Sri Lanka

Institute for Field Research Expeditions - IFRE

While taking a winter off of work, I traveled from Canada to Sri Lanka and became connected with Michael Ferreira, the volunteer coordinator for RCDP International. Michael and his family have a lovely home with an ocean view in the small southern city of Galle, where I lived at very affordable rates for three weeks. The family was kind, friendly, and incredibly helpful and the food (3 meals a day) was amazing.
During my time in Galle, Michael helped to facilitate two projects for me to work at: one; teaching young monks English, and another helping at a local orphanage. Both projects were well organized, and Michael did his best to give me an orientation and also answered many questions I had in regards to cultural understanding, and the general structure of the programs and organizations I was working within. When I told Michael I wanted to contribute in a more sustainable way, he supported me in starting an international fundraiser and went above and beyond in providing me with the information I needed to be successful in the fundraising. With his help and the support of my international community, enough money was raised the orphanage was able to build two new classrooms to encourage a better learning environment for children. At the monastery, the young monks were gifted a brand new laptop to share and use to further their education. I really would not have been able to make any of this happen without Michael's help to contract, and purchase the services and goods.
My entire experience was wonderful. I have infinite thanks for the people I have worked with: staff and children alike, and for Michael and his family for enabling me to have this experience.
I would highly recommend these programs for anyone called to this work.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Sri Lanka
Posted: Jan 13, 2018
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Institute for Field Research Expeditions - IFRE

Maider Sanchez, 22 years

I,m a Spanish girl who has been living in Australia for two years and realized how much I love travelling and meeting people from different cultures and countries. I've always been thinking of doing some volunteering job and I found this the perfect opportunity to do so. I spent one week in an orphanage taking care of little children from months to 3 years of age. I found it a great experience! I loved it so much!! there are so many needy little criatures out there and I was trying to make them feel special and loved. it has been such an intense week and I really enjoyed it.
While I was doing the volunteering, I've been staying at Michaels, with two more volunteers. They feed us really well, the food was awesome as well as the treat and the family.
definitely an experience I want to repeat!!!
Thanks so much for everything Michael

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Sri Lanka
Posted: Dec 8, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

RCDP International Volunteer Abroad

I took part in the teaching program at the local school and it was by far one of the best experiences I have had in Asia. Though the children may not have much they are constantly smiling and full of energy ( especially when it comes to sport time). My organized home stay with Michaels family was also a highlight, they were so welcoming and made me feel like I was home. I definitely recommend taking the opportunity and involving yourself in this program, it is a great way to immerse yourself in the community and learn more about Sri Lanka.

- Joshua

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Sri Lanka
Posted: Dec 8, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Institute for Field Research Expeditions - IFRE

Actually it was a very good experience for us volunteering with elephants and we,Emmy & Frances appreciate for giving us that opportunity to ifre and michael as well as the coordinators who supported me in the program ,Michael was very helpful and picked us from the airport& transport to millenium elephants.
While volunteering we were in charge of an elephant and we wash the elephant everyday in the morning and cleaned the enviorment.making vitamin balls and it was very enjoyable and good experience.this was one of my main dreams and i achieved it ,so thanks again every one who helped me and i would recommend to visit sri lanka as its one of the best countries around world as people are very nice & helpful and a beautiful country.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Sri Lanka
Posted: Nov 1, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Institute for Field Research Expeditions - IFRE

I am Emily and i had a very good experience volunteering in sri lanka with elephants at millenium through Ifre organisation.It was a very good experience and good support was given by michael the coordinator.he answered me all the questions and also gave all informations.he took us to show almost the important historical places in sri lanka.its a very beautiful country
During my volunteer period I was responsible an elephant & daily i wash & scrub him in the riverin the morning and prepared food,made vitamin balls & clean the area too. it was a very good experience and I do recommend any one to come & join,I would really come back again.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Sri Lanka
Posted: Oct 21, 2017
Overall:
9
Support:
10
Value:
10

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

I was with IVHQ for two weeks involved with the wild elephant conservation program in Sri Lanka. I was concerned that my night arrival into the country would affect the volunteering program, but the local staff was not only patient but also approachable, informative, and helpful in answering any questions and concerns we had.

The orientation program was excellent in engaging us with the local culture and lifestyle; this was supplemented with local foods for virtually every meal during my stay! While the staff respected our freedom to do what we wanted, there was also a large emphasis on the safety and livelihood of the volunteers, something I very much appreciated and am sure family members of other volunteers did as well.

If it was not for this program I would not have been able to experience the local lifestyle and appreciate the Sri Lankan culture. For those seeking a local experience in Sri Lanka, I could not recommend IVHQ enough.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Sri Lanka
Posted: Sep 27, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
8

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

I feel so grateful to have had the opportunity to volunteer in Sri Lanka with IVHQ. From the moment I began my application, I felt incredibly supported by the IVHQ staff and knew I would be in good hands once arriving in a foreign country. As a solo volunteer traveling from the U.S., I was nervous and had many questions before the trip. The IVHQ staff were more than helpful in answering my questions and easing my worries. The program itself was wonderful. I stayed in a home with a lovely Sri Lankan family and 6 other volunteers. The home was basic but comfortable and clean. I felt as I was getting the authentic experience, which is exactly what I wanted. My program was teaching English in a local pre-school. This experience was also positive, and I really enjoyed the children and the teachers of the school. It was not always easy as the language barrier did make it difficult to communicate with the kids, but overall I felt like I was applying my teaching skills in a meaningful way. I still keep in touch with the teachers, the other volunteers, and the family I lived with. Sri Lanka will always have a special place in my heart, and I look back on this experience fondly. I highly recommend IVHQ for those considering volunteer projects abroad.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Sri Lanka
Posted: Sep 24, 2017
Overall:
9
Support:
10
Value:
10

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

I have to confess it would be intimidating to volunteer abroad for the first time as a solo traveler, without the help and support from the program managers in IVHQ and the local coordinators.
For sure,Sri Lanka is the first foreign country I have ever been, the volunteering experience in this country was totally fantastic and memorable for me. I met bunches of volunteers from around the world who share the same passion for helping others and enjoying the foreign adventure. We tried our best to assist the locals to carry out the conservative projects and improve their quality of life.
If you ask me what did the volunteering experience bring to you, it would be not only the culture adventure and immersion, but the mental stretch and personal growth.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Sri Lanka
Posted: Sep 22, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

RCDP International Volunteer Abroad

Volunteering in an orphanage in Sri Lanka was an absolutely brilliant experience. I was located in the coastal city of Galle for a month, I spent about 4 hours every week day with the young children (ages below 5). All that was required of me at the orphanage was entertaining and cleaning the kids. The babies were an incredible amount of fun to play with. Definitely an amazing experience in my life.

I stayed at Micheal Ferreira's house with his family throughout the month I was in Sri Lanka. They were a very welcoming family and Micheal was incredibly helpful in organising my weekends where I traveled the country. The meals prepared for breakfast, lunch and dinner were superb, I could not get enough!

Overall great Trip.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Sri Lanka
Posted: Sep 1, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Projects Abroad

This volunteer trip to Sri Lanka was extremely eye-opening. We had many opportunities to explore different sections of the hospital like the emergency care unit, paediatrics, the labour ward and the surgical theatre. My personal favourites were the labour ward and the surgical theatre. While the other sections were interesting at times, they tended to move at a slower pace. I am personally interested in pursuing a career in the OB-GYN field, so being able to see live births and interactions between doctors, nurses, mothers and babies was really amazing. Sometimes, it was difficult to communicate to doctors or nurses because of certain language barriers or because they were simply too preoccupied with their work. However, we were often very impressed by the hospital staff's kindness and welcoming attitude towards us as well as their patience when they took time to explain what they were doing or a certain patient’s condition.
After our time in the hospital, our co-ordinator took us out around the city we were staying in (Panadura, just one hour south of Colombo). We visited markets, temples and even the beach. The beach was absolutely breath-taking. Some of the sunset pictures I took are definitely Instagram-able and the water was just perfect. We spent one weekend during our trip visiting a city named Kandy. We visited baby elephants, watched a traditional dance show, ate some delicious food and visited other attractions around the city. Back in our host city, we attended two educational seminars about the healthcare system in Sri Lanka and traditional medicine amongst Indigenous people in the country. We also helped out at two medical camps where we measured the BMIs, glucose levels and blood pressure of individuals in the community as well as helped a pharmacist prescribe certain patients with medication.
Projects Abroad staff are also very kind. Before I even left, my volunteer advisor answered all my questions and concerns and I felt very prepared. However, at the airport in Toronto, my flight got delayed which messed up the rest of my connecting flights to Sri Lanka. I had to completely re-organize my flights myself and the staff did not respond to their emergency phone lines when I called to try and notify them about the delay. I felt like Projects Abroad could have done more and should have been more prepared for the situation. Regardless, I still made it to my destination safely, just a little late.
At the host family, we were treated very well. The woman and her husband who took care of us were very friendly. We had delicious food for breakfast, lunch and dinner and felt very comfortable in our rooms.
The other high school students on the trip were also very friendly and we bonded very quickly. One problem we encountered was that some of the students did not speak English very well. We were still able to communicate somewhat, but they struggled in the hospital when they tried to interact with hospital staff. I think individuals who attend a Projects Abroad trip must either speak English fluently or speak the language of the country they are travelling to fluently. This will ensure they will get the best out of their experience and not miss out because of language barriers.
This trip really helped me decide what I want to do with my future. Being a high school student applying to university in just a couple of months, there is a lot of pressure to decide what program I want to be a part of. Going to Sri Lanka and meeting doctors, seeing patients, helping patients, asking countless questions and writing pages and pages of notes really showed me that medicine is what I want to do for the rest of my life. It was incredible and unique first hand experience that I do not think I could have received anywhere else. I truly recommend this program for any high school student. But make sure you can handle the sight of blood.

Program:
Location: Sri Lanka
Posted: Aug 31, 2017
Overall:
8
Support:
10
Value:
9

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