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Vietnam forum

Volunteering in Vietnam

Posted by Benno on 21/2/2013 at 02:58

Hello Everyone,
My partner and I are wanting to do volunteer work in Vietnam as part of a trip we are planning this year.
I have looked on this forum and seen the 2010 post but nothing updated and the website for the expats is not working.

We don't want to be stung US$2500 each to do 3 week volunteering through an 'organisation' with an unknown amount going to the actual recipient. Also for $5000 (for both) we can get flights and 3 weeks accommodation with money left over for food. The fees seem like a bit of a rip off.

Can anyone please point us in the right direction so we can start making arrangements. We are looking at going in August, traveling for 5-6 weeks and maybe volunteering work for 3. We prefer to do it around the Hoi An/Hue area but don't mind if it is in HCMC or Hanoi.

It can be teaching English/sport/photography, caring for wildlife or even photographing them (I run a photography business) and supplying them with images etc.

If anyone has any ideas please let me know, and if you reply and are associated with an organization, please disclose this so to be fair on other people.



#1 Benno has been a member since 18/1/2012. Posts: 36

Posted by somtam2000 on 21/2/2013 at 04:33 admin

I've pinged Lola in Hoi An on this one, as personally I have no idea. She lives there, so may be able to help.

#2 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 7,938
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Posted by LolaNguyen on 21/2/2013 at 05:42 TF writer

Posted from within Vietnam.

Thank you Mr Somtam. I might just have the perfect answer for you if you'd like to stay in a beautiful little fishermans house on An Bang beach in Hoi An ... An Bang Seaside Village (they have a website with a blog about what they are doing there), basically these guys have set up a little school for the village kids and encourage guests who stay long-term to help out. Its free for the kids who's fisherman parents can't afford an education for their kids and want them to have some kind of vocation and skill set so they don't end up having to continue in the dangerous fishing industry (so many of them die each year). The school started off with just a few cute kids but word has got round and now there are about 30 of them. They also are looking for people that can help train the mum's to give the families another way of earning a living (to stop the boys having to go out when the sea is dangerous). Their website is There is also the Lifestart foundation who are a not for profit organisation who are always on the lookout for helpers, they also run a school and need help with everything that is involved in running a business (they are based in Hoi An town).
These are the best I can think of, so I'll leave it to you to have a look and if you need any more help please pop a post on here and I'll hunt something down.
Good Luck!

#3 LolaNguyen has been a member since 28/8/2012. Posts: 94
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Posted by Benno on 21/2/2013 at 23:15

Hi LolaNguyen,

Thanks for the replies to the above organisations. I will have a look at the respective websites.
Is there anything in Hue that you can think of??

I looked at a place called 'REACH' they seem to have a few spots all over Vietnam, do you have any feedback or info on them. Th eonly problem is thay require 4 weeks commitment which might be a bit much out aof a 6 week trek.

Thanks again,


#4 Benno has been a member since 18/1/2012. Posts: 36

Posted by LolaNguyen on 22/2/2013 at 00:05 TF writer

Posted from within Vietnam.

I don't know anything off the top of my head for Hue other than Reach (I've just emailed a friend that lives in Hue and will let you know if he comes up with anything). I've spoken to so many charities in the area and the main problem is the larger ones want either big time commitments or only accept applicants that have the skill set they require (usually nursing). The reason for this is they invest so much time introducing and training volunteers that its just not viable if you are only committing to a short time, which makes sense. Also with a lot of charities (especially the ones with kids) its quite disruptive for the students to have people dipping in and out of their lives.
Your best bet is to approach the smaller ones who desperately need help, but finding them is a bit of a challenge. Another option is to approach a charity like Reach and offer to help raise awareness for them back home, incorporating a voluntary period in to your pitch, all charities want to raise as much public awareness as possible and it might just swing things around in your favour.
I'll keep you posted.

#5 LolaNguyen has been a member since 28/8/2012. Posts: 94
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Posted by hongthaotv on 13/3/2013 at 04:09

Posted from within Vietnam.

Hi Beno
If you are interested in doing volunteer work in Viet Nam, you should think of teaching English at Foreign Language Center of Tra Vinh Unniversity which is a remote area in the Mekong Delta. It provides you with free accommodation and an amount of stipend per month.
Here you can assist local teachers to teach English skill to both young learners and adults.
if that interests you, please leave me a few words so that we can contact later.

#6 hongthaotv has been a member since 13/3/2013. Posts: 1

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