Types of Volunteer Projects Abroad that Make a Difference

Volunteering abroad is a rewarding way to make a positive impact while immersing yourself in a new culture and gaining valuable experiences. There are various types of volunteer projects available with IVI, catering to different interests and skill sets.

From childcare and teaching to construction, medical work, environmental conservation, and more, each project type offers a unique way to contribute and create lasting change. Discover which type of volunteer project resonates with you and find out how you can make a meaningful difference in the world.

Childcare Support

Childcare volunteer projects focus on supporting the well-being and development of children in underprivileged communities. Volunteers typically assist with daily care, education, and organizing recreational activities. By providing a safe and nurturing environment, volunteers help create a positive impact on children’s lives, promoting their social, emotional, and cognitive development. This type of project suits individuals who have a genuine love for children, patience, and a nurturing spirit.

You also need to have a lot of energy, as the kids are very enthusiastic! You care able to teach basic works and phrases in English and get them excited for learning!

Top Project! Childcare, Costa Rica

children at table


Teaching projects involve volunteering as an educator in schools or community centres, primarily in areas with limited educational resources. Volunteers assist with lesson planning, teaching various subjects, and conducting educational activities. By sharing your knowledge and skills, you empower local communities, promote literacy, and inspire a love for learning. Teaching projects are ideal for individuals who have a passion for education, adaptability, and the ability to connect with diverse groups of students.

Learning English can be so valuable for these children as it can help improve job prospects for them in the future. No teaching experience is required although this is certainly beneficial!

Popular! Teaching in Ubud, Bali

large group of kids


Construction volunteer projects focus on infrastructure development in underserved communities. Volunteers assist with building and renovating schools, community centres, or housing facilities. Through their physical efforts, volunteers contribute to improving living conditions and creating essential facilities for community members. Whilst no construction skills are generally needed don our projects, those who have basic construction skills, are physically fit, and are willing to work in challenging environments will suit this program.

New Project! Construction, Zanzibar

painting mural

Nutrition Outreach

Nutrition outreach projects aim to address food insecurity and promote healthy eating habits. Volunteers may be involved in organizing nutrition workshops, exercise programs, and performing free health checks for the community. By raising awareness about proper nutrition and providing access to nutritious meals, volunteers help combat malnutrition/ obesity and improve the overall health of vulnerable populations. This type of project is suitable for individuals passionate about public health, nutrition, and community empowerment.

Most Popular! Nutrition Outreach, Fiji


Medical volunteer projects provide healthcare services in underserved areas, assisting local medical professionals or working in clinics and hospitals. Volunteers may be involved in tasks such as basic medical care, health screenings, health education, and promoting hygiene practices. By providing much-needed medical assistance, volunteers contribute to improving healthcare access and addressing health disparities. This type of project is ideal for individuals with medical or healthcare qualification (or students), as well as compassion, adaptability, and a desire to help those in need.

Top Project! Medical Internship, Philippines

Medical Internships - Observing Real Doctors Abroad 4

Special Needs Care

Special needs care projects focus on supporting individuals with physical or intellectual disabilities. Volunteers provide companionship, assist with daily activities, and organize engaging recreational programs. By offering personalized care and attention, volunteers enhance the quality of life for individuals with special needs and promote inclusion within the community. This type of project is well-suited for individuals who have patience, empathy, and a genuine interest in supporting individuals with disabilities.

Popular! Special Needs Care, Vietnam

Balloon twisting (1)

Women’s Empowerment

Women’s empowerment projects aim to uplift and empower women in disadvantaged communities. Volunteers may be involved in organizing workshops on gender equality, providing vocational training, or offering mentorship programs. By promoting women’s rights, entrepreneurship, and leadership skills, volunteers contribute to creating more equitable societies. This type of project is ideal for individuals passionate about gender equality, women’s rights, and fostering positive change in marginalized communities.

Popular! Women Empowerment, Nepal

writing on the board

Cultural Projects

Our cultural orientation weeks are hugely beneficial to volunteers when done before the volunteer program starts. This is a fantastic way to learn more about the local culture, to settle in a bit and to take part in cultural activities. You will get some basic language lessons, or cooking classes, and will be in a great position for when your project starts. It can enable you to connect more with the local team and people on the project.

New Project! Culture Week, South Korea

korean ladies dressed up

Community Projects

Community projects encompass a wide range of initiatives aimed at addressing the specific needs of a community. Volunteers may be involved in initiatives such as environmental clean-ups, organizing community events, or supporting community development programs. By working alongside community members, volunteers contribute to building stronger, more resilient communities. This type of project is suitable for individuals who are adaptable, have strong interpersonal skills, and enjoy collaborative work.

Top Project! Community Support, India

group posing in garden

Marine Projects

Marine projects focus on conserving marine ecosystems and protecting marine life. Volunteers may participate in activities such as marine research, coral reef restoration, or marine conservation awareness campaigns. By contributing to the preservation of fragile marine environments, volunteers play a vital role in safeguarding biodiversity and promoting sustainable practices. This type of project is well-suited for individuals passionate about marine conservation, diving, and marine biology.

Top Project! Mangrove Conservation, Cambodia

boat on river in Kampot

Animal Projects

Animal projects involve working with animal welfare organizations, wildlife sanctuaries, or conservation initiatives. Volunteers may assist with animal care, habitat enrichment, or wildlife research. By contributing to the protection and well-being of animals, volunteers play a crucial role in conservation efforts and promoting responsible animal tourism. This type of project is ideal for individuals with a love for animals, a commitment to animal welfare, and a desire to make a positive impact.

New Project! Turtle Conservation, Zanzibar

_Hatching measurements

Environmental Projects

Environmental projects focus on conservation, reforestation, and promoting sustainable practices. Volunteers may be involved in tasks such as tree planting, environmental education, or wildlife habitat restoration. By addressing environmental challenges and promoting sustainable lifestyles, volunteers contribute to the preservation of our planet for future generations. This type of volunteer project suits individuals passionate about environmental conservation, sustainability, and creating a greener world.

New! Eco Park Rehabilitation, South Korea

planting new trees


Volunteering abroad offers a multitude of opportunities across diverse fields, allowing individuals to contribute their skills and passions while making a positive impact. Whether you choose to engage in childcare, teaching, construction, medical work, environmental conservation, or any other volunteer project, each experience presents a chance to create meaningful change and learn from different cultures.

Consider your interests, skills, and the type of impact you wish to make when selecting a volunteer project. Remember that flexibility, cultural sensitivity, and a genuine desire to help others are valuable qualities for any volunteer endeavour.

By participating in volunteer projects abroad, you not only contribute to the well-being of communities and the environment but also embark on a transformative journey of personal growth and cultural exchange. So, embrace the opportunity, step out of your comfort zone, and make a difference in the world through meaningful volunteer work.

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