Projects Abroad

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8.8 / 10 after 126 Reviews Based on overall, support & value average ratings

Established in 1992, Projects Abroad is the world’s leading short-term international volunteer organization. Over 8,000 people a year join our programs in over 25 amazing countries around the world.  All participants receive unparalleled in-country support from our full-time, professional staff to ensure that the experience is safe, worthwhile, and fun.

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I participated in the Public Health Alternative Spring Break Trip in Ghana offered by Projects Abroad this past spring. The Projects Abroad staff was extremely supportive throughout the entire process. I was especially impressed by the support they provided me in preparation for the trip. Their travel team made sure that I had everything I needed and made planning the trip as easy as possible. They helped me with my flight itinerary and with obtaining my visa. Additionally, they provided me with a volunteer adviser who helped me extensively with any questions I had along the way.

Once I arrived in Ghana, the Projects Abroad staff continued their great support. The first day, we had a staff member take us around the town and taught us things about the culture. This was really helpful to provide us with insight for the rest of the trip.

The staff had provided us with an excellent itinerary for the entire week to ensure that our time in Ghana was the best it could be. They organized opportunities for us to do medical checks at several schools and orphanages as well as a leprosy camp.

Overall, my experience with Projects Abroad was wonderful, and I would highly recommend going abroad on one of their projects.

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Posted: August 8, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10
Age:
21

4 years ago, I attended a small information night presented by Projects Abroad. It seemed out of question at 15 years old, but three years later phased with the question of what I was going to do after highschool- I decided that traveling to Ethiopia was where I wanted to go.

So in January of 2014, I headed to Addis Ababa and was given two volunteer placements for my 18 weeks in the capital. One was a teaching placement where I oversaw the annual science fair and taught children English in the primary grades. My other placement was a care position at an orphanage. The Projects Abroad Staff were very welcoming and genuine. They made the process of adjusting to a new culture seamless and relaxed. I never had to once worry about my safety since they always made a note to check on where we were and make sure we knew exactly how to get there. I worked regular work days that a teacher would, but had my evenings and weekend off to explore the city with the other 30 volunteers from around the world that I met during my stay.

I lived in a home about a 10 minute walk from my placements that had a House Mum and a House Grandma. My House Mum took on the position of being my mother figure. She did everything she was meant to and always made sure that I had somewhere safe to stay within the chaos of Addis Ababa. She spoke very fluent English and helped me communicate with my House Grandma that spoke no English. Though through my Grandma's actions and gestures, I was able to receive the genuine Ethiopian hospitality and love that I was hoping to find. She always was downstairs whenever I went down to eat breakfast and was always on her small porch attached to her bedroom to wave goodbye to me whenever I left for work. My house family had a large impact on my trip that was filled with so many things I wasn't necessarily accustomed to, but assisted in helping me find stability in all the new things that were thrown at me. It was always a safe space I could count on returning to after exploring all day and a place where I could openly ask questions about the culture and people.

I got the opportunity to visit Eastern Ethiopia- Awash and Harrar, Kenya- Nairobi, Nakuru, and Southern Ethiopia- Hawassa, Langano. The staff always made it clear that we were to contact them if anything were to go wrong and checked to make sure we had a plan for where we were going to stay and weren't just winging things and crossing our fingers to find somewhere to sleep. The staff made the experience I had and the experience of the 30 other volunteers I met from around the world, definitely one we’d never forget nor regret. They were always a call or text message away (given there was service when we needed them- pretty inconsistent but that was to be expected) or never too far away to get to. They were my family and will always stay my family. I miss them all so dearly and never go a day without thinking about them.

Overall, that's the best I can summarize my 18 week trip. I saw things I never thought I'd see in my lifetime and felt the love of so many people that were once complete strangers but now considered my family. The trip that Projects Abroad offers is similar to others on the internet that are also advertised, but the specific love and extra attention that this particular organization give a volunteer, help to enhance the view each of the volunteers have on life for the better. No one back at home will be able to necessarily see the change a volunteer has withstood, but they'll be able to feel it and they'll know it. They'll be the only person to know what they've truly done with their stay and they'll realize that the trip was not only for the benefit of the children but for the benefit of the volunteer and their personal growth and progression.

I suggest it for everyone and if you’re wondering if you really should? Just do it. What do you have to lose?

Amasagenallo. Thank you.

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Posted: July 31, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
7
Value:
9
By: clea
Age:
19

For my volunteer abroad experience, I went to Senegal with Projects Abroad for a one-month care project. From the time I contacted the Projects Abroad staff in the United States, they were exceptionally helpful. I emailed the New York office over several months to ask questions and figure out the details of my trip. The staff answered every single of one of my questions promptly and was very accessible. Once I got my placement, the country director was even more helpful and excited to coordinate my trip. I really love the way that Projects Abroad deals with its volunteers and makes them feel welcome and special. I think that I would not have felt so prepared for my trip without the help of the staff. My country director called me and emailed me leading up to my trip to tell me all sorts of details including the arrival procedure. I found her constant contact very comforting since I was nervous to go abroad.
My nerves went away however when I arrived in the country. I was greeted at the airport by the in-country Projects Abroad staff. They picked me up at 5:30am when my flight landed and drove me four hours to my site location in Saint-Louis, Senegal. The staff in Senegal was exceptional. They were always so full of energy and loved getting to know the volunteers. They organized several events each week for the volunteers to hangout and relax after our projects, and provided a great atmosphere for us to learn about the country. They provided me with an orientation when I arrived which I found very helpful. I was shown all around the city and made sure that I felt comfortable where I would be spending my time for a month.
Another great part about my time in Senegal was staying with my host family. Although I did not develop a very close relationship with them they were very kind and accommodating. I also had two other Projects Abroad volunteers who stayed in my house with me. I loved my placement and would not change a thing about it. I would recommend that everyone volunteer with Projects Abroad. My only regret is that I did not stay for longer. One day I hope I can return to Senegal to revisit my volunteer experience!

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Location:
Posted: May 24, 2014
Overall:
9
Support:
10
Value:
10
By: gmccarthy
Age:
20

Projects Abroad is an amazing organization to work with! They are very organized and easy to contact with any questions. I signed up for the trip very last minute, they were more than happy to rush the process of signing up and very welcoming. They provide more than enough information to help you with your planning concerning your flight and such. Not only is the organization great as a whole, but the staff in Jamaica was absolutely outstanding!

They provided me with a very nice host family with a gorgeous home. They set up transportation to and from my volunteer placement and planned many fun activities! They were personable and helped us to understand the culture in Jamaica better. They allowed appropriate free time and social life while visiting.

I was part of the care project while in Jamaica along with about 8 other girls. We volunteered at an orphanage for children with special needs in the morning then a school of arts institute in the afternoon. The volunteer experience was breath taking, i learned endless lessons and it was a trip of a life-time. If i had the chance to go to Jamaica with this organization again, i would take it in a heart beat! This was one of the best experiences of my life thus far! I highly recommend this organization as well as this specific location and care project!

Good Luck with your travels!

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Location:
Posted: May 21, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10
By: Jesse1995
Age:
18

I volunteered in the city of Cordoba for the Argentina Projects Abroad. The overall experience of the trip was absolutely incredible and had a large affect on my prospecitive of the world. I first decided to volunteer because I had a semester where I was not taking classes and was able to get the time off of work. I had only been out of the country once and had never traveled by myself. I wanted a trip that would place me out of my comfort zone and allow me to build my indepedence. This trip did just that! I do not speak Spanish very well so I was a bit overwhelmed traveling alone when I got about halfway on my journey as it took me some time to figure out the different airports but I wouldn't change a single thing. It tested my ability to figure things out for myself and my communication skills. Once I arrived in Cordoba I instantly felt extremely comfortable. I was picked up at the airport and brought directly to my host families house. My family was amazing and I had a blast living at the home for 3 weeks. I did have another volunteer as a roomate which was extremely nice because she had already been there for 3 months and could show me around the city as well as introduce me to other volunteers. During my placement I worked at a daycare facility with 0-4 year olds playing with them, planning daily learning activities, and helping out wherever I was needed with different task around the daycare. The kids were absolutely amazing and I instantly fell in love with them. It was a bit difficult at first because the other teachers and the kids spoke no english and I was not fluent in Spanish. I did pick up enough to communicate with the children and to feel comfortable instructing them on different tasks. We tried to focus on doing activites that would really help the children learn. We worked on colors, numbers, letters, made masks to learn the parts of the face, and colored Easter eggs to hang up the week of Easter. It was so great getting to know the kids and forming relationships with them. I loved getting to plan activities and really have freedom to plan what we would be working on each day. I also really enjoyed having the opportunity to meet so many other amazing volunteers! I made so many life long friends and it was so great to get all of there different stories. One of the weekends I was there was Easter weekend so we had Friday offf of work. Projects Abroad organized a volunteer trip for us that weekend to Mendoza which was incredible! We did vineyard tours, rafting, trekking, and mountain repelling off the side of the Andes Mountains. It was unforgettable. I would love to go back to Argentina or to travel with Projects Abroad to another location to volunteer for a second time. I learned so much about volunteering, the organizations, the country, and especially myself.

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Location:
Posted: May 12, 2014
Overall:
8
Support:
9
Value:
9
By: jrenz
Age:
24

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