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Volunteer Work with NGOs in Cambodia

NGOs play an important role assisting vulnerable people in Cambodia, despite only having limited financial resources and relying heavily on international funding drives. As a volunteer, you’re able to work at the heart of a range of initiatives to enable them to make the biggest difference possible in the community.

NGO volunteers can assist with projects that focus on fields of community development, human rights, health and HIV/AIDS awareness, gender issues, environmental issues and education. Placements are decided based on a mixture of your skills and interests, and where there is the most need for help at the time.

Working with NGOs in Cambodia with IVHQ

While on your project, your duties will reflect your own strengths and what your NGO needs most. It can include assisting with fundraising, reporting, teaching English, organizational development, administration, research and providing IT assistance. Longer term volunteers who are on the project for more than eight weeks are more likely to gain more independence, and can even help with field research.

The Working with NGOs project is open to volunteers over the age of 19. You’re required to have with relevant experience in the field you wish to work in. There is a minimum duration requirement of five weeks and you will need to bring your own laptop.

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Project Highlights
What you need to know
  • Affordable fees from $360 for 2 weeks
  • Volunteer with NGOs that focus on important community initiatives, despite their limited resources

  • Help NGOs that focus on a range of causes including community development, health, human rights and environmental issues

  • Placements decided based on your skills and interests, as well as local need

  • Suited to caring volunteers who want to help vulnerable people

  • Minimum duration requirement of 5 weeks

  • Volunteer for up to 8 hours per day

Destination Highlights
Cambodia at a glance
  • Program headquarters in Phnom Penh, with projects in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang

  • Program fees include airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support

  • Accommodation in a volunteer house

  • Between 10 and 50 volunteers start in Cambodia each month

The IVHQ Cambodia volunteer program has volunteer placements located in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang. When choosing a volunteer’s placement and location, we carefully consider the needs of the local institutions we work with, whilst taking into account the background, experience and skills of the volunteer. Volunteers are placed where the most assistance is needed at the time of their volunteer program and volunteers are ultimately assigned with the projects that will benefit both the volunteer and the local institution.

Volunteer programs begin on the first and third Monday of every month. Volunteers can choose to volunteer for durations ranging from 2 weeks to 24 weeks.

The program orientation begins on the first and third Monday of the month and volunteers need to arrive in Phnom Penh anytime on the Sunday before orientation.

After you have registered for the program, please book your flights to arrive at the Phnom Penh International Airport (PNH). Your airport pick-up is included in your Program Fee.

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

If you are traveling in Cambodia prior to your volunteer program, our local team can pick you up on Sunday from any hostel or hotel within Phnom Penh.

Orientation is hosted by our Cambodia team at the volunteer house in Phnom Penh. Orientation begins on the morning of your chosen start date and covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program in Cambodia – Introduction to Cambodia, Culture and Customs, Rules and Expectations, Safety, Travel Opportunities, Introduction to Project and Placement. The orientation will also give you a chance to meet other volunteers and swap contact details for weekend travel and socializing.

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

Weekdays: A typical volunteer day would is as follows:

7.00 AM Breakfast in the volunteer house or with your host family.

7.45 AM Volunteer leaves home and travels to the project. The volunteer joins with the local staff and will be given a duty roster and plan for work. Work and hours is dependent on the project and location that the volunteer is participating in.

12.00 PM - 2.00 PM Lunch break. In Cambodia all workplaces have a lunch break for about 2 hours. Some start earlier, some later. During this lunch break you are welcome to stay with the children at your Childcare placement or in the office at Teaching/NGO placements and some placements will offer you food.

2.00 PM - 5.00 PM Work at the project usually ends. The volunteer at this point is free to travel home, sightsee or do shopping.

7.00 PM Dinner in the volunteer house or with the host family.

Volunteers are accommodated in a volunteer house, where you can expect to share a room with one to two other volunteers. Bedrooms are comprised of single beds and bunk beds with bedding provided, which includes a bottom sheet, blanket and pillow. Due to the heat, electric fans are provided in each room. Please note that there isn’t air conditioning in the accommodations.

Volunteer houses are located in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap. The volunteer houses have electricity and running water and the majority of rooms have private bathrooms. In each volunteer house, there is a sitting area, dining area, television and WiFi.

In Battambang, you will stay onsite at the school where the placement is located. You will have a separate room which you will share with up to one other volunteer. Electricity, running water, western bathrooms and WiFi are provided.

Volunteers in Cambodia are provided with three meals per day (breakfast, lunch and dinner). Breakfast generally consists of fruits and baguettes. A typical lunch includes rice or noodles with fried vegetables and meat. Dinner consists of a range of dishes in the volunteer house, or a traditional Khmer meal at your homestay, including dishes of rice, soup, vegetables and meat with sweet, salty, bitter and sour flavors. Fresh fruits, such as mangos or pineapples are served with sticky rice for desert. If you have any special dietary requirements, please let us know when you apply for the program so we can make arrangements for you.

“My volunteer experience was nothing short of amazing and I am so thankful for all the kindness and helpfulness from both IVHQ and the local staff. I look forward to returning to Cambodia as this experience greatly enriched my love for the country and volunteering. I felt most connected to the country through my in-office volunteer work and out of office bonding time with my colleagues and Cambodian friends that I met while I was there.” - Anna Jung (Working with NGOs Volunteer in Cambodia)

Read more reviews from IVHQ volunteers in Cambodia here

Cambodia

Length of Program Program Fee $USD
2 weeks $360
3 weeks $475
4 weeks $570
5 weeks $665
6 weeks $760
8 weeks $950
10 weeks $1,140
12 weeks $1,325
16 weeks $1,685
20 weeks $2,045
24 weeks $2,405
  • All programs attract a Registration Fee (from US$299) on top of the Program Fee (partially refundable until 60 days before your program start date*). A 5% international banking fee is added at point of payment.
  • To see prices in your local currency, use this currency converter.
  • * Terms and Conditions do apply
What extra costs will I have?
  • Visa (US$30-35), flights, travel insurance (mandatory), vaccinations, criminal background check (mandatory), souvenirs, in-country trips or tours, transport to and from your placement ($30-$60 per week), trips and tours in-country.
  • Transfer back to the airport at the conclusion of the program
  • Spending money - Volunteers in Cambodia generally find US$30 to be sufficient for weekly expenses

Cambodia: Medical Project

Length of Program Program Fee $USD
3 weeks $675
4 weeks $770
5 weeks $965
6 weeks $1,060
8 weeks $1,250
10 weeks $1,540
12 weeks $1,725
  • All programs attract a Registration Fee (from US$299) on top of the Program Fee (partially refundable until 60 days before your program start date*). A 5% international banking fee is added at point of payment.
  • To see prices in your local currency, use this currency converter.
  • * Terms and Conditions do apply
What extra costs will I have?
  • Visa (US$30-35), flights, travel insurance (mandatory), vaccinations, criminal background check (mandatory), souvenirs, in-country trips or tours, transport to and from your placement ($30-$60 per week), trips and tours in-country.
  • Transfer back to the airport at the conclusion of the program
  • Spending money - Volunteers in Cambodia generally find US$30 to be sufficient for weekly expenses
Registration Fee
What it covers
  • Most affordable program fees
  • Expert support from a program specialist
  • Full MyIVHQ account access
  • Online volunteer training
  • Comprehensive preparation tools
  • Deals on flights and travel insurance
  • IVHQ alumni rewards
Program Fee
What it covers
  • 24/7 in-country support
  • Airport pick-up
  • Program orientation
  • Volunteer placement
  • Accommodation
  • Meals

During the weekend, volunteers have spare time to relax or take the opportunity to explore their local town, or other areas of Cambodia, such as the Temples of Angkor Wat (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), various National Parks, or the beaches in the south of Cambodia. During the long public holidays in April, September and November, you may also wish to travel further afield to Laos, Vietnam or Thailand.

See our Cambodia Travel and Tours page for more volunteer travel options in Cambodia!

Capital Phnom Penh
Population 14.86 million
Languages Khmer
Currency Cambodian Riel (KHR)
Time zone UTC+07:00

Weather and climate: Cambodia has two distinct seasons. The rainy season, which runs from May to October, can see temperatures drop to 22°C (71.6°F) and is generally accompanied by high humidity. The dry season lasts from November to April and temperatures can rise up to 40°C (104°F ) around April.

Volunteer programs begin on the first and third Monday of every month. Volunteers can choose to volunteer for durations ranging from 2 weeks to 24 weeks.

Volunteers need to be 18 years or over to participate on this program, unless volunteering with a parent or guardian. If you are under the age of 18, IVHQ offers alternative volunteer opportunities for teens. Visit our High School Volunteer Abroad page to to learn more.

All volunteers are required to have adequate volunteer travel insurance and provide a criminal background check to IVHQ’s local team on arrival in Cambodia. Additional requirements apply for Medical, Working with NGOs and Computer Support volunteers, please read the project descriptions for details.

Free Interactive Volunteer Training - All volunteers are encouraged to complete our interactive pre-departure training, which is available exclusively to registered IVHQ volunteers. The training is designed to build an understanding of important aspects that need to be considered before embarking on an IVHQ program. It helps volunteers to prepare in the right way by providing advice on what it takes to be a safe, responsible and valuable volunteer. Try a sample of the training here.

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!