Global Volunteers provides a unique volunteer opportunity to teach conversational English to eager Students and Adults in communities around the world. Join our unique service projects and impact their lives by teaching the language of commerce & opportunity in more than 17 countries worldwide.

Travel in China

Meet Your Guide to Volunteering While You Travel in China

A native of China, Bao Li Wang is our China Country Manager. Bao Li joined the Global Volunteers team in 2005 and manages and leads all teams in Xi’an and Kunming, China. While on a service program in China, Bao Li will be your guide on everything – volunteering, culture, development, and travel in China.

Bao Li holds a Bachelor’s Degree in English Literature from Xi’an Northwest University of Political Science and Law. She says she can’t quite explain how she ended up at a law school, but that she always loved English and she is very happy that she is able to use her language skills to do good.

“Bao Li is wonderful. Patient, kind, funny, helpful. She answered countless questions about everything: teaching, Chinese language and etiquette, sightseeing and logistics, Chinese society and culture. She was always tactful and responded to any requests quite promptly. Truly, Bao Li made every aspect of this trip a delight. I cannot imagine a better team leader and am so happy to have spent these two weeks with her.”
– Tracy Harris, teacher

Travel in China

Bao Li with volunteers at a teacher’s home in Xi’an

Background

Bao Li was the first child of her parents’ to go to college and at the time, only 10% of Chinese were able to do so. She was born and grew up in a rural village and only left when she went to study at university. Her parents were extremely proud to send her off to college, hoping that she was saying goodbye to the hard life in the country forever. Bao Li says, “Nevertheless, I went against everyone’s will and married a country boy from a very poor family, Mr. Hao, my husband now, after six years of dating. At first, my family looked at this as a failure of all the education I had. But now, of course, he is accepted and loved by everyone in my family.” Bao Li and Mr. Hao have a seven-year-old son named Jerry.

Bao Li first worked with Global Volunteers as a volunteer when she was a college student. After that, she worked for the Sino-American Society for several years. Then, with Global Volunteers, Bao Li started out as assistant team leader and worked her way up in program management. Now, as China Country Manager, she coordinates all aspects of the programs in both Kunming and Xi’an.

“Hands down of the nine Global Volunteers projects I’ve been on, Bao Li is your star. Her soft spoken manner behest her sharp wit and managerial aptitude plus her sense of humor brings another dimension to her appeal. In my book this young lady is a winner. The project was all the more enjoyable for me because of Bao Li.”
– Anita Verbeke, librarian

Travel in China

Bao Li at Yunnan Dynamic Show

A Short Interview with Bao Li


What compels you to work for Global Volunteers?

“I am inspired by Global Volunteers’ Philosophy of Service, especially the servant-learner concept. No matter how well educated you are or how high a social status you have, when you are a volunteer, you do what you’re asked to do because that’s the priority of the local people in need. What I like about Global Volunteers is also that we do not just hand some money to a community and leave, we work hand in hand with the local people to help with their community projects. This is important because I believe promoting understanding and friendship is as important as — or even more important than — having the community project completed.

“I first encountered Global Volunteers when I was a college student and had been studying English for nine years. I read English well and often scored high in exams, but my listening and speaking skills were poor. It was the Global Volunteers that changed me from a mute English learner to someone who could actually communicate in English. I was amazed and thrilled by the fast improvement I made in the short time of exposure to volunteers. Now I am very proud to be working as a bridge between volunteers and the many Chinese students and teachers who are struggling with listening and speaking English.”

What is one of your favorite parts of your job? 

“The best part of my job is to experience and see with my own eyes that people of two different cultures who meet as strangers with curiosity and uncertainties at first, gradually open up as they spend time together. And they say goodbye as friends at the end of their time in China. It’s such a good feeling to see each team of volunteers and the Chinese students or teachers develop understanding, trust, and friendship in a short time of two or three weeks. And I feel very proud to be a part of that process.”

 

Why should volunteers spend a week or two in Xi’an or Kunming?

“Why should you travel in China? Why should you come to Xi’an and Kunming? Oh, so many reasons! Both cities are very popular tourist destinations and unique in their own way and represent China differently.

“Let me tell you a bit more about each of our host communities. Along with Athens, Rome, and Cairo, Xi’an is one of the most famous of the ancient cities. It was the capital of 13 ancient Chinese dynasties so there are many historical sites and ancient ruins and tombs in and around the city. It’s basically a live history book. The famous Terracotta Warriors Museum draws many visitors to the city. You can see this and so much more while you volunteer and travel in China.

“What makes Kunming unique is its pleasant climate and colorful Chinese minority cultures. Kunming’s year-round temperature is generally about 15 degrees Celsius (59 degrees F) so it’s called the City of Eternal Spring because it doesn’t experience severe cold or a sweltering summer. Kunming is also home to 26 different ethnic groups in China. The charming beauty and diverse ethnic customs and culture make it a hot tourist place among both foreign and national tourists. There is a lot to see in and around Kunming.”

When people think of travel in China, they may not be thinking of volunteer vacations, but a guide like Bao Li is a great reason to do this. She and the eager, dedicated students and teachers who are so eager to learn from you. 

Why do you recommend a Global Volunteers service program in China?

“For many Americans, China is still mysterious and threatening. This is not just because of communism, but also its big size and population, its fast development, and the many new actions China’s new leadership is taking. But what you hear is not always the way it is. So, don’t you want to come and see with your own eyes what China looks like? Don’t you want to meet and learn about the average Chinese people’s life and concerns? Maintaining a healthy and peaceful relationship between China and the United States has never been so important as it is today. I strongly feel that, we as individuals, need to help promote understanding among people while the two governments are still trying to establish a stable relationship. So, come! Volunteer and travel in China, a country that’s changing every day, and a country you cannot just ignore with its important role in today’s global community!”

“I strongly feel that, we as individuals, need to help promote understanding among people while the two governments are still trying to establish a stable relationship.”

What Volunteers Have Said About Their China Team Leader

“I don’t think you could find a better team leader than Bao Li. She got along with everyone, was a great team leader, helped us with anything we needed, spoke fluent English, and is generally a charming, efficient, professional person!” – Fran Pilch, professor emeritus of Political Science

“Bao Li is a delightful young woman who makes you feel you are in very capable hands. She has treated us all with great respect for our individual differences. I could not recommend her highly enough.”  – Carol Sullivan, teacher

“Bao Li was a great team leader. She encouraged us to work as a team. She taught us about the Chinese culture; she took good care of us and I will never forget her. Thank you, Bao Li!” – Sophia N., student

Travel in China

Bao Li visiting Flying Tigers Monument with volunteers

Bao Li Off The Clock

In her free time, Bao Li says she tries to spend as much time as she can with her son, before he grows up. She says, “It’s a life-time project to build a good man, you know. We read together, go to movies, and travel in China to at least one place a year. The best time is when our small family is all together on a trip.”

Travel in China

Bao Li with her family while visiting Beijing

 

Think you’d like to join a service program with Bao Li? Register now for a program in either Xi’an or Kunming, China. Or learn more about our China program here

Rewards of volunteering in Mexico

In Querétaro, right in the heart of Mexico, Global Volunteers have been teaching and tutoring conversational English at the Universidad Tecnológica de Querétaro (UTEQ) or Technological University of Querétaro for almost 20 years. Here, students preparing for careers in middle management, interior design, mechanical engineering, automotive engineering, aviation repair and production, and a variety of other areas, must pass proficiency exams in English. While their Mexican teachers are very skilled in teaching them grammar and vocabulary, the extra help volunteers provide is pivotal in the advancement of their English language skills. Embarking on a Global Volunteers journey will allow you to experience the rewards of volunteering in Mexico.

Teaching Conversational English at UTEQ

The philosophy of the English Department at UTEQ is to have as many students as possible gain exposure to a native English speaker. Here is where Global Volunteers are so important. Students at UTEQ greatly value the opportunity to practice with native speakers, especially to enhance their employment opportunities. Doing mock interviews, holding lively conversations on technology in students’ fields, and practicing talking about students’ skills gives them confidence in the language. This confidence and motivation can go a long way in opening up employment opportunities for these students.

“Global Volunteers take the best out of our students and motivate them to do great things that nobody would imagine they could.” – Juan Luis Salazar, UTEQ teacher

Rewards of volunteering in Mexico

No Experience Necessary!

You don’t need to be a professional teacher to embark on this rewarding volunteer experience in Mexico! Just being a native English speaker with a desire to help eager university students practice their language skills is enough. Classes are typically held in university classrooms and there is a local teacher in the classroom under whose direction volunteers work. Simply being able to listen to your native accent helps students improve their listening skills in the language. Volunteers who have never taught before have been able to help students learn and gain confidence with their conversational English skills.

The Rewards of Volunteering in Mexico

If you join us in Mexico, you are sure to work with grateful students and teachers at UTEQ, and learn about this great country that borders us to the south along the way. Volunteer Carol wrote in her team journal entry on October 11, 2017:

Reports were that the evening classes went well – the students possessed a higher level of English than expected and, as always, they were receptive and eager to participate.

The evening ended with our volunteers feeling successful but tired. Everyone commented that their interactions with the students were rewarding and that the level of cooperation from the teachers was extremely satisfying.

Rewards of volunteering in Mexico

Volunteers Cindy and Alan at the produce market in Querétaro

The gratitude of the UTEQ faculty and students was expressed in this handwritten letter from teacher Ricardo, given to volunteers on the October team. Click on the image to read the letter:

Rewards of volunteering in Mexico

Thank you letter to volunteers from teacher Ricardo

Your willingness to share your experiences and culture is priceless to the students. I hope you have had a wonderful time in our school and beautiful city. For all your time, effort, hard work, and patience, please accept my heartfelt thanks. You have truly been a blessing to the school.

I won’t say goodbye, I will just say until we meet again. (Hopefully next year.)

Yours truly,
Ricardo

Reap the Rewards Yourself

The relationships volunteers develop with students and teachers in Querétaro, the intercultural understanding that takes place on a service program, the gratitude expressed by the people with whom you work – these are the rewards of volunteering in Mexico.

If you want to experience the rewards of volunteering in Mexico for yourself, check out more details on our Mexico page or these blog posts:

Volunteers in China

In the summer, Kunming University runs a 2- to 3- week “staff development” English program for an intact group of Chinese English teachers from elementary, middle and high schools in the area. Global Volunteers is invited to assist every year with the program. Volunteers lead Chinese English teachers in conversations to help improve their English pronunciation and skills – as well as teach new English language games and activities to apply in their own classrooms.

We asked five of the Chinese English teachers, “How were you impacted by your experience with Global Volunteers in China?”

Here’s what they said.

Yin Qiong

“I benefited a lot from the two weeks of training. Although it was a short time, the content of the training helped me greatly with my teaching skill. I have a deeper and more thorough understanding of designing teaching activities. I learned many games that can help with English-learning. This made our study no longer boring. I have become to love learning.”

Volunteers in China - Playing Games

Yang Liqin

“I really felt my improvement through this training. Not only did I enriched my teaching methods and improved my spoken English, but also broadened my horizons and learned a lot about American culture from this program. I could always gain something out of each class and would get touched by every conversation we had. Many of us awaited each class with eagerness. The rich and fun class activities such as PowerPoint presentations, games and small-group learning, brought us surprises each time. Those of us who rarely spoke English in the past could carry conversations with the volunteer teachers freely (at the end of the program).”

Zhou Qionglan

“Looking back to the two weeks with Global Volunteers, I find it difficult to calm down. I have kept learning and being touched. My English listening and speaking skills have been greatly improved; my scope of knowledge has been expanded. The volunteers used various and fun teaching methods that achieved multiple effect. They were always well prepared before the class, utilized every minutes in the class and were very efficient in teaching. The short two weeks have renewed our teaching concept, provided me a genuine understanding of English language and experienced American people’s daily life. I have a clearer idea towards the core of English teaching.”

Tian Xiuhua

“I felt lucky to have such valuable opportunity to improve myself. I benefited so much in the short time of two weeks with Global Volunteers. I loved the program and hope I have more such opportunities in the future.”

Global Volunteers in China

Wang Xiaomei

“My English knowledge and skills improved greatly. I will also use the teaching activities I learned from the program in my own teaching to make English-learning pleasant and fun for my students.”

Learn about volunteering with Kunming teachers with Global Volunteers in China.

Peru Volunteer and Travel

Lima, Peru – a South American city with both an ancient and contemporary vibe  – has been our partner community in Peru since 2004. This is a great opportunity for Peru volunteer travel.  Miraflores, one of the most beautiful and tourist-friendly districts in Lima is our “home.”  This area combines both a variety of meaningful service opportunities and significant points of archeological interest – all within a short taxi ride. Volunteers express great satisfaction with the option to balance their service program with both daytime volunteer projects and after-work and weekend exploration.  Learn more about both here!

What’s New in Peru?

The Miraflores Human Development Department is our newest partner for community projects. We began teaching English to public school students – largely children of maids and day laborers – in the summer of 2017. At the same time, we initiated adult conversational English at the Miraflores Community Center. This greatly broadens our service “footprint” in the area, enabling us to broadly serve families of greatest need.  Mary Ann, a summer volunteer, shares her experience with this new program:

One Volunteer Voice

“I have been traveling a lot, always as a tourist,” Mary Ann says.  “And I’ve noticed on my last couple of trips that they felt very Americanized. I just wanted to get into the heart of some place. So I started investigating a volunteer vacation. Global Volunteers had the best online reviews.  Peru felt like the best fit.”

 “My trips felt very Americanized… And I wanted to expand. I just wanted to get into the heart of some place.”

New volunteer project in Peru

Brian, Mary Ann’s son, teaching English to staff from the Municipality of Miraflores.

“In the mornings, we taught at the ‘Manuel Bonilla’ elementary school. We worked with groups of children, mostly fifth graders and sixth graders. Some speak no English at all, others speak a little. Their English is limited, but we help them figure it out.”

“They’re amazing kids. We played games, sang songs. My favorite: We made books. They made their own little English books, which they’re very proud of, and I’m very proud of too.”

“In the afternoons, we presented English lessons for all ages at the Community Center. They all want to learn English and came in eagerly.  We also started some projects in the workshops. I actually got to help in the bakery -it was fabulous.

Check out the full interview with Mary Ann:

New volunteer project in Peru

Joni, Peru Volunteer, working with children at the kindergarten in the community center.

What’s Old in Peru?

A major advantage of Peru volunteer and travel opportunities is exploring the cultural and historical attractions in free time. Peru’s archeological wonders start right in Miraflores!  We know you’ll be interested in exploring these intriguing sites during at the end of your workday on a service program.

For instance, the 1,500-year-old Huaca Pucllana archaeological complex is a fascinating site within our home base of Miraflores. And, just a “stone’s throw” away – 19 miles (45 minutes by car) from Lima on the Pan-American Highway South – is Pachacámac, the most important pre-Inca ceremonial center on the Peruvian coast.  Others are also within an easy distance. Enjoy these attractions after a day of fulfilling work with children and students — and explore intriguing art and cultural sites on the weekend.

Of course, the Nazca Lines are one of the primary weekend excursions, and Machu Picchu draws volunteers at the end of the program.  You won’t be disappointed in Peru’s many archeological wonders –  one of the immense benefits of serving with Global Volunteers.

volunteer opportunities for experienced teachers

Experienced and retired teachers tell us frequently how much they enjoy engaging with new students and teachers in a new culture and in new classrooms on a service program abroad. One of the most fulfilling challenges our volunteers report is leveraging the skills they’ve honed over decades to benefit children who might have been exposed to only one style of instruction. To see eyes light up with recognition and curiosity is what every teacher craves.

And for retirees, getting back into the classroom with eager and appreciative students is exciting and stimulating beyond their expectations. Some have said they didn’t realize just how much they missed planning and teaching daily lessons until they had a class of their own again – on another continent or in a different time zone!

Global Volunteers offers teaching abroad opportunities to tutor students in basic classroom subjects including math, computer skills, geography, music, science, sports, agriculture, arts and crafts, reading and literacy, as well as opportunities to teach conversational English. You can support these efforts in a range of destinations, including the Cook Islands, Greece, Mexico, Montana, Peru, Poland, Tanzania and Vietnam.

Hundreds of experienced and retired teachers choose to volunteer with Global Volunteers every year. As a Global Volunteer, you can volunteer from one to three weeks and the all-inclusive (and tax-deductible) program fees mean your airport pick-up and drop-off, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support are all taken care of. If you are looking to volunteer with a group of your teacher friends, contact us. Our group specialists are ready to help you get started.

To learn more about the available teaching abroad opportunities for experienced and retired teachers, browse the programs featured below.

Cook Islands Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Conversational English in Classrooms, Early Childhood Education, Tutoring Numeracy, Computer Literacy, Literacy and Math Testing
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to three weeks, programs start on select Sundays year-round
  • Program fees: From $2,695 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Abroad Opportunities in the Cook Islands

Teacher volunteers in the Cook Islands have the opportunity to work with a range of ages, from toddlers to 4th graders to high school students. Working alongside and providing valued support to local teachers, you invest in the future through the youngest of citizens.

“My one-time curiosity has turned into 9 years of annual volunteer trips to Rarotonga. I return because I have a connection with the teachers at St Joseph’s Primary, to the shopkeepers, to the Global Volunteers who serve every year, but mostly I cherish my connection with the students, whom I taught in Grade 1 and now are vibrant Grade 6 students. It’s an honor and a privilege to be a part of their lives if only for three weeks a year.”

-Ellen (Global Volunteer in the Cook Islands)

Greece Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Conversational English in Classrooms, English Language Camps
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to two weeks, programs start on select Saturdays year-round
  • Program fees: From $2,795 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Abroad Opportunities in Greece

Thanks to our teacher volunteers in Crete, Greek youth, teenagers and adults have been given the opportunity to improve their English and expand their educational opportunities. Summer “language camps” are a fun and challenging service opportunity to work with students on English pronunciation and usage. Or, teach adults at the Union of Women Association of Heraklion in the spring and fall.

“The students are energetic young people who are eager to learn, and the parents deeply appreciate the volunteers giving time for their children. If I had to sum up why I’ve returned to Crete three times it would be the warm culture, friendships, beauty of the island and authenticity of the whole experience.”

-Lynn (Global Volunteer in Greece)

Mexico Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Conversational English in Classrooms, English Tutoring
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to two weeks, programs start on select Saturdays year-round
  • Program fees: $2,495 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Abroad Opportunities in Greece

Teachers serving in Mexico work at Universidad Tecnológica de Querétaro (UTEQ) – helping students with English conversation as well as tutoring. As a Mexico Global Volunteer, you also have the opportunity to enjoy cultural activities alongside students and community partners. Your chance to help wonderful students and explore a different culture is right across the border!

“These “vacations” have been the most rewarding of my life. I had been looking for a way to visit a foreign country and get beneath the surface, to meet people and be introduced to a new culture through their eyes… Classroom interaction is fun, and during our free time on weekends, we get to see the sights just like “regular” tourists, often in the company of our local Mexican friends. What could be better!”

-Tom (Global Volunteer in Mexico)

Montana Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Computer Literacy, Children’s Summer Programs
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one week, programs start on Saturdays May through September
  • Program fees: $1,045 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Abroad Opportunities in Montana

Our Montana program is on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation alongside Glacier National Park. If you have expertise in computer systems and/or programs, you can help students learn the basics and improve their computer literacy so they can successfully compete in college and job-seeking. Or, help supervise field trips, play and direct games, read story books, or teach a lesson on a topic of your choice at a tribally run summer day-camp for children five to 18.

“The volunteers bring their skills, insights, and helping hands to the reservation. But, most important, they bring friendship, curiosity, and compassion. We work together to close the gap of understanding between the Indian and White cultures, and it’s very good.”

-Bob Tail Feathers (Blackfeet American Indian)

Peru Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Conversational English in Classrooms, Early Childhood Education, Tutoring Numeracy
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to two weeks, programs start on select Saturdays year-round
  • Program fees: From $2,595 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Abroad Opportunities in Lima, Peru

Teacher volunteers in Lima play an important role in assisting local daycare workers, teachers and university professors. Stimulate children 1 to 5 years old through arts and crafts and reading storybooks; work one-on-one and in small groups on numeracy and math comprehension with students of all ages; or, at the university level, help students anchor their independence through conversational English practice and lesson reviews.

“If English is the language of opportunity, it’s our rare privilege to play a small supportive role in our students’ quest for graduate studies, professional employment, and success. We’re inspired by their motivation; our hearts are warmed by the graciousness of the students, staff, and faculty of La Molina.”

-Efy (Global Volunteer in Peru)

Poland Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Conversational English in Classrooms, English Language Camps
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to two weeks, programs start on select Saturdays year-round
  • Program fees: From $2,495 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Abroad Opportunities Poland

Teachers who enjoy working with children and teenagers are especially needed in Poland. Whether in a classroom setting or at a summer camp, the Polish youth are eager to learn from you. If you love beautiful landscapes as well as cross-cultural learning, look no further. Poland is the place for you.

It’s the great experiences I have with the Polish children and the Polish language camps staff that draw me back again and again. Working with and learning about the Polish people is a great delight in my life. Language camps are too much fun to miss!”

-Lori (Global Volunteer in Poland)

Tanzania Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Conversational English, Early Childhood Education, Tutoring Numeracy, Computer Literacy, Literacy and Math Testing, Classroom Teaching (Topics include: Math, Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Geography)
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to three weeks, programs start on select Saturdays year-round
  • Program fees: From $1,995 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Abroad Opportunities in Poland

Teacher volunteers in Tanzania provide support to local teachers in the rural community of Ipalamwa. Tutor children at the primary school. Teach secondary students math, biology, chemistry, physics and physical geography. This may be the most fun you ever have. Tanzanian village schools are not equipped with all the tools and equipment that can make education interesting in more developed countries. So volunteers utilize their professional experiences and creative imagination to bring these subjects to life.

“I was surprised by how appreciative and eager the students are to learn. Their respect for the teachers is something I’ve never before witnessed. I learned so much from them about their lives and the village. I have a great deal of respect for Tanzanians.”

-Jake (Global Volunteer in Tanzania)

Vietnam Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Conversational English in Classrooms at a Primary School or a University, Conversational English to Visually Impaired Adults, Tutoring High- and Mid-Ranking Officials at a Research Institute
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to two weeks, programs start on select Saturdays year-round
  • Program fees: From $2,495 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Abroad Opportunities in Vietnam

In Vietnam, teacher volunteers work with a wide range of students – from college students to high ranking officials to visually impaired adults. Your service provides more opportunities for the students, and they greatly appreciate that. Once you see how much attention they pay during your classes, you’ll understand what we mean!

Teaching English in Vietnam was as wonderful as I had anticipated. Practicing pronunciation with blind students at Blind Link with each student assuming the role of a Massage Therapist speaking with a client was sheer joy. To provide help, enjoy the students and the assistants, and the process itself, is very rewarding.”

-Fran (Global Volunteer in Vietnam)

Additional Teaching Abroad Opportunities

In addition to the teaching abroad opportunities listed in the locations above, Global Volunteers also offers the opportunity to teach students of all ages in China, Costa Rica, Cuba, India, Italy, Portugal, Romania and St. Lucia. Gain a new perspective of these colorful countries by sharing your skills and knowledge!

Request a free e-catalog for more information about teaching abroad opportunities for experienced and retired teachers using the form below.

Get started! Request a free e-catalog.

Request a program catalog here or by calling 800-487-1074.







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Teaching Volunteer Abroad Programs

“Once A Teacher, Always A Teacher.” Whether you’re an aspiring teacher, experienced teacher or retired teacher, you’ll always be a teacher. And volunteering with Global Volunteers may be the perfect opportunity for you to share and develop your teaching skills while gaining international volunteering experience in schools which don’t have reliable access to educational resources. Welcome to Global Volunteers’ teaching volunteer abroad programs!

Global Volunteers offers volunteer opportunities for teachers to tutor students in basic classroom subjects including math, computer skills, geography, music, science, sports, agriculture, arts and crafts, reading and literacy. You can support these efforts in a range of destinations, including the Cook Islands, India, Montana, Peru, St. Lucia and Tanzania. In addition, we also offer the opportunity to teach conversational English in China, Costa Rica, Cuba, Greece, Italy, Mexico, Poland, Portugal, Romania and Vietnam.

Hundreds of teachers and retired teachers choose to volunteer with Global Volunteers every year, as the year-round program start dates make it easy to volunteer abroad on a teacher schedule. As a Global Volunteer, you can volunteer from one to three weeks and the all-inclusive (and tax-deductible) program fees mean your airport pick-up and drop-off, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support are all taken care of. If you are looking to volunteer with a group of your teacher friends, contact us. Our group specialists are ready to help you get started.

To learn more about the volunteer opportunities available for teachers, browse the programs featured below.

Cook Islands Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Conversational English in Classrooms, Early Childhood Education, Tutoring Numeracy, Computer Literacy, Literacy and Math Testing
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to three weeks, programs start on select Sundays year-round
  • Program fees: From $2,695 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Volunteer Abroad Programs - Cook Islands

Teacher volunteers in the Cook Islands have the opportunity to work with a range of ages, from toddlers to 4th graders to high school students. Working alongside and providing valued support to local teachers, you invest in the future through the youngest of citizens.

“My one-time curiosity has turned into 9 years of annual volunteer trips to Rarotonga. I return because I have a connection with the teachers at St Joseph’s Primary, to the shopkeepers, to the Global Volunteers who serve every year, but mostly I cherish my connection with the students, whom I taught in Grade 1 and now are vibrant Grade 6 students. It’s an honor and a privilege to be a part of their lives if only for three weeks a year.”

-Ellen (Global Volunteer in the Cook Islands)

India Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Conversational English in Classrooms, Early Childhood Education, Tutoring Numeracy, Computer Literacy
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to two weeks, programs start on select Saturdays year-round
  • Program fees: From $2,396 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Volunteer Abroad Programs in India

Teacher volunteers in India have the chance to work alongside local teachers in classrooms, daycare centers, small group settings, and one-on-one sessions – serving in low-income areas. Projects involve creating stimulating lesson plans for preschool, primary school and secondary school students. Focus on pronunciation and common phrases to help them attain fluency and confidence in English. Or, work on numeracy and math comprehension with students of all ages

“We came with the intention of teaching English to these beautiful children but we ended up discovering benefits for all that were far greater than this. I feel blessed to have met such beautiful human beings.”

-Kristen (Global Volunteer in India)

Montana Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Computer Literacy, Children’s Summer Programs
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one week, programs start on Saturdays May through September
  • Program fees: $1,045 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Volunteer Abroad Programs in Montana

Our Montana program is on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation alongside Glacier National Park. If you have expertise in computer systems and/or programs, you can help students learn the basics and improve their computer literacy so they can successfully compete in college and job-seeking. Or, help supervise field trips, play and direct games, read story books, or teach a lesson on a topic of your choice at a tribally run summer day-camp for children five to 18.

“The volunteers bring their skills, insights, and helping hands to the reservation. But, most important, they bring friendship, curiosity, and compassion. We work together to close the gap of understanding between the Indian and White cultures, and it’s very good.”

-Bob Tail Feathers (Blackfeet American Indian)

Peru Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Conversational English in Classrooms, Early Childhood Education, Tutoring Numeracy
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to two weeks, programs start on select Saturdays year-round
  • Program fees: From $2,595 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Volunteer Abroad Programs in Peru

Teacher volunteers in Lima play an important role in assisting local daycare workers, teachers and university professors. Stimulate children 1 to 5 years old through arts and crafts and reading storybooks; work one-on-one and in small groups on numeracy and math comprehension with students of all ages; or, at the university level, help students anchor their independence through conversational English practice and lesson reviews.

“If English is the language of opportunity, it’s our rare privilege to play a small supportive role in our students’ quest for graduate studies, professional employment, and success. We’re inspired by their motivation; our hearts are warmed by the graciousness of the students, staff, and faculty of La Molina.”

-Efy (Global Volunteer in Peru)

St. Lucia Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Early Childhood Education, Tutoring Numeracy, Computer Literacy, Classroom Teaching
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to two weeks, programs start on select Saturdays year-round
  • Program fees: From $2,795 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Volunteer Abroad Programs in St. Lucia

Teacher volunteers in Anse la Raye, St. Lucia have the opportunity to work with preschool, primary school and secondary school students on numeracy and math comprehension, computer basics, and more. If you enjoy soft sand beaches and a carefree island “beat,” this is a perfect teaching opportunity for you!

“It’s very encouraging to see how engaged and curious the children are. Not only do they listen when we talk with them, but they ask questions that show they are thinking and processing what is said. This reminds me that these children, who are struggling with their schoolwork, are also so full of potential.”

-Lisa (Global Volunteer in St. Lucia)

Tanzania Teaching Volunteer Program

  • Community projects: Conversational English, Early Childhood Education, Tutoring Numeracy, Computer Literacy, Literacy and Math Testing, Classroom Teaching (Topics include: Math, Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Geography)
  • Program duration: Volunteer for one to three weeks, programs start on select Saturdays year-round
  • Program fees: From $1,995 for one week. Tax-deductible fees include food, accommodations, ground transportation, team leadership, project materials and program coordination.

Teaching Volunteer Abroad Programs in Tanzania

Teacher volunteers in Tanzania provide support to local teachers in the rural community of Ipalamwa. Tutor children at the primary school. Teach secondary students math, biology, chemistry, physics and physical geography. This may be the most fun you ever have. Tanzanian village schools are not equipped with all the tools and equipment that can make education interesting in more developed countries. So volunteers utilize their professional experiences and creative imagination to bring these subjects to life.

“I was surprised by how appreciative and eager the students are to learn. Their respect for the teachers is something I’ve never before witnessed. I learned so much from them about their lives and the village. I have a great deal of respect for Tanzanians.”

-Jake (Global Volunteer in Tanzania)

English Teaching Volunteer Abroad Programs

As a Global Volunteer, you can also teach English to children, university students, English teachers and mature adults who have a sincere desire to improve their conversational skills – in China, Costa Rica, Cuba, Greece, Italy, Mexico, Poland, Portugal, Romania and Vietnam (in addition to the Cook Islands, India, Peru and Tanzania). Gain a new perspective of these colorful countries in classrooms, through small group activities, and at one-on-one tutoring sessions.

Request more information about teaching volunteer abroad programs using the form below.

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Request a program catalog here or by calling 800-487-1074.







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There Is No Darkness in Cuba

A blackout seemed to frustrate a volunteer’s English classes one night. But soon our volunteer, Jennifer, would learn that there is no darkness in Cuba.

I am going to remember Monday as a collection of sounds, lights, and … darkness!

Breakfast at hotel: The slurps of coffee and leche, the undertones of Deutsche – sprechen among the new arrivals, and the pad-pad-padding of ours shoes as we scamper across the tile to the lobby to be on time to start our new assignments.

Our walk to the community garden: The clopping of horse hooves, bicyclists pressing quietly into a strong wind, and the occasional rumble of a heavy truck or scooter. I am fascinated by the many ways people get around!  As Yanel told us gardeners this morning, a Cuban could even make a spaceship from Russian and American car parts.

There Is No Darkness in Cuba

Volunteers Breanna and Jennifer with coomunity guide Yanel at the comomunity garden in Ciego de Avila.

At dinner: Seated together after our first day of volunteering, we were all full of chatter about our new experiences.  I felt tired but happy to be surrounded by new friends – all working as a team toward common goals with the Ciego de Avila community.

And then, the electricity went out and the background music was silenced.  Without hardly missing a beat, the candles were lit and the conversations went on.  Would we be teaching tonight or not?  Would students still come, or stay home?

And, indeed, the student came – ready to learn – even in the midst of darkness.

Our first evening of conversational English started by the lights of mobile phones.  The room buzzed with voices speaking English and Spanish words, with laughter, with songs and games.  For my partner, Brie, and me, it was improvisational give-and-take learning between us and our middle-school-age students.

To cap off the day, and by this time we’re pretty tired, we arrive back at the hotel to be recharged by the beat of dance music and the sight of an amazing, athletic, and graceful dance troupe performing down in the bar area.  How lucky to see them – what a perfect ending to an amazing day.

I closed the day happily immersed in the sights and sounds of the wonderful Cuban culture, and grateful to be exchanging these experiences with fellow volunteers and the people of Ciego de Avila. Despite their struggles, there is no darkness in Cuba; not in their spirit.

There Is No Darkness in Cuba

Volunteer Jennifer checks out English student Erick’s bike.

There Is No Darkness in Cuba

Jennifer receives a flower from local Cuban worker.

Teach English Abroad Summer in Europe

Give purpose to your summer! You can do this… So can your child, siblings, spouse or friends!

“I’m humbled by how well I was received, and how much I learned that I had to give.  It was a true exchange every day in the classroom – between the students and each one of us volunteers. Every day I felt appreciated, safe, and very much at peace.”

-Louise, Poland Global Volunteer

Teach English Abroad: Summer Camp Programs

Volunteers of all ages are warmly invited by our host partners in Greece, Italy, and Poland to help conduct summer conversational English language classes in camp-like settings for local students ages 8 to 18.

Anyone can be effective at teaching. No special licenses or teaching backgrounds are required. In fact, we prepare you every step of the way… just take a peek at our Conversational English Guide for ideas and insights on what the work assignment involves. And, because kids love to learn from others their own ages, these summer camp opportunities are excellent options for family volunteering.

Teach English Abroad Summer in Poland - Family Volunteering

As the international language of commerce, technology and opportunity, English is a passport out of poverty. It provides students a tool to engage with and learn about the world. It offers the chance to go on to higher education, get a more fulfilling and better paying job, and achieve ever greater success.

So, why not jump right in to share what you know with European students. Reserve your spot on a summer program before summer comes and goes!

Greece English Language Summer Camp

Teach English Abroad Summer in Greece

Since 1996, volunteers have worked in partnership with local people in Greece through Global Volunteers to provide opportunities to improve their English and expand educational opportunities for children. Minimum volunteer age for the English Summer Camp is 6.

Learn more about Teach English Abroad Summer

Italy English Language Summer Camp

Teach English Abroad Summer in Italy

Global Volunteers’ partnership in Italy started in 1995. Teach English as a student group, a couple, a family or an individual at English Summer Camps in Monopoli. Work in small groups to share your creativity and enthusiasm for the language. Minimum volunteer age for the English Summer Camp is 12.

Learn more about Teach English Abroad Summer

Poland English Language Summer Camp

Teach English Abroad Summer in Poland

As a volunteer in Poland, you work with the most engaging Polish youth you’ll ever meet! Practice English skills with elementary and middle school students through fun activities – such as skits, games, field trips and the like. Minimum age for the English Summer Camp is 6.

Learn more about Teach English Abroad Summer

Campers are already enrolled. Now, all they need is you! Register today! (Service program fees and all associated travel costs are 100% tax deductible for U.S. taxpayers.)

the Cuban people

Ken, a volunteer from one of the Cuba teams in January, reflects on the virtues of the Cuban people as well as the challenges they face and their dilemma of whether to stay in Cuba or try to emigrate.

After only 4 days here, I am already falling in love with Cuba and the Cuban people. There are good people in the United States and everywhere else, but I do believe in the notion of a national character and find it interesting that many Cubans I’ve met use the words sociable and affable to describe what they think is unique and what they like about Cubans.

This includes Rafael, the retired engineer from The Nestle Company and our supervisor at the water project, who is curious and loves to talk  about Cubans and Americans, and particularly Donald Trump. It also includes Mikiahl and Esmarie, the warm and caring owners of my Casa Particular (bed & breakfast) and my two evening students, Jamie Le I and Jamie Le II. As Jamie Le I put it, “when your neighbor has no salt, you give her salt”.

the Cuban people

Streets of Cuba.

In my mind, the great sociability of Cubans and their warmth for one another and others was reflected in the wonderful church service on Sunday carried out by people young and old in a beautiful expression of music, dance, and religious faith. It is also seen in the patience and respect shown by all kinds of people that I have stopped and talked with on the street. Also, in the gratitude and friendliness expressed toward the church community and me by those who come to fill their water bottles in the morning at the church building. Finally, I see it in the great pride that Cubans frequently express about how there is little violence in their country and that there is safety in their streets, schools, and cities.

the Cuban people

Church service in Cuba

Part of my admiration for the Cuban people is rooted in the great strength and resourcefulness shown by so many in the face of economic challenges. As many of us are discovering, even though Cuban people benefit from free education and free medical care, many Cubans are frustrated by how difficulty it can be to achieve economic security and to realize their occupational goals and dreams. For example:

Jamie Le II, an electrical engineer is studying English because she is planning to immigrate to Canada as she is earning only $90 a month in Cuba

Jamie Le I has worked 20 years as a cultural promoter and earns only $16 a month. She and her husband both have to work extra jobs in the economy particular to make ends meet. She says a person needs to be a magician in Cuba in order to survive.

Adrian said during his study of computers at the university, four of his professors migrated to Mexico because they could make much more money there. Jamie Le II said many Cubans go to Mexico and use it as a trampoline to make it to the U.S.

Rafael said his heart doctor left for Ecuador because he could earn $3000 a month instead of the $90 a month he was receiving in Cuba.

Rafael says he is worried about the demographic trend of the Cuban population becoming older and older as more and more young people, including many with university degrees leaving the country. Mikial says the same. That is why helping the Cuban people improve their language skills is so important. Whether they stay in Cuba or emigrate, they can have much better job prospects if they are able to speak English.

By Ken.

the Cuban people

Volunteers Ken, Mary & Richard picking rice in Cuba.

the Cuban people

Cuba Team Photo from January

Service Trip to Poland

Are you searching for a meaningful yet reassuring volunteer opportunity? Ease into a service trip to Poland! Global Volunteers engages individuals of every generation, ethnicity and walk of life on our Poland Service Program to help teach conversational English to students – and no previous teaching experience is necessary! These students crave the chance to learn American English from native speakers. So even if you’ve never taught, your native English expertise is a resource to help students enhance their future opportunities.

This first-hand story is by Ken, a Poland Global Volunteer, who, like many of our volunteers, decided to join the Poland program with no previous teaching experience. As you read on, you’ll realize that although Ken took a chance by stepping outside of his comfort zone, he returned home with a new perspective, life-long friendships, and memories he’ll likely remember forever.

Stepping Outside of My Comfort Zone and Building Confidence

My service trip to Poland was quite out of my comfort zone. Most of the time, I’m less than comfortable speaking to a group of people I don’t know. I’m not a teacher. I’m not college educated. I don’t have any children. I’ve never traveled outside the states alone, and finally, I didn’t know a word of Polish before this experience. And despite Iwona’s best efforts, I still know very few! (Iwona used to be a student at the Poland English summer camp, but now she teaches Polish lessons to the volunteers.)

Add to all of this, as I met my fellow volunteer teammates, I learned that virtually all of them had completed many assignments with Global Volunteers. Several had even been to the Poland English summer camp many times in the past. To say I was frightened would be an understatement.

There were 61 children at the camp. I was assigned to teach English to a group of eight. As I met “my” kids on the first day of class, my anxiety, fear and feeling of “I cannot do this” began to melt away. Don’t get me wrong, I continued to fret about lesson plans… But, by the end of the first day with those eight kids, I knew they were going to give and teach me just as much (if not,  more) as I did them.

Service trip to Poland to teach

Over the next two weeks, the other volunteers along with Dorota and Iwona supported me more than I could have hoped.

A Lesson Worth Learning Over and Over

I’ve completed a couple of marathons. And I can tell you that it took far more courage to stay at camp that first day than it did to complete a marathon. However, in just two short weeks, I grew to care about my students, forged what I hope will be long friendships with other volunteers, and learned I can do anything. I just have to “jump”. A lesson worth learning over and over again, even at age 58.

Photos from Ken’s Service Trip to Poland:

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Step outside of your comfort zone and just “jump”!

Feeling inspired? Step outside of your comfort zone and just “jump” – as Ken would say! Visit our Volunteer in Poland page or chat online with a Poland Program Specialist to learn more about upcoming service opportunities.

Chat online about a service trip to Poland