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Things To Know Before You Volunteer In Developing Countries

By Joseph Reed

When you have a compassionate heart and you want to help less fortunate people, then doing some volunteer work might just be right up your alley. Bear in mind though that this is not an easy task because there will be several challenges you may encounter along the way. Should you feel that you have the strength and conviction to proceed, then read the details below for more information.

Be prepared to rough it out because this job primarily does away with the creature comforts you are used to having at home. When you are a volunteer in developing countries, chances are you will be living and working in very squalid conditions, and this is not for the faint of heart. Not only do you have to be physically able to handle this, but you should also be mentally prepared for the challenge.

Your placement is determined by the administrators over at the volunteering program, so when you receive the information, your next order of business is to study all there is to know about your destination. From the language and customs to their climate and geography, you should be busy absorbing all the info you need. This will definitely serve you well during your time spent abroad.

While it can be very tempting to treat this whole affair as a vacation of sorts, your primary objective should be to focus on the basics. As such, packing for your volunteer job overseas should be strictly kept to the absolute essentials that can be reused to save on precious luggage space. Resist the urge to bring anything that will only be cumbersome during your trip.

Prior to your departure, get yourself tested for any diseases and make sure you get all the necessary vaccinations and medical shots which will boost your immunity against any foreign illnesses. This is a mandatory requirement that all volunteers have to comply before leaving. You certainly do not want to fall sick in a country with limited access to advanced medical facilities.

Additionally, you would be wise to learn life saving procedures that can come in handy when unexpected accidents occur while doing your volunteer work overseas. Things like the Heimlich maneuver or CPR are crucial in the event you have to perform them on a person who needs them. Also, it never hurts to include stuff like first aid application as this is also vital.

Foreigners happen to be pegged as easy targets for con artists and other unsavory criminals, so it never hurts to be cautious at all times. But on the flipside of things, not all locals are hostile to foreign visitors, especially if they know you are there for volunteer work. Maintain an attitude of genuine positivity and friendliness whenever you engage with the local population.

Finally, you should be prudent when it comes to finances so make sure your bank account is considerably ample before you leave. There is a possibility that you might need to spend more than your intended budget, so having access to backup funds is crucial. Do not bring loose cash with you, so use your international ATM or credit card as most businesses accept these forms of payment.

Volunteering has its ups and downs like any other job, but the rewards you get from the experience will surely make an impact. This guide can definitely steer you in the right direction when you need a bit of help. Always remember to keep an open mind so you may broaden your horizons in the process.

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