|Delphine & Damien
We've been volunteering for VolNepal in Chitwan in November, 2007...
I thought traveling can be something more than just visiting a place...
I visited the local Murry Foundation Orphanage and enjoyed immensely...
I am amazed at how much I learned in the short two and a half weeks...
I spent my time in the Radiotherapy department for all six weeks I was...
Upon arrival at the Katmandu airport I was pleased to find a van waiting...
It's very hard to describe my time that I spent in Nepal. The reason being...
My experience with VNNG in 2009 was a remarkable gateway into the interworking....
The children are very nice. Even I came to give all from me, teaching, helping them...
First, I would just like to say that my experience in Nepal and volunteering with VolNepal...
While friends back in the States were celebrating the New Year with music and dance...
|Vanice Chan and Franko
It was only a week we spent in Nepal but it was like we had spent a year already...
I think it was a wonderful experience; not only did I lived in a Nepali’s home and....
During the month of June 2011, I participated in a 2-week medical internship program....
Kathmandu traffic contrasts with the glorious temples like the sacred cremation ghats at Pashupatinath...
Teaching at Nabin was a lot of fun, and I learned more about my teaching style...
My stay in Nepal was for three and half months. When I first arrived I taught English to Buddhist Monks.
- Airport pick-up and drop to the host family house
- Detailed Orientation & Placement Briefing
- Language & Cultural ideas
- City Tour
- Transfer to Placement: Depending on the placement location (which will not fixed) we have many school, monastery, orphanage so it will depend up on the location of placement. Be sure we will place volunteers in safe, quite and good environment. Most of the time we prefer village area for placement because it will gives you the real taste of Nepal.
|Are There Any Nepali Customs I Should Be Aware Of?
The Asian mantra: bring your own toilet paper. Also, hands will become your favourite eating utensil, and by that I mean you're only. Wash those hands baby! And enjoy rice, for most meals.
Privacy is a non-existent idea in Nepal. The roots must lie in its third-world history: be prepared that anything you do, read, write, and have will be examined some way or another. The innocence of it all is sweet, but even right now - this report is being read by everyone that walks by. It is hard to get used too: "What are you doing's being asked every 5 minutes as you read on the roof.
- Eat with your right hand; do not touch your food with the left hand. [right for eating, left for 'other']
- Take your shoes off to enter houses
- Spilling or wasting food is a serious 'no no'. So, be careful with those new forks and knives but also, if the food is not tasty, speak up right away. This will be best for both sides.
- Clothing is an important aspect to the culture. The men have a fascination in western clothing: so boys need to bring some collared shirts and pants to wear to school. The women wear traditional dresses to work. The America and Europe travellers with roughed up clothes, washed out tee's, etc…may sometimes be offensive to their culture. Example: a dirty shirt or a shirt worn inside out or something is an omen of bad luck. The influx of the West in Kathmandu is slowing allowing for us rough travellers to get by walking around Thamel with no problem - beards, old socks and a few months late for a haircut. But in the village, such things are seen as improper - bad influence on the children - and simply ugly. [This is the reality, cultural difference number 1000 - you can certainly do whatever you wish my friend.]
- Drink tea at least 3 times a day
- Male - female relations is certainly under the light of Hinduism: do not worry if some of the female teachers come of as shy or un-interested in you, it is not in the culture to have equal rights between men and women.
|Timespan And Weather
Any time you give is great. Most people kick around for 2 or 3 months, which gives you a pretty good feel for the community, school, and life in Nepal. Plan your travels during school holidays.
- Rainy Season: June to August-Monsoon is a falling. Watch out for increased heat and some humid nights. The temperature in the valley never goes above 30 Celsius, but the rain and clouds cover the mountains for views and treks.
- Winter: September to January- Most temperate time for the valley, this is the time most treks head out: cool temperature and no rain.
- Spring: February to May-Green season, weather is also nice for hiking: no rain.
- Summer: May to June- Hottest time for the Valley, look for 35 degree days. It is rare for there to be rain.
Be aware that during the Monsoon season some road ways are blocked due to land slides and floods. We understand that the monsoon sits uncomfortably during college holidays, and can personally state that the monsoon has not affected much of our time for travel or enjoyment. It rains heavily once a day, if you get caught in it, it will be the best shower you had in weeks, but it does not stop life here. So, still come if this is your only time too.
|Phone, Email, Post, Photos?
Again, Welcome to Nepal. Be prepared for some seriously slow internet, crappy phone connections and a postal service that is effective one day, and none existent the other. There are many internet places in Kathmandu, Bhaktapur, Lalitpur or Pokhara, Chitwan.
The post is across from the bus station in Bhaktapur and Kathmandu: and if you are receiving letters they come right to the school.
Ask Coordinator for a different address if receiving a parcel.
In Kathmandu, there are endless photo spots.
|When can I start my Volunteer Program?
You can start volunteering when ever you want. We can arrange referrals 365 days/year.
|How long are the volunteer programs?
You can volunteer from a few days up to five months (this is limited by the visa the Nepali government will issue you).
|What kind of volunteer work is available?
You can volunteer in any of the following sectors: Teaching English, Childcare, Orphanages, Disabilities, Health & Medical Centers, Human Rights, Youth/Women's Organizations, Environmental Care, or whatever you are looking for!
|Can I have two different volunteer placements?
Yes, you have full flexibility! You can volunteer as many times as you like at various volunteer placements and there are opportunities in partner organizations world-wide.
|Can I volunteer part time?
You can volunteer full time or part time. You even can get two part time volunteer placements at the same time. For example, you can volunteer at an NGO during the day and in the late afternoon volunteer in an orphanage or a school, etc.
|What type of accommodation do I get? Who is responsible for it?
This varies depending on the location of your referral. If you volunteer in rural areas then you will have basic arrangements with homestay normally our program is semi urban area so you will get accmodation with Nepali famliy or school hostels or orphange homes. Depending up on the program. But you are watched by our volunteer coordinator or placement representative 24/7 days.
|How can my family contact me during my volunteer time?
This depends on the location of your referral. If you are in Chitwan, Kathmandu Valley, Pokhara telephone and internet is readily available. But even If you are in rural areas, most of the time there will be a telephone available which allows incoming and outgoing international calls. Internet in rural areas is usually available in the nearest major village/city. In the case of an emergency, your family can also contact us and we will forward the message to you as quickly as possible. Furthermore, in most of the places you will have mobile reception and a Nepali mobile sim card costs less than US $20.
|What language requirements do I need to fulfill?
This depends on the sector you wish to volunteer in. It would be preferable that you speak English proficiently. If you are in rural areas, it is an advantage and very helpful to know basic Nepali.
|Do you pick me up at the airport in Kathmandu?
We do offer an Airport pick up service. The first day we will be stay at hotel in Kathmandu and Volnepal will arrange this.
|How do I get a visa for Nepal?
You will get your Nepali Visa at the airport or at the borders with India which will be valid for two months. Visa extensions can be made for 30 days. You can stay for a maximum of five months per year in Nepal.
|What is the climate like in Nepal?
The weather in Nepal depends on the time of the year and the location/altitude level of your referral. The climate in Nepal is monsoonal with a dry and a wet season. The dry season is from October to May. The monsoon (wet season) comes usually in June and ends in September. The highest temperatures occur in May and the beginning of June, during this time 30oC in Kathmandu are typical and in other low altitude areas the temperature can increase up to 45oC. In the dry season (winter) the temperatures can still be around 20oC during the day but at night the temperature can drop below 0oC. However, it very rarely snows in Kathmandu Valley.
Nepal has four distinct seasons: spring, summer, autumn and winter. Spring starts from March to May and it is warm and there are rain showers. From June to August, the monsoon season, is summer and everything is green. From September to November (autumn) is the best season for trekking and the skies are clear but it is cooler. Winter is from December to February with cold nights and fog in the morning.
|How much money should I bring with me?
Compared to Western countries, the prices in Nepal are very low. However it is difficult to estimate the amount of money you will spend here. It depends on how long you are staying in Nepal, on the season, where you are staying and in what kind of accommodation, if you go trekking/rafting/traveling, how much shopping you do and how much you use the telephone/internet, if you take a domestic flight and how much you go out and drink alcohol, etc. In contrast if you are staying in Kathmandu in a nice Hotel and go our every night, do a lot of shopping, etc. you can easily spend US $ 30 or more per day. We recommend you to buy one of the travel guide books for Nepal like "Lonely Planet" which helps you to find out about the prices/costs according to your life style. In Nepal you can exchange almost any kind of currency or traveler checks and you can use your credit card on ATMs in major cities.
|What immunizations/vaccines should I consider prior my arrival?
You should consider the following vaccinations. Some of them are essential, others are not! It is very important that you talk to your doctor or local tropical medical institute for the latest vaccines recommendations for Nepal and to see what is best for you. You should also visit the Center for Disease Control website and learn more for yourself before making a decision.
- Hepatitis A & B
- Yellow fever
- Japanese B Encephalitis
|Do I need a travel and health insurance?
We strongly recommended you to have an adequate travel and medical insurance!
|Is volunteering safe in Nepal?
Please remember, there are always inherent risks when traveling abroad, especially to developing countries. We advise you to contact your embassy to make informed decisions regarding your stay in Nepal. If you are unsure or you have further questions please do not hesitate to contact us.
(We will provide free Nepali language hand book for volunteers,our partner organization support volunteers for their Nepali language. As we are well structured throughout the country we are truly able to offer you the means of 24/7 emergency service)
|How can I help Volnepal?
For many of us a trip to Nepal may be impossible due to work, family, etc but the desire to help remains. There is still a way for you to participate with Vol-Nepal. We encourage you to not only visit the link below to make a donation online. But also to organize fund raising events in the community. This could be anything from a bake sale to a tea party with friends. We encourage you to get involved! This will not only help us raise funds for those in need but also help to spread awareness through your community.
For more details please visit:
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