Volunteer in India

Learn about Tibetan culture, support a local school and hike in the Himalayas
Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh       September 5 - September 25, 2016

Volunteer project: Valleys of the Himalayas - This small paradise on earth is home to His Holiness Dalai Lama and to a significant Tibetan settlement in India. Dharamshala is set in the backdrop of the snow-clad peaks of Dhaulathar Mountains. It is the capital of the Tibetan Government in exile and the residence of the Dalai Lama.

The project aims to provide sanitation and safety wall facilities for a local school and a cleaner environment for the community which is being affected by tourist influx and lack of waste management and watershed management systems. The project also wants to create awareness on the Tibetan migrants and their culture.
We have been conducting international volunteer projects in McLeod Ganj, Dharamsala for the last 9 years with the purpose of bringing a sustainable model for development of the region in partnership with school management committees, the Tibetan Welfare Office and the local municipality.

In the first two weeks of this project, the volunteers will work on the construction of school safety walls, wall painting, educational murals, teaching basic English and Mathematics to children. There will be also cleanup activities in the area of the waterfalls, creating awareness among the community and tourists to support responsible tourism, Health and Hygiene awareness, tree planting to avoid landslides, cleaning ponds and tanks. Through their work in the community, the volunteers will promote eco-friendly practices.

Leisure activities: During the project, the volunteers will get the opportunity to learn about the Tibetan culture and the different issues related to the exile of its people and their re-settlement in India. There will be cultural activities, daily visits to important cultural sites and meetings with Tibetan monks and youth with the support of the Tibetan Welfare Office.

On the third week of the project, the volunteers will take part in a four-day trekking activity around the mountains of Dharamsala and Triund.

Language: English

Accommodation: In a guesthouse with shared rooms.

Location: McLeod Ganj is a suburb of Dharamsala in Kangra district. Dharamshala is located in the state of Himachal Pradesh, North India, 500 kilometers from Delhi. Dharamshala is accessible by bus on a daily basis from New Delhi and other smaller cities of North India. The nearest railway stations are Pathankot and Kangra Mandir. Delhi is the nearest international airport.

Age range: 18 and over

Extra fee: 18,000 Indian Rupees (about $285 US)
The extra fee is intended to support the local host of the project who does not have sufficient funds. It is due upon arrival.

Teaching English and creating a better environment in schools and orphanages in Goa
Goa       2 projects of 2 wks in September and October

Volunteer project: Situated on the west coast on the shore of Arabian Sea, Goa was the former Portuguese colony in India. It is one of India's most cherished and prominent locations for travelers since many years for its remarkable palm-fringed beaches.

The aim of the project is to support schools and orphanages, and to provide safe, clean, creative and environmentally friendly atmosphere for the children.

The international volunteers will teach basic English, Health and Hygiene, and Environmental protection to children in schools and orphanages, employing creative learning methods like art, music, games, etc. The group will help improve the children's environment through wall painting, planting trees, setting up a kitchen garden, minor repair work on school kitchen and toilet. The volunteers can take the children out in the city for picnics, exposure visits and city walks.
House visits and meetings with local rural people are part of the program to provide opportunity for intercultural learning and raising awareness on health, education and hygiene.

Leisure activities: Visiting cultural and religious sites, Indian family visit, intercultural exchange with the local community.

Language: English

Accommodation: In a guesthouse with shared rooms.

Location: Canacona, a seaside village in Goa, 650 km south of Mumbai. The nearest international airports are Mumbai, Bangalore and Panjim. The nearest railway station is Madgaon. Buses operate on a daily basis from Mumbai, Bangalore, Panjim and Madgaon.

Age range: 18 and over

Extra fee: 15,000 Indian Rupees (about $230 US)
The extra fee is intended to support the local host of the project who does not have sufficient funds. It is due upon arrival.

All available dates for this project:
September 5 - September 18, 2016
October 3 - October 16, 2016

Sustainable agriculture, creative teaching and yoga experience
Kundapur, Karnataka       4 projects of 2 wks from September to December

Volunteer project: Kundapur is a town situated near the beach on the west coast of Karnataka state, and is very close to the Western Ghats (a mountain ridge). The Western Ghats is India's prime zone for bio-diversity, known for the number of animal and plant species in this region. We have been involved in developing projects in this region for many years and have formed a very strong network of local partners and local volunteers.

The focus of the project is providing field-based knowledge on sustainable agriculture and its impact, practicing Yoga and introducing creative learning methods in schools. The group will work with farmers, women groups and schools in different villages in the region.

The volunteers will be engaged in the following activities:
• Baseline survey and mapping;
• Conservation of natural resources: soil and water conservation, live hedge fencing, fruit and forest tree planting;
• Implementation of sustainable agriculture practices: crop cultivation, composting, kitchen garden, medicinal plants cultivation, nursery management;
• Maintenance and management: after care, basin making, watering, pruning, protection, etc.;
• Post-harvest practices: threshing, cleaning;
• Documentation of traditional cultivation practices;
• Learning the basics of Yoga and practicing Yoga every day;
• Teaching basic English in schools, introducing creative learning through art, music, games, etc.;
• Promoting Health and Hygiene Awareness;
• Promoting Eco friendly practices.

Yoga is a complete science of life that originated in India many thousands of years ago. It is the oldest system of personal development in the world encompassing the entire Body, Mind and Spirit. It is the union between a person's own consciousness and the universal consciousness. The classical techniques of Yoga date back more than 5000 years. The word Yoga means "to join or yoke together," and it brings the body and mind together into one harmonious experience.
During the project, the volunteers will learn the basics of Yoga. Every day there will be topics covered by a professional master, which will be practiced by the volunteers.

Leisure activities: Visits to cultural and religious sites, family visits as part of the inter-cultural learning and participation in cultural programs with the local community.

Language: English

Accommodation: In the local training center, in shared rooms.

Location: Kundapur is a coastal town in Udupi district, Karnataka state in South India. Kundapur is located at the Arabian sea coast, 440 km north west of Bangalore, 91 km north of Mangalore and 35 km from Udupi. The nearest international airports are Bangalore and Mangalore. Kundapur can also be reached from Mumbai, Goa, Bangalore and Kerala by train/bus.

Age range: 18 and over

Extra fee: 14,000 Indian Rupees (about $220 US)
The extra fee is intended to support the local host of the project who does not have sufficient funds. It is due upon arrival.

All available dates for this project:
September 12 - September 25, 2016
October 3 - October 16, 2016
November 7 - November 20, 2016
December 5 - December 18, 2016

Education and awareness projects in Rajastan
Jodhpur, Rajasthan       November 14 - November 27, 2016

Volunteer project: Jodhpur is a popular tourist destination featuring many palaces, forts and temples. The city is known as the "Sun City" for the bright sunny weather it enjoys throughout the year. It is also referred to as the "Blue City" due to the indigo tinge of the whitewashed houses around the Mehrangarh Fort. Culture and lifestyle in Jodhpur is quite fascinating. Lending a romantic aura to Jodhpur, are its exquisite handicrafts, folk dances, folk music and the brightly attired people.

The focus of this project is to spread awareness on environmental issues, health and hygiene among children and the community, and to teach and introduce the school children to creative learning methods.

The volunteers will organise meetings and activities with the local community to promote health and hygiene, and raise awareness on environmental issues. They will help the community with tree planting. In the project, the volunteers will also teach basic English to children in non-formal schools through creative teaching methods like art, music, games, etc. The team will help improve the school environment by painting walls, drawing educational murals and creating a kitchen garden.

Leisure activities: Visits to cultural, historical and religious sites; Cultural exchange with the community; Interaction with slum kids.

Language: English

Accommodation: In a guesthouse, in shared rooms.

Location: Jodhpur is located in the state of Rajasthan, 560 km south west of Delhi, and is accessible by domestic airlines. Jodhpur is connected by air to major airports in Delhi, Mumbai, Jaipur, Udaipur. The airport is about 5 km from the city center. Trains and buses operate on a daily basis from New Delhi and Mumbai.

Age range: 18 and over

Extra fee: 14,000 Indian Rupees (about $220 US)
The extra fee is intended to support the local host of the project who does not have sufficient funds. It is due upon arrival.

Teaching, raising environmental awareness and renovating schools in Jaipur
Jaipur, Rajasthan       December 5 - December 18, 2016

Volunteer project: Jaipur, the fascinating capital of the marvelous state of Rajasthan, is one of the well-planned cities of its time. The graceful architecture of the City that runs across in pink colour has earned Jaipur the title of "The Pink City". Jaipur is predominantly known for its musicians, artisans and craftsmen. Today, it is flocked by masses for its fine jewelry, varied textiles and sumptuous cuisine. The growth of the city is also contributed by the rapidly developing social infrastructure with super-speciality hospitals and medical centers, institutions of higher learning and schools.

The purpose of the volunteer project is to create awareness on environmental issues affecting this city, to create better learning facilities for school kids, and to provide community service to slum dwellers and poor children.

The project involves teaching basic English to children from poor and marginalized communities in non-formal schools through creative teaching methods like art, music, games, etc. The volunteers will undertake simple renovation work to improve school infrastructure including renovation of a school kitchen, wall painting, making a kitchen garden, etc. The group will hold meetings with the local community to promote health, hygiene, and awareness on environmental issues. Volunteers will also plant trees along with community members.

Leisure activities: Visits to cultural, historical and religious sites; Cultural exchange with the community; Interaction with slum kids.

Language: English

Accommodation: In a guesthouse, in shared rooms.

Location: Jaipur is located 268 km south of Delhi, the national capital and is well connected to other parts of the country through air, rail and road. Jaipur International Airport is located 13 km from Jaipur. Jaipur is well connected by bus and trains to most of the major cities in India. Regular buses are available from Delhi and other cities in North India.

Age range: 18 and over

Extra fee: 14,000 Indian Rupees (about $220 US)
The extra fee is intended to support the local host of the project who does not have sufficient funds. It is due upon arrival.

Long-term projects in India