Here are a few tips to help you decide whether a volunteering opportunity is right for you:
1. Define your goals. Volunteering is an investment of your time and money, so make sure you know what you will gain from the experience. Whether it is wanting to improve your resume, learn a new language, contribute to a good cause, or just take a break from your everyday life, ensure the position will give you just that. Getting direct experience with microfinance, learning more about development, and getting experience managing teams of people were all reasons behind my decision to volunteer with En Vía.
2. Measure your impact. As well as gaining from the experience on a personal level, it is also important to know what you are going to contribute to the project. One of the things that drew me to volunteering with En Via was that I knew I would have a lot of responsibility and that by having a lot of responsibility with such a new, growing organisation, I would be able to make a significant contribution to the program.
3. Know the job description. So you’ve found the perfect position in turtle conservation in
4. Research the organisation. Who will you be working for and what are their values? Make
5. Inquire about the team. How many staff and other volunteers are there and who are they?
6. Evaluate the costs. It may seem like all volunteer positions come with a big price tag, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be the case. Define your budget and do your research. Make sure you know exactly how much you are paying: does the organisation charge volunteers a fee? Do you need to pay for transportation? Know what you are paying for and how big a part of the money goes to the organisation itself rather than intermediaries.
Volunteering with En Vía was perfect for me as they don’t charge volunteers a fee, so it was well within my budget. After figuring out travel and living costs, I knew the money invested would be more than worth it in the long run.
I love En Via’s volunteer program because it ticks all the boxes for me. It’s a two-way thing that both En Vía and I benefit from, and that’s the way it should be.
By Anni Kasari, Volunteer, Program Manager