Volunteering in Laos for free (or low cost)
Replies: 47 - Last Post: Feb 19, 2013 2:30 PM Last Post By: Bushwaker
Jun 14, 2012 7:23 PM
Jun 17, 2012 2:14 AM
46I think that Vientianeboy has summed up this entire discussion with his comments:
"Are you aware that voluntourists in Lao and in Thailand require work permits. If you do not have one you are working illegally."
"By the way, does YOUR organisation provide work permits for all voluntourists or do you allow them to wrok (sic) illegally? For whom do you work? Is the Ministry of Education and Sport aware of your activities? "
If you do not have the relevant skills to get a work permit then you can not volunteer. Just turning up at random places and random times to chat with the locals is not volunteering. Simple construction or yard work is just keeping paying jobs from the locals.
If you truly want to help and not just make yourself feel better about yourself then get some useful skills and training before you leave home and join a legitimate volunteer organization doing sustainable work somewhere. You need to be able to provide (and ideally teach) a skill that is not available locally.
Anything else is just playing.
Feb 19, 2013 2:30 PM
47Important to read this article if considering volunteering (it focuses on Cambodia, but relevant to all countries):
This is in no way meant to deter anyone from helping and volunteering - there are great projects out there.
Just do your homework, consider the impact of short stays on children who easily get attached to "new friends" and generally, make sure the operations are legit and have the children's best interests at heart.
DO YOUR HOMEWORK ; )
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