If there is one thing that Thailand is known for apart from its scintillating beaches, it is definitely the Elephants. Elephants are immensely popular in Thailand and are highly revered as well. The love and affection for these giant mammals in Thailand is pretty evident, and that is exactly what the elephant camp volunteering is all about.
Gap year travelers who are wildlife enthusiasts and looking for volunteer opportunities for wildlife conservation and welfare can join this program in Chiang Mai. They will be staying at these elephant camps that are located 45 minutes outside mainland Chiang Mai. The Camp is a beautiful setup, located amidst lush green forests and surrounded by tall mountains from all sides. Every little bit helps in the development of the camp. Late in the afternoon/early evening, volunteers will be able to spend more time with the elephants and elephant trainers. This is when volunteers will really begin to bond with these lovely creatures and learn how to best care for them. This program is best suited for wildlife enthusiasts and those who are willing to do some outdoor hard work.
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"My experience in Chiang Mai was nothing less than amazing. I got to engage in the Thai culture,..."Read More
"The highlight of my trip is being with elephants and meeting thai people. I learn a lot about my..."Read More
"I like meeting new people from all around the world and get to know the health system in..."Read More
"I am very grateful that your organization provided a positive opportunity/experience to..."Read More
"I have found so much happiness in Thailand surrounded by these amazing smiling kids and everyone..."Read More
"I enjoyed working at the children home and definitely loved the kids. In the beginning they were..."Read More
"I Love Love Love working with the elephants. It is an amazing place and the Jungle is beautiful...."Read More
"I loved my program placement and very much satisfied with the program and it meets my..."Read More
"I very much enjoyed working at my program placement. It was a very enjoyable two weeks. Really..."Read More
"I enjoyed working at my placement. I learnt a lot from the elephants. I enjoyed living a bit the..."Read More
"The staff have been absolutely amazing. They were always there for us when we needed help and..."Read More
"I loved the program placement very much. The placement was very organized. We had a program..."Read More
"The program was amazing. The children were happy and take well care of. The staff was helpful..."Read More
"The program placement exceeded my expectation in many ways, it was wonderful. So much was gained..."Read More
"I had the time of my life at my placement. I couldn't have asked for anything better. The..."Read More
"The pre-departure booklet was nice and the staff was really very helpful. The highlight of my..."Read More
"I greatly enjoyed my time at McCormick hospital. The doctors and the staff members were really..."Read More
"The activities at the camp, teaching at the school, walking through the jungle, visiting other..."Read More
"I loved the work I did at my site. It was literally a lifetime dream come true. I would love to..."Read More
"The pre departure booklet was amazing it contained all the information I wanted to know. I did..."Read More
As we have limited spots available in our programs and we serve on first come first basis, it is recommended that potential volunteers book their programs well in advance to get confirmed placements. You can book your slot by filling the application form online and pay the application fee of $225. You can pay your program fee later and also, in installments. However, the complete payment should be made 45 days prior to the starting date of the program. If you are volunteering in a group, you can also fill a group application form.
After you complete your application, your personalized ‘My Account’ will be activated.You will need to upload your CV/Resume along with your photo in the same. Our backend team and the placement site takes around 10-12 days to review your application. After we review your CV and documents,your booking is confirmed and booking confirmation is updated in your ‘My Account’. Some projects need mandatory criminal background check and the same is mentioned in the project info of your program. Approval of your application depends on your qualification and eligibility criteria for each project.
Volunteers are provided with the airport pick up from the Chiang Mai International Airport by the coordinator or representative. Volunteers already in Chiang Mai will be met by the staff at a designated meeting point decided beforehand.
Please note that volunteers are provided with the airport pickup from the airport between 8 AM and 8 PM only. The volunteers are advised to book their flights accordingly.
If you are planning to come for multiple programs in your trip, you will have to pay the application fees just once. Your application fee is valid for a year's time (from the date of applying). You will not have to pay the application fees again if you come within the mentioned time frame.
For our returning volunteers, $50 discount is provided for the application fee for their next Vol Sol program.
Medical internships are recommended for pre-meds, nursing and healthcare students. These internships are designed to gain experience and insight into global health and also help you gain a mature understanding of the healthcare field. Interns are placed in the various hospital departments and work under professional doctors and nurses.
Medical volunteering, on the other hand, is valid for all practicing doctors and healthcare professionals. 3rd and 4th-year medical students are eligible for both the projects, i.e. medical volunteering as well as internships.
This, however, is destination specific and you must consult the program advisor before booking.
As a medical intern, you will be working under a professional doctor. You will be assisting the doctor in various medical practices, observing the processes and would also be allowed to shadow them in critical surgeries or operations. Some pre-meds will be allowed to handle the procedures, depending on your skill set and knowledge level and confidence of the doctor on you.
Some major benefits include:
Working in a live environment and gaining hands-on medical experience
Being able to work with minimum resources available and help out the ones in need
Being able to work with patients of different cultures and understand cultural dynamics of a new city or country
Being able to travel during weekends and in the evenings to explore your destination
Minimum age requirement to participate in any of the programs in Chiang Mai is 18 years and above.
For medical and healthcare interns:
Age limit is 20 years and above
Statement of motivation is required
Interns have to submit a CV/Resume
Letter of recommendation from medical professional/doctor (you’ve worked with earlier) is also needed
Interns are required to give a list of their preferred departments, where they would like to work in the hospital
For Journalism Internship program, requirements are as follows:
You need to be 18 years and above
You need to provide a Statement of Motivation
Resume/ CV and photo is needed
Interns are required to submit 2 samples of their writings and published work
We encourage our participants to volunteer in a group. We take special care in providing you a placement and also customize your itinerary to make sure you get exactly what you are looking for. Also, we can design special group programs for groups of 5 or more. Our programs are designed to be safe, affordable and offer a great group volunteering experience to the volunteers.
In our experience of more than 10+ years we have enabled and facilitated volunteer program placements for college groups, university groups, high school groups, group of families, group of couples as well as groups of colleagues.
Yes, we will provide you with the Certificate after successful completion of your program. The certificate is provided on request.
VolSol volunteers usually work for 5 to 6 hours a day depending on their program type. You will have weekends off so you can go for traveling on weekends. However, in some projects, you will have to work on Saturdays as well.
Most volunteers participating in a short-term volunteer travel experience in Thailand can enter the country on a 30 days tourist Visa which is available to a majority of nationalities on arrival at the airport itself. It is also possible to attain a 60 days tourist Visa prior to the arrival in Thailand.
We can help you attain 90 days Non-Immigrant Visa as well. However, this takes longer time to apply for and requires a lot of paperwork. Please contact us for further information on the same.
Please Note: During your time of volunteering, if you leave Thailand (for example: to spend a weekend in Cambodia and Laos), it will be your responsibility to re-enter Thailand and get the relevant Visa at the border.
Also, note that the maximum duration of Visa at the Surin - Cambodia border is for 15 days.
Although all major carriers fly to Thailand, we recommend the following:
Thai Airways, Bangkok Airways, Tigerair flights, Dragonair flights, Bangkok Airways, AirAsia, Korean Air, Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, Air China flights, Thai AirAsia, SilkAir.
Thailand is one of the most popular destinations in the World and attracts liable travelers all around the year. The locals are friendly and helpful as well; however, it is recommended to consult your in-country coordinators before you step out alone or go to any other locations in Chiang Mai. Also, it is recommended to be with your group whenever you venture out or stay out late in the night. It is strongly recommended to follow the safety rules and regulations provided by the in-country coordinator.
Carry general medicines with you, other than that consult your doctor before flying. We recommend these basic vaccinations for your safety:
Hepatitis A and B
Yes, for all volunteers it is mandatory to have a travel medical insurance. To provide the best option to our participants, we offer comprehensive insurance coverage in collaboration with a leading insurance provider.
Your program coordinator will take you to your program location and introduce you to everyone after giving you a basic orientation about the program/city/culture etc. You will also be told about the local transportation and how to get to your project every day from the accommodation.
Lightweight clothing and rainwear is recommended for the day and warmer items of clothing for the evening (light jacket and/or light sweaters). A pair of walking shoes is highly recommended as well.
Sandals or flip flops are comfortable options and will come in handy as well.
For those traveling between November and February, please note, that the evenings can get cool, so a sweater/light jacket will come in very handy.
Medical Interns need to carry their scrub, lab coats and professional clothing as the program requirement. More details will be provided to enrolled participants in their pre-departure booklets.
In Chiang Mai, volunteers are provided accommodation in Volunteer’s house.
Located in a convenient area in the middle of Chiang Mai city, our volunteer houses are only minutes apart from each other and can accommodate up to 35 people in air-conditioned bedrooms. Both the volunteer houses have wireless internet, fully equipped kitchens as well as washing machines for volunteers’ convenience.
Breakfast is self-made and volunteers are provided with all the resources to cook their own breakfast. Lunch is usually at the project site and for dinner, you can go out with other participants and enjoy the Thai cuisine in one of the many restaurants in the city.
Yes – please do ensure that you inform the local team about your food preference and they can help you to try the best food available. Also, please do mention your specific food preference in the application form as well.
Depending on your project, VolSol volunteers are required to put around 5-6 hours of volunteer work for 5 days a week. Evenings and Weekends are free for you to roam around and indulge in your personal work or activity.
We encourage our volunteers to travel. We have designed various weekend tours which can be booked under the Add-on Tours section in your ‘My Account’. Your in-country coordinator will also help you book and organize the tours once you are in Chiang Mai.
Some of the places you can visit include Wat Chedi Luang, Chiang Mai Cabaret show, 3D art Museum, Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, Museum of World Insects and Natural Wonders, Catmosphere Cat Cafe Chiang Mai, Wattana Art Gallery, Wat Phra Singh and more.
If you are planning to head out of the city on the weekends, you can go to Pai or Lampang or even head out to Bangkok for a short 2-day trip.
There are ample money exchange counters at the Chiang Mai International Airport. You can change money at any bank or at the airport by showing your passport. There are ATMs located all around the city. You will not face any problems in regards to changing money while in Chiang Mai.
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 connect with other participants.
To read alumni interviews from past participants, visit ?the Meet a Volunteer section on our website.
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