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Childcare Volunteer Program in Laos - Luang Prabang

Childcare Volunteer Program in Laos - Luang Prabang

Young at heart and interested in being a Childcare volunteer in Laos? International Volunteer HQ’s Childcare project enables volunteers to assist in early childhood centers in Luang Prabang. Volunteers gain experience in childcare while helping local staff with daily jobs and providing extra care and attention to local children.

Highlights:
  • Programs start every Monday
  • Affordable fees from CA$404 for 1 week
  • Includes accommodation, meals, airport pick up, orientation and 24/7 support
  • Offer extra support and nurturing for local children

  • Discover Laos’ great mountains, markets and monks

  • Stay with other volunteers in Luang Prabang

Key information

Provide a safe space for children to learn
Based in Luang Prabang
Dormitory-style volunteer house
Volunteers aged 16+ and families
Fully hosted experience from CA$404 for 1 week
Durations from 1 - 12 weeks
Introduction week available
Up to 5 hours volunteering a day

This program is ideal for:

Enthusiastic volunteers who are interested in early childhood education and want to make a difference to children in Laos.
Who is this program suited to?

What to expect and how you'll make an impact

Childcare centers are lively, busy places that can operate much more smoothly with more assistance. As a volunteer, you’ll help to provide care and attention to local children, increasing the benefit they receive and helping local staff with daily jobs.

As a Childcare volunteer you’ll be based in various childcare centers around Luang Prabang. All placements have fixed weekly activities, focusing mainly on education, such as English language classes. Topics such as morality, hygiene and Laotian traditions are also discussed. While some basic resources are available, you’re encouraged to use your initiative to develop activities and bring resources to assist you. Many centers also support creative activities like painting, drawing, origami or dancing, and some organize visits to the river or local villages.

Volunteer duties will vary depending on your placement but generally include:

  • Arranging games and activities
  • Cooking and food preparation
  • Feeding children
  • Cleaning up after meals
  • Teaching
  • Caring for children
  • Administration
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 Luang Prabang with IVHQ?

When you volunteer with children in Laos you’ll be adding value to the local community, while also developing personally and professionally by:

  • Improving access to care and education for children
  • Helping students develop life skills in a safe place
  • Developing your communication skills
  • Gaining childcare experience
  • Immersing yourself in Lao culture
  • Discovering the UNESCO World Heritage Center, Luang Prabang

Volunteer requirements

  • Volunteers under the age of 16 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to participate in this program
  • Volunteers aged 16-18 are required to provide IVHQ with parental consent in order to participate on the program, and may be asked to provide additional documentation 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 Laos, 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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What recent volunteers said about their IVHQ experience

KC
Kate Chartier
08 Feb 2024

Amazing experience with the Laos Program! I did not know much about Laos as a destination, but knew I wanted to see as much of South East Asia as possible, and avoid the heavily touristed spots. Luang Prabang was the perfect place! Beautiful architecture, the sweetest people, it was truly a magical place & experience.

...
MB
Mana Barron-Judd
08 Nov 2023

My experience in Laos was very eye opening and grounding. I felt so at home from the day I arrived and was welcomed with enthusiasm from Micky, Ticky, Onsee, Khon and Nali.

The program itself was very rewarding and the staff at both the childcare centre and ESL school made working there feel super fun and less overwhelming than I expected. The kids at the daycare were so sweet, funny and energetic and were an absolute pleasure to be around. I loved working alongside the teachers there and learnt a lot from them. Working at the ESL school was a whole different experience but left me with the same feelings of gratitude and warmth. The students were so respectful and keen to learn. It was my first time teaching but their attitude towards me made me feel super comfortable and helped the classes to flow smoothly. I really loved learning from the teachers there too and am so grateful for how trustingly they welcomed me into their classrooms, allowing me to have quite a bit of freedom with how I taught whilst sticking to their workbook.

On top of that I spent my whole stay in Laos excited about my next meal because the chef, Dao, is an absolute genius and makes the most delicious meals I’ve ever tasted. One morning I was craving rice soup which I had been eating a lot in Thailand and she went and got some for me, what an angel! The team is always happy and willing to help out with transport and organising things outside of the volunteer work too, I mean it when I say they truly go above and beyond. I had been travelling solo for two months before arriving in Laos and I felt the most comfortable and safe and supported here out of anywhere else I have visited. I loved learning about Laos history and culture and there is truly so much beauty to see in this place from the people to the nature and traditions. I would absolutely recommend this program to anyone who is thinking about doing it.

...
HR
Hoana Renau
29 Sep 2023

I found the IVHQ pre-departure process really easy, everything was clear in the portal and the support was amazing from start to finish :)

The local team in Laos were absolutely amazing, they made me feel welcomed and comfortable from the moment I arrived to well after I left. The accommodation was great and the food cooked for us by Dao the Chef was outstanding. The team in Laos ended up feeling like family. I didn't want to leave! I support them in every way and I hope they get more volunteers there as the country itself is beautiful and their hospitality was incredible.

I cannot rate this place enough! I loved every minute I was there from the culture and the food, through to the lovely people and overall atmosphere.

After travelling for 3 months through SE Asia I was blessed to see several different countries and meet many different people. I am so glad I added Laos to my itinerary. It is the most beautiful place with the best people.

...
CS
Carlota Sousa
26 Apr 2023

Being with the kids, see their smile and play with them was, for sure, the best part of the all experience. Kids were adorable, easy going and super friendly and excited with us!

As a person I grew a lot during this experience. It gave me a different perspective on life, making me appreciate what I have much more, being grateful for all I have and lastly made me see that I have all the reasons to smile everyday. Life is simple, easy going and fun. We should stop complicate it and adjust life goals for something more rather than material things and "achievements". I would say to future volunteers, "Think no more and go for it". This will be one of the most amazing experience of your life. Go with an open mind, challenges will be on the way (mostly mental and emotional challenges), but at the end you'll grow and your hearth will double in size after all the experience.

...
RP
Rhysa Phommachanh
22 Mar 2023

My favourite moment was the programme. I enjoyed every single day of this programme, teaching and entertaining the young children was so fun! It was a massive eye-opener. I am half Laotian myself, and this was my first time visiting the country. To be able to volunteer and help the children of my country, whilst also being able to experience day-to-day life in Luang Prabang with the programme. To anyone who is hesitant about volunteering, just go for it! I was hesitant myself but I was in good hands with IVHQ, and the coordinators in Laos. You will receive all the support, and meet some lovely, helpful people whilst abroad. The experience is like no other, so if you are fortunate enough to volunteer, you definitely should!

...
EA
Emma Andreani
20 Dec 2022

I loved all the moments spent with the children and with the local team. This volunteer trip allowed me to grow and gain self-confidence, it gave me great fulfilment. Volunteering abroad is a very good way to learn more about yourself but also about others, and to be immersed in a new culture.

...

To read all reviews, visit our reviews page.

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

Academic course credit

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Volunteer Abroad in Laos with IVHQ

Location

Compared to the thronging, bustling party that is other capital cities of South-east Asian countries, Luang Prabang is in northern Laos at the heart of a mountainous region. This relaxed town, often described as the Jewel in Laos Crown; has beautiful parks, markets, temples and monuments, tropical weather, and plenty to do. Wider Laos has a huge range of adventure activities popular with visitors, and breathtaking waterfalls, limestone caves and scenery.

Just outside the town center, you can explore lush jungles with miles of hiking trails leading to gorgeous waterfalls and limestone caves.

The IVHQ Laos Program is based in Luang Prabang. The placements are located in and around Luang Prabang.

Arrival and orientation

After you have registered for the program, please book your flights to arrive at the Luang Prabang Airport (LPQ). Your airport pick-up is included in your Program Fee. We recommend that volunteers under the age of 18 travel internationally with a notarized letter from their parents to support their documentation.

Volunteers need to arrive in Luang Prabang on the Sunday before orientation. When you arrive, you will be greeted at the airport by a member of the local team and transported to the volunteer accommodation. Your accommodation is covered by your Program Fee and includes the night before your program orientation.

If you are traveling in Vientiane, Laos prior to your volunteer program, we can arrange for you to be picked up in Vientiane on the day before your program orientation for an additional pick-up fee cost.

There are two options for orientation in Laos:

One-day Orientation: This runs for a full day and covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program in Laos, including an introduction to the IVHQ Laos program, the local team, general rules and a class on the local culture and language. In the afternoon, you’ll learn about the local projects, go on a walking tour of the local area, arrange your SIM card, and finish the day planting vegetables like a local. The orientation will also give you a chance to meet other volunteers and swap contact details for weekend travel and socializing.

Introduction Week: This not only teaches you everything you need to know for your volunteer project, but also gives you the opportunity to learn more about the culture and tick off some must-do Laos experiences including a language lesson, cooking class, village walk and visits to the KuangSi waterfall, bear conservation sanctuary, ancient history temple and forest temples. This week has an additional cost of US$435 (approximately CA$618).

Join the Introduction Week by making a note in your application or contacting your IVHQ Program Manager after you register.

Volunteer schedule example

Weekdays

After the initial orientation week, you will work for approximately 3 to 5 hours per day and a typical schedule is as follows:

8:00 AM Breakfast at the volunteer guesthouse.
9:00 AM Volunteers travel to their placements by foot, bicycle or tuk-tuk.
12:00 PM Volunteers break for lunch and travel back to the volunteer guesthouse. In some cases volunteers eat lunch at their placement. After lunch, volunteers continue with their volunteer work (where applicable).
3:00 - 4:00 PM Work at the placement usually ends. Volunteers are free to return to the volunteer guesthouse, plan for the following day’s activities or use their free time as they wish.
6:00 PM Dinner at the volunteer guesthouse. After dinner volunteers will have the remainder of the evening free to relax and use as they wish.

Weekends

Volunteers have the weekends free and there is no shortage of things to do in Luang Prabang or further afield in Laos. Volunteers can fill their free time with local markets, adventure activities or simply exploring parts of Luang Prabang. Laos is a popular tourist destination, offering beautiful nature and scenery, with great biking, kayaking, climbing, caving, trekking and rafting. Volunteers who wish to take a long weekend to travel can enjoy the beautiful limestone mountains and waterfalls in Vang Vieng or even take a two-day cruise on the mighty Mekong River.

Volunteers staying for longer durations, or who wish to travel before or after their program, can visit areas further afield in Laos and neighboring countries such as Thailand and Vietnam. Volunteers can make travel arrangements once in Luang Prabang, with the advice and guidance of our local staff.

Accommodation and WiFi

Volunteers are accommodated in a dormitory-style volunteer house in Luang Prabang. The town center is only a 10-15 minute walk or 3 Tuktuk ride from the volunteer accommodation. You should expect to share a room with up to 4 other volunteers of the same gender. All rooms are equipped with air conditioning, a fan and have a shared bathroom equipped with western style toilet and a hot shower. Bedding and towels are provided. There are staff who clean the accommodation throughout the week, however volunteers are required to keep their rooms tidy.

Couples, families 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 accommodation has free Wifi which volunteers are able to use. You can also purchase a local SIM card with data for an unlocked mobile phone to access the internet.

Meals

Laotian food is very tasty and during your time in Laos, you will be sure to receive some delicious treats.

Volunteers are provided with three meals per day. Breakfast is self-serve at the accommodation and generally includes tea, coffee, eggs, bread and fruit. Lunch and dinner are prepared in the guesthouse restaurant and will often include fresh vegetables, fish or meat, cooked with fresh herbs and spices, and served with plenty of sticky rice. Noodles are common at mealtimes too, as are local soups.

Please note that during the weekends only brunch and dinner is provided.

Fresh tropical fruit is plentiful at roadside stalls and there are many street food vendors around Vientiane offering local treats.

Bottled water is readily available in Laos and volunteers should budget approximately US$10 (approximately CA$14) per week for 2 liters a day.

Pricing

  • USD
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 CA$404 Equivalent to CA$58/day
2 weeks CA$638 Equivalent to CA$46/day
3 weeks CA$872 Equivalent to CA$42/day
4 weeks CA$1100 Equivalent to CA$39/day
5 weeks CA$1327 Equivalent to CA$38/day
6 weeks CA$1554 Equivalent to CA$37/day
8 weeks CA$1866 Equivalent to CA$33/day
10 weeks CA$2178 Equivalent to CA$31/day
12 weeks CA$2491 Equivalent to CA$30/day
  • Accommodation
  • Meals
  • 24/7 in-country support
  • In-country program orientation
  • Pre-departure support from your Program Manager
  • Airport pick-up
  • Personalized preparation tools, guides and check lists
  • Access to IVHQ’s preferred insurance and flights partners
  • Discounts on travel and tour add-ons
  • Certificate of International Volunteer Service

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

  • All programs attract a Registration Fee of US$329 (approximately CA$467) in addition to the Program Fee. This covers all pre-departure support services. IVHQ fees are priced in USD but you may elect to pay in CAD.
  • A 5% international banking fee is added at point of payment.
  • Additional things to budget for include: Visa, flights, travel insurance (mandatory), vaccinations, criminal background check, public transport to and from your placement each day and return to the airport when your program finishes.
  • Recommended spending money: Volunteers in Laos generally find US$75 per week to be sufficient for expenses.

Free-time experiences & tours in Laos

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

Introduction Week
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 Laos.

CA$618
Laos Adventure Week
Laos Adventure Week

Explore Laos in a fun packed week where we take you to some of the must visit places and experiences in Laos.

CA$694
Introduction Week
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 Laos.

CA$618
Laos Adventure Week
Laos Adventure Week

Explore Laos in a fun packed week where we take you to some of the must visit places and experiences in Laos.

CA$694

Check what's required to visit Laos

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

Capital Vientiane
Population 7.2 million
Languages Lao
Currency Lao or Laotian Kip (LAK)
Time zone UTC+07:00

Weather and climate

The climate in Laos is considered tropical monsoonal, days are typically warm and sunny all year around, with an average temperature of 29°C (84°F). The rainy season runs from May to October, and this is when humidity and temperatures can peak at 40°C (100°F). The dry season runs from November to May, and this is when the temperature is typically cooler and can get to a low of 15°C (58°F)

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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!