Volunteer Work Ideas

If you've never been volunteering it can be really hard to come up with volunteer work ideas, especially while you try to figure out the logistics. There are so many different organizations and locations around the world, meaning that you are absolutely spoiled for choice. For practical inspiration on where to volunteer, check out the stories from our Generous Nomads

For more volunteer work ideas we've compiled this helpful list. 

Volunteering in India

Animal volunteer work ideas: 
Working with animals is hugely rewarding, especially with animals that have been domesticated or neglected. Often, as people, we forget out large impact on the world and the effect our development has had on the environment and animals alike. By choosing to do volunteer work with animals you are giving back and helping animals flourish that might otherwise die or be in poor health. There are numerous volunteering projects that involve animals, from working in dog shelters to helping protect baby turtles during the mating season. 

The great thing about working with animals is that you don't have to go overseas to do so. While it can be a lot of fun to travel to a foreign land and work with animals you might not otherwise be able to see, let alone help, in large cities there are often overcrowded animal shelters that need your help too, for as little as a day a month. Start thinking about what animals you'd most like to work with and then you can work backwards. 

Hospital volunteer work ideas: 
If you have studied as a nurse or doctor then your skills will be hugely beneficial in diaster areas or regions of high poverty. In some countries medical care is not a given right and they rely on the volunteer efforts of others. If you have these skills then you will be highly sought after. You can elect to volunteer through the Red Cross or you can choose to go through a private volunteering organization. All Hands is a particularly useful organization that is not for profit and focused around disaster relief. 

If you're not trained in the medical field but would still like to help enrich the life of others, you could consider donating blood overseas. In many third world countries there is a negative stigma around donating blood  as they believe it makes them weak and unable to work, so foreign blood donation is desperately needed. 


Manual volunteer work ideas: 
If you're experience is more around manual work, then it makes sense to use your skills overseas. There are a number of projects that you can get involved with which require manual volunteer work. You can help build a school in an underprivileged slum or help with a draining problem in an orphanage. For the more experienced builders, you can help build houses in areas that have been affected by natural disasters. 

Volunteering in Camnbodia

Teaching English volunteer work ideas: 
Teaching English overseas is one of the most sought after volunteering opportunities. In many countries, especially where tourism is a large part of the economy, learning English is seen as an opportunity to escape the harsh bounds of poverty. Native speakers, especially, can make a substantial difference to a community by electing to volunteer teaching English for a few weeks, months or even years. Many children in high poverty areas cannot afford schooling, let alone English lessons, so by volunteering you are providing education to children who might not otherwise be able to afford it. 

Have you got any volunteering work ideas that we haven't shared here? We would love to hear them. 

2 responses to “Volunteer Work Ideas”

  1. Freya says:

    If I volunteered, I'd most probably choose something related to taking care of animals. You have a great site here. Will bookmark for future reference!

    • clbberry@gmail.com says:

      I’d love to go back and volunteer with animals. I feel bad for them, especially because of the negative impacts we’ve had on them as people.