Whether you've decided to go abroad with a volunteer-sending program or are going on your own, there are lots of questions to ask the organization where you'll be volunteering. Here are some to get you started (please keep in mind, however, that you may be able to answer many of these questions via your own research of the program or organization, including visiting their website, reading any materials provided by them, and gathering advice from former volunteers):
Last, but by no means least, be sure to consider some of the ethical questions of volunteering with their organization. Check out our section on The Ethics of International Volunteerism. Also, be sure to read the excellent Ethical Volunteering Guide by Dr Kate Simpson for additional questions to ask (e.g. what are their policies on eco and ethical tourism?)
Found answers to your questions, decided where to volunteer, and are now ready to start planning? Keep reading to learn more about what you should Know Before You Go as well as steps for Getting Ready to Go.
Our sincere thanks to our advisory board, especially Joss Ellams with Cross-Cultural Solutions, Samantha Wolthuis with American Jewish World Service, Katie Mulembe with Catholic Network of Volunteer Service, Nina Lawrence with WorldTeach, and Nicole Sheldon-Desjardins with Hostelling International for contributing questions to this list!