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Service Learning Projects Abroad

Service Learning Projects Abroad

International Volunteer HQ’s service learning trips enable students to develop personally and professionally while giving back to communities through volunteering. Every year, more than 15,000 people complete their service learning abroad with IVHQ in 52 destinations around the world.

Our service learning opportunities overseas enable you to embark on a journey of self-discovery through community service, learn about new cultures through immersion, and make a positive impact within your host community. This helps develop the cultural understanding, soft skills, self-awareness and empathy that are essential to becoming a happy, well-rounded and successful individual.

Since 2007, IVHQ has helped more than 118,000 volunteers complete service learning programs in Africa, Asia, Europe, South America, Central America, North America, the Caribbean, Middle East and the Pacific. Our diverse range of long and short term service learning projects abroad are available year round and include childcare, wildlife conservation, environmental, medical, teaching and much more.

With Program Fees starting at just $180 for one week, we offer fully hosted service learning projects for college students, high school students and individuals at any stage of life. Find the best service learning opportunity for you below.

What is service learning?

Service learning is an educational approach for students, where learning and personal development occurs through participation in volunteer initiatives that give back to local communities.

A typical service learning project will require students to define goals, research and plan their community service volunteering. After completing the project, students will usually present their findings back to the school and reflect on their learnings.

Why is service learning important? Because it engages students in real life experiential learning beyond the classroom, teaching them the importance of compassion, kindness and advocacy. These experiences also help uplift local communities, economies and natural environments around the world.

Many students choose to undertake their community service learning program through IVHQ, as our volunteer abroad programs empower them to make a tangible impact while also exploring an exciting part of the world. As an IVHQ volunteer focused on service learning, you’ll build new friendships, discover new cultures and broaden your horizons - all while giving back to those who need it most.

Quote from Ella

I felt very suited to the work I was doing, and left feeling very fulfilled. I felt that the locals who I was working with were appreciative of my time and effort. I could see how my physical presence and assistance was helping the community. I have learned so much about the world, people, different cultures and lifestyles and my horizons have definitely expanded. I returned home with a newly found sense of confidence in myself and a stronger sense of direction for my life. My trip with IVHQ transformed me and absolutely changed me for the better, I feel like I’ve become the person I want to be.

IVHQ Volunteer Ella - Music in Kenya Quote from Ella

Why do a service learning project with IVHQ?

With over 14 years of experience in facilitating international service learning programs abroad, IVHQ is proud to be the organization of choice for students looking to combine community service work with an international learning experience.

We believe that service learning should contribute positively towards society. Environmental and social impact has always been at the heart of what we do, which is why IVHQ is the first and only global volunteer travel provider to declare a climate emergency and become a certified B Corporation.

If you’re looking for service learning ideas, you likely have a social or environmental cause in mind, or you might like to contribute to a project that aligns with your studies. IVHQ offers a variety of service projects, including Teaching, Childcare, Community Development, Environmental Conservation, Construction and Renovation, Turtle & Marine Conservation, and Wildlife & Animal Care. You can even earn academic credits from our international service learning programs - please contact us for more information on this.

You can choose to take a long-term or short-term community service learning trip with IVHQ for periods ranging from 1 week to 24 weeks. With fully hosted experiences abroad starting from $180 and available year round, you will not find a more affordable and trustworthy international service learning provider.

What it is like volunteering abroad with International Volunteer HQ.

Best service learning opportunities across the globe

Service learning projects for high school students

Service learning overseas is one of the best ways to step outside of your comfort zone, gain new perspective and give back to communities in need. IVHQ offers a range of service learning programs for high school students and teens, meaning you don’t need to be 18 to go abroad and make a difference.

Since 2007, IVHQ has supported thousands of young people to volunteer around the world on our youth service learning trips abroad. More than 20% of our volunteers are under 20, so we know a thing or two about providing life-changing, reliable travel experiences for young explorers.

We offer safe and affordable volunteer opportunities for teens and high school students in 17 destinations around the globe. Learn more about how to join an international service learning trip if you’re under 18 here.

Top service learning projects for teens & high school students:
Volunteer in Guatemala
Antigua and Sipacate
Volunteer abroad in Guatemala with International Volunteer HQ
1 - 24 weeks
Ages 16+ and families
Program Fees from AU$498
Volunteer in Peru
Cusco Lima
Volunteer abroad in Peru with International Volunteer HQ
1 - 24 weeks
Ages 16+ and families
Program Fees from AU$271
Volunteer in Tanzania
Arusha and surrounding suburbs
Volunteer abroad in Tanzania with International Volunteer HQ
1 - 16 weeks
Ages 16+ and families
Program Fees from AU$407

Service learning projects for college students

Today’s student demographic is more progressive than ever before. That’s why student service learning has become a popular alternative to studying abroad. Instead of doing a study exchange, many are opting for a more meaningful form of international travel - one that is regenerative and makes a positive impact on local communities. You can even earn academic credits from our international service learning programs - please contact us for more information.

IVHQ offers service learning for college students abroad in more than 50 destinations around the world. Program Fees start at just $180 for one week and include your accommodation, meals, airport pickup and more. This is an affordable way for students and young professionals to discover a new country, gain a global perspective and make the world a better place.

Top service learning programs for college students:
Volunteer in Costa Rica
Manuel Antonio San Jose & surrounding areas
Volunteer abroad in Costa Rica with International Volunteer HQ
1 - 24 weeks
Ages 16+ and families
Program Fees from AU$573
Volunteer in Ghana
Greater Accra Region
Volunteer abroad in Ghana with International Volunteer HQ
1 - 24 weeks
Ages 18+
Program Fees from AU$407

Short-term service learning abroad

IVHQ offers short-term mission trips for 1 to 3 weeks in over 50 destinations, starting at just US$180 for one week for a fully hosted experience. This means you can get away and experience a new culture without needing to take ample time away from your day-to-day priorities.

Our short-term service learning programs overseas are designed for those who want to maximize impact in a short period of time and are perfect for students who are looking to take an alternative break. With everything organized for you, including airport pickup, accommodation and 24/7 in-country support, you can hit the ground running as soon as you arrive at your destination. Check out our top short-term service learning trips for 2022 & 2023:

Top short-term service learning trips:
Volunteer in Ghana
Greater Accra Region
Volunteer abroad in Ghana with International Volunteer HQ
1 - 24 weeks
Ages 18+
Program Fees from AU$407
Volunteer in Mexico
Mérida, Yucatán state on Mexico's Caribbean Coast
Volunteer abroad in Mexico with International Volunteer HQ
1 - 24 weeks
Ages 18+ and families
Program Fees from AU$483

Summer service learning trips

Summer is one of the most popular times of year to go on an international service learning trip, allowing you to immerse yourself in a new culture and interact with locals while soaking up the sunshine. With time off from college and school, it’s the perfect opportunity to see the world and make a difference alongside like-minded people.

Whether you’re an animal lover or an aspiring medic, check out these top summer mission trips for 2022 & 2023. For more information on IVHQ’s top summer volunteer abroad projects, click here.

Top summer service learning trips:
Volunteer in Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico's coastal capital of San Juan
Volunteer in Puerto Rico with International Volunteer HQ
1 - 12 weeks
Ages 16+ and families
Program Fees from AU$905
Volunteer in South Africa
Kruger Table View Cape Town
Volunteer abroad in South Africa with International Volunteer HQ
1 - 24 weeks
Ages 18+ and families
Program Fees from AU$377
Volunteer in Zanzibar
Nungwi and Jozani
Volunteer Abroad in Zanzibar with IVHQ
1 - 12 weeks
Ages 16+ and families
Program Fees from AU$815

How to get started

Pick a destination + project and apply for free
Meet your personal volunteer travel expert
Pay the Registration Fee to secure your place and upgrade your MyIVHQ account
Get ready to volunteer abroad, we’ll support you every step of the way!
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Got questions? Message our volunteer Travel Experts. We're here to guide you through an unforgettable volunteer experience.

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