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Childcare Volunteer Program in Vietnam - Ho Chi Minh City

Childcare Volunteer Program in Vietnam - Ho Chi Minh City

Young at heart and want to be a Childcare volunteer in Vietnam? International Volunteer HQ’s Childcare project is a great way for volunteers to assist in early childhood centres in Ho Chi Minh City. Volunteers gain childcare experience while helping with day-to-day tasks and giving local children the valuable opportunity to hear English spoken fluently.

Highlights:
  • Programs start every Monday
  • Affordable fees from £331 for 1 week
  • Includes accommodation, meals, airport pick up, orientation and 24/7 support
  • Care for young children and give them a headstart learning English

  • Enjoy Vietnam’s wide variety of delectable food

  • Stay with other volunteers in a vibrant district of Ho Chi Minh City

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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.

Key information

Provide a safe space for children to learn
Based in kindergartens in Ho Chi Minh City
Dormitory-style volunteer accommodation
Volunteers aged 16+ and families
Fully hosted experience from £331 for 1 week
Durations from 1 - 12 weeks
Introduction Week orientation available
Up to 6 hours volunteering a day

This program is ideal for:

Enthusiastic volunteers who are fluent in English, passionate about early childhood education and want to help children learn and grow. You’ll be working with local staff so no experience is needed, but some relevant training like a TEFL certificate would be useful.
Who is this program suited to?

What to expect and how you'll make an impact

Learning English is much easier from a young age, and having a fluent speaker helping at a local kindergarten can be hugely beneficial as a way of introducing Vietnamese children to the language. Volunteers are also able to provide valuable support to local teachers in the day-to-day operations of the kindergarten.

As a Childcare volunteer you’ll be assisting local teachers with children between 3 and 5 years old. Your day will be split between a morning and afternoon lesson, with children having a nap in the middle of the day. Volunteer duties can vary but usually include:

  • Playing games
  • You can be either leading a class as the head teacher, or assisting a local teacher with lessons
  • Assisting at meal times and with other activities
  • Teaching English in a fun and supportive environment

It is important to note that the celebration of the Vietnamese New Year (TET) is from the 8th to the 16th of February, 2024. During this time, volunteers will make food for the at-risk community (mainly young children in the community who have been diagnosed with cancer). The local team will arrange activities for the children including, dancing, singing, playing and the volunteers will also spend some time teaching them English.

The local team will buy all the food and materials for volunteers to help with preparation of the food, cooking the food and serving for that center. The center is about a 45 minute bus ride from the accommodation and you can expect to volunteer from 8am to 1pm. Alternatively, volunteers can use the time to travel and join in on the local festivities.

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 Ho Chi Minh with IVHQ?

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

  • Improving access to childcare for local families
  • Helping students develop life skills in a safe place
  • Developing your communication skills
  • Gaining childcare experience
  • Immersing yourself in Vietnamese culture
  • Exploring Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s largest city

Volunteer requirements

  • Volunteers under the age of 16 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to participate in this program
  • Volunteers aged 16 or 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 Vietnam, 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.

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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

SN
Sommer Nadelstein
23 Apr 2024

We participated with our 14 yr old son as part of our “family gap year” and his world schooling program for his 8th grade year. We thought our experience was invaluable, not just to him but to us as a family to grow and teach us all, about other cultures and to be so grateful for what we have and be able to give back to communities that might have less. My advice would be go in with an open heart and mind. Your “discomforts” in stepping out of your comfort zone is temporary; but your impact on the community and the individuals you meet and impact is long term. The lessons learned, on both sides, will be impactful for years to come.

...
SD
Susan Dousset
16 Jan 2024

From the very beginning of my search about volunteering with IVHQ, they answered every issue promptly, clearly, quickly and effectively. Due to the clear concise responses, I became a volunteer.

The local team in Ho Chi Minh City were everything I could have asked for in a support team. They were sensational and constantly went above and beyond being that my time was over Christmas and the New Year. Very high level of satisfaction for me.

Don’t hesitate to trust and embrace IVHQ as an opportunity to volunteer in a new culture, you will be well looked after, know exactly what to expect, and helped and supported with any touring you may want to experience as a tourist.

...
TS
Thomas Sanders
19 Dec 2023

Being immersed in Vietnamese culture, doing meaningful work and being surrounded by a team of people who make you smile everyday. I was initially nervous about joining the programme but it turned out to be one of the best experiences of my life so I would suggest to anyone considering it to step out of their comfort zone and go right ahead!

...
HR
Hoana Renau
10 Oct 2023

Ashlee was amazing from start to finish. I was able to navigate my way around the portal and even managed to switch my placements up and added a week in the food outreach program.

The local team were great to deal with. They were friendly and welcoming!

I found it interesting in the food outreach program as you could see instant gratification whereas working with the children is a long game as such. Which is not a bad thing as you know the work you put in will contribute to ongoing work by future volunteers.

I liked the idea the food was prepared and served by the hospitality school. So it was a double flip of giving back as the students were learning as they went too with not only the food prep and serving but with their English as well. :)

I would highly recommend any program with IVHQ in Asia as they are a well oiled machine. They were helpful and friendly the whole time I was there.

...
MP
Maria Poniris
04 Sep 2023

The volunteer program was such a great experience. I made so many friends, got the opportunity to see a different country, and was hopefully able to make a positive impact at the childcare center that I volunteered in.

...
NR
Nazurah Rahim
23 Aug 2023

IVHQ is very reliable and reputable, all information given were easy to follow through. The local team in Vietnam made me feel comfortable despite travelling solo for the first time. The people were very nice, approachable, and their English was well spoken and understood. I feel that I have discovered my passion in life - which is always to give back to the community through a platform of my interest - teaching and the arts. IVHQ has given me the opportunity to do something I love, while immersing myself in a new culture.

It is truly an eye-opening experience to not only volunteer, but to volunteer abroad, with the opportunity to interact with people from all over the world, and gain a different perspective while immersing myself in a new culture. To anyone who is afraid or anxious to travel solo, I was in that same position but IVHQ made everything comfortable and easy - from airport pick-up to meeting all the other volunteers at the hostel accommodation. This is my first time volunteering with IVHQ and certainly it won't be my last.

...

To read all reviews, visit our reviews page.

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Volunteer Abroad in Vietnam with IVHQ

Location

Ho Chi Minh City, formerly known as Saigon, is home to IVHQ’s Vietnam program. With high-tech industry, upmarket hotels, skyscrapers, shopping malls and buzzing nightlife, the city has a modern, dynamic atmosphere tempered by reminders of its history under French colonial rule and of its fall during the Vietnam War. While Vietnam has made great economic strides since then, the country is still recovering from the war and many people, especially ethnic minorities and those in rural areas, live without the basic necessities of life or find them difficult to access. Volunteers are needed to support efforts that help to further reduce poverty and hunger for these vulnerable people.

Arrival and orientation

The program orientation begins every Monday, and volunteers need to arrive in Ho Chi Minh City on the Sunday before orientation.

After you have registered for the program, please book your flights to arrive at the Tan Son Nhat International Airport (SGN) in Ho Chi Minh City. 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 Ho Chi Minh City. Your accommodation is covered by your Program Fee and includes the night before your program orientation.

If you are travelling in Vietnam prior to your volunteer program, you will need to make your own way to the volunteer accommodation on the day before your program orientation.

There are two options for orientation in Vietnam, a One-day Orientation and the Introduction Week Orientation.

One-day Orientation: This begins on your selected start date and all volunteers will attend. It covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program in Vietnam, including an introduction to the Vietnam 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, and arrange your SIM card. The orientation will also give you a chance to meet other volunteers and swap contact details for weekend travel and socialising.

Introduction Week Orientation: The Introduction Week begins on your selected start date and runs for five days. This option is very popular among IVHQ volunteers as you’ll gain a deeper understanding of the Vietnamese culture, a true appreciation of local life and have extra time to bond with your fellow volunteers. You’ll also get to see some of Ho Chi Minh’s notable landmarks, visit markets and take a Vietnamese cooking class. Plus, it’s a great way to help settle the culture shock you can face when arriving in Vietnam.

Introduction Week does incur an additional Add on for US$360 (approximately £298) to cover the additional costs. If you wish to participate in the Introduction Week, you can indicate this on your application form or let your Program Manager know once you have been accepted.

Volunteer schedule example

Weekdays

After the initial orientation day or week, you will work for approximately 4 to 6 hours per day. A typical schedule:

7:30 AM Breakfast at the college restaurant.
8:00 AM Volunteers leave home and travel to their placements. Work and hours are dependent on the project and placement that each volunteer is working at.
12:00 PM Lunch break. Lunch is served at the college restaurant or at the placement. However; volunteers are free to buy their own lunch​ at their expense​, which will usually cost between £1 - £3.
2:00 - 5:00 PM Work at the placement usually ends. Volunteers are free to travel home, prepare for the next day or do some shopping and sightseeing.
6:00 PM Dinner at the volunteer accommodation.

Weekends

During the weekends, volunteers have spare time and usually just relax or take the opportunity to explore other parts of Ho Chi Minh City or Vietnam.

Ho Chi Minh itself boasts an incredible number of things to see and do. You could find yourself gazing up at the famous Notre Dame Cathedral, or down at the lights of the city below from a bar on the rooftop of a towering skyscraper. You might pick your way through the local morning markets, sample the city’s mind-blowingly delicious street food, squeeze through the underground Cu Chi tunnels used by the Viet Cong during the war or admire a selection of ornate temples and pagodas.

Long weekends can be taken to travel further afield to engage in tourist activities, such as trekking, joining Vietnamese history tours and visiting the Mekong Delta.

Accommodation and WiFi

You’ll stay in an IVHQ volunteer dormitory at ​a tourism college which is a 30-minute drive from the tourist area of Ho Chi Minh City.

You can expect to share a room ​with up to 8 other volunteers, all sleeping in bunk beds. Living conditions are basic; however, there is air conditioning and fans for the hotter months. The showers are with cold running water (nice and refreshing in the hot weather!) While bedding is provided, it is recommended that you bring your own sleeping bag/silk liner (these can be purchased in Vietnam) and a mosquito net if you wish to travel during the weekends.

WiFi is available in the volunteer dormitory, however the connection can be slow so we recommend bringing an unlocked mobile phone and purchasing a local SIM card when you arrive in Vietnam. The local team can assist you with this during your program orientation.

Some placements are located relatively close to the volunteer accommodation, however in some instances, volunteers may need to travel by public bus for 30​ to 40​ minutes to their placements. If this is the case, you will be accompanied by a member of the local team for the first 2 or 3 days to ensure that you know where to go and can find your way around easily.

Meals

Volunteers in Ho Chi Minh City are served three meals per day during the week.

Breakfast is usually toast, cereal, fruit, tea and coffee. Lunch and dinner are typically traditional Vietnamese fare and include a wide variety of rice, noodle and soup dishes with plenty of vegetables, meats and fresh herbs. On the weekends volunteers are only served brunch and dinner.

If you have any special dietary requirements, please let us know when you apply for the program so we can make arrangements for you.

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 $400 Equivalent to $57/day
2 weeks $550 Equivalent to $39/day
3 weeks $740 Equivalent to $35/day
4 weeks $910 Equivalent to $33/day
5 weeks $1,080 Equivalent to $31/day
6 weeks $1,250 Equivalent to $30/day
8 weeks $1,590 Equivalent to $28/day
10 weeks $1,930 Equivalent to $28/day
12 weeks $2,270 Equivalent to $27/day
  • All programs attract a Registration Fee of US$329 (approximately £272) 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 Vietnam - Ho Chi Minh generally find US$50 per week to be sufficient for expenses.
  • Meals
  • Airport pick-up
  • 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
  • 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.

  • Return to the airport when your program finishes and transport to and from your volunteer placement each day
  • 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 Ho Chi Minh

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

Cu Chi Tunnel
Cu Chi Tunnel

Embark on a captivating journey through history with our Cu Chi Tunnels Half Day Tour. Delve into the wartime significance of this underground network, crawl through tunnels once used by guerrilla fighters, and soak in the lush green scenery en route. Departing from Ho Chi Minh City, our luxury transport takes you on a scenic 1.5-hour ride to the tunnels. Explore the intricate passageways and even witness remnants of battle. With all-inclusive amenities and expert guides, it’s a memorable adventure back in time. Please note that the Cu Chi tunnels tour is included in the introduction week so you will not need to add this to your itinerary if you are already joining the introduction week.

£128
Vietnam Introduction Week
Vietnam Introduction Week

Gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of the Vietnamese culture.

£298

Check what's required to visit Vietnam

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 Hanoi
Population 96 million
Languages Vietnamese
Currency Vietnamese Dong (VND)
Time zone (UTC+7)

Weather and climate

Vietnam has a tropical monsoon climate, with humidity averaging 84 per cent throughout the year. However, because of differences in latitude and diverse geography, the climate tends to vary considerably from place to place.

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!