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Traveling for the Good: Types of Volunteering Opportunities Abroad



Traveling for fun and adventure is one of the most common bucket list items many people dream of making come true. Places like Italy, South Korea, Japan, Hawaii, etc., have been longed after by people around the world.

Amongst these people are those who want to make the most out of their travels. For them, their dream travels include spending some time volunteering somewhere.

However, like most people, they don’t know where to start.There are numerous areas that need people to donate their time. It’s impractical to think that you can tackle it all. You have to narrow down your focus to find what resonates with you the most.

To help you do just that, we have compiled a list of some of the main areas you can find volunteering opportunities abroad.


Child welfare is one of the main areas where volunteer opportunities are abundant. However, it is also one of the most demanding fields as children are a vulnerable group. There are many rules to be followed to ensure their safety.

This is the perfect opportunity, especially for people who have an affinity with children and like working with them. You can choose opportunities around the world that call for people to spend some with children and work for their better future.

Social work, teaching, and childcare are the main categories of working with children abroad. In either case, you’ll be deeply immersed with the children, their culture, and the communities they grow up in.

Unlike any other type of volunteering program, this is one of the most demanding ones. You truly need to have the drive and enthusiasm for this. If you are just looking for a few hours of feel-good time, this field is not meant for you.

It requires a lot of hard work to connect with the children. In fact, you’ll be learning a lot more form them than they’ll be learning from you. But if you have the willpower to do it, it can be one of the most rewarding experiences.

Animal Welfare

For anyone who loves animals, animal welfare volunteer programs are abundant. These programs are more than just walking or grooming animals in your local animal shelter. It is a huge step up from that.

Since the climate is changing, the health and safety of many of our scaly and furry friends are endangered. Animal welfare programs work day and night to combat that and preserve their existence in our ecosystem.

You can volunteer with sharks, gorillas, giraffes, whales, elephants, and many other species of animals. You’ll get an opportunity to learn more about these wonderful creatures. You’ll be working in sanctuaries, rescue centers, and other organizations for the rehabilitation, preservation, and security of these animals.


Unfortunately, there are numerous third-world countries where education is not necessarily at its best. To combat this, many organizations create programs that call for educated people to contribute some of their knowledge voluntarily.

This can include year-long programs where you stay for the whole school year and tackle one or more subjects as per your expertise. Besides that, there are opportunities like summer camps.While many of these programs are centered on teaching children, there are other programs as well.

If you don’t want to work with children, then teaching English may be the right choice for you. There are organizations that offer English programs that serve populations who can’t afford English lessons otherwise.

Often, you’ll have to stay with local families. This offers an incredible opportunity to immerse yourself in the local community and maybe pick up a new language.

Disaster Relief

Organizations like the Peace Corpshave programs that respond to areas in need of disaster relief. Natural disasters like earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, etc., unfortunately, affect many areas. They shake up and disturb entire communities.

It takes a lot of helping hands, dedication, love, and long tiring working hours to help reestablish life. This particular type of volunteer work is based on bringing the community together and multiplying the efforts.

You don’t have to stay for the entire rebuilding process, but even the smallest bit of help counts. You might be lifting logs and wood panels or removing debris, the community affected by the disaster will appreciate it greatly.

Social Work

When it comes to volunteering, social work is an umbrella term. It involves different areas of work you can focus on, such as education, fundraising, awareness campaigns, healthcare support, education, and others.

There are various communities and societies in the world where disadvantageous and marginalized people have no one fighting for them. It is here where your efforts and decision to volunteer comes in.

NGOs and various non-profit organizations put in a lot of effort to meet such needs and work for the overall betterment of these areas. However, funds and human resource often fall short. This is why they need volunteers.

Whether you’re a dentist performing free dental procedures for orphans in India or spreading awareness about diseases somewhere in South America, you will be the manpower supporting their effort.

Women’s Empowerment

Despite it being the 21st century, there are many unprivileged groups in various countries where women are discriminated against. They face obstacles in areas that are not a problem for us like having access to birth control, education, and even basic rights.

You can make a difference and lend a hand in empowering these women and giving them a chance at a better life. Work in such programs comes in different forms. This includes skills training, education, health outreach, micro-lending, awareness, and more.

You’ll be working individually with each woman, playing your part in striving for gender equality and justice. If this subject is a passion for you, a volunteer program in this area will be very fulfilling.


According to the World Health Organization, approximately half of the world lives in extreme poverty, which limits their access to basic healthcare. The WHO, along with other organizations like Doctors without Borders, offer programs to alleviate this issue.

They have programs for trained and in-training nurses, doctors, and surgeons where they put their skills to good use. For a limited number of weeks or months, they spend time in areas where healthcare is not in the best state.

For example, there are maxillofacial experts who volunteer in countries like India to perform cleft-palate surgeries for orphans who need them. In the end, volunteering abroad comes down to what you’re most passionate about and what skills you have. If there is something you’re passionate about, you can find opportunities in that area. You just have to look for them.

I am a passionate blogger who like to share information and make the community.