Fiji

In the center of the Pacific Ocean, Fiji is the perfect destination to escape your daily routine between the turquoise waters, white sand beach and green jungle. As a volunteer and simple tourist, feel free to share your experiences and adventures during your trip to Fiji. If you are looking for more information about the unlimited opportunity to volunteer aboard, you will find all the verified programs right here.

Global Vision International (GVI)

I volunteered in Fiji for 2 months this past summer and had the greatest time of my life. I worked for 6 weeks volunteering in local villages and schools building rain harvesting tanks and other projects and spent the last 2 weeks of my trip teaching class 6 at the Ratu Meli boarding school on Nacula island. For starters the Yasawan islands are, in my opinion, the most beautiful place to spend the summer and the local fijians are very cool and extremely hospitable. The most shocking thing to me was how ridiculously friendly all the locals were, they didnt hesitate to invite you into their house to have some tea and cake and we consumed a lot of both while there. While on the construction crew I got to hang out with a lot of people form several different villages across the Yasawas and couldn't get enough of the place. It was mind boggling how each place was more beautiful than the last one. I lived with 25 other volunteers and staff members in very basic dorm accommodations with cold showers and electricity only 3 hours a day. That may sound like it's pretty rough but it was actually pretty nice the cold shower was a great way to cool off after hauling sand, concrete, and gravel to the work site all day. We worked form about 8 in the morning to about 4 in the afternoon which gave us weekends and afternoons off to enjoy the island life and hang out. Without a doubt it was the best trip I have ever taken and hope to do many more with GVI form now on.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Fiji
Posted: Nov 17, 2012
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Global Vision International (GVI)

I did the Fiji Childcare programme for 6 weeks with GVI. It was honestly the most rewarding, amazing experience i've ever had, and i have completely fallen in love with Fiji, and hope to be going back next year. GVI where amazing while the whole time, which made living in extremely basic conditions bearable, and even fun (although i actually enjoyed how basic our living conditions were, but i think for some people you might need to mentally prepare for that!). The staff members were in control the whole time, yet managed to create a balance between being professional and being extremely lovely and approachable.

As it was my first ever time away from home (and i had chosen the furthest possible place away from home) i was pretty nervous about going on the project, but as soon as we got to the island i would be living on, and met the staff members, i felt safe and happy instantly. When you arrived in fiji, you get to Nadi which is on the mainland, and you have to stay at accommodation that you arrange yourself, and then meet at the arranged meeting point at 6 am on the day your project begins. This was handled very well, and help is available from GVI if you need advice on where to stay and what will happen. We were met promptly by a staff member and introduced to fellow volunteers, and then got on the ferry to take us to the Yasawa Island. Nanuya Lai Lai, the island we lived on, is 5 hours away by ferry from the mainland. Once you get there, you have a base tour and decide which bunk you will sleep in. We live in dorms, there are currently 2 dorms, a 3rd is being built, and there are roughly 12 in each dorm. You have cold showers, as all the running water is pumped by a generator (which also pumps electricity for about 3 hours each day, yep thats right, only 3 hours of electricity a day, and its only available in the common area- no hairstraighteners or electric razors!) We also live among a local village, and you get to know some of the villagers and their children very well. They are lovely, generous people, and it was nice feeling part of their community.

We also cooked in cooking teams, once a week, breakfast and dinner, and sometimes lunch. The food supply is very basic, meat is basically off the menu completely, and we mainly lived on rice and pasta. Vegetables were around but mainly in the form of canned beans, however for at least 3 days of the week we would have lettuce and tomatoes for salad. However their is also a lady called Lowe, who owns a tea house about 10 minutes down the beach from Tovutu Base (the name of where we live) and she sells cake, fizzy drinks, crisps and bear-(alcohol is also available to be bought on base). She also sells sea shells on the sea shore...

We work 5 days a week. We leave base at 8 am (depending on the boat drivers- 'fiji time' is slow and something you will become used to) get to school at about quarter past 8 in time for assembly at half past, and then begin your ay of teaching. You will often have the fijian teacher leading the class, however sometimes they aren't around so you will have to take over. We are expected to plan lessons for music, arts and crafts and sports, which is good fun because the kids absolutely love doing it. You can either be attached to one class the whole time you are there, or you can to one to ones where you have a select number of students that you take out of classes throughout the day to focus on where they are suffering. We finish at 3.30 and go back to base to plan lessons and chill out with other volunteers- (marine conservation and construction live with us!)

The weekends are free to do diving or hiking across the island or going to a resort nearby or just sunbathing. There are always some sort of drinking sesh going on in the evenings- if someone has a birthday there is normally quite a good party. We had an Olympics party while i was there which was great fun.

The only negative things i have to say about my time there is that i did not bring enough money- it is suggested the 100 fiji dollars a week is sufficient. Following this advice, i found myself coming short and had to sacrifice going to some awesome sights in fiji to save money! I would take 200 fiji dollars a week, or more if possible. Its such a beautiful place, you might as well make the most of it and see all you can!

PS- As for the support being a bit lower than the overall- this is only because the people who work in the offices are often un informed about each project, and therefore give unhelpful advice. It is always best in my experience to ask for direct contact on the course. By doing this i was able to speak to someone in fiji about a few problems.

As for the value of the course- if you are complaining that its FOR PROFIT then you only have yourself to blame for misleading yourself into thinking it wasn't. They never say that they are, and you can actually request a transparent PDF breakdown of where all the money goes. It is very reasonable, takes slightly less than other large companies, and uses it more efficiently. It is a for profit organisation that provides sustainable volunteering, unlike many other large organisations.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Fiji
Posted: Nov 6, 2012
Overall:
10
Support:
8
Value:
10

Comments

Hi I am planning to apply and go to Fiji this summer. I am vegetarian so thank you so much for noting about what you ate. The positive news makes me more and more excited to go! and what you said about money was also very helpful! Is there anything else you might say to someone planning on going? My course will be different from yours i doubt i will be doing much teaching because I'm doing a different programs because i'm 15. If you have any advice about what to bring or expect or just more about your experience i would love to hear it all! Thank you so much!

Global Vision International (GVI)

Fiji construction project

'I have recently returned from the idyllic Yasawa Islands, Fiji. Its volunteer programmes like this that can not only change the lives of others but your very self. In a place of such beauty, necessitys like water and electricity are scarce and that's where GVI stepped in. To be a part of not only a stepping stone but a future vision was as rewarding and exciting as anything else I have ever done. Having been a volunteer with previous organisations it was clear from the start GVI is set apart. Its friendly staff, safety, and simple to learn training make for an unparalleled unique experience.'

'With so much achieved in Fiji already our main role was to produce a report on all the successful water tanks installed and other work achieved. We took photos, mapped the villages, spoke with the locals and as a unforgettable bonus was welcomed in for traditional Fijian lunches. I took pride knowing our report would be directly sent to the government for review. Although much has been completed in the one short year GVI has been in Fiji there is still much to do. With the future bright its an exciting time for others to get involved.'

James McKie

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Fiji
Posted: Sep 21, 2012
Overall:
10
Support:
9
Value:
8

Frontier

Frontier's Fiji Marine was truly a unique and unforgettable experience. On the first day all the new volunteers and staff went for a final meal in the capital, Suva, a time to bond and eat as much as possible before being whisked off to the remote island that was to be our home for the rest of the trip. We journeyed for 8hours over the pacific ocean and reached our camp which was in a prime location.

The spots where we did our shore dives were just a 20minute walk straight out from camp and there was an incredible wall to dive just 30 minutes away by boat. The coral in Fiji is exquisite, and the marine life abundant; on an average dive we would see masses of species of butterfly fish, groupers, wrasse, puffers and the occasional shark. On one occasion my fellow volunteers and I were lucky enough to see 4 oceanic white tip reef sharks on a single dive- with the largest one coming up to 2 metres! During our time off from the diving we would gather in the classroom to attend lectures about the identification of fish, coral and invertebrates, do some cooking or pop round the corner from camp to sunbathe or play volleyball on the beach.

A highlight from my trip definitely has to be spending time at the Fijian village of Navukailagi which neighboured our camp. As soon as we arrived each volunteer was adopted into one of the families in the village and every Sunday we would attend the church there and then go to our respective families' houses where they would dress us up and feed us freshly caught fish and other Fijian delicacies.

The whole trip was so much fun; the marine life, frontier staff, other volunteers, party nights and Fijian culture. What a great project!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Fiji
Posted: Sep 7, 2012
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Global Vision International (GVI)

I am currently at university going into my 3rd year and was looking for something to do over this summer which would give me some kind of volunteering experience to go with my psychology degree. I came across the organisation GVI and found the expedition in Fiji which involves teaching and construction work. I believed that it would be an awesome opportunity to gain some vital skills working with children and individuals from a completely different culture and way of life. My thoughts were, 'If you're going to do some volunteering, you may as well go all out and go to the other side of the world!' My time in Fiji has opened my eyes to the world and the rewarding feeling that comes from knowing that my contribution, however small, has made a difference in someone else's life for the better. I would massively recommend volunteering abroad wth GVI as they make the experience as enjoyable as possible and were absolutely awesome to work with! There isn't the words to describe how much of an amazing experience I have gained from volunteering, especially with GVI, so all I can say go ahead and do it, you won't regret it!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Fiji
Posted: Aug 7, 2012
Overall:
9
Support:
9
Value:
10

Frontier

The Fiji marine project is located on the beautiful island of Gau. Our camp accommodation is simple, traditional and comfortable, which adds to the ’wild expedition’ nature of the project. The diving is great and the locals are welcoming. Camp food is basic but with the added food given to us by the local village, this is not a problem. The diving is great but there’s loads to do on camp too.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Fiji
Posted: Aug 1, 2012
Overall:
9
Support:
8
Value:
9

Frontier

My experience in Fiji has been unforgettable. The diving was incredible, the whole of Gau island is surrounded by a barrier reef that provided us with an endless amounts of marine animals to see. As well as the amazing marine life there was the wonderful Fijian culture. Being fortunate enough to see first hand this amazing, friendly culture was an experience I’ll never forget. Apart from the diving, my main highlight was meeting people and getting involved with the local village activities.

Program: Gap Year
Location: Fiji
Posted: Aug 1, 2012
Overall:
10
Support:
8
Value:
8

Comments

Hi, I was thinking of doing the full 20 weeks on the Fiji project, do you think that's too long or would you recoend doing it for as long as possible? Thanks Megan

Frontier

So far I’ve really enjoyed my time in Fiji. The diving here is amazing, the water is so clear compared to anywhere else I’ve been and I’ve never seen so many fish. Today I saw my first turtle (which I love). It was so graceful and mesmerising to watch. Camp life is never dull and if you don’t want to chill in a hammock theres always something to do around camp. We often go to the local village to go see our Fijian families. Myself and Dan (another volunteer) go to our house and get given so muchlovely food. I’m really going to miss them when I’m gone. Experiencing the way they live is like nothing I’ve done before and I’m grateful for the chance to do this.

Program: Gap Year
Location: Fiji
Posted: Aug 1, 2012
Overall:
9
Support:
9
Value:
9

Frontier

 I arrived in Fiji at the beginning of June and started my healthcare project with Frontier. I have been working for a local NGO called ACATA Trust which stands for Action for Children and the Aged. ACATA's mission is to serve the local communities by assisting in general health and wellness. When I arrived, I was the first Frontier volunteer to be partnered with ACATA so the process was new to everyone. Rosan Lal, the executive director of ACATA, asked me to develop a program within ACATA that would perform research regarding diet and exercise patterns in children throughout Fiji. Since finalizing the survey, I have gone to approximately 20 primary and secondary schools throughout all of Fiji's main island, Viti Levu, as well as Vanua Levu and Taveuni. The project has allowed my team members and I to travel and see Fiji from all different angles. We have stayed in homestays throughout our travels, which in my opinion, has been one of the most rewarding experiences I have had while in Fiji. It has allowed us to live the life of a true Fijian and to experience many of the customs the Fijian culture has to offer. I could not have asked for a better, more fulfilling experience and would recommend Frontier and more specifically the Frontier Healthcare Project to anyone who wants to learn a new culture while making a difference in the local community.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Fiji
Posted: Jul 25, 2012
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Comments

Hi I am doing the healthcare project in June next year. Please could I ask what the homestays conditions were like? Did you have to sleep with rats crabs etc like iv heard on other reviews or is that just people staying in the camp? Also did you successfully gain any sponsorship? Many thanks x
My particular homestay was amazing! I could not have asked for a better family to be placed with. I felt welcome from the moment I stepped into their house and immediately became a part of the family. There were no rats, or crabs in my house, however I have heard some of the volunteers had an issue. BUT, Frontier and the project coordinator had the problem resolved quickly, and to my knowledge that family won't be used again. I feel very confident in saying that you will have absolutely ZERO issues with the homestay. I also had the opportunity to travel and stay with multiple families, none of which I had any issues with. I am fortunate enough to be studying in New York on a scholarship that was extremely generous in funding my trip. However, I know the Frontier website gives loads of ideas for fundraising and places to go for sponsorships. Good luck to you, have a great time! I might be seeing you down there :)
Thanks so much for your response, that has put my mind at rest in that respect. I am aware to expect basic but just wanted to know if I was in for the same environment as in camp. I will try getting sponsership from the organisations Frontier suggest, am just worried as I will be leaving my job but I am getting that the whole experience is definetely worth losing some money and a job in the long run! So you are thinking of doing it next year, in Fiji? Would that be the same project?

Frontier

We have just come back from our amazing trip to Vanua Levu and Taveuni. Leaving on the Saturday ferry to our first stop of Savusavu, Then a bus ride to the fantastic village of --- it was right by the beach and the kids went to get us cocunuts while we watched the local rugby game at the school. We went to church, all dressed up in our sulus on the Sunday, we all introduced ourselves and sang with the choir. After the kids took us around the beach and showed us the fish, we came back to a feast! With currys and fresh prawns and grilled fish and plenty of breadfruit and dalo. On the monday we packed our bags and headed to our first school 'Savusa secondary' we took the heights and weights of the children and helped them fill in the health questionair. Then it was off to get a 4 hour bus ride to labasa, and our second homestay in vunivow we had a fantastic welcome, and during the 4 days we managed to survey over 5 schools and we even took the sons of the family clubbing! We were lucky enough to stay for the hair cutting ceremony of the daughter of the chief, on her second birthay. We had another feast, with Lovo and plenty of Kava, they had been pounding grog all day! The next day we packed our bags to get the bus back to Labasa to go all the way to savusavu, then we stayed with another family by the sea who cooked the most amazing cakes! And gave us loads of sandwiches for the bumpy bus journey to the point of the island – Natuvu where we caught a small boat to the garden island of Fiji, Taveuni. We went to the famous waterfall slides, and picked up a few bruises on the way down, but it was well worth it. The next day we got the bus to the stunning Tavoro waterfalls, we hiked for about an hour to reach the third, and highest waterfall. It was well worth it, diving of the rocks and into the pool was amazing, and the birds and plants were stunning.
Then we caught the Sofi ferry back home. All in all it was an amazing trip, and we all got to see so much more of Fiji.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Fiji
Posted: Jul 25, 2012
Overall:
8
Support:
10
Value:
7

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Fiji