Volunteer Interview: Peru With IVHQ

December 24, 2009

Today's blog entry is courtesy of Dani Scism, who volunteered for five weeks in Peru with International Volunteer Headquarters. You can read more about IVHQ here. Thanks, Dani!

About You

Volunteer Global: In which city do you live? What is something interesting about it?

Dani Scism: Currently I live in Washington, D.C. with my husband and our abnormally hairy child, named Kitty. As we’re all Arizona natives, we’re still adjusting to east coast living and the cold,...

Volunteer Story: Earthwatch Project In Mongolia

December 22, 2009

Today's blog entry comes courtesy of Ruth Fitzpatrick, who volunteered with Earthwatch on a small mammal research project in Mongolia, 2007. You can read more and view her travel pictures here. Thanks, Ruth!

My flights all went well, with no problems in either security or immigrations. I went from Anchorage to Portland to Los Angeles to Seoul (South Korea) to Mongolia, for a total of 21 hours of actual flight time and 10.5 hours of layovers. The return trip was pretty much the...

Guest Article: The Global Citizen Project, By Charyn Pfeuffer

December 21, 2009

Today's blog post is courtesy of Charyn Pfeuffer, who is embarking on the Global Citizen Project, which will take her on 12 volunteer projects in 12 different locations over 12 months. You can read more about it here and donate here. Thanks, Charyn!

 More than a decade ago, I stumbled into a writing career while running the Personals and Promotions department at...

Volunteering To Support Art And Artisans

November 03, 2009

A few days ago, Malcolm Trevina of Meaningful Volunteer sent me a story about Grassroots Uganda, a small group that started with a young woman named Alaisa Nandudu and a bracelet.

"Alaisa had been up all night and making this seed bracelet. I was suitably impressed. Alaisa was living in a small house with her husband, four of her own kids, two HIV orphaned nephews, and a bunch of chickens. Alaisa and her family were eating maybe one...

Connecting With Your Prospective, Current, And Returned Volunteers

October 21, 2009

If you coordinate a volunteer abroad program, you probably know that it’s important to connect volunteers, alumni, and prospective volunteers with one another. It’s essential for marketing to your target audience before, during, and after volunteering abroad.

Here are a few ideas on connecting your volunteers:

Social Networking

Create a fan page on Facebook, organize a group on LinkedIn, make pinboards on Pinterest, and update your new links and programs on Twitter.


I’m separating this out from social media, as some forums are a bit more private and the...

Keeping Fit While Traveling

October 05, 2009

Update! We've made a video about this blog post--watch it here!

While it might be tempting to forego exercise on your travels, it shouldn’t be forgotten. If you’re working on a trail building, construction, or similar project, then you’re in luck—your workout is built in! However, if you’re on a less physically demanding project, then you’ll probably want to put together a workout plan, even if it’s just a few simple routines.


Cardio is the easiest part...

Traveling Abroad: Vaccinations And Medications

October 01, 2009

Update! We've made a neat lil' video about this blog--click here to watch!

Today let’s talk about medicine and travel—how do you get your prescriptions while traveling abroad? And how will you know what vaccines you’ll need before your trip?

Travel Vaccines

If you know you're going to be traveling abroad, especially to a developing country, the first thing to do is to visit your general practitioner or a travel clinic if...

Volunteering Abroad For Disaster Relief

September 18, 2009

Today, let’s go over volunteering for disaster relief—these are first-response and ongoing programs to help a community or group of people following natural and manmade disasters.

What’s Involved In Volunteering For Disaster Relief?

Volunteers can be on-call or ongoing participants for disaster relief projects, which help to provide preliminary and ongoing help after natural or manmade catastrophes.

This can include debris cleanup, search and rescue, First Aid or other medical care, and preventative strategies (such as bracing shelters against hurricane wind damage).


Volunteer Abroad For Trail Building

September 15, 2009

What’s Involved In Volunteering For Trail Work?

These projects range from light work to strenuous. Volunteers clear brush or invasive species; map trail routes; help build new trails by moving debris and flattening the route; create signage for nature walks; build bridges across streams, lakes, and rivers; and observe and report on flora and fauna in the area.

Trail projects are some of the most flexible service activities worldwide, allowing volunteers to work for one day to several months, and with different levels of difficulty depending on hiking experience and overall health...

Volunteering Abroad For Business Administration

September 14, 2009

For today's post, let's talk about volunteering for business administration. This is an extremely versatile project that can help build the economic structure of an entire community, or just assist with the day-to-day work of a small company. 

What’s Involved In Volunteering For Business Administration?

With administrative work, you’ll help with such projects as:

  • Fundraising
  • Grant writing
  • Office management
  • Greeting visitors and conducting tours
  • Brainstorming business development ideas
  • Writing newsletter articles...