We Deliver Meaningful Travel That Makes A World Of Difference At ABV, we are passionate about travel and the unique opportunities it provides for cultural immersion. Since our founding in 2007, our organization has been driven by a desire to make a positive impact on the world through meaningful service-learning volunteer work. We believe that every individual has the power to make a difference in the lives of others, and we are committed to empowering our volunteers to do just that. If you share our love for humankind and our motivation to help others, we invite you to join us on a journey of discovery and service.
Welcome to A Broader View! We offer volunteer projects for the globally-minded individual searching for a unique travel experience. We are a US based non-profit organization (501 c 3 tax deductible) offering short term volunteer placements working with international social projects in 32 Countries and over 345 programs. Our programs are in areas of teaching, orphanage assistance, community development programs, conservation, healthcare projects and many more.
Volunteer with us and gain A Broader View of the World!
At home, I work as a nurse in a busy emergency room in Boston MA. I am used to seeing and caring for people that are sick and people that may be dying of a chronic illness. It was very challenging for me to be around people suffering and dying from HIV/AIDs and not being able to provide them with the care I am used to. The practice of medicine is very different in Tanzania since there are limited supplies and resources at your disposal. People are required to be much more self-sufficient, even when gravely ill. I had to adjust to the fact that just because it is not what I am used to, does not mean it is wrong. I had to respect cultural norms and learn to do what I could within my means for the ill individuals I encountered.
Traveling to Tanzania for volunteering I had no expectations. I had never volunteered in a foreign country and I had never traveled to such a place alone. This was a wonderful experience for me.
My time in Cartagena was wonderful. I met so many lovely women and men through my time spent at the foundation, especially the women I worked with. Although sometimes I felt that I could be doing something more effective or instantly productive to some people’s lives I soon realized that the need for emotional support and basic health education is monumental too. I offered to give basic English lessons at the end of the group sessions every morning and I was so pleased to see how enthusiastic the parents at the foundation were to learn after not having much opportunity to beforehand. I spent a lot of time with the toddlers too, to make sure I spent as full a day as possible volunteering and they were so adorable and I found it very rewarding to see them remember me and developing character - even over the period I was there.
I think it’s a beautiful, inspiring, sprawling city that has a lot of social issues at its core but is fundamentally full of great charming people.
I wish I had been able to stay for longer and bring more supplies for the Hospital and Clinic. I was impressed with the connection Abroaderview has arranged with the local hospital. This is a unique volunteer program. I knew I would not be able to change the way healthcare works in La Ceiba, but still it was very difficult to see things that so easily could be improved just by some logistics, more education, and better supplies. I am now thinking of ways I can help Honduras in the future. I Appreciated the unique opportunity to travel to La Ceiba with my daughter before she begins college and introduce her to another culture and climate and a very different way of life and level of health care. The local coordinator and all the people associated with him that we interacted with all placed a high priority on our safety. He only used cab drivers that he knew and has worked with many times.
My trip to Costa Rica with A Broader View was probably one of the best experiences of my life. Just like everyone would be if they came to a foreign country alone, I was nervous that something would go wrong or I would find the experience too difficult. With the support of the coordinator, her family, ABV in America, my volunteer location and the people of CR, I was the happiest person ever. I got to volunteer as well as learn the unique history of Escazu, CR and the local people. The US and CR have so many differences, but by coming to Escazu I have a new appreciation for happiness. Seeing the kids of the kindergarten come to school with big smiles of their faces reminded me that happiness isn’t based on the things that you have, but rather what you make of it!
At my age 70....I always wanted to do some volunteer work and ABV USA looked to me as a good organization and Nepal did sound as a very interesting location with many needs, I traveled with 2 of my best friends from NYC. The orientation day 1 was provided with information about the program places to go, and ways to go. I got a cell phone from the country and eat lunch at a local restaurant, orientation was good by the local coordinator. I worked on the school in the morning and library in the afternoon, the school was challenging because there were physically disabled children in the same class with the regular children, but it was a very satisfying experience and heart warming to see how the able children help the disabled to get around the school. In the library was a lot of fun working with the children from the community different ages, loving, very polite. The host family was wonderful.
I really could have not asked for a better experience. The senior center in CR was the highlight of my trip, even on top of the vacation week I took beforehand. Every person I met was friendly to me, which fueled me to give my best effort in my project. I could tell that the workers and residents really appreciated my work. They answered all my questions. They appreciated that I was communicating in Spanish to them. They could tell I was really enjoying myself. I am still in contact with a couple of the workers! On my last day, one of the workers gave a speech in front of all the residents basically giving thanks to us the volunteers. Then a couple residents said a few words, but the most memorable thing was that a resident said that their country is always open to us in the future. I cannot express how grateful I am for this experience. It was hard to say goodbye, especially since some residents even shed some tears. They want me to come back soon! Seeing the impact I made, for what l
My experience in Ecuador went so far beyond my expectations. I loved how welcoming and friendly my host family was. They made me feel comfortable and made my time in Ecuador 10x better. Everyone that I worked with at the projects were patient and understanding of my limited Spanish ability, and despite the language barrier I was able to learn so much from them. I would highly recommend this program to anyone who is interested in experiencing a new culture, and getting some real hands on experience in the field of Occupational Therapy.
My favorite memory of the trip would either be traveling on the weekends to different parts of Ecuador or just hanging out with my host family during meals. The weekend travels were so awesome because I got to see a new part of the world unlike anything I had ever experienced, and I got to do some awesome activities. Hanging out with my host family was great because I got to be fully immersed in Ecuadorian culture, and they taught me so much about the h
This experience was more than just the “Dental Volunteering” you sign up for. You are exposed to an honest view of the country that you would fail to meet if you were on the standard tourist trail. Personally, I found the experience humbling and it has motivated me to make charitable work a significant part of any life. I look forward to being back in Nepal sometime soon.
Just a quick note to let you know that Kathryn returned from Peru today. What a fantastic time she had with everyone. Maria Elena was the perfect fit for her first journey abroad and alone. She was truly a Peruvian mother to her and an excellent guide. The week was filled with excitement and warm and caring relationships. The kids were very special to her, as well as her Spanish instructor. A small child on the side of the road, selling insignificant little candies late at night, until she earned 20 Sol, was asleep at the corner of the building, with chapped, cracked and blood dried lips bring tears to Kathryn's eyes telling us about her. She was deeply affected by the entire experience. Your professional expertise is very much appreciated, as are all of the wonderful people who make A Broader View possible in Cuzco. It is a special program, providing very special human connections. We hope to participate in another journey with your organization in the future.
Quito and Galapagos are almost like different countries! The people are incredibly friendly in both places, and in the Galapagos, I was not at all worried about theft or walking alone at night. We learned a lot about their struggles with invasive species, worked really hard in the fields and helping with their efforts to keep turtles in a safe environment but had a chance to explore the island every afternoon.
This was a great project for myself and my 14 year old daughter, who wants to become a veterinarian. The educational/experience value for her was tremendous. She really grew up a lot in 4 weeks.
The best leisure activity was the day-long trip around the Island of St Cristobal. We never needed to leave the island - 90% of the species in the Galapagos are there, including Blue-footed boobies and tortoises and many other birds. To see penguins and the lava tubes you would go to the islands but your choices are very long boat rides or flying, so we took day tours and snorkeled.
Volunteering in Nepal was an eye opening experience for me. I got to see how people make do with whatever is available rather than complain about what they don’t have. I had a lot of fun at the school. A lot of teachers do not speak English that well (including English teachers) but they still make an effort to try and communicate. The kids really don’t know any English but they also do their best and try to play with me or show me some of their culture (like dancing) which is always very fun. Although at first I doubted I would be able to make much of an impact, I got to see little things once in a while that they’ve pick up along the way: like giving back something that I lent them or stopping fights in the classroom which is really heartwarming. The home stay is also very comfortable; the host family was very welcoming and other volunteers on site were a great help to get used to the very different environment. Not every day was necessarily easy or gratifying, but the whole trip was
It was a great experience going to Honduras. I did learn a whole lot during the two weeks I was there. It was an eye opening experience to see health care services in a different country and how they have to deal with limited supplies. I had a different expectation for the trip like I would travel to different locations to provide care, but I was able to give a lot just by volunteering at the hospital and clinic. My favorite memory about the program was able to work alongside with people I have never met before and speak a totally different language.
The host family house was pretty nice, in a safe area of La Ceiba and we had wifi so I was still connected with the rest of the world. There is always a ghetto side to any city, and La Ceiba is no exception. However, the coordinator pointed that out on the first day and made sure that everyone knows to stay away. The local people are very nice otherwise.
I absolutely loved my month in Cusco! My experience surpassed all of my expectations and I am really sad that my time there ended so fast. My time at the primary school was amazing. I rotated through the three classes of five-year-old students to teach English. Most of the time I was given complete control of the class for the day and led activities to teach basic English vocabulary and concepts. I tried to make the lessons engaging by having the students act out different words, creating competitions between groups of students, and teaching them songs in English. It was amazing to see how interested they were in learning English, how much effort they put into practicing, and how much progress they made over the course of the days I spent in each class. I also loved getting to know the students in a non-academic setting: talking with them before class, eating lunch with them, and playing with them at recess. They were so excited to see me every day and would scream “Profe de ingles!!”
From the beginning, I knew that this nonprofit was the right organization to help me volunteer abroad. The support staff was extremely helpful and thorough, and my emails always received responses within minutes. Also, the detailed and informative volunteer guide made me feel comfortable and gave me the knowledge I needed to prepare for my arrival in Honduras. I volunteered in two hospitals throughout my time in La Ceiba, but I spent most of my time observing and assisting doctors at the Hospital. I was in La Ceiba for two weeks, building relationships with the doctors, nurses, and other medical staff at the hospital. By volunteering in the hospital every day, I learned a lot about the differences between the Honduran and American healthcare systems; one of the key lessons I took away from my experience is how much we take for granted in the United States.
This nonprofit was able to help me throughout my registration process. If I had any question they were quick to respond back. Even during my stay at Costa Rica, I was able to contact ABV quite easily over the chat/email/whatsapps. Overall my stay in Costa Rica was extremely nice. The coordinator was able to help me when I had an issue and took care of it properly and very fast. Abroaderview did a good job of finding a nice host family to stay with and provide me with all the information before I went to Costa Rica.
My accommodation was very nice. I felt like I was at home. I was able to freely access anything I want such as the T.V., food, etc. The meals were very well prepared, never got sick. I liked every food I ate, and it was different each day/meal. I felt very safe during my stay there. Security was least of my worries as there was never a moment where I was scared or felt unsafe.
I got to develop relationships with the senior people and the staff at my volunteer placement
I really enjoyed volunteering at the child care program with my mother for the last month .. I was an assistant at a foundation for Cartagenan children. sometimes I was a bit unsure what I should actually be doing the first couple of days. But as I just went with the flow, asked around, I adapted to the everyday life of the program and learned that the most important part of my job was to care for the children, play and give them the attention and love they need. I worked every day from 8 am until 1 pm, and although it was only 5 hours it could be very tiring as I was always around many kids. Then had Spanish lessons in the afternoons.
I worked with a group of 20 kids 2 year olds, and as my Spanish wasn’t the best, in the beginning, I had some trouble understanding them. However, as I improved my Spanish it was a lot easier to communicate and connect with them and that definitely improved my work experience.
It was a wonderful experience volunteering in Cartagena. The Abroaderview immersion program gives a unique opportunity to learn Spanish and at the same time learn more about the Colombian people and culture. The Foundation in which we worked with my daughter is surprisingly well run and really makes a difference for poor families and their children. It was an honor to be part of it and to get to know the adorable children and the fantastic staff.
This was my first volunteer abroad program in Ghana and I’m so glad I picked this one out of the many others I sifted through online. The coordinator’s background on how he started the orphanage was truly inspirational. I could go on and on for pages about my experience but there’s not enough space here. All I will say is to come with no expectations + an open mind. Was so touched by this experience that I plan on continuing to help as much as I can (social media, fundraising, pal-to-pal). Even got one of my friends to strongly consider doing this next summer after she saw all the pictures that I posted. Do hope to come back sometime in the future to visit these amazing kids.
My experience as a medical volunteer in Peru was beyond the power of words to describe; it changed my life, and my outlook on life, permanently. From the days that I spent at the hospital helping mentally and physically challenged children to grow stronger, healthier, and feel more loved, to exploring the city of Cusco and the Peruvian countryside, to living and sharing a home with a family that was willing to open its doors to me and my best friend, the experience brought new memories, awesome moments, and learning opportunities that I could never have even hoped for before. To try to describe my trip in mere words is an exercise in futility. I can only say that I have been truly privileged to have been a part of this program, and will never forget Elena, our hostess; Emily, our fellow volunteer who became a sister to us; Jhoselin, the two year old hospital patient who I fed, cared for, and grew to love each day at the clinic.
This has been one of my favorite travels of my whole life. I have done a lot of traveling and have had mostly good experiences but my time with A Broader View has been one of my favorites of all of my travels. The host family experience was incredible. My host Mom welcomed me with open arms from day one and was always checking in on me to be sure that I had everything I needed to be comfortable and feel supported.
I really enjoyed my volunteer site- a girls orphanage. I was able to really build relationships with the girls in the orphanage over my month long time with them. The girls were so welcoming and inclusive of me, I really was part of the family. Felt very safe the whole time, a safe neighborhood and a safe city (Cusco and Machu Picchu). I didn’t feel like such a tourist and like I stood out even though I am very fair skinned. I felt comfortable and at peace walking around. The locals are very friendly and many lookouts for tourists.
Volunteering in Belize with A Broader View was probably one of the best experiences of my life. Just like everyone would be if they came to a foreign country alone, I was nervous that something would go wrong or I would find the experience too difficult. With the support of the local coordinator, her staff, ABV in the USA, my volunteer location and the people of Belize, I was the happiest person ever. I got to volunteer as well as learn the unique history of Belize, and the indigenous people. The USA and Belize have so many differences, but by coming to Belize I have a new appreciation for happiness. Seeing the kids of the orphanage go to school with big smiles on their faces reminded me that happiness isn’t based on the things that you have, but rather what you make of it!
The maternity project in Mongolia was a wonderful experience. I enjoyed working in several different settings and exploring the city of Ulaanbaatar and the beautiful sites surrounding it. The Mongolian culture is open and friendly and I never felt unsafe or uncomfortable. The other volunteers were great too, and it was fun to meet new people from all over the world. I recommend this project to all volunteers that have the qualifications.
I am 18 years old and choose to volunteer in Nepal to experience a new culture and country and impact the lives of people from underprivileged country. I did the pre-nursing program to gain a greater experience in the medical field. While I was here I got to view future being put in and taken out, medical professionals giving medicine & taking vitals, simple dressings, and an endoscopy. I did not spend much time here, but the longer you stay the more they will teach you. I did enjoy experiencing a healthcare setting much different than one and the US. While at the hospital we got to explore around and new doctors and nurses in the EP, general ward, and pathology lab, so it was nice having a little priority. The country itself was amazing and very different than the one I am from. I loved getting to explore and learning about the country. Everyone here was very welcoming. I even got the inviting to have lunch at a nursing student’s home. The host family was also very welcoming and did
I had a wonderful experience with Broadview. I really enjoyed working in the orphanage and getting to know the kids and staff. I would definitely recommend this program and Chile to other volunteers. I just have a few comments/tips for ABV and other volunteers...
The house in La Serena is cold in the mornings and some nights so bring lots of fuzzy socks and hoodies and a sleeping bag just in case.
It can be difficult working with others who do not speak English because my Spanish skills are so minimal. I have made it work but I should have learned more before coming - practice your Spanish before coming! Also, the local staff were WONDERFUL!! Vilma is an amazing host mother and helped me so much with the initial adjustment.
I just spent a month in Tanzania with A Broader View. Before going I was really nervous. Being from a completely different world there was times when I felt on edge but it all turned out well, nothing bad happened to me. The city is safe and outsider friendly, the ABV coordinators were
a great help. They showed up on my first day and showed me around town. They took me out to the market, some local shops and introduced me their friends and made the trip better than what I could have expected. If you are thinking about volunteering just go for it and do it, it is worth every penny. When there don’t be scared, just go with the flow of everything and open your eyes to everything happening around you. This is likely a once in a lifetime opportunity so enjoy every second.
I am impressed with the Costa Rica program. Initially, I was stressed out about going through with the program due to financial reasons, but I am so glad I did not back out. This was an opportunity of a lifetime and I loved every minute of it (even the "rough times" ;) not rough at all). I've met so many people from all around the world and developed connections with them and the locals. I learned a lot about turtle conservation and leading teams in hands-on field work. If possible, I would love to return to Costa Rica to visit everyone and help out again.
The location of the program is a nice little town that has shops and plenty of places to eat (if you want to have other options). There is wifi at the accommodation, although it is a little spotty. The meals are good, but are certainly repetitive. It is easy to go into town to get additional snacks and things you may want (bug spray).
I enjoyed the experience in Costa Rica. It was truly an eye-opening, once in a lifetime opportunity. I would love to do more projects around the world like this. I met so many amazing people from around the world, and learned so much about ocean conservation and sea turtles. I cannot recommend this enough. You will not regret going through with this project.
The best memory was when I was helping a mother turtle that was nesting, and another turtle came from the ocean and came right up to me! I was so shocked that a turtle trusted me enough to come to me. She decided to have her front flipper touching me, and started to dig her nest. For me, it was the most beautiful moment. I would have never expected something so amazing to happen.
Before I left for my travels earlier this year I completed the necessary training to receive my EMT certificate in the states. After some searching online, I found this opportunity and thought it would be a great way to combine my travels with my newly learned skills.
The pre medical program was a fantastic way to experience a different hospital environment in a place with limited resources. I had the opportunity to observe the ER general OPP multiple endoscopies, the path lab and 4 surgeries during my 3 weeks.
The bedrooms and common space provided were both very nice in areas to stay for 3 weeks. Enough space was provided even with 7 volunteers, the volunteer house is very big and safe.
And I was pleasantly surprised how much I enjoyed everything about Nepal. Its challenges, its food, its people made it an amazing experience and I want to return very soon.
This experience was a difficult one, personally, since the day before I flew to Ecuador my grandmother passed away. I then had to spend the next six weeks in another country, away from my family, and living with a new family. Despite such personal tragedy, my overall experience with the project at the Hospital was a learning experience I will never forget. The hospital staff was beyond friendly and willingly to show me knowledge in the medical field. I spent my time working in the Emergency and Pathology departments. One department completely different from the other, yet still just as interesting. I am one of those science-lovers that enjoyed going to project every single day and never wanted to miss a day of work, there were even more days than not that I would work late just to see one more patient or to finish collecting one more sample.
I loved my Peru medical volunteer experience. It was a great way for me to go out of my comfort zone and experience a new country! Volunteering in the clinic was so rewarding and was a great way to be truly immersed in the culture! I would definitely do it again!
I loved my accommodations! They were very comfortable and the host family was amazing. The food was excellent and I always felt very safe. Everyone was extremely friendly and was always willing to help.
The support I felt in country was awesome! Beatriz was always available when I needed her and showed me how to get around. She was very helpful when things changed and was always willing to help.
This is the program I did https://goo.gl/2BCzX9
I’ve always been intrigued by Asian countries more so, Nepal was the only place that had a program specifically for dogs. Dogs are my passion. Im happy I did this program! I know this was an opportunity that I won’t get again in my life. It was a humbling and rewarding experience. Doing it through A Broader view made planning very easy.
I loved my experience in India Jaipur. Some little culture things were frustrating and some other things were extraordinary. There is a mentality of “that’s just India”, but thing can change for the better if the adults could open their minds to the possibilities. Although there are not many resources, volunteers can do and bring so much. Every person has a talent that they can bring to the table, but that can only happen if there is organization and adults who desire to better the project one volunteer at a time with a broader view I did find this balance. The children at the program are beautiful and I wish I could give them the world, but they taught me that unconditional love is the best thing a person could ever give them.
Some tips I can give for other volunteers: Don’t have expectations. 10 minutes really means 45. Having an Indian sim card is great if you don’t have an international plan. Be patient with everyone and yourself.
The trip to Kathmandu was one to remember. Throughout the 2 weeks, I not only grew as a dental student, but as a person. The people we met did greatly impacted my experience and I found myself enjoying the stay more and more each day. I gained a lot of insight into the local practices and we were able to do an extraction case, a minor oral surgery, some scaling and impression, which were enjoyable experiences. We even got to observe an enucleation of cyst, which never seen before.
I found myself looking forward to seeing different procedures and talking to the staff every day. I have never felt such compassion in a community and it is very different to our urban city life in Hong Kong, but I found their laid back way of life refreshing for a change. For sure, I would like to be back in Nepal in a few years time and I’m looking forward to seeing their reconstruction and development. I wish Nepal and its wonderful people all the best.
Volunteering to provide medical and dental care in La Ceiba Honduras was one of the most memorable and rewarding experiences of our lives, I volunteered with my father. The people there really need the care and the equipment that we donated. It was also rewarding for my father to be able to perform and teach some extremely useful oral & maxillofacial surgical procedures on the patients and doctors working in the clinics.
The local coordinator Rafael was extremely accommodating making sure we were well taken care of throughout the entire duration of our stay. He set us up with pre-medical and medical students as well as dentists in training who hung out with us most of the time and took us to fantastic places off the beaten path that you would never see as an average tourist. They went with us to fantastic restaurants and we ate some of the best local food to be found in La Ceiba... maybe even all of Honduras.
I would highly recommend doing this program in La Ceiba Honduras to anyone.
I would recommend volunteering with A Broader View because they offer a broad range of volunteering opportunities, not just all over Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands but all over the world. The US and Ecuador staff are all very knowledgeable and accommodating. They were very willing to work with us in constructing a program that worked for us given our tight timeframe (daughter, niece and me). Most of all we felt taken care of which is important when you are so far away from home in a foreign environment.
The children at the program were adorable and eager to work with us. We brought many English books translated into Spanish which they could not wait to get their hands on. Their enthusiasm was priceless.
Pack light versatile clothing and should include waterproof shoes and wind/rain jacket. Bring items you need like sunscreen, insect repellant, toiletries, anything else you may need from the states. The brands we are use to are not available in Ecuador and can be expensive.
So many emotions in me while thinking back of my days in Cusco Peru. I would like to think that I did make a difference. I hope to have contributed and consolidated through my work with this Non Profit.I made a lot of friends and filled my heart with a lot of unconditional love. We are not only a citizen of our country, but also a citizen of the world. Thus, we can be useful in any society. We are here not only for ourselves, but for others.
I brought clothes for kids and the second time we did a special breakfast for the patients in the cancer hospital, there were Kekes (soft orange cakes) left over. So, Maria Elena and I went down the street in the night distributing pieces of cakes and clothes for poor kids. We looked out for people in need and offered these. Happiness and gratefulness could be read on their face.
The US office was so fantastic. I don’t know how they can be so present. Indeed, all the time I had a question or a doubt, I was answered very quickly.
I volunteered at both the orphanage (6 weeks) and elderly home (2 weeks) in La Serena, Chile from May 15th to July 10th this year. Both organizations are run my Sisters, who are so kind and made me feel extremely welcome. They made my experience so great. Overall, I had a wonderful experience volunteering with the children and elderly people.
I learned so much about Chilean culture and really improved my Spanish. I also made some great friends with other ABV volunteers and people at my work. I had a great trip after learning to adjust.
My host mom cooked plenty of food for us and adjusted her cooking to my dietary needs (I cannot eat gluten or lactose). Her food was delicious! I always felt safe and everyone was very nice. Vilma and Tanya (local coordinator and Spanish teacher) are very kind.
The pre medical program I was part of in Costa Rica was an awesome experience. I was lucky enough to volunteer at a hospital where I would help care for the babies or kids whose parents could not always be with them.
There are not enough nurses to care for all of the kids and the parents need to eat or sleep at some point and that is where the rest of the volunteers and I come in. We would help take care of the children. This could be as simple as sitting there and letting them play, or helping feed them. What was amazing to see was how happy many of the kids are even though they are in the hospital. Just playing with them for a few minutes is enough to see a big smile, which was great. It was so rewarding. Also, the family I was staying with was amazing.
Alice was the greatest cook, and she was so welcoming. She helped to show me around my first day in the country and was such a great help until my last day in Costa Rica. The weekends were also a great time to explore the country.
Volunteering at the Monastery in Nepal Kathmandu was a beautiful experience. I had never taught before, but after a while it felt very natural. This is something I think everyone will benefit from if given the chance. The local coordinator and his family were very welcoming and kind. He was able to provide me with information about anything I needed to know about. He checked up on me everyday asking how I was and if I needed any help. Both he and his family made me feel at home and were very welcoming. I will cherish the memories of this trip for years to come. From teaching, hiking, to meditating it was all very soulful and I feel much different after this trips. Hoping to come back again.
I really really loved my time in Cusco. The people I met through traveling, and other volunteers were absolutely amazing. I always had something to do in town and the time flew by. Volunteering in Peru has taught me so much about different cultures, mentality, values, and way of life.
My program in the clinic was exactly what I wanted to do. The nurses I worked with were so kind and encouraging of me, which really motivated me to go work there everyday.
I absolutely fell in love with Peru and Cusco. I feel as though I really took advantage of my month in Cusco to explore the city and get integrated, and yet I still feel like I there was so much more I didn’t see. Cusco is incredibly beautiful and cultured with many quaint side streets, historical sights, and activities. You won’t be bored!
Overall the trip was very memorable. I got to watch a ton of endoscopes, discussion and shadowing the doctor’s at the hospital, there were a few other volunteers and students working at the hospital at that time, I’m glad I came and stayed with a host family so that I could really immerse myself in the culture. There are tons of options for sightseeing, trekking, and traveling and I very much enjoyed the experience.
I would advice if you are coming during winter, BRING LOTS OF WARM CLOTHINGS! Nights get freezing during winter and you’ll be glad you brought sweaters, hats and gloves. Definitely go to Pokhara and Nagarkot. We had a lot of fun in both of those places but prepared to travel for a long time to get to/from Pokhara.
The Staff support in country was great – he was extremely helpful in both orientating me to the city and helping to plan any outside trips. He’s is very dependable and whenever I needed anything he would accommodate.
I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to volunteer in Honduras at the local hospital and clinic. Everyone in the ABV program really wants you to have the best experience possible. This program also allowed me to gain so much more hands-on experience than I would have been able to get in the U.S. I was able to take vital signs, assist in wound cleaning and help at a "health fair". I also observed C-sections and many other surgeries. All of the doctors were welcoming and thankful for our help. They were also willing to explain what they were doing and why. There is no doubt that I would recommend this program to anyone who is thinking about pursuing a career in the health care field.
Rafael was a wonderful host during my week in Honduras. He drove us to and from the hospital each day to ensure our safety and was always open to hearing our questions and concerns. I'm really grateful for everything he did to make sure I was having the best experience possible.
In the month that I was there I first spent time at a hospital, where I was able to move around to some of the different departments. Here I was able to see health conditions and procedures that I hadn't seen before. I enjoyed learning from the Doctors, Nurses and other volunteers at the hospital. I then spent time on a HIV and care programme, where I would assist staff with daily tasks at an orphanage for children with HIV. On this programme I also went into communities where I enjoyed seeing people receive support and donations.
I was fortunate to visit a school where the pupils were educated on health matters such as HIV, the class was translated to me and I was shown around the school. We also went to people's homes where it was sad to see people live in poor conditions but it was nice to whiteness how donations were helping families. On these visits I was told that I may have been the first white person that some of the children may have seen.
On one of the days, we visited a local school to conduct a health check up. The school did not have proper walls and the coordinator told me that for some time, the school did not have a proper roof. Inside one of the classrooms, I saw 15 little children bundled up in scarves and jackets, eager to learn. It warms my heart to see the dedication and passion these children had for their education. The children were so respectful and stood up and greeted me when I entered their classroom. It was a privilege to do a health check up for these children. I checked their height, weight, and eyesight. Most of the children were underweight. It was inspiring to see how happy these children were regardless of the condition of their school or their financial backgrounds. They were determined to study and progress their careers. Despite the fact that these children were from humble backgrounds, their lunches were all homemade and healthy.
I've done a similar trip in Guatemala with another program but it cannot compare to going through ABV. The coordinator in Honduras was with me every step of the way and cares that you are getting the most out of the program. As a result, I learned and saw so much that I wouldn't have been able to see as a volunteer in the U.S. I got to take vital signs, help out in wound care, and I learned to start IV leads and administer medications and vaccines. I got to witness live births and hear about the surgeries that other ABV volunteers witnessed. It was also cool to meet other volunteers also from ABV and hear about their experiences. What I loved most was learning from the doctors and nurses who enjoyed teaching us despite how busy they were and who had the patience to explain to us the whys and the hows. In the U.S., it's harder to find doctors who are willing to take that time of their days. Overall, it was an amazing 2 weeks and I was excited to share it with my family and friends.
I gained so much hands on experience and saw so many medical cases during my pre-med program in Honduras. The doctors were more than happy to show us how to do sutures, catheters, vaccines and more. I did see cases and diseases I could only read about at home. At the hospital, I got to watch so many surgeries, deliveries and met so many different types of doctors. It is amazing how well they do with what they can with such little and limited resources. We also gave pets vaccinations and went to schools to educated people with an outreach healthcare program. I am so very thankful for the opportunities and all that I have learn. I could never have gotten this kind of experience at home (Canada), and this truly reinforced my path in the medical field. The Spanish lessons were good and very helpful. The neighborhood we lived in was very safe. They have two security guards that are circulating in the neighborhood 24/7.
This was my very first trip abroad without my family. I was very excited to go to Costa Rica to help out the sea turtles and see the culture. This program has definitely broadened my view of volunteering and the culture.
There is a lot to get “used to” when you arrive. There is a major shock due to lack of technology and limited electricity at the camp. You must be very social and open since you will be around other volunteers all the time.
My biggest problem was adjusting to being dirty every day, we did beach patrols, making holes for turtle eggs in the safe zone, digging out the eggs from the beach, making paths, cleaning the beach and much much more :)
I was part of a host-family and shared an apartment with another ABV volunteer. All this was a bonus since I had my own space to write, yet when it came to family time, we were only one floor away from the warmth of a fabulous family. My host family took pride and leaving time aside to be with everyone together. Also, the host-family was very passionate with all the food they made. If you want to learn about the culture, food and traditions, please have a host-family in mind. The best part of this trip was helping all the children. I was inspired to see all the children so eager to learn and to see how passionate they were to hear what everyone had to say. Some children have to walk far, but they were there on time and eager to learn, I already miss them.
I started my time in La Serena after having been in Chile for five weeks (four in Santiago and one in the Lakes Region). It was very exciting to see another facet of Chilean culture – particularly the striking red and white architecture. I was nervous to start work at Colegio, specifically with the language barrier, but this proved to not be an issue. The children were very outgoing and excited to talk to me, which put me at ease. Luckily, I was also able to go on tours of both Pisco Elqui and Isla Damas during my one weekend in La Serena. All in all, it was a fantastic experience that helped me see Chile from a point of view distinct from that of a tourist.
For anyone who is considering volunteering in Ghana. I can’t express enough how incredible of an experience it was, and how much I would encourage them to do it. As a volunteer you hope that you can change a life and give your help where it is needed. The amazing thing is the gift you get in return from the people you go to work with and for. You will learn about other ways of life and you learn about yourself in the process.
The accommodations provided by my host family were comfortable, private, safe and clean. From the morning greeting each day to the good night greetings in the evening. I felt part of the family. Everyday my host Lizzie, prepared a wonderful breakfast and dinner for me. It was beautiful and everything was laid out on the table and just waiting for me.
I felt completely safe and secure in my host family’s home. Not only did my room have a lock and key, but the home itself has a private gate security.
Overall this was a great experience and I would suggest it to anyone who is thinking of doing any type of similar work. This being my first time leaving the United States it was a huge culture shock but it made it so much better in the long run. You get a real sense of the people and the culture that the country is made up of that I don’t think a tourist vacation would allow you too see. I think in the future I will put more thought into what kind of work I would like to do in a trip because I learned that anything can change and become what you wouldn’t expect. If I had the opportunity I would do this program again but for a longer period of time so I had more time to see the country.
When I first signed up for the Guatemala Animal Care Center program, I didn't know what to expect. Volunteering in a different country was definitely a challenge for me. Navigating the streets, talking to the locals and eating new food are all part of the experience. Issues will come up in new environments and I can attest that it was overwhelming. Losing items and getting lost to name a few. It takes time to get comfortable for some volunteers. Interactions with the animals at the care center, cleaning their straw beds and play areas, and providing them with food are all good memories. Volunteering at the animal program was an up close and personal experience to witness first-hand how to care for many varieties of animals.
Through the volunteering you'll find that there is help needed from you. Any work will be appreciated and acknowledged. This is the best feeling. So be proactive and show initiative.
From the moment I submitted my application for the Pre Dental Program in Ecuador, to online chats, right before leaving the US, to arriving in Quito. It was extremely helpful to have pictures of my coordinator and host family before hand. It was comforting and stress reducing to have a visual of the first individuals you would meet and count on during your stay.
I was surprised at how quickly my host family felt like my real family. They were very accommodating. I may not have always understood what was said in Spanish but at the same time I was still always apart of family activities and discussions. This is also true with the extended family. Within one week I met extended family from both sides of my host parents and it made this experience even richer.
I had an amazing experience within the short time I was able to volunteer, 4 weeks. I loved basking in the breathtaking scenery. No picture could capture the essence of the mountains in Quito.
I had one of the best experiences of my life in Xela Guatemala. I loved helping the people here but more importantly I loved the people. As a nurse, it is so intriguing to see how other healthcare systems operate! It was wonderful to have a skill set to be able to share with them! They were so welcoming of me and let me practice immediately!
My Spanish teacher was incredible and it was so encouraging to be able to communicate more and more.
The shelter was the best of all! It was so wonderful to love on girls who have been wronged! It was amazing to establish real relationships with them. Also, it was great to get to see them open Christmas presents!
My homestay was absolutely wonderful! They were described as wonderful, but I don´t think that does them justice. They were incredibly attentive to any need I had, and genuinely cared about my safety! I felt safe in almost every place in Xela because my coordinators and homestay family advised me where to go! This was a great experience
I really enjoyed working with the girls from the orphanage. I worked in both the kitchen and the ceramic classes and it was fun to chat with the girls and I think they also had fun asking me about the United States.
The accommodation was very nice. The local coordinator has a comfortable house. She has a large tv in her family room with lots of movies if you want to watch and relax. The meals were very good, I loved the soups that were served every lunch. I never felt concerned about my safety, even at night. Lunch will be your biggest meal and breakfast and dinner will consist of bread and jam or bread and meat. There was always boiled or bottled water to drink so I didn't have to work about the water quality. Maria Elena is a great host and really wants you to feel comfortable and at home. She is flexible and if you won't be there for a meal it's not a problem.
I also was in Peru over Thanksgiving and Maria Elena surprised me with a Thanksgiving meal, that was so nice of her.
This volunteer trip to Guatemala did certainly opened my eyes to the fact that I am so lucky to have been born into a financially comfortable and healthy family – other people are not so lucky. Because of this I want to continue giving back! This was my second time in Xela with Abroaderview and I have fallen even more in love with this city. From the culture to the friendly people, I will certainly miss it. Our host family kept us very comfortable. I was always warm enough, fed and rested. It was great that they only spoke Spanish because it really helped me improve my own. I will forever be amazed by the warmth and hospitality of these wonderful people. I came here to help them, but they really ended up helping me to be a better person!
My volunteer jobs were wonderful. The first 6 weeks, I worked with 2-year-olds at a day care center in one of the poorest sections of the city. I am not going to tell you it was an easy transition. The poverty I had to pass every day, the conditions I saw, the real suffering of some of the children and families were all extremely difficult to assimilate. The differences between Euro-American and Ecuadorian cultures are not small. Yet, the children... oh, the children. They captured my heart. I'll never forget the day about 2 weeks after I started, and they were going down for their naps (the time I always left each day). I said goodbye to them as usual, and for the first time, 9 little hands waived from their beds and several voices were saying goodbye ("chao"). One little voice, said, "Chao, Burbuja!" They couldn't yet remember "Barbara", so they called me the closest thing they were familiar with, "bubble". From then on, I was putty in their hands...
I came to Colombia with a broader view in the midst of a breakup hoping to find a distraction, but what I got was much more.
I felt like there were so many elements to the trip. There was the volunteer work at the foundation and my relationships with the ladies who worked there, the mothers and the babies. And although there was a lot of work there was also a LOT of laughter.
There was my home life and my relationship with my host family which was fun and warm.
Then there was my individual exploring which I really enjoyed.
All these elements made for a trip that was truly rich in its blessings.
I would like to thank ABV for giving me this opportunity to explore myself and the world. I would also want to thank my homestay host family for their generous hospitality and care. I sure send my best thanks to my family, friends and colleagues who supported me and encouraged me to go on this trip. Finally, I call all humans out there from different nationalities, you must visit Nepal, there are a lot of people here to help and you could always balance your life changing volunteering work with amazing unforgettable adventures.
Overall I had an amazing time in Cusco! The people are so nice and welcoming, the weather is gorgeous, the city and mountains are like nothing I’ve ever seen, and the food was great (definitely try ceviche at least once, it’s amazing)! You certainly have to be able to roll with the punches, and if you’re more Type A, you definitely need to turn that switch off! The work was great, but you have to be very assertive and have some Spanish skills. The patients are incredibly thankful and tough as nails, and it is so rewarding to just do simple things like give vaccines or hold a hand. Working at the orphanage was fantastic as well! The girls are so excited to meet someone new. The majority of the time I helped with homework (math, grammar, English), and when their homework was done we played volley ball! I think what they needed most was just hugs and affection. It´s been an incredible, eye opening experience, I hope someday I’ll be able to visit Peru again!!
I had once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be in Cuzco Peru for a month, working at the orphanage and being there for a month you get very connected to the girls and get very connected to the city because of how different it is. You realize how beautiful the simpler things in life are, the local ABV coordinator made everything really easy for me to acclimate into Peru. I know Spanish from high school, but being down there for a month and immersing myself in the culture was really great for my Spanish. You pick up quickly on the language and for myself learning in a classroom isn't the same.
The US abroaderview staff did helped me a lot, any questions I had they would answer me within 24 hours. My mom called and they answered any and all of her questions! I had a few precautions before I actually signed with abroaderview but after talking to them and talking to other ABV volunteers who have gone I realize that this was the right choice for me.
I have met so many amazing people on this journey from other volunteers to the girls at the orphanage. I have built the strongest connections in so little time and fallen in love with Cusco. The girls at the orphanage are some of the sweetest girls I have ever met and I wish I could stay here with them so much longer. I would not trade this trip for anything in the world.
My favorite memory was just sitting and talking with the girls at the orphanage. I don’t speak much Spanish and they don’t speak much English but somehow it was a perfect fit. I learned so much from them and truly felt a companionship with these amazing girls.
The best memory of the country was Machu Picchu. On the weekend I had the opportunity to do an excursion to Machu Picchu and it was phenomenal. I not only met so many great people, but got to experience some of the best views Peru has to offer.
My time at the Kathmandu orthopedic hospital after the big earthquake was one of the most amazing experience of my life. I gained an emerse amount of experience and applied least 50 casts and 70 slabs to earthquake victims along with doing countless dressings wounds and on multiple occasions removing post operation staples and stitches. I have also met so many amazing people and networked with countless Nepali surgeons at the hospital along with American surgeons here for relief aid. Best of all I was able to observe a hemotriaplasty which was probably the highlight of my trip.
The coordinator was more than accommodating and provided all the information and things I needed to succeed in the program. He showed me how to get to and from the hospital safely using buses and also showed me around the city so that I knew where to visit on my days off.
My 18 yr old daughter and I had decided to spend a week working in the orphanage in Bulenga, Uganda with ABV before working in Kampala on a project of mine and then exploring other parts of Uganda, and our plans were somewhat complex. Early in the planning stages I had to change the dates a few times, and I am very grateful to ABV for their flexibility and support. I also felt very well prepared by the US staff for the trip with well-organized contact numbers both here and abroad and with in-depth descriptions of the projects, country, living situation, and expectations.
My favorite memory of the trip was teaching four young, wildly enthusiastic and grateful 12 yr old girls mathematics in a tiny, brick room with red-clay floors, no windows or door, a chicken clucking at my heels and a baby (who had wandered into the classroom and asked to be held) in my arms. After we completed the lessons with me writing on a slab of slate propped against a wall and a tattered piece of cloth (shared
Volunteering at a health clinic in Xela Guatemala for past two weeks was a revitalizing experience. During the past semester in college, I went through some emotional troubles and thankfully, this trip helped me get my life back on track. It inspired, within me, motivation to continue pursuing a career in the health field and self confidence that I saw disappearing in the past few years. During my time here in Xela, I had the opportunity to give vaccinations to babies, learn and practice Spanish, visit Fuentes Georginas, hike up a hill to see all of Xela, celebrate Christmas and New Year´s with my family, and many other things. I am extremely grateful for the time I spent volunteering in Xela, and I hope I can come back soon to work in the clinic again.
I was pleasantly surprised how nice it was to be without internet access at the national park in Peru. I had such an amazing time getting back into my body's natural rhythm, waking up at 6am with the sun and going to bed around 8pm! :)
You need to bring ALL biodegradable substances: shampoo, toothpaste, and bug spray. However, you can also support the program by buying their products once you arrive. They sell all three of these products there for 40 soles.
I had a truly eye opening 2 weeks and I have A Broader View to thanks. I learned so much from being in the jungle, and it really changed the way I think about the World. I hope I can use this experience to help better my own country!
This was one of the most amazing 10 weeks I have been through in Guatemala Xela. Every person I met, every experience, every day brought something new. I can’t stress how much this experience honestly changed my life. I’ve always wanted to travel and I finally got the chance and took it through ABV. It was well worth it.
Don’t be afraid to open up. This may mean to the clinical staff or to yourself. I forged what I think could easily be lifelong friendships with many of the staff in the clinic. They will always have a place in my heart and its almost certainly likewise for them. In terms of yourself, be willing to go and travel, even if on your own, and meet new people. Everyone in Guatemala, locals, travelers, and transplants, are some of the most amazing people I have ever met and will likely meet. With a simple conversation with someone and your almost guaranteed to learn something new or find something in common.
The most difficult thing I experienced was working with special need's children, and not only having to adjust to caring for their disabilities, but also having to work somewhere that only spoke Spanish when I came here not speaking any. It was difficult communicating with both the staff and the children, and the work was exhausting anyway without the added language barrier. However, as both my Spanish and understanding of how the daycare centre was run improved, I found it easier as time went on.
I stayed with Laura, the ABV Coordinator, and her family for the duration of my stay in Quito. Laura and her family are one of the most welcoming, hospitable and loving families that I have had the pleasure of staying with, and the warmth that they showed the volunteers by including them in their family definitely meant that any homesickness was minute. During my stay, other volunteers and I had our own rooms in the family's apartment.
Colombia Cartagena Children Program
The kids are amazing (tiring but amazing) and it was great watching them live and interact with each other. They’re goofy and full of positive energy,most of the time. Also, experiencing a culture very different from my own is always exciting for me. And once my Spanish started improving, being able to communicate successfully was a rewarding feeling.
The language barrier was the biggest hurdle for me. I adapted to the city and lifestyle very well, and unknown territory was never a big worry for me (it was the exciting part).
I am doing a post-program donation so it’s never too late to donate if you don’t have enough time to fundraise properly before your trip like I didn’t have. But i would suggest fundraising before the program so you have the extra money to buy all the supplies you want. They’re pretty cheap in Cartagena and I think its more practical to buy them there…plus you’re supporting the local economy.