Cross-Cultural Solutions: Volunteer Abroad in Thailand

By Cross-Cultural Solutions   Reviews (8)   88% Rating

From pristine beaches and remote mountain communities, to floating markets and bustling cities, Thailand will take your breath away. When you volunteer in Thailand, you'll soak up the cultural influences of India, China and Cambodia and the strong presence of Buddhism, all of which meld together to create the unique richness of Thailand.

With Cross-Cultural Solutions you’ll experience not only the great things Thailand is famous for, but also a side that you never knew existed. By connecting with the local staff and serving others, you’ll experience Thailand not as a tourist, but more as a member of the community.

For two decades, CCS volunteers have traveled around the world to work on sustainable service projects. Volunteer in Thailand to help improve education for local children, assist with the care of children, or support children or adults with disabilities.

Locations
Asia › Thailand › Bangkok
Length
1-2 Weeks
2-4 Weeks
1-3 Months
Language
English
Housing
Hostel
Cost
Included - Home-Base Lodging, Meals, Ground Transportation, In-Country Cultural Activities and Excursions, Language Lessons, Comprehensive Travel Medical Insurance.
Not included - Visa, Passport, Flights.
Other Locations
Trang
Starting Price
2000.00

Rating Values

  • Impact
    86%
  • Support
    93%
  • Fun
    83%
  • Value
    85%
  • Safety
    93%

Program Reviews (8)

Danielle
Female
42 years old
United States
University at Albany- SUNY

Beautiful Country

Overall 8

Thailand is wonderful. I love going with CCS because all the volunteers share a house. So there is always someone to go and explore the city or take a weekend trip with. The staff (especiialy Pimsutta the woman in charge) was so warm and friendly. i would recommend going out to eat to try different Thai then what is prepared at home base. The street vendor food is also very good. What I liked is that you saw the CCS staff everyday during the week. I also liked that they planned a mixed of cultural activities for us to enjoy and learn about Thailand.

How can this program be improved?
I went at the end of the summer it is just a six month program so I was the last program for the year. It felt like they were closing up and cutting back our last week.
Katie
Female
31 years old
Austin, Texas
California State Polytechnic University- Pomona

Worth it!

Overall 10

I know you're are thinking it's pricey and it is but it is with eve penny. I have volunteered a few places and I think this is a great location for pretty much any demographic. If you are a hardcore backpacker or super familiar with Southeast Asia you might me just as well coordinating something more independently. Homebase is a great location in Bkk that pulls you out of the city tourist traps and makes for a safe neighborhood setting! Incredible staff and the sweetest neighbor...cute dogs next door if your missing your pup! Volunteering is impactful if you do your homework! The program offers multiple resources to help you prepare but I've found of you don't utilize them you may fell less impactful than you hoped! They've compiled some free and low cost options for learning basic Thai. They've created some language lesson files. But let's be real only you can learn the language and you probably won't pick up much...it's Thai, a very tricky language! So just keep an open mind and be flexible! Program offers great balance of volunteering and free time but most of cultural exchange!

How can this program be improved?
More facilitated opportunities for past and present volunteers to connect.

Only summer programs are offered at this site so you can't make it for some holidays!
Dwayne
Male
41 years old
Chicago Illinois
Hampton University

Bangkok

Overall 10

The eastern experience coming from the west was amazing. I love the food, culture, history, and the people. They were so open and friendly. The overall volunteer experience was life-changing. I would definitely go back and do the same volunteer work in Bangkok. I loved the metro feel and energy of the city. The house that we stayed and the overall staff were unbelievable. They made you feel at home and it was very safe!

How can this program be improved?
Nothing.
Bruce
Male
56 years old
Castro Valley, California
Boston University

Excellent program in Bangkok

Overall 9

I spent three weeks in Bangkok as a volunteer with Cross Cultural Solutions. The CCS staff in Bangkok was excellent, very knowledgable and always ready to make extra effort on behalf of the volunteers. My placement at a local primary school was perfect, challenging but not overwhelming. The teachers and staff were welcoming, and the kids loved having volunteers in the classrooms. The program provides an impressive array of organized outings for the volunteers, as well as plenty of time left open for exploring or relaxing. Highly recommended.

How can this program be improved?
I honestly can't think of anything I would change. I was very impressed with the program.
Jeremy
Male
31 years old
Greenfield, MA
Earlham College

Exercise Caution

Overall 5

I don't doubt the good intentions of the folks at CCS, but I don't agree with what they're doing, either. The thing about voluntourism like this is that it gets you into the country and out so fast, that I don't think it's possible to really have an accurate picture of what (if anything) you accomplished. The phrase volunteering abroad has such a positive ring to it, that I think a lot of people sort of take it for granted that they'll be making a positive difference-- so they don't put much real thought into it themselves.

I was a teacher at a couple of local schools. Like all of the other volunteers, I had no teaching experience or knowledge, so I don't think that I accomplished much. A lot of people volunteered at orphanages, which was fun for them-- after all, everybody loves to play with cute kids, and when you see all those smiling faces, it's hard to think that you're NOT making a difference (if nothing else, you'll get a saint like facebook profile picture out of it). But little kids form bonds extremely quickly. So when they go through their early development constantly forming bonds with people who show up for a couple of weeks and then leave forever, severing those bonds, that actually seems kind of . . . bad for them.

But doesn't CCS advertise on their site that they consult local organizations to find out where volunteers are needed? Yes, but . . . here's the thing: I spent two years in the Peace Corps, and what I found is that for a lot of organizations in developing countries, white people are--sadly-- a symbol of prestige. There aren't many organizations that are going to say no to white people being associated with them. A friend of mine who taught some English in South Korea put it this way: "Most places just want a white face in front of the room." The big difference between the Peace Corps and CCS, is that in the Peace Corps you learn some of the language (the idea of meaningful language learning in a few weeks-- like CCS advertises-- is a joke), and you have two years to figure out which of your assumptions are true and false, and gravitate toward the more meaningful work. CCS is limited to only organizations in which they can plug in many volunteers who don't speak the language, don't have any training, and will be there for twelve weeks at the most, and in most cases much fewer.

The fact is that a lot of volunteers are there to party. In my program, volunteers spent most of their evenings watching Sex and the City in the CCS house, and their weekends partying on the beach. In fairness, I was participating in the Trang program in southern Thailand, which seems to have been discontinued. But it's also hard to imagine that the culture in other programs is that much different, when most of them are intentionally near prime tourism spots. There are a few good things about CCS-- the staff are dedicated, and you will enjoy your weekend travels. But I don't know that those things outweigh your dubious non-impact/ possible negative impact. Just think about it. You could do a heck of a lot of responsible tourism for the amount that you'd spend on CCS.

Meg
Female
23 years old
Minneapolis, MN
Other

Best Decision of My Life

Overall 10

My summer in Bangkok, Thailand with Cross-Cultural Solutions was the best decision I ever made in my life. I met amazing friends, and I learned life lessons.

I volunteered at a daycare center with three year-olds and I also volunteered in a hospital.

Highlights included the staff, the house, the city, and the social activities.

The only difficulty was the language barrier, but what a great experience!

Darlene
Female
56 years old
Mesa, Arizona
Small Group (1-15)

Cross Cultural Solutions

Overall 8

It was a great program working with many different schools to help the students with English. They all were so appreciative and the teachers and faculty was happy to see so many of us there giving of our time. We had 80 to 100 students through our classes a day.

I have volunteered in Costa Rica, Thailand and Peru with CCS and they are so professional and caring. There are other groups going overseas but they don't offer the same things. You do have to make the comparison. NOT EVEN CLOSE !!!!

When our bus pulled out for the day, the students would line up along the driveway and reach for our hands (sticking out the window) so they could say "thank you" and each one had a beautiful smile shining through their tears.

Maddy
Female
56 years old
New York City

BEYOND ALL EXPECTATIONS!!!

Overall 10

My time in Thailand is difficult to put into words. I volunteered in a day care center, where each day brought a smile to my face. We arrived to a sea of beautiful, happy & eager faces, from both the children and the staff. We had alot of fun, while trying to teach the group English through reading, conversation, and music. Our time was met with alot of caring and support from Cross Cultural Solutions, who were very sensitive to all of our needs. They were very professional, as well as open to all of the volunteers during our time there. As much as we thought we were giving, the impact of what we received is hard to describe. I don't really remember encountering any major difficulties. Getting lost, or having trouble with the language, was all part of the experience. I met wonderful people along the way, and will never forget this very special and unique time abroad.

About The Provider

The Cross-Cultural Solutions Volunteer Abroad experience allows students and travelers to gain valuable experience overseas while working side by side with local individuals and communities to make an impact.

Since 1995, over 35,000 people have volunteered with Cross-Cultural Solutions, providing meaningful and sustainable volunteer services to international communities, and contributing responsibly to local economies.

Volunteers gain valuable experience working in areas such as education, healthcare, and social services. Visit the Cross-Cultural Solutions website to learn more about how we're changing everything.

Cross-Cultural Solutions: Volunteer Abroad in Thailand