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Childcare Volunteer Program in Fiji - Sigatoka

Childcare Volunteer Program in Fiji - Sigatoka

Purpose
Provide a safe space for children to learn
Start dates
Programs start every Monday
Duration
Choose from 1-12 weeks
Volunteer hours
Up to 3 hours a day
Age
Volunteers aged 17+ and families
Accommodation
Dormitory-style volunteer house
Program fees
From CA$716 for 1 week
What's included
Find out here
Apply for free
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Who is going?
Group video calls

Once you have secured your place, join regular video calls to meet your Program Manager and other volunteers before your trip.

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This program is ideal for:

Energetic volunteers who enjoy playing with and teaching children. All volunteers have the support of local staff, who will guide you in your tasks and activities so no experience or training is required.

Project details

Eager to be a Childcare volunteer in Fiji? International Volunteer HQ’s Childcare project empowers volunteers to assist local teachers in Sigatoka with lively groups of local children. Volunteers can be extremely helpful in being able to focus the energy of Fijian kids on lessons and constructive activities that contribute to their learning and growth. This is a fun and unique opportunity to gain valuable, hands-on experience in early childhood education and development.

What to expect and how you'll make an impact

In Fiji, children often grow up without many luxuries, yet they remain incredibly happy and playful. Consequently, local kindergartens are busy and lively places. Teachers greatly appreciate any assistance they can get in entertaining these active and curious young children, and volunteers can truly lighten the load.

As a volunteer in Fijian kindergartens, you’ll assist local teachers with informal lessons and confidence-building activities for children aged 4 and 5. Your volunteering hours will be from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM, followed by either planning lessons for the next day or assisting at the Sports Education project.

Your duties as a kindergarten teaching volunteer may include:

  • Engaging with and caring for children
  • Singing songs
  • Organizing arts and crafts activities
  • Assisting with and conducting lessons
  • Sharing your language and culture with students
  • Organizing and leading fun and educational activities

During school holidays, all volunteers will take part in the Kids Club, organized by the local team in a nearby village. From Monday to Thursday, you’ll participate in general teaching with a themed focus each week, such as healthy living. Fridays are dedicated to running sports activity days.

School holiday dates:

  • December 8 to January 29, 2024
  • May 6 to May 17, 2024
  • August 26 to September 6, 2024
  • December 9 to January 24, 2025

The remaining 2025 school term dates have not yet been confirmed but holidays typically fall around the months of May, August, September and December.

Contributes to United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal #4: Quality Education

Contributes to United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal #4: Quality Education

More than half of all children and teens do not meet minimum proficiency standards in reading and mathematics. Quality education provides an opportunity to learn and grow in a safe environment and is key to preventing poverty, securing long-term employment and improving quality of life.

Why do Childcare volunteering in Sigatoka with IVHQ?

While volunteering with children in Fiji you’ll be adding value to the local community, while also developing personally and professionally by:

  • Improving early childhood education for kids in Fiji
  • Helping students develop life skills in a safe place
  • Learning and practicing Fijian
  • Developing your communication skills
  • Gaining childcare and teaching experience
  • Immersing yourself fully in the Fijian way of life
  • Exploring Fiji’s blissful beaches

Volunteer requirements

  • Volunteers under the age of 17 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to participate in this program
  • Volunteers aged 17 on their program start date are required to provide IVHQ with parental consent in order to participate on the program, and may be asked to provide additional document to the local team.
  • All volunteers aged 13+ are required to provide a criminal background check to IVHQ prior to departure. Those aged 13-17, if unable to obtain a criminal background check, can provide two character reference letters instead
  • All volunteers are required to have adequate volunteer travel insurance
  • To respect the local culture and customs in Fiji, volunteers should be aware that they’re unable to have anything obstructing their face while at their volunteer placement.
  • All volunteers must speak fluent English.
Are you eligible to volunteer?

Submit a free application so we can confirm your eligibility and check availability for your preferred dates.

Apply for free

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'Who is going' users image
Who is going?
Group video calls

Once you have secured your place, join regular video calls to meet your Program Manager and other volunteers before your trip.

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What recent volunteers said about their IVHQ experience

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Ava Buettel
12 Jun 2024

I was guided step by step exceptionally to ensure I was comfortable and prepared for my volunteer project. I was thoroughly informed on what to expect and what was expected from me as a volunteer.

After volunteering, I have gained a new insight on living. I honestly feel so grateful and it was as if volunteering abroad humbled me. Every little stress I had back at home seemed so small while I was volunteering. I have never felt so inspired and loved by a place. From learning the traditional Fijian culture to visiting the beautiful resort islands and beaches in my spare time, it’s been incredible. I will very much miss the beautiful children I had the opportunity to teach and play with for a few weeks, as well as all the wonderful people I met along the way.

...
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Claudia Rose
23 May 2024

I found that the support and guidance before the trip was extremely helpful and made me feel very well prepared. The local team was extremely helpful and welcoming upon my arrival. I feel as if this project has had a massive impact on me. It has inspired me to pursue my dreams of becoming a teacher and gave me closure on why I am so passionate about choosing that career path.

...
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Sophie Callander
15 May 2024

I loved every part of my experience with IVHQ and I will definitely do another program in the future. I gained a lot of knowledge about the Fijian culture and gained an amazing life experience.

...
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Anya Hubbard
02 Apr 2024

Whenever I read reviews about places like this, I always take what is written with a grain of salt. However, I genuinely had an amazing experience at my placement in Fiji. Everyone that I met, local and other volunteers, were so unbelievably kind and friendly and made the experience that much better. Going in with an open mindset that people and basic things you may be used to, will be different, is the best way to get the most out of your experience. Regardless of where you offer your help, you will feel appreciated and if I could go back for longer, I wouldn't hesitate. This experience is beyond worth it, and I highly recommend it for anyone who wants to get out of their comfort zone and help people from another culture.

...
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Amika Dorre
27 Feb 2024

The host are amazing and very friendly. Everyone in this environment is extremely nice and easy to talk to and I made some of the best friends of my life and the Introduction Week is definitely worth doing to experience Fiji and learn more.

...
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Cheryl Rae
20 Feb 2024

I am so glad that my first visit to Fiji was as part of a volunteer group, it was an amazing way to get a real sense of the country, its people, and their culture.
The orientation week was really worthwhile.

...

To read all reviews, visit our reviews page.

Academic course credit

Academic course credit through International Volunteer HQ and Intern Abroad HQ.

Academic course credit

Gain course credit from your college or university and meet your academic requirements when completing a volunteer abroad program with International Volunteer HQ!

Learn about course credit

Location

Volunteer Abroad in Fiji with IVHQ

Location

The IVHQ Fiji program is based on the Coral Coast of Fiji, which is on the south-eastern coast of mainland Fiji. Although Fiji is known as an island paradise with a thriving tourist industry, many Fijians face challenges associated with living below the poverty line. Volunteers provide valuable support in helping with the development and improvement of infrastructure in this small island nation, especially as it continues to grow.

Volunteer placements are located in and around Sigatoka which has some of the best beaches on the island. Volunteers travel to their placements from the volunteer accommodation via taxi. The accommodation is a 15-minute taxi ride to Sigatoka town and a mere 2-minute walk to the nearest beach.

Arrival and orientation

After you have registered for the program, please book your flights to arrive at Nadi International Airport (NAN) in Nadi. An airport pick up is provided here on Saturdays and Sundays between 6:00 AM and 4:30 PM only. If you arrive between this time, you will be met at the airport by a member of the local team who will provide assistance with your bus transfer to Sigatoka. You will then be picked up by a member of our local team at the Sigatoka bus station.

If you arrive outside of these times you can arrange a late airport pick up as an add on option. Alternatively you can arrange your own accommodation in Nadi and then make your way to Sigatoka via bus the following morning.

If you arrive prior to 6am, you may wait in the arrivals terminal until the local team can meet and assist you with your bus transfer.

Your accommodation is covered by your Program Fee and includes the night before your program orientation.

If you are traveling in Fiji prior to your volunteer program, you will need to make your own way to the volunteer accommodation and the local team will provide guidance on this.

There are two options for orientation for the Fiji Program.

One-day orientation:

This begins on the morning of your chosen start date and runs for a full day. Orientation covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program in Fiji, including an introduction to Fiji, culture and customs, rules and expectations, safety, travel opportunities, city tour and an introduction to your project and placement. The orientation will also give you a chance to meet other volunteers and swap contact details for weekend travel and socializing.

Introduction Week:

The Introduction Week begins on the morning of your chosen start date and runs for the first five days of your stay. It is an awesome way to kickstart your volunteer abroad experience and it covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program in Fiji, plus you’ll learn more about the culture and get to tick off must-do Fiji experiences! This includes a Kava welcome ceremony; weaving class, hike to a waterfall, language class, cooking class; and trip to Maui Bay!

Please note, the Introduction week is included in your total duration on the program. If you would like to take part in this week, please let your Program Manager know.

Volunteer schedule example

First Day

On your first day of volunteering, you will be taken to your placement by a local coordinator and introduced to the placement staff you will be working with.

Weekdays Please note that start times and daily workloads depend on the project that you are participating on. Some placements run in the afternoon and volunteers on these placements will have the morning to create their lesson plans, or can join another project.

A typical volunteer day is as follows:

7:30 - 8:30AM Breakfast at the volunteer house and then travel to your placement to join local placement staff.
9:00 AM Start at your placement.
12:00 PM Head back to the volunteer house for lunch.
2:00 PM Lesson planning for the following day.
5:30 PM Dinner at the volunteer house. After dinner, you will have the remainder of the evening free to relax and use as you wish.

To ensure the safety of our volunteers and respect of others in the volunteer accommodation, a curfew of 11:30 PM has been put in place for every evening, including the weekend. If you wish to stay out longer, you must discuss this first with our local team and arrange alternative accommodation.

Weekends

Volunteers can spend the weekends exploring Sigatoka, visiting the beautiful pristine coastlines, beaches or rainforests. Volunteers can spend the weekends exploring the Coral Coast which is a stretch of beaches and bays between Nadi and Suva. Along this coastline is the Pacific Harbour (approximately 1.5 hours from Sigatoka), which is the self-proclaimed ‘Adventure Capital’ of Fiji. From Pacific Harbour you can organize activities, such as kayaking, white-water rafting, shark feeding, jet ski tours, zip lining and diving. It is recommended you budget for these additional weekend trips.

Accommodation and WiFi

You’ll stay in dormitory-style volunteer houses located in the Sigatoka area near the community where volunteers work. It is approximately 15 minutes by taxi from Sigatoka town and 2 minutes from the beach. The area has a very strong friendly Fijian culture. A curfew of 11:30 PM is in effect every evening, including weekends, to ensure the safety and respect of others in the volunteer accommodation.

The volunteer house is very basic but comfortable, with electricity, fans, and running water. Bathrooms in the volunteer houses are all western style with a shower, toilet and basin. Bedding is provided which includes a pillow, pillowcase and sheets (Washed Weekly). You will need to bring a towel and toiletries.

You can expect to share a room with up to 5 other volunteers of the same gender. Couples or individuals who want more privacy have an option to upgrade to private accommodation. Private rooms are subject to availability and therefore you must arrange this well in advance of your program. The local team will do their best to keep families together.

While basic WiFi is available for communication use at the accommodation internet access, it is not always reliable. Therefore we recommend purchasing a local SIM card with data for an unlocked mobile phone. The local team can assist you with purchasing this during your program orientation in Sigatoka and is relatively cheap 30FJD for 60GB a month). WiFi is also available at cafes and restaurants around Sigatoka.

Please note that during busy times, some volunteers maybe accommodated in a nearby hotel. Volunteers who are placed in the hotel will still have all their meals at the volunteer house.

Meals

Fijian food is tasty and diverse, with a strong influence of Indian and Chinese cuisine. Three meals a day are served at the volunteer house on weekdays, but on weekends only breakfast and dinner are served, leaving volunteers responsible for their own lunches. Typical dishes include chow mein (Fiji style stir-fried noodles and vegetables), starches such as cassava, taro, sweet potato, bread, fruit, rice, stews, soups and curries.

Breakfast is typically cereal, tea, coffee, fruit, eggs and toast.

Bottled water is readily available in Fiji and there are water filters available in the volunteer accommodation for volunteers.

If you have any special dietary requirements, please let us know when you apply for the program so we can discuss this with you. The local team will do their best to see that you are well taken care of but you should not expect to eat as you do at home. If you wish to supplement some of your meals with home comforts, there are basic kitchen facilities available to use and the local team will show you where to buy food during orientation.

Pricing

  • USD

Spots are limited. For a Registration Fee of just US$329 (approximately CA$471) you secure your spot and unlock all our preparation and training tools.

You don't need to worry about paying your Program Fee until you get closer to your start date.

Duration
Program Fee
Due 30 days before you start, or within 48 hours if you register inside of 30 days. Covers the cost of hosting you.
  • USD
1 week $500 Equivalent to $71/day
2 weeks $720 Equivalent to $51/day
3 weeks $945 Equivalent to $45/day
4 weeks $1,165 Equivalent to $42/day
5 weeks $1,365 Equivalent to $39/day
6 weeks $1,570 Equivalent to $37/day
8 weeks $1,980 Equivalent to $35/day
10 weeks $2,410 Equivalent to $34/day
12 weeks $2,820 Equivalent to $34/day
  • All programs attract a Registration Fee of US$329 (approximately CA$471) in addition to the Program Fee. This covers all pre-departure support services.
  • A 5% international banking fee is added at point of payment.
  • Recommended spending money: Volunteers in Fiji generally find US$100 per week to be sufficient for expenses.
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • Airport pick-up
  • Transport to and from your volunteer placement each day
  • Accommodation
  • 24/7 in-country support
  • In-country program orientation
  • Pre-departure support from your Program Manager
  • Personalized preparation tools, guides and check lists
  • Access to IVHQ’s preferred insurance and flights partners
  • Certificate of International Volunteer Service

Learn more about what's included in your IVHQ Registration Fee and Program Fee.

  • Return to the airport when your program finishes
  • Flights
  • Visa (if required), travel insurance (mandatory), vaccinations, criminal background check.
  • Personal spending money for snacks, laundry, public transportation, drinks and leisure activities during your free time.

Free-time experiences & tours in Sigatoka

Take your volunteer experience to the next level with IVHQ's affordable activity and tour add-ons in Sigatoka! Explore your options below and learn how to book them once you've been accepted onto the IVHQ Sigatoka program.

Fiji Introduction Week
Fiji Introduction Week

The Introduction Week is an awesome way to kickstart your volunteer abroad experience and it covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program in Fiji.

CA$157
Extra Nights of Accommodation
Extra Nights of Accommodation

Arriving early or departing a day after your program finished? Book your extra nights of accommodation.

From CA$74

Check what's required to visit Fiji

Safety and support

Safety and support with IVHQ

Safety and support

IVHQ follows best practice and industry-leading health and safety procedures, which are regularly reviewed and optimized as part of the B Corporation recertification.

  • All volunteers encouraged to complete our interactive pre-departure training.
  • All local teams trained on best practice volunteer management & First Aid.
  • All IVHQ programs are required to adhere to IVHQ's Risk Management Policy.
  • All volunteers have access to 24/7 in-country support from our local team.
Learn more about IVHQ's safety

Essential country information

Essential country information

Capital Suva
Population 909,943
Languages English, Fijian and Fijian Hindi
Currency Fijian Dollar (FJD)
Time zone UTC+12:00

Weather and climate

Fiji has a hot climate all year round with maximum temperatures averaging between 26°C and 31°C (79°F - 88°F). The wet season runs from November to April and the dry season runs from May through October. The wet season is characterized by high humidity with heavy downpours followed by sunshine. The dry season is when temperatures are typically cooler with little rainfall.

Apply to check if you're eligible!

Other projects you may be interested in

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!