Volunteering abroad is kind of a big deal. You’re going to be getting up close and personal with a tight knit community somewhere else in the world. Chances are, you’re going to get to know that community very well, and even become a big part of it. You can get a huge amount of satisfaction and experience many benefits from volunteering abroad. If this is something that interests you, this post has everything you need to know:
You Must Read Your Online Briefing Over and Over
Read the briefing of the place you are considering over and over before you actually make up your mind. Think of the things you will not be able to survive without. Some places will mean you have little luxuries to keep you going, but you might not be so lucky in other places. For example, don’t always assume that hot showers are the norm. You won’t always get TV access either. In fact, it’s quite rare. That’s one of the great things about volunteering, though. You get to live like the people of the community, experience another world, and when you get home you’ll value your life so much more.
Pack A Phrase Book
It’s only polite to learn a few key phrases for the place you plan on going. Try to learn as much as you can in advance, but take a phrasebook with you in case you need it too. Not knowing how to speak the language can be a real handicap.
Pack As Lightly As You Can
Packing a huge suitcase isn’t going to help anybody. Try to pack as light as you can. Make sure you pack your essentials, like socks, shoes, and pants. However, consider buying much of what you need over there, if possible. You were probably going to do some tourist shopping anyway, and this way, you can fit right in with the locals.
Learn About The Medical System
You want to stay safe as you volunteer, so make sure you learn about the medical system before you go. Where do you go for medication and prescriptions? What do you do if you are feeling unwell? It’s crucial you learn these things, and ensure you visit the doctors before you leave too, as you may need jabs and things to protect you.
Choose The Right Location For You
There are a lot of different volunteering locations you can choose from depending on what is important to you. Make sure you consider things like culture shock, as it can have a huge impact on your experience. Consider your place from an ethical standpoint too, as some things can hurt a community more than help it. You can volunteer in Costa Rica, Thailand, Ghana, and a number of other places.
Have More Money Than You Think You’ll Use
Although you’re helping out, it’s still a good idea to have more money than you think you’ll use. Save, save, save in case of emergencies!
You Must Be Passionate, Friendly, And Hardworking
Although you’re volunteering, being hardworking is a must. Being both passionate and friendly is a good idea too. You’ll have a much better time!