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Volunteer Abroad Reviews


Tyler Devine
Nationality: American
Age: 24
Program: Costa Rica
Project: Turtle Conservation
Date: October 2014 - 2 weeks

What to start with, the culture, the langauge barrier if you don't know Spanish, living in a host family, all this was new for me. Volunteering in Costa Rica was such an amazing time, I loved every minute of it. Although two weeks went by really quickly, I wish I could have stayed longer. I would advise if you are doing anything with conservation stay for a longer time. I was doing the sew turtle conservation and I wish I got to see more baby turtle being release ha I to the sea. I was placed in Junquillal. Junquillal was very deserted on the beach and not a lot of tourist which made the program more exciting because we did a lot of hands on stuff with out being interrupted by other people. The program was very fun and I learned more about sea turtles then I did.


Elizabeth Graham McRae
Nationality: American
Age: 22
Program: Kenya
Project: Childcare
Date: September 2014 - 6 weeks

All the can say is GO. I spent six weeks teaching at a school connected to a child rescue center, and it was the best six weeks of my life. I completely fell in love with Kenya: the people, the area I was living, the kids, my host family, the food...

Jennifer Quinn
Nationality: American
Age: 37
Program: Brazil
Project: Childcare
Date: September 2014 - 2 weeks

The orientation was very good and helpful to better understand the way of life in Brazil. Zack and Vivi answered all of our questions and were very helpful in pointing out different landmarks. They were both very knowledgeable and very friendly people. They made the experience very enjoyable. I really liked the Thursday get together. I do feel as though I have grown and developed because of my volunteer experience in Brazil. My favorite moment from my volunteer experience was watching the children's faces light up when I was there.

Summer McCleary
Nationality: American
Age: 21
Program: Ecuador
Project: Street Children Work
Date: September 2014 - 3 weeks

I am so thankful for my experience in Ecuador with IVHQ and their partner organisation. The volunteer house was amazing and comfortable. The family was accommodating and welcoming from the beginning to the end. My favourite moment were in the markets for the Street Children Work. Danny is the best. I will never forget his passion for the children and his work. He was so friendly and thankful for our help. It made it hard for me to leave.

Sally Goenaga
Nationality: American
Age: 19
Program: China
Project: Special Needs/Childcare
Date: August 2014 - 3 weeks

I believe I have grown and developed as a person. I am now readier than ever to take on bigger challenges. I would love to volunteer again with children. Working with special needs children allowed me to see things I never thought I would see or experience. I now feel like I can work better with children and know their needs. The best part of my volunteer experience with IVHQ in China was when the teachers left me and a Canadian volunteer in charge of a class. 

Allison Siggeman
Nationality: American
Age: 22
Program: Bali
Project: Teaching
Date: September 2014 - 3 weeks

I liked being able to make my own lesson plans and apply my skills in the classroom. My students were very eager to learn and all people I met in the community seemed happy to have us there. I was totally happy with accommodation! Meals were authentic, hosts were friendly and living standards were exactly as I expected. I think my favorite moments were when my class would sing together. It's a good way to learn and celebrate at the same time. Lots of smiles! Volunteering in Bali with IVHQ gave me a lot to think about. I would enjoy doing this again in the future. 

Kathryn Brady
Nationality: American
Age: 22
Program: Bali
Project: Teaching
Date: September 2014 - 4 weeks

The project was totally suitable for me as I am an education major, this was a very valuable teaching experience. The kids learned so much and were so thankful!!  The accommodation was great! So comfortable. Better than I expected. The food wasn't my favorite but I tend to be a picky eater. Great that there are two cafés close by :) Volunteering in Bali with IVHQ was really the best experience I've had volunteering ever!

Rebecca Sackman
Nationality: American
Age: 25
Program: Peru - Cusco
Project: Medical Placement
Date: March 2014 - 1 week

As nursing students, we learned so much with the projects! It's unbelievable that as a group we helped over 1,000 Peruvians. The project was more then I could have ever imagined! I came back a more confident nursing student because of the IVHQ program. Thank you! Our host family was outstanding. Very accommodating. Meals were great and the housing that we stayed in was more then what was excepted. I couldn't say more amazing things about this program. So thankful that there are programs like this.  It was an eye opening experience and I am so thankful for it.

 

Makayla Jodrey
Nationality: Canadian
Age: 18
Program: Kenya
Project: Childcare
Date: July 2014 - 1 week

Orientation was great! The people who ran it were hilarious, entertaining, and super informative. They never let us get bored and I love how interactive they were with us with the signing and dancing, jokes and just introducing us to their culture throughout the whole thing. It was amazing. The second you meet the people at your project you know you're appreciated. Not a second goes by that they don't appreciate everything you're doing, and they make sure you know it. They filled my heart with love the first day and everything counts so it is worthwhile in whatever community you're working in. My life is changed. I promise you that not a day goes by that I don't think of Kenya and how AMAZING my stay was there. It has changed everything about me, my perspective, my approach on things, and my maturity, along with knowledge. I wish everyone had the opportunity to do something like this because it gives you such a rewarding feeling once you're done and it just makes you want to go back and do it again!

My accommodation was fantastic. Literally amazing. We had all the amenities you would need, they were so welcoming, and there meals were the best food I have ever tasted. Right away we clicked with the young family, and got to know them so well! By the end of it, it was almost impossible to leave them. They treated us so well, loved us like their own, that they made a serious impact on the experience of the trip.

My favorite moment was our last two days, when we visited the children at school and they were so excited to show us around and show us off to their friends and know that "these people are here to see me!". It was an amazing feeling and so interesting to visit the Kenyan school and learn about their education system. We walked them home and had some very meaningful conversations with them that we will never forget. Some even would tell us their secrets because they trusted us so much ♥. Then the day after, we surprised them at school and had brought them all new school uniform socks because their orphanage could barley afford them, an could not replace the old ruined ones. Their expressions made everyone cry because they were so thankful.. A moment that would change your life. Once you go IVHQ, you never go back. SO addictive!

Mai-Chi Pham
Nationality: Vietnamese
Age: 20
Program: Vietnam - Ho Chi Minh
Project: Special Needs/Childcare
Date: August 2014 - 3 weeks

Thank you! This has been the best experience I’ve ever had. The staff and coordinators have been wonderful, friendly and welcoming. Orientation week was great. Volunteering at the orphanage has been an unique and valuable time. I loved everything and I wish I could have stayed longer. Hopefully in the future I will come back to Vietnam and visit.

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