In May of 2014, I volunteered with IVHQ's orphanage program in Ghana. I stayed for one month and it was a fabulous experience. I would highly recommend this program to others, especially to those who are traveling abroad for the first time.
It was my first time traveling abroad, and also my first time traveling alone. I completed the program independently, but I did make friends with the other volunteers whom I stayed with. I was 18 years old when I traveled to Ghana, and I had a mother who was very worried about safety. IVHQ has an amazing staff who is very professional and supportive. Before traveling, an IVHQ employee was in contact with me and gave me all the details of my program. I contacted this employee many times via email to ask questions, and she always responded quickly. Once I arrived in Ghana, the in-country staff were amazing. I had various phone numbers to reach them on 24/7 and they made me feel very safe.
I stayed in a volunteer house with the other volunteers on my program. One of the Mamas who worked at the orphanage would come make our meals for us and clean our house. She was so friendly and would always be there to offer advise about the program or travel plans. I spent most of every day at the orphanage because the primary reason for my trip was volunteering. IVHQ's program is dedicated to making a real change in the lives of the children. On weekends many volunteers travel to the main city or to other tourist attractions. Ghana is a VERY beautiful country!!
IVHQ is very organized and I had absolutely no trouble volunteering with them. If you are contemplating volunteering abroad with this organization, especially in Ghana, please just do it! I was very apprehensive at first, but it was a decision I will never regret.