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Which Volunteer Abroad Programs Are Best?


What Volunteer Abroad Programs Are Best?

Are you looking for the best volunteer abroad programs? Since 2007, International Volunteer HQ has placed over 113,000 volunteers abroad, contributing a total of over 4 million volunteer hours to communities around the world. As a pioneer of responsible and affordable volunteer travel, IVHQ is recognized as providing the world’s best volunteer abroad programs. So what makes these the best volunteer opportunities? It comes down to a few simple things…

We’re volunteer travelers too

Did you know that IVHQ was launched by our Executive Director, Dan Radcliffe, following a volunteer trip in Africa? As a keen volunteer traveler back in 2006, Dan was surprised at the lack of affordable volunteer opportunities available, and after registering with the most reliable company he could find, Dan headed away to volunteer in Kenya for 6 months. Although he loved the experience, he was disillusioned with the large disparity between what he had paid, and the actual cost of the volunteer trip, and while in Nairobi, Dan began meeting with potential partner organizations and the seeds of IVHQ were planted. Upon returning home, Dan began the foundations of IVHQ and 9 years later, we’re recognized as one of the top volunteer organizations with the best international volunteer programs in over 50 different destinations.

Which volunteer programs are best? IVHQ's Dan Radcliffe teaching

We’re big on variety

Whether you want to volunteer as a nurse, as a teacher, or even as a surf instructor – IVHQ has a volunteer abroad program for you! We are dedicated to ensuring we offer a wide variety of volunteer opportunities to ensure we have a project to match your skill sets and passions! There’s something for everyone, take a look below at a small selection of our most popular volunteer projects:

Best Volunteer Abroad Programs

  • Surf Instructor volunteer in South Africa
  • Work in Animal Care in Mexico, Peru and Guatemala
  • Wildlife Conservation volunteer program in Victoria Falls
  • Turtle Conservation volunteering in Bali and Costa Rica
  • Food Rescue volunteer in Portugal
  • Marine and Forest Conservation volunteer program in Madagascar
  • Volunteer in Creative Technologies in Spain
  • Temple Renovation volunteer in Sri Lanka

If you’re having trouble picking “the one”, see our How To Choose A Volunteer Abroad Program.

IVHQ's Surf volunteer program in South Africa

We’re affordable

99% of our volunteers tell us that our affordable fees play a strong part in their decisions to volunteer abroad with IVHQ - and we don’t blame them! With volunteer program fees starting from just $20 (approximately $20) per day including accommodation, you won’t find a more affordable and trustworthy volunteer travel organization. Seriously.

Which volunteer programs are best - IVHQ's William in Kenya

We work with locals

By working with local organizations in each volunteering destination, the costs for volunteers can be kept low, which means more people are able to volunteer, resulting in higher volunteer numbers, and higher output! Our local staff are also in the best position to determine where volunteers are genuinely needed and are confident in providing guidance, safe supervision and support to our IVHQers.

Which Volunteer Programs are Best? - IVHQ's Dan in Nepal

We show you what it’s like

We want to help you to {insert yourself here} before you apply, so we hosted an IVHQ Video Tour to capture first-hand footage and volunteer interviews for our future IVHQers out there! Tune in to our IVHQ Video Tour playlist to keep up to play!

IVHQ videographer George in Ghana

We’re responsible

As the field of volunteer travel develops, we are determined to lead the way in developing responsible volunteering practices and policies that are world-class and can be adopted by all companies running volunteer travel programs. We are committed to ensuring the long-term impact of our programs and operations are effective in supporting the communities we work with, while ensuring that IVHQ can continue to thrive long into the future. See the Responsible Volunteer Travel Section for further information.

IVHQ's Ben, Ashlee and Dan meet IVHQ volunteers in Nepal

We support you every step of the way

From the moment you apply to volunteer with IVHQ, you’ll be treated to comprehensive pre-departure services and ongoing support from the friendly team at IVHQ to ensure that you’re confident in your role as an IVHQer, and that you’re ready to roll on your volunteering adventure! This pre-departure support includes access to our interactive volunteer training, available exclusively to IVHQers. Plus once you arrive in country, our local team will provide you with 24/7 in-country support from the moment they collect you from the airport!

IVHQ's Dan visits International Volunteer HQ's program in Vietnam

We listen to your feedback

Here at IVHQ, we’re firm believers in the importance of ongoing improvements and we actively encourage our IVHQers to share feedback from their experiences with us, so we can work with our local teams to ensure our programs never stop improving. It’s this commitment to providing a top-quality volunteer experience that makes us a leader among the best volunteer abroad organizations.

IVHQ's Lydia visits our program in Ecuador

We encourage you to make the most of it

Monday to Friday, our volunteers are committed to making valuable contributions to their projects. Saturday to Sunday, our volunteers are making the most of the opportunities to explore more of their host countries (cue Machu Picchu, Great Wall of China, Taj Mahal etc etc).

IVHQ's Katie visits the Taj Mahal in India

We visit our programs regularly

While we are based in New Zealand, our staff visit our volunteer programs personally to work with our local teams to continually improve and develop our programs, and ensure we are implementing IVHQ Best Practices across all of the countries we work in. See our IVHQ TV videos to see where we’re coming from.

IVHQ's Dan Radcliffe visits our volunteer program in Bali

We make it really easy for you to apply

See what we mean and apply online now - it’s completely free to apply and your application will be processed within 48 hours (2 working days)!

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!