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Teaching Volunteer Program in Fiji - Sigatoka

Teaching Volunteer Program in Fiji - Sigatoka

Purpose
Improve access to quality education
Start dates
Programs start every Monday
Duration
Choose from 1-12 weeks
Volunteer hours
Up to 4 hours a day
Age
Volunteers aged 17+ and families
Accommodation
Dormitory-style volunteer house
Program fees
From £415 for 1 week
What's included
Find out here
Apply for free
'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.

This program is ideal for:

Volunteers who enjoy working with children, and want to help a community through education at a grass-roots level. TEFL certification is recommended for those with no relevant education or experience.

Project details

Eager to be a Teaching volunteer in Fiji? International Volunteer HQ’s Teaching project empowers volunteers to gain teaching experience by assisting in schools or at after school programs in Sigatoka. Classrooms in Fiji can often be overcrowded and volunteers can be extremely helpful to local teachers by taking on some of the work involved in educating such large groups of students with diverse abilities.

What to expect and how you'll make an impact

Class sizes in Fijian schools are large, with up to 50 children per teacher, so holding inclusive lessons where each student gets equal benefit can be challenging. Volunteer teachers enable classes to be more appropriate and effective for students of different abilities.

As a volunteer teacher you’ll be placed in either a local school or on an after-school teaching tutorial.

Volunteers in schools will follow the local curriculum, helping with students aged between 4-16. You can either assist a local teacher or lead a class independently, but in both instances you’re encouraged to be creative in planning and executing your lessons in a lively and interesting manner.

The after-school tutorials have a lot more freedom, as they’re considered supplementary lessons that don’t need to follow a set curriculum. They’re designed to be fun and interactive, and should reinforce lessons being learnt at school. Because you’ll have time free in the morning, you’ll have the option to also assist on the Childcare project.

Teaching volunteer work can vary but generally involves:

  • Assisting teachers
  • Teaching lessons
  • Tutoring students
  • Lesson planning
  • Interacting with students
  • Setting up educational activities
  • Preparing exams and worksheets
  • Marking student exams

During school exams and holidays, all volunteers will be placed on after school programs or a Kids Club. Additionally, occasional events like graduation, festivals and other school activities may mean students have time off, so volunteers aren’t required. This is a normal part of the education system in Fiji and you’ll need to be flexible in accepting free time yourself.

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 Teaching volunteering in Sigatoka with IVHQ?

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

  • Improving access to education for students in Sigatoka
  • Helping students develop life skills in a safe place
  • Learning and practicing Fijian
  • Developing your communication skills
  • Gaining 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.

What recent volunteers said about their IVHQ experience

YH
Yasmin Herold
07 Jun 2024

I learned so much, the happiness little things brings those kids is amazing! So is the community feeling and the welcoming feeling everyone gives you.

...
IH
Isabella Hubbard
06 Jun 2024

From doing my program I have come to realize how privileged I am and how others have to live, yet how kind and caring they are. I have learnt so much from these kids and hope to go back one day.

...
KH
Keira Hayidakis
30 Apr 2024

I feel as though I have gained an understanding of Fijian culture, a passion for teaching and an immense feeling of gratitude for the experience. I would advise anyone hesitant of joining to 100% sign up. It was truly the most experience ever with lovely people.

...
SR
Sushmita Roy
04 Apr 2024

I'd totally vouch for IVHQ if anyone’s thinking about volunteering! For anyone unsure about signing up, I'd just share photos of the amazing lifelong friends I've made from all over the globe. I'd talk about the school kids who deeply touched my life and share how volunteering abroad is hands down the best way to really see a country!

...
HT
Hollie Towner
02 Apr 2024

Extensive self growth was the best part of this experience. As a first time solo traveller, this experience helped me feel comfortable in the beginning of my solo travelling journey. It was a privilege to be able to give back to the local community through volunteering.

...
SB
Salisha Baksh
08 Mar 2023

My hightlight moment from the volunteer experience was interacting with the locals, experiencing their culture, but most of all, seeing the smiles on the kids face everyday. The biggest impact my volunteering trip had on me was I was able to see how different cultures live and enjoy the simple wonders of life. It is an experience of a lifetime and you just have to get out of your comfort zone and do it. It will be an amazing experience that will last a lifetime.

...

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 socialising.

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 might be:

7:30 - 8:30 AM 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 Volunteers break for lunch. Most volunteers travel back to the volunteer house for lunch, while some volunteers may be provided lunch at their placement.
2:00 PM Work at your placement usually ends. You are free to use this time to lesson plan for tomorrow or spend the afternoon exploring
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 £273) 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 £273) 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
  • Personalised 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.

£91

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 characterised by high humidity with heavy downpours followed by sunshine. The dry season is when temperatures are typically cooler with little rainfall.

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How to get started

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Pay the Registration Fee to secure your place and upgrade your MyIVHQ account
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