International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

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9.3 / 10 after 220 Reviews Based on overall, support & value average ratings

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ) is the trusted volunteer organization, providing safe, quality and extremely affordable volunteering placements in developing countries all over the world. Each year they place over 5000 volunteers abroad and have a wide range of volunteering opportunities in Kenya, Kenya - Maasai, Ghana, Uganda, South Africa, Nepal, India, Vietnam, Cambodia, China, Costa Rica, Mexico, Guatemala, Colombia, Brazil, Peru - Lima, Peru - Cusco, Morocco, Ecuador, Tanzania, Sri Lanka, Bali and Thailand.

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I volunteer in Argentina and Brazil with IVHQ for a total of 7 weeks. This is an honest review of my experiences there.

One of the first things I was told in the orientation with IVHQ Argentina was that if I had a good review of them to write it on facebook and if I had a bad one to e-mail it to them! Depending on what project you are looking to do don’t expect to spend much of your time doing that! I applied for childcare and only spent 3 hours per day with children, an hour of that getting to and from the project. If you want to spend more time volunteering and actually feel like you’re doing something worthwhile you have to take it upon yourself and look for another project to volunteer on.
You definitely need more than basic Spanish to get by and the Spanish lessons there are overpriced, a waste of time and not useful!
The showers are a dribble of luke warm water. While the showers are low on my list of what I look for in accommodation when volunteering (and I have done a lot of volunteering abroad) after a while you do start to think where does my money actually go because it is not on the up keep of the accommodation!

My project in Brazil more than made up for Argentina, even with a 30 min walk, 1 hour bus ride and over 200 step journey! I started a brand new project on my first day and felt appreciated, supported and needed by the staff from the start even with the language barrier!
The house manager in Rio was NEVER there! We a lovely lady that helped with breakfast in the mornings but other then take items out of the fridge and put them on the table I can’t see what else she was needed from! The accommodation had cold water and barely any light. Again these things are low on my list as I’m there first and foremost to volunteer but comparing the price with what you get I can’t help but feel is it really worth it??

Program:
Location:
Posted: August 29, 2014
Overall:
4
Support:
6
Value:
1
By: Cath
Age:
23

I volunteer in Argentina and Brazil with IVHQ for a total of 7 weeks. This is an honest review of my experiences there.

One of the first things I was told in the orientation with IVHQ Argentina was that if I had a good review of them to write it on facebook and if I had a bad one to e-mail it to them! Depending on what project you are looking to do don’t expect to spend much of your time doing that! I applied for childcare and only spent 3 hours per day with children, an hour of that getting to and from the project. If you want to spend more time volunteering and actually feel like you’re doing something worthwhile you have to take it upon yourself and look for another project to volunteer on.
You definitely need more than basic Spanish to get by and the Spanish lessons there are overpriced, a waste of time and not useful!
The showers are a dribble of luke warm water. While the showers are low on my list of what I look for in accommodation when volunteering (and I have done a lot of volunteering abroad) after a while you do start to think where does my money actually go because it is not on the up keep of the accommodation!

My project in Brazil more than made up for Argentina, even with a 30 min walk, 1 hour bus ride and over 200 step journey! I started a brand new project on my first day and felt appreciated, supported and needed by the staff from the start even with the language barrier!
The house manager in Rio was NEVER there! We a lovely lady that helped with breakfast in the mornings but other then take items out of the fridge and put them on the table I can’t see what else she was needed from! The accommodation had cold water and barely any light. Again these things are low on my list as I’m there first and foremost to volunteer but comparing the price with what you get I can’t help but feel is it really worth it??

Program:
Location:
Posted: August 29, 2014
Overall:
4
Support:
6
Value:
1
By: Cath
Age:
23

I volonteered in Ghana with IVHQ (Ghana Volonteer Corps) for 6 weeks in an orphanage. I have to say that it was a great experience to discover the ghanaian culture, the ghanaian people who are so nice and always smiling, the wonderful nature ... For the moment I flew into Ghana, a staf member was there for me. I arrived in Accra with a flight delayed of an hour and a half, after 11pm, but despite this, there was someone waiting for me. During my whole stay the Ghana Volonteer Corps Staff was very helpful if we needed anything, driving out to our placement every weeks to check if all is doing well. I recommand volonteering with IVHQ and Ghana Volonteer Corps.
It was an amazing experience that I’ll never forget !

Program:
Location:
Posted: August 27, 2014
Overall:
9
Support:
9
Value:
10
Age:
20

I am here to tell you about my volunteer experience with IVHQ last year. I volunteered in Ghana Africa for two months from October to December 2013 and I have to say it was the best experience of my life and really has changed it forever. On arrival in Ghana I was greatest at the airport by Evans Kojo I have to say we didn't click right away as I had a slightly rocky experience at the airport but after that we became friends and Evans was teaching me Twi one of Ghana's national languages. Once at the volunteer house we met Benedict Adeli, Erin Adeli and Edward (Eddie) Adeli the head coordinator of the Ghanaian branch of IVHQ. After enjoying a lovely meal cooked by Eddie's gorgeous wife Erin I went to sleep of jet lag. In the morning I woke to more volunteers who had arrived when I was sleeping I wandered into the kitchen to meet Gideon the chef being assisted by Evans so I helped make breakfast. Gideon is an amazingly gentle giant, and I really enjoyed spending time talking with him. After breakfast we had orientation and we were sent on our merry way to our placements mine being the scarlet program better known as BBF or Blessed Bright Futures orphanage. Aside from all the amazing people and children at the orphanage I am here to review my experience with IVHQ and their staff. On a weekend 'away' in Kokrobite (one of my favourite places in Ghana) we got to meet Dan Radcliffe the founder of IVHQ I felt very lucky as he only meets about one percent of his volunteers. Dan brought along George his camera man Eddie and Gidion came along also we had a great time relaxing with them all over dinner which they kindly paid for. And its these little touches which made the experience all the more special for me. They are all honestly great people and I can happily call them all friends.

Program:
Location:
Posted: July 31, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
7
Value:
10
Age:
23

TRULY AMAZING!!! I went out to Ghana in April 2014 after having this trip planned for around 8 months i could not wait to begin my dream i had imagined since a young age. At first i thought i could never plan and follow through with a trip like this all by myself but right from the start the coordinators and staff at IVHQ were always on hand to assist with any issues or questions and up to the date i flew they made me feel at ease, even though they had many other volunteers to help, i still felt valued and that they really wanted to make sure my trip went smoothly. So my nerves were calmed and excitement was taking over! Which was good!
As soon as i arrived at the airport in Ghana i was overwhelmed a little, but as soon as i saw the IVHQ staff member Gideon waiting for me i was instantly at ease. His warm friendly calming manor, whilst making sure i was okay as i looked like a lost puppy, really helped. I could tell instantly i was in safe hands.
When we got back to the volunteer house we were well looked after with water, shown around the house, introduced to the other staff and then we had our dinner cooked, followed by breakfast and a welcome meeting the next day. I strangely have never been made to feel more at home and welcomed in a place so far from home. This really helps when on a trip in an unfamiliar country. I already knew i had a safe place to rely on with people on hand that really cared about your safety if i needed it. It meant i could relax and truly enjoy my experience from the get go.

On route to our placements Gideon and Evans made sure we had everything we needed, like money etc, and told us all we needed to know, the rest was for us to experience :) They reassured us if we needed anything that they are only a phone call away, they checked in on us and we were never ever made to feel like we were a hassle, they were always so happy to help. This really made you feel supported and not alone in what you were doing. They gave you your independence which is important as this is a personal trip but it was amazing to know support was there. I personally appreciated this as i am still only young. I never had any issues whilst away in terms of safety, food etc. I was always well looked after and obviously had me own common sense to prevent any issues from rising.

I did get a little sick, which is extremely common due to change in diet, water, weather etc, but it was nothing extreme. I told one of the staff members Evans and he made sure i got back to the volunteer house so i could be looked after there. He did everything he could to make sure i was okay and getting back to health again, there was nothing he wouldn't do to make sure i was feeling as best i could. He then took me back to my placement once i was well enough and checked up on me for the next few days. This made me feel at ease as being sick in a country where you know nothing can be quite scary. But i felt no fear as i knew i was being looked after. A big thank you for that. You could tell he really was concerned for my health and genuinely wanted to make sure i was well as soon as possible so i could get back to being with the kids as he could also see the passion i felt for them. The staff there really would do anything for you. YOUR ALL AMAZING :)

The programmes available at IVHQ are simply life changing, not only for you but for the people you work with. In my personal opinion there is no better feeling you can get from doing this. You get a real sense of pride and passion from all involved at IVHQ, it is very family orientated and that is exactly what i was hoping to find in this organisation. I was not disappointed, i came away not only changing my own life, the life of the kids i so openly bonded with, but also a part of IVHQ and Ghana itself. It will always be a big part of my life and i have IVHQ to thank for that.

I will most definitely be back... i need to come and find my heart again, it's in safe hands in Ghana though!
If anyone has any doubts.... quite simply, don't!
It is amazing and life changing, the staff there will not let you feel anything but calmed, loved and valued as you start your amazing journey with their programmes available. The kids out their will take your heart. I miss it every single day.

You all deserve so much, you changed my life. Your positive attitude, pride, passion and love has all made its way into my heart!
See you soon Ghana! :)

Program:
Location:
Posted: July 30, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10
Age:
21

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