Why volunteer with BUNAC?
BUNAC was established in 1962 and is today recognised as a market leader in coordinating high quality, ethical volunteering programmes abroad. With over 50 years’ experience, and now providing volunteering programmes in Africa, Asia and the Americas, BUNAC’s expertise in establishing sustainable volunteer projects is unrivalled.
BUNAC is committed to coordinating projects that we are certain are genuinely worthwhile to local communities. This means that a good deal of time and money is invested in identifying local partners, establishing projects and constantly monitoring the programmes. Volunteers have the peace of mind that they are provided with 24/7 support from our local partners, and fees also cover services such as airport pickup, orientations and excursions. Further to this, accommodation and food is provided. Where volunteers stay with local families, the contribution that volunteers make to local families is an extremely valued source of income.
Paying to volunteer means that volunteers make a valuable financial contribution to underprivileged communities as well contributing their time, and ensures that they receive expert help and support both in the UK and while they are away.
Support and preparation, health screening, visa processing (where applicable), one-to -one interview session, programme handbook, country guidebook, T-shirt, programme marketing, staff salaries, office space and utilities.
Project donation, accommodation, orientation, airport pick up, transfers, placement, food, partner administration costs and overheads including, staff salary, 24/7 support, office space.
Prior to departure, volunteers have an informal orientation interview with one of our volunteer programme coordinators. This ensures that volunteers have the opportunity to ask any questions they have and to tell us all about their skills, experiences and preference, so we can be confident that the programme is suitable for them. Volunteers are also given advice about local culture, what to take with them and how to stay safe and aware while they’re away. We’ll be in regular contact in the build up to departure, and if volunteers ever have any queries they can just pick up the phone! BUNAC will contact volunteers with finalised details of the project and accommodation 2-4 weeks before departure to ensure that there is time for the volunteer to prepare. This includes full details of the project, project address, volunteer job role, and working hours.
Volunteers are met at the airport by our local partners and given a 2-5 day orientation, through which they are introduced to local culture and customs and given all the essential details about life on the project. BUNAC’s in-country partners ensure that the projects run smoothly and that volunteers are happy and safe. Our partners offer 24/7 support to all volunteers so are fully able to address any concerns or problems that might arise. BUNAC will also be in regular contact from the UK, and volunteers are free to phone or email our London office with queries while they are away.
Projects are sourced by our in-country partners, who are able to identify local needs. It is important that we are not taking away jobs from local people, but instead are adding new skills and experience to share with the community. Working closely with our in-country partners, we are able to ensure that our projects are carefully monitored, that volunteers can make a real contribution and that the resources are in place to ensure that volunteers work in a safe, secure environment.
All homestays are carefully vetted by our partners. Volunteers tend to stay with families that the in-country partner has worked with for many years, so are well experienced in providing volunteers with a home from home! All host families speak English, serve up wholesome, home cooked meals, and do all they can to ensure that the volunteer’s stay is as comfortable as possible.
BUNAC is a founding member of the Year Out Group. This is an association of independent UK-registered organisations that adhere to a code of practice which commits members to coordinating well-structured, quality volunteer programmes.
BUNAC supports the ‘Know Before You Go’ campaign, promoting safe travel.Have a look at the Know Before you Go website.
BUNAC is a founding member of WYSE Work Abroad, a trade organisation that has over 150 members from 40 countries. All members adhere to a Code of Conduct, providing quality work abroad and volunteer programmes that protect the welfare of participants around the world.