Immerse yourself in the rich Nepalese culture amongst breathtaking Himalayan scenery and volunteer in a care centre or children's home. Nepalese traditions are an important part of local life that have remained largely unchanged in centuries, allowing you to fully experience life in this amazing country.
Upon your arrival into the beautiful country of Nepal, volunteers will have an orientation in the second largest city of Nepal and visit traditional Hindu and Buddhist sights. During this time, you have the chance to explore the area, live with a Nepali family, learn some basic Nepali and visit many of the local sights.
Following the 2015 Nepal Earthquake, our projects adjusted focus to provide disaster relief to those in need. In conjunction with our partners, trucks of supplies and family care packages were taken to some of the most affected areas. Now our projects are focused on initiatives within our local communities, who have needs around education and improving educational facilities.
"I saw some things I never even dreamed I would see and met the nicest people I have ever come across in my lifetime. The only thing I hated about the program was that it ended! Fun, enjoyment and other words like that can't even come close to describing the time I had in Nepal!"
What's Not Included
Monday to Friday
In the mornings you will work at a children’s home helping with homework, playing sports and working on creative projects with the children. You will then work alongside staff at a local childcare centre to provide an educational programme including art activities, songs, stories and games. In the afternoons Conversation Club where English language and creativity is a focus, is a chance for you to work with local children in an after school programme. Evenings are free time for you to relax and get to know your fellow volunteers.
During orientation and the program you will enjoy home cooked meals in your home stay.
Your accommodation will be shared bedrooms and bathrooms in a local homestay, giving you the rare opportunity to truly experience life inside a Nepalese community. Typical food will include a mix of Nepali and western food such as vegetable curry, beans, rice and pasta which are provided for you.
If you would prefer to stay in private accommodation while on this project, this location does offer upgrades. Contact us for more information, or mention to your Country Expert who will be able to assist you.
What's Not Included
Nepal is a naturally and culturally beautiful country, but the unfortunate truth is that the streets of Nepal’s cities and towns are where a lot of children end up when their families can no longer support them. Hundreds are found each year in this situation.
Through placements in Nepal you will help create a nurturing and positive environment to provide the much needed educational support for these children.
Our volunteers provide critical support to run educational programmes at centres which are under staffed and faced with lack of resources and funding.
How this project makes a difference:
Our volunteers help provide positive and stimulating learning environments for children. We support local staff with new ideas and resources. Our hands-on work helps run programmes that would otherwise be difficult due to low staff numbers..
What's Not Included
Volunteering with GVI not only allows you to participate on programs assisting disadvantaged communities or endangered ecosystems but it also offers wonderful opportunities to travel in the local area in your down time or further afield either before or after your program. Many decide to travel after volunteering, solidifying the lifetime friendships established on program.
Our long term field staff are a great source of advice and are here to help you make the most of your time abroad. Remember to ask about discounts on local activities and side trips through your association with GVI. Our field teams have helped us put together the following information on trips and travel options in Nepal!
Included Side Trips
During your orientation you will visit the Tal Bahari temple which is situated in the middle of the beautiful Fewa Tal Lake surrounded by the Annapurna Himal. You will also get the opportunity to learn about the local culture with local Nepali language lessons and cooking classes.
Optional Side Trips
In Nepal, you are in a true adventure region. Don’t worry if you forget to pack your adrenalin, with these options, there are ample opportunities to top it up!
From a two day rafting or kayaking trip on the white-water of the Trisuli or Seti Rivers, to paragliding over incredible scenery to mountain biking, canyoning and bungee jumping, you could spend weeks here and still not do everything.
But if the adventure side of things becomes too much, Nepal will continue to provide and surprise you. Besides sightseeing in Kathmandu and Pokhara, you could try a three-day/two-night elephant safari in the Chitwan National Park staying at the Royal Park Hotel, chancing upon tigers and rhinos out on drives. Also, if throwing yourself off of high places attached to a kite is not your thing, Nepal boasts some of the best hiking trails in the world. Embark on a four-day trek in the Annapurna Mountains, where you will immerse with the villages and communities of the High Himal.
Further Travelling Opportunities
There are a wealth of opportunities in Nepal for further travel and exploration of the rest of the country. This can include the foothills of the Himalayas in Langtang National Park, the ancient temples and villages of Tansen, Newari architecture in Bandipur, the hustle and bustle of Kathmandu, Everest Base Camp, the ancient Hindu centre of Janakpur, and so many other options that will leave you wondering why you didn’t give yourself more time...
Meet Binita, one of our lovely field staff members working on our childcare projects in Pokhara, Nepal. Before joining GVI, this Nepalese music lover helped struggling students in Kathmandu with their studies and decided that she wanted to help more.
Binita is passionate about her job at GVI and how she has been able to make a difference in the lives of others. She is enthusiastic about motivating the local local staff and helping them to learn new ideas. “My main highlight would be meeting the volunteers from around the world and sharing my country with them.” She loves welcoming new volunteers and appreciates all the fresh ideas that they bring to the project.
Her most memorable travel experience was when she travelled to Buddha’s birthplace in Lumbini, Nepal, to visit the different temples and to learn more about her religion. Binita’s proudest accomplishment since working with GVI was seeing the children become more confident in their English and achieving higher grades. She is not all work and no play; she can make 15 momos (steamed dumplings) in a minute!
Assistant Director of Programs
Meet Jill, our Assistant Director of Programs and line manager for Thailand, Laos, India, Nepal, Australia and Kenya programs. ‘Manow’ (lime), as she’s locally known in Thailand where she's based, taught English, environmental education and art in the USA and Thailand before joining us to set up a TEFL and Community Development Expedition. “I haven’t looked back since!”
When Jill isn’t working, she likes reading or doing just about anything energetic. “I devour books, love cooking and enjoy finding some time to get some exercise – yoga, dancing and aerobics are some of my faves.”
What does Jill like most about her job? “It’s great to see volunteers rising above the cultural and language barriers between themselves and the communities. That, and every day is completely different, which is the way I like it- it keeps me from getting bored.” Being ‘allergic’ to being bored has led to Manow doing some pretty amazing things. “I once ended up spending a week living in a cave with some Buddhist monks while I helped them build a small adobe monk hut.”
Lok Bahadur Gurung
Meet Lok, our Community Liason in Pokhara. Lok is bona fide Nepalese and worked as a kayaking instructor prior to joining GVI.
Being the Community Liason, Lok is involved in all projects we have based in Pokhara. His favourite aspect of his job? Working with the volunteers. “I get to meet amazing people from around the world and I love getting to know them. I feel that not only the volunteers, but myself as well gain a great cultural exchange.”
How do the volunteers assist Lok in his work on the projects? “They’re great at helping the kids gain the confidence to speak English and thereby improve their chances at a better future. Thanks to the volunteers, over 400 children now have access to a healthier learning environment!”
Meet Cheryl, our Base Manager in Nepal. A former teacher, headmaster and special needs educator, she was the first volunteer on our ‘Grade R’ project in Cape Town, and was exactly who we needed.
Cheryl’s main highlight since being involved with GVI? “When we first started 'book-time' at the educare centre, the children didn’t really appreciate books and stories. We were pretty persistent and the children now easily sit and enjoy a book for almost an hour, even the toddlers! It’s led to such a great improvement in their language skills, attention span and ability to learn. I’m also really proud of the work we have done concerning protecting children’s rights, especially in social media. We’ve set a really good standard.”
What does Cheryl think volunteers bring to the project? “The volunteers never cease to amaze me with their skills and talents! It’s so important to use these talents as best we can. These things have made a difference to the teacher’s ability to provide a program, and therefore, to the children’s ability to learn.
Meet Ruth, our Project Manager in Nepal. Although she’s a qualified skipper and dreams of joining the Honour Fiji journey, she says there’s nothing quite like Nepal. “Waking up to the magical Himalayan Mountains is absolutely breath-taking!”
Apart from discovering that drinking turmeric in hot water cures a cold (!), Ruth has also seen the impact that the volunteers have had in the time that she’s been there by the changes in the local children’s English and learning abilities, and the trust that’s been built with the local community.
What does Ruth think about what the volunteers bring to the table? ‘Volunteers have assisted me with work that we couldn’t do without the extra pairs of hands. If we didn’t have volunteers, it would be simply impossible to help so many worthwhile projects in Pokhara.”