International Volunteer Workcamps  



































































































































































































































































































































































































































































 

Summer day camp program for children with autism
Comox Valley, British Columbia          July 6 - July 27, 2013
Comox Valley, British Columbia          July 7 - July 28, 2012
Comox Valley, British Columbia          July 9 - July 30, 2011
Comox Valley, British Columbia          July 10 - July 31, 2010
Comox Valley, British Columbia          July 11 - August 1, 2009
Comox Valley, British Columbia          July 12 - August 2, 2008
Comox Valley, British Columbia          July 8 - July 28, 2007
Comox Valley, British Columbia          July 9 - July 29, 2006

Volunteer project: The international volunteers will help provide social and recreational summer day camp program for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in the Comox Valley. The children, ages 10-15 years, are quite high functioning in certain areas, but often struggle with social skills and the mastery of appropriate communication and behaviour. The project will include one week intensive training of the volunteers followed by the 2-week day camp with the kids.

"I know for me it was an experience of a lifetime that I will always cherish
and hope it was the same for the kids."   James L., Cadip volunteer 2007

The volunteers will learn about Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and how to support these children in a social/recreational program. Under the direction of the campleader, the volunteers will support the children to participate in small group activities such as planning and performing skits which explore daily life with ASD, preparing lunch meals, exploring the community on daily outings including local lakes, rivers, beaches and farms, etc. The group work is intended to provide children with specific tasks and encourage both appropriate social and communication skills. Volunteers will also help to create a handbook about summer activities for youth in the Comox Valley drawing on the experiences of the workcamp. The volunteers involved in this project will gain valuable insight into the world of autism.

Requirements: Volunteers need to be fluent in English. They are required to provide a clear criminal record check.

Accommodation: In a youth hostel.

Location: Stretching along the eastern coast of Vancouver Island, the Comox Valley is a collection of rolling mountains, alpine meadows, rushing rivers, pristine lakes, lush forests, fertile farms, sandy beaches and green parks. The City of Courtenay (20,000 inhabitants) is the urban and cultural hub of the Comox Valley with its downtown considered to be one of the most vibrant and charming downtowns on Vancouver Island and an incredible cultural district that includes theatre, art gallery, museums and paleontology centre.

Nearest international airport: Victoria, BC

                                                                                                                                  

 

Restoration of Killaloe’s Hoch Farm heritage site
Killaloe, Ontario          June 4 - June 24, 2006

Volunteer project: Pioneer farming and active encouragement of immigration were hallmarks of the young Canada. The Hoch Farm is the only designated heritage site in Killaloe-Hagarty-Richards Township, Ontario. It reflects the pioneering agricultural development of the area, as well as its rich cultural background. The property was originally a land grant offered by the early Government of Canada to Europeans willing to immigrate to Renfrew County. As a result, the ethnic German and Polish population in the area grew significantly in the 19c.
The aim of the project is to turn the old pioneer immigrant homestead into a full-fledged heritage site. The farmhouse was renovated and partially opened as a museum in the summer of 2005. The plan is to open the second floor this year. The other initiative of the farm is the development of an adjacent wetland conservation area as an environmental education centre on the eastern side of the property.

The volunteers will tackle the cleaning and painting of the second floor of the farmhouse, as well as the repair of the floor in its main room. They will also clean out the barn and the area around it as a preliminary step in the establishment of a show-place for heritage farm implements and vehicles. In addition, the volunteer group will lay down the planking for the walk-ways in the conservation area. Finally, they would help with the installation of community gardens.
As a side activity, the group can help in the installation of a concrete pad for the local hockey rink. This project would allow this space to become a year-round recreation facility - for example, through the erection of basketball nets, and the construction of ramps for a skate-board park.

Location: The Township of Killaloe, Hagarty and Richards is situated in the western part of Renfrew County in Eastern Ontario. Ottawa is about two hours drive east of the township, and Toronto is about three and a half hours southwest. While there, you can check out the First Canadian Polish settlement located amongst the beautiful rolling hills in Wilno, or try your hand at fishing on Round Lake. Round Lake also provides great opportunities for canoeing, swimming, or even a relaxing boat ride.

Nearest international airports: Ottawa, ON and Toronto, ON

                                                                                                                                  

 

Art, music and gardening program for elderly people in Vancouver
Vancouver, British Columbia          August 9 - August 29, 2009
Vancouver, British Columbia          July 19 - August 8, 2009
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 28 - July 18, 2009
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 7 - June 27, 2009
Vancouver, British Columbia          August 10 - August 30, 2008
Vancouver, British Columbia          July 20 - August 9, 2008
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 29 - July 19, 2008
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 8 - June 28, 2008
Vancouver, British Columbia          August 5 - August 25, 2007
Vancouver, British Columbia          July 15 - August 4, 2007
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 24 - July 14, 2007
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 3 - June 23, 2007
Vancouver, British Columbia          August 6 - August 26, 2006
Vancouver, British Columbia          July 16 - August 5, 2006
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 25 - July 15, 2006
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 4 - June 24, 2006

Volunteer project: The project supports the largest care facility for elderly people in the West End of Vancouver. The Centre provides independent housing, assisted living and complex care for elders. It supports the Eden philosophy and is committed to creating a human habitat where life revolves around close and continuing contact with plants, animals, children and youth. The Centre aims at establishing a homelike environment that emphasizes a quality of life supporting the physical, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual well-being of each person.
Volunteers will contribute to the quality of life of the elders by taking part in a multifaceted program involving residents in gardening, art, music activities, walking and just being outside in the summer time.

Volunteers would accompany staff and residents on outings allowing the involvement of more residents. Volunteers would be paired with residents for walking and will assist staff with the gardening, art and music programs. Volunteers will accompany residents on trips to the museum, art gallery, parks as well as bus trips for picnics or prearranged tours. Walks or bus trips will be organized to sites for art sessions or gathering items for art such as leaves, flowers, etc. The group will help organize a walking event in which residents compete at different levels – walking category, wheelchair, etc. Volunteers are expected to be creative, flexible, respectful and responsive to the residents’ needs.

Accommodation: In the Centre for elderly people. Volunteers should bring a sleeping bag.

Location: The project takes place in Downtown Vancouver, close to museums, theatre, art gallery, upscale shopping and Stanley park with its beaches and other attractions. Vancouver’s most popular shopping area – the trendy Robson street is just a block away. The centerpiece and green heart of Vancouver is Stanley Park, the city's most famous landmark, and one of the largest parks in any urban centre in North America. There are wooded trails, open playing fields, secluded lakes, gorgeous gardens, and the Vancouver Aquarium, the largest in Canada. A seawall walkway meanders along the park's perimeter, with beautiful views of the city skyline, the harbour, beaches, and the spectacular North Shore Mountains. Vancouver's fame as one of the most beautiful cities in the world is tied to Stanley Park's popularity.

Nearest international airport: Vancouver, BC

                                                                                                                                  

 

Environmental, restoration and social work with first nation kids
Koeye, British Columbia          July 27 - August 9, 2008
Koeye, British Columbia          July 13 - July 26, 2008
Koeye, British Columbia          July 29 - August 11, 2007
Koeye, British Columbia          July 15 - July 28, 2007
Koeye, British Columbia          August 6 - August 19, 2005
Koeye, British Columbia          July 23 - August 5, 2005
Koeye, British Columbia          July 9 - July 22, 2005

Volunteer project: Located in British Columbia’s Great Bear Rainforest and overlooking the Pacific, the Koeye (pronounced “kway”) have been for millennia cherished by the Heiltsuk First Nation people for its healing and sustenance and have been a home for 'Qaikas Nan' - the Great Grizzly Bear. International volunteers will support Heiltsuk youth, culture and environment at the mouth of Koeye River. The Heiltsuk are opening a traditional ceremonial Bighouse which is to support the culture and science camps organized for kids and youth as well as their healing programs.
Volunteers will assist the Heiltsuk First Nation with restoration project and the completion of the traditional ceremonial Bighouse. They will be also involved in some work with the youth culture and science camps, healing courses and non-profit ecotourism which will also be on site.

Volunteers will help landscaping the Bighouse area, including bushing, moving sand and rock, stream clean-up, rock fire pit work and building. Among the other planned activities are clearing and building trails, some garden preparation for medicine and demonstration gardens and collecting plants, assisting the set up of obstacle course for team building. Volunteers may also take part in some plant propagation and pruning for trails as part of a 1000-year restoration plan for a small logged area.
Around 30 first nation kids at the age of 10-15, some of whom with disabilities, attend the culture and science camps at Koeye each week. Volunteers will be involved in organizing and attending some activities with those kids. Each Friday night, a feast is held around the big camp fire, filled with traditional songs, dances and ceremonies. Kids present what they’ve learned of their cultural history and the elderly tell stories about the past.

Requirements: Volunteers are required to provide a clear criminal record check.

Accommodation: Volunteers will be accommodated in the big lodge and/or in two smaller cabins with bunk beds. Sleeping bags required. Canoes are available for use of the volunteers in their free time. All facilities are within a half kilometer of the Bighouse. The place is very remote but well equipped.

Location: Koeye River Watershed, 30 miles south of Bella Bella and 70 miles north of Port Hardy. Surrounded by beautiful sandy beaches and rugged coastline with numerous islands, inlets and coves, this magnificent area offers breathtaking scenery and wildlife.

Nearest international airport: Vancouver, BC

                                                                                                                                  

 

 

Preserving heritage varieties and endangered species in the Kootenays
Nelson, British Columbia          August 6 - August 19, 2006

Volunteer project: The project is organised in cooperation with a local environmental organization that addresses community environmental and social issues. They focus on developing and running programs for sustainable agriculture and community gardening, waste reduction and composting, environmental education, eco-forestry, alternative energy and ecological restoration.

This project aims to involve international volunteers in environmental gardening projects connected to food security and preserving endangered and heritage varieties. The project for increasing local food security links homeowners who are unable to harvest their fruit trees with community members who can use their fruit. The harvested fruit is shared with non-profit community organizations that distribute fruit to people with low incomes. Some of the volunteers’ activities will be related to preserving heritage varieties of vegetables and fruit. Heritage varieties have been grown by humans over many generations but are now very rare since modern agriculture has selected only a handful of food crops to grow and today 75% of the vegetable and fruit varieties in North America are endangered.

Volunteers will work on different gardening projects. They will help harvest medicinal herbs, cull a garden, save and dry seeds, pick local fruit, dry fruits and herbs, harvest vegetables and coordinate seed saving of heritage varieties and medicinal plants.

Accommodation: In a building. Sleeping bags will be necessary.

Location: Surrounded by pristine mountains and set on the shores of the giant Kootenay Lake in the interior of British Columbia, Nelson is a place where life is unhurried and people say "hello" to strangers. In 19 c. gold and silver were found in the area and Nelson grew quickly as a result of the frantic mining activity. Turn-of-the-century ambiance still lingers in every corner from the 350 preserved heritage buildings. Lakeside Park is the pride of Nelson’s waterfront, encompassing almost every outdoor activity that you can imagine. A long, beautiful beach, wide promenade and large open green spaces highlight the area.

Nearest international airport: Spokane, Washington, USA

                                                                                                                                  

 

Therapeutic and social programs for elderly people in Vancouver
Vancouver, British Columbia          August 11 - August 31, 2013
Vancouver, British Columbia          July 21 - August 10, 2013
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 30 - July 20, 2013
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 9 - June 29, 2013
Vancouver, British Columbia          August 5 - August 25, 2012
Vancouver, British Columbia          July 15 - August 4, 2012
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 24 - July 14, 2012
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 3 - June 23, 2012
Vancouver, British Columbia          August 7 - August 27, 2011
Vancouver, British Columbia          July 17 - August 6, 2011
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 26 - July 16, 2011
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 5 - June 25, 2011
Vancouver, British Columbia          August 8 - August 28, 2010
Vancouver, British Columbia          July 18 - August 7, 2010
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 27 - July 17, 2010
Vancouver, British Columbia          June 6 - June 26, 2010

Volunteer project: The project supports the largest care facility for elderly people in the West End of Vancouver. The Centre provides independent housing, assisted living and complex care for elders. It supports the Eden philosophy and is committed to creating a human habitat where life revolves around close and continuing contact with plants, animals, children and youth. The Centre aims at establishing a homelike environment that emphasizes a quality of life supporting the physical, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual well-being of each person.

Volunteers will contribute to the quality of life of the elders by supporting them in a variety of therapeutic, social, and physical programs and special events. Activities include art, horticultural therapy, music therapy, exercise programs and seasonal/theme parties. Volunteers with musical interests are encouraged to bring their instrument. We also have several pianos on site.

Volunteers will work with residents in both one-to-one and group settings. There will be structured activities and a daily schedule of events but volunteers are also expected to be motivated, independent, and to make effective use of their unscheduled time. A typical day might include: making a collage, leading a discussion group, putting up party decorations, playing cards, and taking residents out for walks. Over the course of the summer there will also be various outings such as scenic drives, picnics, and visits to the aquarium and/or art gallery.

All volunteers are expected to be creative, flexible, respectful and responsive to the residents’ needs. The benefits to volunteering at this project are immeasurable. We are offering volunteers an amazing opportunity to develop relationships with interesting and loving seniors. The volunteers who have a person-centered approach to their volunteerism and who are looking for these personal connections are the ones that will benefit the most from this experience.

Requirements: Volunteers are required to provide a clear criminal record check.

Accommodation: All volunteers will live at the Centre, sleeping quarters are co-ed dormitory-style and volunteers are asked to bring a sleeping bag.

Location: The project takes place in downtown Vancouver, close to museums, theatres, art gallery, and numerous other attractions. Vancouver’s most popular shopping area, trendy Robson Street, is just a block away. The centerpiece and green heart of Vancouver is Stanley Park, the city's most famous landmark, and one of the largest parks in any urban centre in North America. There are wooded trails, open playing fields, secluded lakes, gorgeous gardens, and the Vancouver Aquarium, the largest in Canada. A seawall walkway meanders along the park's perimeter, with beautiful views of the city skyline, the harbour, beaches, and the spectacular North Shore Mountains. Vancouver's fame as one of the most beautiful cities in the world is tied to Stanley Park’s natural beauty.

Nearest international airport: Vancouver, BC

 

                                                                                                                                  

 

Renovation of social housing residence in Vancouver
Vancouver, British Columbia          August 6 - August 26, 2006

Volunteer project: While Vancouver is one of the wealthiest and most beautiful cities in Canada, it is also a home of the poorest neighbourhood across the country The international volunteer workcamp is one of the many projects undertaken by charity and non-profit organizations to improve the housing situation and life of the poor, disadvantaged and displaced people in this area.
The volunteer project is organized in cooperation with a community based organization focusing on the key components of poverty and homelessness. They work to provide decent, secure and affordable housing, jobs, community and recreational facilities for the low-income population. The organization manages 562 units of social housing at four locations.
One of them is Marie Gomez House, providing home for 76 low-income people who live in small self-contained units. All residents are multibarriered and at extreme risk of becoming homeless. Many of them are mentally ill or drug-addicted. Marie Gomez House is in serious need of renovation. International group of volunteers will help in partial demolition, various renovation and reconstruction works. The building enhancements will help to foster a sense of home and empowerment among the residents.

Volunteers will work on the renovation of the building. The renovation and reconstruction activities include demolition of patios, removing debris, painting, flooring, gardening, shrub removal, planting an indigenous garden. The work will be mostly manual and sometimes physically demanding.

No special skills are needed but people with skills in painting, carpentry and gardening are very welcome.

Accommodation: In a building located in Downtown Vancouver, 10 min walking from the work site. Sleeping bags will be needed.

Location: The Downtown Eastside is the oldest neighbourhood in Vancouver. This area was the center of the City at the turn of the century. City hall, the courthouse and the Vancouver Carnegie Public Library were all located here. It was also the main shopping area for the city as well as major cultural and entertainment district. Here are the very popular Vancouver's historic Chinatown and Gastown Historical District.

Nearest international airport: Vancouver, BC

                                                                                                                                  

 

 

Renovation and environmental works by Sylvan Lake
Sylvan Lake, Alberta          August 13 - August 26, 2006

Volunteer project: Camp Sherbino is in a natural setting on the northeast shore of Sylvan Lake in Central Alberta. Many children and adults have benefited from the closeness to nature and local wildlife. You can see a beaver passing by the camp, a moose standing in the dark or hear the voice of coyote in the night. This camp is a learning environment for all groups. The camp requires labour intensive work to its buildings and grounds which these groups are unable to perform due to age and ability.

Volunteers will help with some building renovation and construction works as well as environmental maintenance on the grounds surrounding the camp. The tasks would include hauling and cutting wood from the bush, painting exterior of buildings, cleaning eavestroughs, building a small cook house deck, cutting and laying old carpet for trails, burning brush, clearing out old camp sites and some carpentry work. Work can be physically demanding at times.

Accommodation: The camp is basic with three small cabins, a cookhouse and Clarence Hall. Volunteers will sleep in Clarence Hall, a large heated building. They will require sleeping bags. Water is taken from an underground well in a well house. Volunteers can enjoy swimming, jet skiing and kayaking in the lake in their free time.

Location: Camp Sherbino is located on the northeast side of Sylvan Lake in Lacombe County. It is 5 km north of the town of Sylvan Lake. The town of Sylvan Lake, famous as “A Town For All Seasons”, is situated in Central Alberta, midway between Alberta's largest cities, Edmonton and Calgary (161 km from each), and is the gateway to the beautiful Sylvan Lake Provincial Park. It has the second largest marina in the province, with one of the cleanest lakes in Canada.

Nearest international airports: Calgary, AB and Edmonton, AB

                                                                                                                                  

 

"The Power of One" solar car project
from Buffalo, NY, USA to Inuvik, NT, Canada          June 5 - July 25, 2008

Volunteer project: The objective of "The Power of One" solar car project is to develop and build a solar car to set a world distance record. Its mission: to fulfill a dream and inspire others to build their dreams in a positive way to benefit mankind and the environment. Its commitment: to promote the use of clean and sustainable energy.

We plan to start the tour at June 5th in Buffalo, NY. The "The Power of One" solar car project will be attempting to reach the Inuvik, NT, the most northern place on the planet by road. The goal is to arrive in Inuvik, the land of the midnight sun, by June 21st which is the longest day of the year. The tour is expected to last about 40 days and end back in Buffalo, NY on July 25th.

The volunteers will share the driving of support vehicle following the solar car, help set up solar array in the morning and afternoon for charging the solar car batteries, share duties to ready solar car and trailer, take photos, film. In short, do whatever tasks may be required to safely help the tour get on the way. The volunteers will act as support vehicle driver and navigator in turns. The support vehicle driver will be also responsible for maintaining communication with solar car driver. The navigator will be also the liaison with others (e.g. media and supporters) and logistics.

Special requirements: Driver's license, positive attitude, capable of working independently & without supervision, good interpersonal skills, enjoy working outside, willing to work long hours. No engineering experience required.

Accommodation: Camping (bring your camping gear), occasionally accommodation staying as guests in homes of supporters along the way.

Location: More than 6000 km tour from Buffalo, NY to Inuvik, NT, and back to Buffalo, NY.

                                                                                                                                  

 

Support and leisure program for people with intellectual disabilities
Kawartha Lakes, Ontario          August 6 - August 26, 2006

Volunteer project: Community living is something most people experience naturally, as part of our daily lives. We live in communities, go to schools and have the opportunity to work at real jobs and to contribute as productive citizens. But for many people who have intellectual or developmental challenges, community living is a dream, an objective yet to be realized. At all ages, many people with intellectual challenges face physical and social barriers that keep them from participating in the social, recreational and economic world around them.
The volunteer project will support  a community organisation in Kawartha Lakes, providing a wide range of services and direct support to people with intellectual challenges as they develop their capacity to live, learn, work and participate in all aspects of living in the community. They also help the community to develop its capacity to welcome and support individuals who have not always had the same opportunities as the rest of us to participate in community life in meaningful and productive ways.

The volunteer group will do some landscaping and ground enhancement as well as painting and minor repairs on some of the residences of the association where the support programs take place. The volunteers will also work directly with the people affected by disabilities from the City of Kawartha Lakes involving support to adults in day programs and organizing leisure activities for the youths with intellectual challenges.

Accommodation: In a building. Sleeping bags will be necessary.

Location: Kawartha Lakes is just over one hour northeast of Toronto in central Ontario and has 250 lakes and waterways to enjoy. Many of the lakes are linked by the scenic Trent-Severn Waterway, a water system of canals and lakes that allow boaters to travel the 387 kilometers of water from Lake Ontario up to Lake Huron. It takes roughly a week to travel the full length of the system by boat. The City of Kawartha Lakes is a “community of communities” with a population of 72.000, offering various recreational choices, historical attractions and festivals throughout the year.

Nearest international airport: Toronto, ON

                                                                                                                                  

 

 

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