Volunteering abroad is a great way to experience a new culture, to live like a local and to make a positive contribution to a community or to a conservation initiative. It’s also a great way to learn about yourself and to grow your understanding of the world.
It’s important to do the right preparation before volunteering abroad. While some people will be seasoned travelers, many IVHQ volunteers are traveling alone for the first time. Regardless of which group they fall into, we think is a whole range of issues that people need to consider before traveling abroad.
Volunteers should always do their own detailed research about the country that their chosen program is based in, but we’ve also developed a set of online training tools which help IVHQ volunteers to get prepared in the best way. These tools are free to all of our volunteers and are accessible as soon as you become fully registered with us, so there’s plenty of time to work through them before you leave home.
This training is available exclusively to IVHQ volunteers. Give it a go here!
What Does the IVHQ Training Cover?
The IVHQ volunteer training is made up of three individual learning modules, which can be completed in any order. Each module provides a series of interactive scenarios designed to build an understanding of important aspects of volunteering that need to be considered before embarking on an IVHQ program.
Module 1 – Know before you go
This module covers the basics of getting prepared for volunteering abroad. It provides advice on important steps to take, such as booking flights, arranging visas, organizing the right insurance, completing a criminal background check and what to pack. Volunteers are shown how being organized and well researched is vital to making the most of their IVHQ experience.
Module 2 – Keeping safe
Health and safety is a big focus for IVHQ and we want to do everything we can to keep our volunteers out of harm’s way. Module 2 focuses on the steps volunteers can take to keep themselves safe and the scenarios in this module cover things like: using local transport, beverages safety, enjoying local food, what to do in emergencies or when incidents occur, and how to be safety-conscious when enjoying free time activities.
Module 3 – Being a responsible and valuable volunteer
This module includes guidance on how to make a positive contribution to a community, in an ethical and responsible way. It includes advice on developing the right expectations, understanding and respecting different cultures, gaining the trust of local people, and protecting the rights and needs of children. The big emphasis in this module is on establishing the right mind-set before volunteering abroad.