Summer Volunteer Trip to Kerala
Kerala – India
Dates: July 2 – 23, 2016
Prices: Starting at $1,799 CND for a 3 Week Experience
Group Size: Maximum of 12 people
Travel to beautiful Kerala in South India – With the Arabian Sea in the west, the Western Ghats in the east and networked by 44 rivers, Kerala’s unique geographical features make it one of the most sought after destinations in Asia. Experience Kerala’s serene beaches, cruise in a traditional houseboat in its tranquil stretches of emerald waters, partake in traditional health and wellness experiences, and indulge in Kerala’s delicious cuisine.
We’ve teamed up with Rainbow Voluntours to offer you an opportunity to experience what Kerala has to offer while giving back to the local communities. Whether you’re looking for some sun, sand and sea, peaceful serenity or a unique cultural experience – Kerala has something to offer you!
Volunteer Program Details :
We run our projects in run down urban slum areas of Mattanchery (in Cochin, Kerala) where most of the community live in difficult conditions which include low family income and conservative societal pressures. Many of the children we work with are the first in their family to be educated. Education is not always a priority for many families and young ones are expected to start earning as soon as possible. Girls in particular have to give into societal pressures of early marriage and end up giving up their career dreams to raise families.
If you volunteer teaching children in India you can expect to work in local schools or community centres helping to coach, mentor and tutor children from 6years up to 16 years. There will also be opportunities to assist with painting the schools.
You will be giving one to one tuitions to weaker students, taking group sessions, assisting the teachers in class or even at times helping with spoken English classes for adults. With English as their second language, the focus for our children and youth is to develop English basics like phonics and grammar through songs, rhymes, story telling, school text books, art or activity based learning . Our Youth learning comprises of spoken English, computer skills and life skills lessons to teenagers.
We will provide some resources and books, topics and a curriculum outline however volunteers are expected to prepare lesson plans using teaching resources available. Our staff will be present on site at all times on the project and guide you. You will be working as a group and individually based on your comfort level.
On the weekends the group will have time to explore the amazing region and have a choice of doing a backwaters excursion, exploring the beaches of the south in Varkala, and trekking in the hills of Munnar. There will also be time in the evening to participate in various cultural events such as cooking classes, Kathakali dance performances, and Ayurvedic treatments. The group also has the option to participate in morning yoga classes.
- Learn new skills and teach underprivileged children
- Experience local village life and culture
- Trek the tea plantations of Munnar
- Stay on a traditional Keralan houseboat and cruise along the tranquil backwaters
- Rejuvenate yourself at morning yoga sessions
- Explore the beautiful beach town of Varkala
All meals, accommodations, domestic travel, local tour guides, and local tour excursions.
Volunteer Program Typical Week:
Arrival Day Saturday/Sunday: Pick Up from the Airport and arrive to your home in where you meet your program coordinator. After some relaxation you will get a Welcome Presentation, Culture Training and area orientation. On Sunday you will visit local sights and in the evening you are free for your leisure.
Monday- Friday : After breakfast you will be volunteering during the day. You can walk or take a tuk-tuk to the project site where Rainbow staff will meet you. Project times and work plans will be given to you on arrival.
Evenings: You will have evenings free for cultural activities such as visiting Temples in the area, local markets, Hindi Language Classes, cooking classes, basic meditation classes, painting class, basic yoga classes, massage classes, basic ayurveda classes, pottery classes, tea factory and tea garden visits, homemade woolen knitting factories, hydro power projects, and organic farming sites. There will be an additional fee for these.
In Kerala: The group will spend the weekends enjoying living on a houseboat on the famous Backwaters of Alleppey and going for trekking to the Munnar Tea Plantations.
There are opportunities to visit nearby beach towns and also to stay longer and explore more of India! We are happy to help with additional travel arrangements if needed.
Living Arrangements for Volunteers:
When you book this volunteer program we will be making all the necessary arrangements for you pre-arrival.
- Before arrival : you will be sent pre-departure information, India guide and project information
- You will be picked up from the airport by our driver in a car and brought to your home
- On arrival you will get some time to rest and we will give you an area orientation followed with training which includes India culture and project details.
- You will be living with other volunteers in a house with a family or local guardian.
- Your will have western style bathrooms. Other facilities include use of lounge, kitchen area and terrace.
- There will be WIFI in the house and you will be walking distance from amenities like supermarkets and local handicraft shopping.
- Basic project resources such as paper, colours, or pens will be available locally.
- Breakfast and dinner will be home cooked continental or Indian. Western Cafes are around if you crave pasta or burgers.
- Daily Project Transport in Tuk- tuks or cars will be pre- arranged.
- Project coordinator will be present on site for support and daily meetings.
- Dedicated Program Manager will be available for meetings.
- Medical facilities and Doctors available for emergencies and you will be given numbers for all on arrival.