Volunteering Abroad for Individuals
If you want to immerse yourself in a community abroad and volunteer alongside locals to make a lasting impact, then becoming a UBELONG Volunteer is right for you. UBELONG opportunities are highly affordable and rooted in safety, support and impact.
“I knew from the second I boarded the plane back home that I needed to tell other people about UBELONG so that they could experience what I just had. I can say with confidence that you will not have an experience with another organization like you will have with UBELONG.” Janine Puleo, UBELONG Mexico Volunteer from the United States – read her interview here.
Who volunteers with UBELONG?
About half of the people who volunteer with UBELONG travel by themselves. Many are university students or young professionals in their 20s, although it’s impossible to narrow down UBELONG Volunteers to a “type.”
We have had people on gap years between high school and college; mid-career professionals taking time off during job transitions; retirees; senior executives; homemakers…
They have come from over 30 different nationalities – many have come from the United States, Canada, Australia, Germany and the United Kingdom. Countries like France, Portugal, Spain and Italy are also well represented in the UBELONG Family.
In other words, UBELONG Volunteers come from across the world and from every type of background. The only similarity they consistently share is a passion to discover the world, connect with new people and make a difference.
When, where and for how long can you go?
All of our volunteer trips are open to individuals 18 years old and up.
You can volunteer with UBELONG from 1 week to 6 months and pick from our volunteer projects in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
Depending on the country you pick, you can start either any week of the year, or every other week.
“It was an unforgettable feeling realizing how much we impacted their lives in such a short time.” – Jessica Vogel, UBELONG Costa Rica Volunteer from the United States – read her interview here.
What can you do?
There are over 100+ volunteer projects to pick from in activities like animal care, caregiving, education, business, healthcare and more. Browse through all the activities on our home page.
Each project has it’s own requirements to participate. For example, all our medical projects require that you have some sort of medical education and/or experience.
Additionally, each project has its own minimum time commitment. So, while you can serve for as short a time as 1 week on some of our projects, for others you need to go for a longer minimum time. We do this to ensure that volunteers are able to get up the learning curve and truly make an impact – this is good for the projects and you as a volunteer looking to make a real difference.
You can see the requirements to participate and minimum time commitments when you navigate to each individual project listing. For example, for the projects in Cusco, Peru, simply look under the “projects” tab and then click open whatever individual project title interests you.
How do you apply?
Every person volunteering with UBELONG must submit their own application.
A few of our locations at a glance
While all our volunteer locations across Africa, Asia and Latin America have had individuals and groups join, here are four of our most popular locations for individuals:
Volunteer in Cusco, Peru
Located in the Andres Mountains, Cusco is a beautiful small city that is one of Latin America’s most popular tourist destinations. It offers many outdoor activities like hiking and rafting, and is a jumping point to the world-famous Machu Picchu.
In Cusco, volunteers live in a fun, social Volunteer House located in the heart of Cusco. From there they travel to their volunteer projects, which are spread throughout the city. Volunteers can serve on projects in caregiving, education, health, sports and more.
Volunteer in Merida, Mexico
Merida, which is especially easy and affordable to reach from the United States and Canada, offers a beautiful, authentic Mexican city right along the beautiful coast.
Live in the Volunteer House, which is perfectly situated in the historical center of Merida, and enjoy the unbeatable support of the other volunteers and our wonderful local UBELONG team.
Volunteer in Rabat, Morocco
Rabat is a large, yet still manageable and calm city. It combines Morocco’s old-world charm with great beaches and a year-round mild climate. The Moroccans are famous for their friendly and welcoming demeanor.
In Morocco pick from caregiving, education and women’s empowerment volunteer projects. Be prepared to work hard, challenge yourself and make many new friends – that’s what volunteering in Morocco with UBELONG is all about.
Volunteers live with host families, which is a great way to live and experience life in Morocco in a very authentic manner. Learn more about volunteering in Morocco with UBELONG.
Volunteer in Phnom Penh, Cambodia
In Cambodia, pick from a variety of volunteer projects, including volunteering in an animal shelter, microfinance organization, school, clinic and various NGOs that work across areas like women’s empowerment and land rights.
In Phnom Penh you can live in a Volunteer House or with a local host family.
Phnom Penh is a very dynamic city that combines comforts of the Western world with traditional Asian culture. Many individuals like volunteering in Cambodia because of the breadth of our programs there, as well as the city’s fast-paced nature.
For students interested in development and/or international relations, Phnom Penh is particularly appealing because there is such a large foreign NGO presence that students can explore while they’re there with UBELONG.
All the locations and projects where you can volunteer
Meet some of the thousands of people who have volunteered with UBELONG
How to apply with UBELONG
Apply to volunteer abroad with UBELONG
” I wanted to support a respectable project. Furthermore, UBELONG convinced me with low costs and flexible dates. This and having read about the experience of former volunteers, convinced me to be part of the UBELONG Family.” – Leon Haupt, UBELONG Costa Rica Volunteer from Germany – read his interview here.
What we do not do: “voluntourism” and “factory volunteering”
We do not do “voluntourism” and “factory volunteering,” which are unfortunate ways of travelling that have been perpetuated in recent years by money-driven tourism companies. Some of these are even owned by private equity firms.
While these companies spend millions of dollars on slick advertisements and websites, we believe these companies have little interest in actually making a positive social impact. We believe their goal is to pump as many people as possible into local communities. They have little regards to whether their “volunteers” are making a positive social impact or not, and, in our opinion, they do not properly mentor and support the people who travel with them.
Whether you travel with UBELONG or not, please do your research as you look into providers. We believe that as a responsible traveller you have the duty to only support organizations that are socially minded.