Budget Volunteering Overseas | Conservation | Care for Animals | Care for Children
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SUPPORT AND BACKUP:

Travelling is ... Exciting. Adventurous. Exotic. Enlightening. But it can also be a little scary to first-time adventurers. This is why our Country Consultants help you with advice and guidance each step of the way, starting with helping you to choose the best place and the most suitable projects for you. And our in-country support staff continue to give you assistance for the duration of your stay.

SAFETY IS PARAMOUNT!
Our No. 1 priority is to ensure that you are in a safe environment while on your project. we only start new destinations that are politically stable and safe. Where a situation changes, our UK staff and our local staff overseas constantly monitor the situation.

If we think that your safety is compromised, we will immediately take steps to remove you from the unsafe environment. We are constantly in contact with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and this supplements the information received from our local staff on the ground.

Support from our Local Overseas Staff:

BVOL works with carefully selected partner providers to ensure that we can bring you programmes at the lowest possible prices. Thus we have excellent, paid, local support-and-back-up staff teams plus provider teams in all of our destination countries. They are there to assist you with any concerns, advice and administration. They are contactable 24/7. They look after you during your stay and liaise with our partner organisations to ensure that your placement provides maximum benefit to both you and them.

They can also give you help or advice on your conservation/care/teaching/work responsibilities and the practical aspects of living abroad. Their local knowledge is invaluable and they can direct you to all the most impressive sights and tourist attractions to visit, as well as the beauty spots that are off the beaten track! They will also advise you on any safety issues specific to places that you may want to visit during your free time.

“I loved them (the in-country support team), honestly, and they were some of the nicest people I've ever met. They made me feel right at home.” Canyon Cugini, Brazil

Support from our UK Staff:
We have an excellent support network in the UK. During the run-up to beginning your placement, our home team's advice and expertise is invaluable in arranging and tailoring your placement to your requirements. They can answer all your questions and are very experienced travellers themselves who understand what you're looking for and hoping to gain on your project.

Before your departure we help you with all stages of planning your trip, from arranging your travel dates to coincide with others, booking your flights or helping you decide what to take with you. Whilst you are on your placement, we stay in touch with you to make sure you are having a great time!

Placements and Projects:
Before you go on your placement, we'll send you lots of information to help you prepare. Before leaving your home country, you'll be given (amongst other things):Contact information, i.e. the address and telephone number of your Overseas Travellers Manager and, where relevant, the contact details of your host work organisation.

Your Placement - this is a booklet filled with information about your placement. It includes information on flights, visas, local transport, currency, the cost of living, medical info, insurance info, what to take with you, dress code and a host of other things.

Your Project  - detailed information about your specific project or projects.Your Country  - a booklet containing general information about the country you're going to, including the town or city, the people, the culture, places worth visiting while you're there. If you're doing a teaching placement, we also send you a Teaching Guide to help you prepare. This will assist you in planning lessons and give you ideas for topics to use in your classes.

Flights and Travel:
You can arrange your own flights or we can assist you with your flight arrangements. We'll liaise with you regarding suitable flights and dates.

Induction:
During the first few days after your arrival you'll receive an Induction. The depth and length varies according to country, but will include useful information on: local safety, local banks, local transport, money, the telephone system, etc, location of the post office, where to change money and internet facilities, etc. Advice on safety, local customs and code of behaviour.

What you should know before taking part in a placement with BVOL:
Sometimes some elements of work duties within a placement may change - this is because of the nature of the cultures we work within and institutions that sometimes change things on very short notice! We will endeavour to keep you informed, but you should also check our website and phone us for latest updates.

You’ll get out of your placement what you put into it - your attitude is important.You're going to a different culture and although it is exciting, it is also different. It won't be what you used to - but then that's exactly why you're doing a placement in another country! To experience something new, something different. 

However, that something different can also include the buses not being on time, the telephones lines going down, power cuts, changes at short notice or even no notice and without prior notification, perhaps even some traditions you may not particularly like. Unfortunately, we're not responsible for everything and we can't put everything right for you. We're there to make you as comfortable as possible and help you get the most out of your placement. 

Although we have excellent support and back-up staff in all our destination countries who will do their best to ensure you have a wonderful time, neither we nor they can make trains run on time, or change irritating local bureaucracy, or stop headmasters from saying “Yes” when they mean “No”, or projects from being disorganised or even closing for a few days with no notice - all of these are cultural differences and that is the reason why ...

You must be adaptable, have infinite patience and tolerance, be able to use your own initiative to get things done, and most importantly ...A good sense of humour!