If you want to do something different this coming winter, great news: several accredited volunteer organizations are now offering two-to-four week winter break volunteer projects.

This is perfect for students who only have a few weeks off between semesters, as well as working adults with limited vacation time. If you are a retiree, lucky you! You can spend more of the winter season giving back. The mission doesn’t have to be purely humanitarian, either: students (with approval from an academic advisor) can receive either academic or community service credit for their participation.

Volunteering with Childcare Programs

Volunteering in education and childcare is one of the most common project types out there. Although you will likely make a bigger impact by staying for more than a couple of weeks, you could still participate in a short-term winter volunteer program and assist with English lessons for Mayan children in Guatemala or planning craft activities for students in India.

Volunteering for Environmental Conservation

Environmental conservation projects are more abundant and feasible on a winter break. From volunteering with the human-elephant conflict in India to tracking wildlife in Kenya, there volunteer projects for environmental conservation are almost as diverse as nature itself.

While winter may seem like the wrong season to volunteer to plant organic gardens or track howler monkeys in the rainforest students should remember that December is the perfect time to journey to sub-tropical climates. Who wouldn't want to escape the cold?

Volunteering for Healthcare Programs

Professionals already in the medical field and university students who plan on pursuing a career in medicine can have no better preparation than volunteering in regions where medical professionals can be few and far between.

Volunteering for healthcare may include anything from outreach work in local communities to hands-on work at medical clinics. Medical training is not always required for these projects, although some may give preferences to those with training and background knowledge.

Construction Projects

The need for housing and secure infrastructure is strong in developing nations, particularly in rural communities. Winter break can be an opportune time for university students to take a break from their own educational endeavors and, perhaps, construct a school building that can support the educational needs for children in Africa or Central America. Modern housing, in regions where shelters may be constructed from materials such as cardboard and plastic, is also a key necessity in developing communities.

Thailand

It’s safe to say that many people classify Thailand -- a country home to idyllic beaches, lush islands, and ancient rainforests -- as an ideal place to spend the winter. It’s also a developing nation with a growing number of volunteer opportunities, ranging from community empowerment to environmental conservation programs.

For short-term winter break projects, interested students and professionals can find one-to-two week projects in areas such as animal care and conservation (have you ever wanted to work with rescued elephants and monkeys?), community infrastructure development, and children’s programs, where volunteers can contribute to nutritional and education projects for disadvantaged minors.

Costa Rica

Costa Rica is the place to visit for a literal breath of fresh air. The country ranks among the greenest on the planet and is known to be friendly to travelers.

Projects in areas like organic farming and wildlife conservation are open to short-term volunteers.

Winter Volunteer Abroad Programs

Displaying 1 - 15 of 528 programs
153 reviews
International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ
Most Affordable & Trusted Volunteer Programs in Bali with IVHQ
Indonesia
9.61 •153 reviews

Trusted by 110,000+ volunteers, IVHQ offers the most popular volunteer...

176 reviews
Maximo Nivel
Volunteer in Costa Rica with Maximo Nivel - Best Rated Projects
Costa Rica
9.63 •176 reviews

Costa Rica is known for having progressive environmental and social...

GVI
GVI: Volunteer in Thailand
Thailand
9.67 •83 reviews

GVI offers a variety of programs in Thailand driven by sustainability...

Volunteering Solutions
Volunteer in Peru | Most Affordable Volunteering & Internship Projects
Peru
9.33 •72 reviews

Volunteering Solutions, in association with the local organizations...

International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ
Most Affordable & Impactful Volunteer Programs in India from $250
India
9.73 •94 reviews

Trusted by 110,000+ volunteers, IVHQ offers the world's most popular...

153 reviews
Maximo Nivel
Volunteer in Guatemala with Maximo Nivel - Best Rated Projects
Guatemala
9.59 •153 reviews

Maximo Nivel offers volunteer abroad programs in and around the quaint...

Projects Abroad
Projects Abroad Volunteer Programs in Ghana
Ghana
9.15 •47 reviews

Projects Abroad has been placing volunteers abroad since 1992. As a...

Volunteering Solutions
Volunteer in India | Most Affordable Projects Starting From $250
India
9.42 •45 reviews

Volunteering Solutions provides the most affordable and meaningful...

International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ
Affordable & Trusted Volunteer Programs in Ghana from $270
Ghana
9.61 •88 reviews

Are you ready for a meaningful adventure in Ghana? Then join...

128 reviews
Maximo Nivel
Volunteer in Peru with Maximo Nivel - Best Rated Projects
Peru
9.63 •128 reviews

Peru is one of the world’s richest countries in terms of natural...

Projects Abroad
Projects Abroad Volunteer Programs in Tanzania
Tanzania
9.29 •34 reviews

Projects Abroad offers a variety of volunteer programs in Tanzania...

Volunteering Solutions
Volunteer in South Africa | Most Affordable Projects From $350
South Africa
9.71 •17 reviews

If you're looking for an adventure where you can make a difference at...

International Volunteer HQ - IVHQ
Most Affordable & Trusted Volunteer Programs in Costa Rica from $370 with IVHQ
Costa Rica
9.54 •52 reviews

Trusted by 110,000+ volunteers, IVHQ offers the most popular volunteer...

Projects Abroad
Projects Abroad Volunteer Programs in Argentina
Argentina
9.31 •29 reviews

Projects Abroad has been sending volunteers overseas since 1992. Our...

Operation Groundswell
Experiential Education & Community Service in Guatemala
Guatemala
9.59 •27 reviews

Nestled in Central America, Guatemala has one of the most interesting...

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