Make your family holiday really count. No piano recitals, no football practices, no staying late at the office. No schedules or distractions. Instead, invest in quality time, adventure and meaningful work with your family. Volunteering abroad with your children, parents or siblings offers you a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reconnect with your loved ones in beautiful destinations across the world, while working on community development projects with sustainable long-term goals. Our projects are driven by a core mission: positive impact. GVI is committed to sustainable change alongside both our local project participants and our global partners.
What are you waiting for?
Travel to breathtaking locations around the world and contribute to sustainable community projects that are run in collaboration with our partners on the ground. We offer family volunteer opportunities in the following countries:
Travel to Siem Reap in Cambodia where you can contribute towards projects with a focus on education, public health and gender equality.
Participants on a volunteer teaching program typically spend a portion of their day teaching English to Buddhist monks and the rest of the day at other educational facilities teaching English to children. You could also assist with early childhood development initiatives or contribute to gender equality through a women’s empowerment volunteer program or women’s economic empowerment program.
While volunteering in Cambodia, you’ll be staying at a guesthouse in the city centre – which is ideally situated to take in all that Siem Reap has to offer during your free time. Spend your evenings and weekends visiting restaurants, markets, temples and national parks, including the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Angkor Archaeological Park.
Our base in Costa Rica is in the mid-sized city of Cartago, near the border of the San Jose province. From here we run projects that focus on teaching English and community development and women’s empowerment and gender equality.
With national parks and volcanoes on your doorstep, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to take in the natural beauty of the country – hiking to waterfalls, white-water rafting and tubing down rivers, or taking a jungle canopy tour. Known for its beaches and famous surf spots, head down to the Costa Rican coast for a weekend of swimming, surfing and snorkelling.
Adventure seekers as well as those in search of a peaceful travel experience will love our base in the popular town of Pokhara, the second-most visited city in Nepal. With views of the Himalayas, volunteers can spend their free time cycling or walking around Phewa Lake and visiting the many Hindu temples and Buddhist monasteries in the area. Before or after your volunteer program, you and your family could also take part in one of the many available trekking activities, including the Annapurna Sanctuary trek and Everest Base Camp trek.
Our community volunteer programs in Nepal focus on women’s empowerment, construction, teaching, public health and early childhood development. Working alongside local educational facilities, you can assist with renovations to classrooms and libraries. Or support educators in pre-primary and primary schools with literacy and numeracy lessons. During a volunteer teaching program, participants can also facilitate after-school classes for young learners and conversational English classes for local women and other adults.
In Nepal, we work closely SASANE, a survivor-led anti-human trafficking organisation that rasises awareness about human trafficking, gender based violence, child marriage and sexual exploitation.
If you’re looking for a tropical beach destination, our base in Phang Nga in Southern Thailand is for you. Here you could join a volunteer program which assists with teaching English to children. During this program you can also contribute to after-school activities like art and craft sessions or sports lessons. Or your family could choose to volunteer on a global public health program where you might conduct nutrition and hygiene workshops in the local community, or organise sports and physical fitness classes at local schools.
As one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, Thailand is a perfect destination for families looking to combine travel with a volunteer experience. You’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to food, beaches, waterfalls, cultural sites and national parks. Our base is a short walk from the beach and the centre of the village – where you’ll find markets, shops and food vendors.
All of our community volunteer programs are locally-led and based on the needs of the communities in which we work. Working together with local partner organisations, governments and NGOS, and with on-the-ground teams and sustainable long-term goals, our projects run throughout the year.
Our programs align with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), with our community projects specifically focusing on Goal 3: Good Health And Well-being, Goal 4: Quality Education, Goal 5: Gender Equality, Goal 8: Decent Work And Economic Growth and Goal 10: Reduced Inequalities.
Please note that GVI does not support or endorse volunteering at orphanages. You can learn more about our stance on orphanage volunteering here.
At GVI we believe the most effective and ethical way to volunteer with children is to support our partners who are doing impactful educational work on the ground. While volunteers support local educators in teaching English, you might also support the teaching of other subjects if you have the necessary expertise. English is an important skill in many countries as it is the main language of tourism, which is a large part of the country’s economy and related job opportunities.
We are your trusted guide throughout your journey and we guarantee unparalleled 360 degree support from the moment you first get in touch.
When accompanied by a guardian, participants of 14 years and older are welcome to join our family volunteer programs.
We offer a variety of accommodation options that are suitable for families. Depending on the number of volunteers in your group and your needs, these could include a private apartment or a hotel located close to our base. Our enrolment team will be able to assist with making sure you and your family have the most suitable accommodation to match your travel requirements.
We don’t have any language requirements, except on our Costa Rica program. When volunteering in Cartago, Costa Rica participants are required to have a grasp of Spanish so they can meaningfully engage with our partners and members of the community. If you aren’t already fluent, you’ll be able to take Spanish lessons on the GVI base.
If we have any other questions head on over to our FAQs page or reach out to our enrolment team who will be happy to answer any questions you have about our family volunteering programs.