The Himalayas are ever enchanting, and this program will be held in the beautiful town of Palampur, which is located at the foothills of Himalayan mountains and surrounded by tea gardens and pine forests. Palampur is known as the Tea Capital Of North India.
The program is highly recommended for student groups and it includes volunteer work, trekking adventure activity, yoga and meditation classes. The volunteers would also have an optional Paragliding activity. The volunteers have to spend quality time at the childcare centres as a part of their work.
With perfect amalgamation of adventure, peace and philanthropy, this program is absolutely perfect for you, if you are looking for a retreat.
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"I thoroughly enjoyed my time volunteering at the women’s Hospital. Everyone was so friendly and..."Read More
" I have been here a month and seen so many things. I mean trekking to Tirund, driving to Manali..."Read More
"I like the autonomy and the difference between the type of patients. My favorite volunteering..."Read More
"I really like the new house. The location is perfect and I feel very good there. It’s a..."Read More
"I really like my different placement. They help me achieve the goal of my internship. I also..."Read More
"Before coming, I thought to myself that I had enough knowledge about the field. But the first..."Read More
"I feel as though I have learned a lot. The people were informative and the variety of experience..."Read More
"I appreciate the fact that we worked at different placements. I appreciate both clinic and..."Read More
"Palampur was breathtaking and the people so warm and friendly. The volunteers house so welcoming..."Read More
"I really enjoyed working at the childcare center. The teachers were nice and the kids were so..."Read More
"I absolutely enjoyed my program placement. It was an amazing experience and once the staff gets..."Read More
"I enjoyed working at my program placement. I was able to see a lot of things and the doctors..."Read More
"I enjoyed my program placement. I was very new and enjoyable experience. The highlight of my..."Read More
"We liked the placement very much. The things that was not okay was modified by Amit and it's..."Read More
"I preferred working at the orphanage because I felt I could have made more of an impact on the..."Read More
"I learned a lot about how to work with people despite language barriers, both from directing the..."Read More
"Our weekend trip to Manali with the team was fun and everyday time spent with the kids was very..."Read More
"I worked at the Day Care Center of Palampur ,where the kids received me with a huge smile. That..."Read More
"I worked at three different placements during my stay in Palampur.Since teaching at the school..."Read More
"The pre-departure booklet had all the information we need to be prepare for the trip. I really..."Read More
It is advised to apply for the projects once the volunteering/ traveling dates are decided as there are limited spots available. The application fee is valid for one full year and can be sent earlier than the desired year of volunteering for timely confirmation of the seat. As soon as you decide the travel dates, we suggest you to apply for the program and hold your spot.
Usually, it takes around 10 – 12 working days for the application to be processed and placement to be confirmed. After we review your CV and documents your booking is confirmed and the booking confirmation is updated in your My Account and you can view the information in your account. The application acceptance depends on the availability of seats in the project as well as the eligibility criteria of the program (age, skills and experience etc.).
Volunteers must be 17 years or older at the time of joining the project. Medical Program volunteers must be at least 18 at the time of joining.
16-year-old volunteers can participate in Childcare projects with a Letter of Consent from the parents.
Volunteers need to have an open mind and flexible attitude for working in a new and different environment. India is a country of different culture and traditions, though it is modernized, the cultural sensitivities need to be kept in mind before volunteering in India. The volunteers should bring energy and enthusiasm to make a difference.
Participants joining the Medical Program, must be either Pre-Medical, Medical or Nursing student.
Participants must be in good health.
Yes, you are welcome to take part in India Volunteer Programs as part of a group. We welcome families, friends, high school students, college/university and corporate groups to volunteer together in the India program. Volunteering Solutions India program has hosted large student groups as well as families coming to volunteer in the program. We have hosted groups, from universities in UK, Europe, and the USA as well as other countries, in Palampur.
Yes, most definitely, you can as we believe every participant brings something new to the project. If you do not have previous experience, we offer you the opportunity to have a great start with us. We make international volunteering easy – not only are our Volunteer Abroad opportunities rooted in offering you extensive support, but they are also very affordable.
Yes, we will provide you with the Certificate after successful completion of your program. The certificate is provided on request.
All volunteers need to arrive in Palampur on the starting date of the program. Volunteers will be picked up from the Gaggal Airport in Dharamsala by a driver assigned by the local coordinators. Dharamsala is connected to Delhi by daily direct flights. Volunteers who have opted for the Orientation Week in Delhi will travel to Palampur post the completion via bus or flight, depending on their choice. After you arrive at Dharamsala airport, you will be picked up by our local coordinator and transported to Palampur. On the way, you can enjoy the scenic view of the Himalayan mountains and lush green landscapes.
On the next day, you will be given a short orientation and told about the program, daily schedule, safety guidelines, market tour and weekend trip options.
All enrolled participants are provided information on the appropriate Visa requirements for India in the pre-departure manual. You can also contact your pre-departure point of contact to know more about the Visa requirements.
Volunteers first need to arrive in Delhi. The Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi is connected with all major airports across the globe and flights are easily available. Some of the major flight carriers operating direct flights to Delhi are:
British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, Air India, Jet Airways, Etihad Airways, United Airlines, Swiss Air, KLM Dutch Airlines, Lufthansa, Austrian, Air France, Thai Airways, Singapore Airlines, Emirates, Qatar Airways and Finn Air.
From Delhi, you can take a connecting flight to Dharamsala Airport (Airport Code: DHM). Air India and Spice Jet have daily flights between the two cities. Pickup by our local project coordinator is provided from Dharamsala Airport. Volunteers can also choose the option to take the direct overnight bus from Delhi to Palampur. Overnight air-conditioned bus service operates between the two cities. You will be picked up from Palampur bus station and transferred to the accommodation.
India is a country of diverse cultures and practices. Like in any new foreign country, participants are advised to follow the guidelines specified by the project coordinator to enjoy their Indian experience fully. The program coordinators are always ready to help and give helpful safety tips. During the first day of the orientation, you will be given safety guidelines and will be informed about do's and dont's.
All participants are recommended to consult their physician or travel doctor before traveling to India. To view the general list of vaccinations recommended for your travel to India, click here.
Yes, for all participants, it is mandatory to have a valid travel medical insurance for their trip. Volunteers have the option to purchase Travel and Medical Insurance at a nominal extra cost from Volunteering Solutions. To provide the best option to our participants, we offer comprehensive insurance coverage in collaboration with a leading insurance provider.
If you already have a valid Travel and Medical insurance, you can email us a copy of the same. It is also advised to bring along the Insurance documents during your trip.
Your program coordinator in Palampur will take you to your placement and introduce you to everyone after giving you a basic orientation about the program/city/culture etc. You will be told about the directions to the project from your accommodation and the mode of transport which you can use. Most preferred mode of transport within the town is the public bus, and the coordinator will be more than happy to guide you regarding that.
Volunteers are provided accommodation in volunteer house accommodations. Participants of same gender share rooms together and there are attached toilets with the rooms. Volunteers are provided with all meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) at the accommodation. Meals are freshly prepared by the cook in the house.
The local market is not far away and in the evening you can also head out for a pleasant walk in the vicinity.
Yes, that is not a problem at all. In fact, volunteers are served vegetarian meals at the accommodations in India.
Depending on your project placement, you may get evenings and weekends free to travel and explore the place.
Palampur is a great location for volunteering since you also have ample options for quick weekend getaways. Hill stations like Mcleodganj, Dharamsala, and Manali are nearby which can be visited over the weekend. Adventure activities like trekking and paragliding can be taken up during weekends. Billing, which is a few kilometers away from Palampur, is a world famous site for paragliding.
Your program fee does not cover your personal expenses. You will need to provide for yourself your personal expenses, such as bottled water, local transport, telephone, shopping, sightseeing etc. However, you should carry around $40-$50 per week for your basic personal expenses. This amount can vary and you would need a higher amount if you choose to go on weekend trips out of town.
Depending on the project, selected volunteers will work during the week from Monday - Friday. You will have the weekends to travel and explore. However, volunteers need to be flexible, open minded and understand that work requirements can change as well on certain occasions.
Do not worry, all the coordinators can speak and converse in English. Most of our participants are non-Hindi speakers and they’ve never had any problems while communicating. Like we say, love is expressed better through actions than the language.
To add to the project experience while you can also join the Language and Orientation Week in Delhi before beginning the program in Palampur. It's an optional week, besides that we recommend participants to brush up their Hindi skills (learn basic terms and phrases, greetings) before traveling.
ATMs of major banks like HDFC, ICICI, and SBI are available in Palampur and money can be easily withdrawn. Currency Exchange Counters are also available in some of the banks in the city.
We encourage volunteers to get in touch with former Volunteering Solutions participants and also other program participants joining our projects. You are recommended to join the Volunteering Solutions Facebook Page or Facebook Group to communicate with other participants.
To read alumni interviews from past participants, visit the ‘Meet a Volunteer’ section on our website.
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