian myself but I didn't mind the food at all. For me it was actually pretty nice to eat greens for few weeks but if you have special dietary requirements, don't forget to ask the program in advance.

The city, Pokhara, is so peaceful, one of the huge plus point of this program. I love the local people there, who I feel more authentic than business-oriented people that we encountered in Kathmandu. There're lots of sightseeings to do, ranging from hiking; bike riding; kayaking; majestic mountain view to lakeside. And I'm sure if you're interested in farming, there's something that could be done as well.

All in all, Insight Nepal to this day is still the best volunteering experience that I've had, at the very reasonable price. Highly recommended for anyone who loves something more meaningful than just being tourists.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
9 hours by bus from Kathmandu to Pokhara, which on the map shows 200km.
Default avatar
Mariusz
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

First experience with volunteering

My stay in Nepal was definitely too short. One month in Pokhara was last stop during my gap year after visiting few other countries in Asia like Japan, Vietnam, Singapore or Malaysia. One special think about Insight Nepal is that the program can be customized to your needs. I was supporting a local architect with her work as I am a structural engineer.

Next to a home stay, where I could really feel and experience how local people live, there was a hill with amazing view on Himalaya. I found my morning walks to the hill as perfect place and time for reflections about past year and future plans. This is only one of many more good memories from Nepal and the volunteering program I will keep in my mind for a life time.

I would like to come back to Nepal one more time, first to visit old places and meet friends, second to spend more time by myself hiking lower parts of the mountains.

What would you improve about this program?
I my opinion there is not much to improve in the program. Anyone can find what they want in the program.
Default avatar
Jackson
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Teaching English In Nepal

I contacted Naresh via email about volunteering in Pokhara as an English teacher, and from his first response, I could tell that he was a really nice guy. Upon my arrival in Kathmandu, there was someone waiting for me at the airport who took me to my hotel and then put me on the bus to Pokhara. Naresh and my host brother were waiting for me at the bus park, and when I arrived at my home-stay the mother immediately told me to call her "aunty." My entire experience at my placement in the school and in and around Pokhara was full of similar experiences, as everyone was so warm and inviting (literally, everyone wants you to come to their house and meet their family). I can full-heartedly recommend this program to anyone who loves to meet new people and have amazing new experiences.

Default avatar
Geeta
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

No comment

To describe my experience in a few words, absolutely mindblowing. I had the most wonderful time with the students and everyone involved in this program. Naresh Shrestha and his wife are the most caring people I have ever met, and they display lots of effection towards themself and others around them. Bless them!

What would you improve about this program?
Please check the schools you are working with, and screen them carefully. The school I was placed at was Holy Garden Boarding School, and they didn't respect and care for the students. They only care for the money they bring in. This is a one critical point, but my overall experience are great.
Default avatar
Romain
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A very special experience

Last year, I spent 9 months traveling in India Nepal and Africa all by myself. I wanted to have a good secure and immersing start. Insight Nepal gave me that, and more way more! I stayed with a Nepalese family witch took care of me as if I was one of their own! Most of them could speak English but Nepalese classes by Naresh gave me the opportunity to share more than smiles and gestures with the mom and with people in the city!
I worked 6 weeks with an organization helping AIDS patients to get the care they need, and organizing prevention and screening programs! As a medical student I learned a lot and shared as much as I could of my own knowledge!
For my last week, Naresh introduced my with to a very sweet guide who made me discover the beauty of the Annapurnas!

I definitely recommend this program!!!

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

What a wonderful experience!

What a wonderful experience!
From the Lonely Planet where I found Insight Nepal, to Pokhara where I've lived for almost three months, everything has been easy and magical. Insight Nepal found the perfect placement for me (Women's Skills Development Project), where I helped the business development for Europe. People were highly welcoming, I remember having cryed so much at my fairwell party when I realized I had to leave because I made so good connections with lots of them. Still now I miss them and we try to keep in touch sometimes.
I also stayed at the best host family in town, I enjoyed having a host sister, and a caring host mother.
Finally, Insight Nepal drove me to this amazing trek, where I discovered more on the beauty of this country; we went through Mountains, Jungles, Rivers...so diverse landscapes!
The culture and kindness of Nepali people is breathtaking.
No bad surprises, only pure discovery and happiness.
Naresh from Insight Nepal took care of everything. I highly recommend Insight Nepal for people who want to live an unforgettable moment of life in Nepal.

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

Volunteering Abroad

I volunteered in Pohkara with Insight Nepal about a year ago. I was a little nervous about going to another country by myself for such a long period of time. Naresh at Insight Nepal did a fabulous job coordinating my volunteering experience. He and his family welcomed me and made sure I was comfortable during my entire stay in Nepal. Insight Nepal works with host families that are very experienced with hosting volunteers. At the end of my volunteering experience, Insight Nepal also helped me organize a trek and set me up with an excellent guide. I would highly recommend this volunteer program.

Default avatar
Holly
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Wonderful, thoughtful program director

We were placed, by program Director Naresh Shrestha, into a Tibetan Refugee Settlement. I was tasked with assisting at the carpet making facility where i helped with a minor aspect of production and gave tours to the foreigners, encouraging them to buy some carpets. (I later started an importing business importing these carpets to the US.) I loved the job and loved who i worked with. My boyfriend was placed as a teacher in the school, not a job he was well suited for, so he ended up repairing all the broken machinery in the settlement instead! We had a cook preparing our (very basic, very meaty) Tibetan meals. There was a hot shower which most of the other volunteers didn't get (for which i was grateful!) The window into that culture was very profound for me. I was captivated.

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

Volunteering with Insight Nepal

As a couple in our early 50's, we volunteered with Insight Nepal from January to April, 2002. Our placement was with a school in Pokhara. We did not have previous teaching experience, but we were greeted warmly by both teachers and students. We found that we enjoyed working with grades 3 - 5 best; the children had enough English to understand us, but were still young enough that we were able to design suitable classes without difficulty.
The Insight Nepal program is well designed, including some basic language lessons and cultural orientation, as well as a very enjoyable trek in the mountains and trip to Chitwan National Park. During our orientation week, we stayed with a local family, and then moved in with the family of one of the school's teachers while we were doing our teaching placement.
Although the English of most members of our host family was limited, we found that we were able to communicate quite well. We spent some time working on our Nepali, using a book originally written for members of the Peace Corps. It was very satisfying to be able to speak to people in their own language, even though our knowledge of the language was quite basic. Both our host families were very welcoming, and we still keep in contact with them.
In 2008, we returned to Nepal and visited with Naresh and his wife, the families we had lived with, and the school where we had volunteered. It was a wonderful reunion.
Naresh and his staff are warm, supportive and knowledgeable, and we recommend the Insight Nepal program to anyone who is interested in a educational and enjoyable volunteer experience in Nepal.

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

Fantastic, safe introduction to a beautiful country

I completed this programme in 2009. I hadn't travelled very much outside of Europe before, so I was a little nervous, but I felt so safe and taken care of for the entire trip. I travelled alone to Nepal, and was met at the airport in Kathmandu, and escorted to my very friendly hotel in the centre, where Naresh phoned to ensure I had arrived safely. I had a few days to explore the city, which was so different to any place I had been before, and I met other volunteers and sampled the local restaurants and Ayurvedic treatments.

I had a long bus journey to Pokhara then, and could really enjoy the landscape. I was met off the bus by Naresh, who was very welcoming and friendly. We travelled to his home where I stayed a few days, having Nepali lessons and being fed extremely well by his lovely wife. I was then introduced to my host family, who became my own family for the next two months. I will always remember their kindness, welcome and good humour, and think of them so often. Day to day I went to Children Nepal, a local NGO, where I taught English to preschool children, and helped with marketing for their women's crafts group. In the evenings I would sometimes go to Lakeside to have a coffee and chat with some other tourists and volunteers. Other times I would go back to my family, help around the house, watch Indian soaps on TV with my host-Mum, wander down to the markets or sit and look at the breath-taking mountains in the distance. The food was fantastic, and I learned to cook a few specialty dishes, and taught my host Mum to make pizza and cookies!

I made some lovely friends through my host family who took me to see their Ashram, painted my hands for Mendhi, and took me trekking to see the dawn over the mountains. I was dressed in a sari for a cousin's wedding! Another highlight was the 5 day trek through the Annapurna mountains, this was spectacular, with a cheerful and trustworthy guide, and another lovely volunteer. I don't think I've ever been so happy as diving in under a cool waterfall after a long, hot day's trek.

I highly recommend this programme, especially for lone travellers - you will feel safe, cared for, and will learn so much about this beautiful country.

Interviews

Alumni Interviews

Staff Interviews

About Insight Nepal

Insight Nepal was established in 1992 with a mission to give cultural experiences through volunteer works in Nepal. Our services entail volunteer placements, language training, cultural orientation, local family home stay services, and outdoor...