CN welcomes volunteers with a variety of skills in teaching English, social work, IT, communications and handicraft design. Please find below some useful information about volunteering with us. For more information, please contact us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Information for Volunteers
How long should I volunteer for?
We require that if possible all volunteers be here for a minimum of 3 months.
What type of work will I be doing?
There are many types of programs that you can be involved in depending on your skills and interests. Below are some general descriptions of different programs and assignments volunteers typically working within, but if you have other skills or interests (dance, sport, art, etc.) that you are keen to apply at CN, you are most welcome to discuss your ideas with us.
– Assisting CN staff with developing plans and monitoring of social work.
– Assisting staff with writing case studies/progress reports of children, families and small projects
– Teaching staff new/additional computer skills – e.g. intermediate or advanced Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint
– Teaching staff how to use internet (especially for researching fundraising opportunities)
– Updating and/or developing CN’s website, or translate pages into your language
Resource Development /Administration
– Training staff with staff development and capacity building techniques/models
– Assisting staff with project application for funding (research and proposal writing) and finding funding partners
– Assisting staff by writing letters to sponsors
– Assisting staff with writing funding reports to donors
– Assisting staff with new marketing ideas (local and international) and/or catalogue production
– Assisting staff with the development of new designs and patters and finding buyers
Fulbari Resource Centre
– (Volunteer assignments still to come)
Where will I live and how much will it cost?
There are a number of possibilities for where you can live. If you live in Pokhara, it is possible to stay in cheap hotels or rent a room where you can cook your own food. Generally, cheap hotels/lodges cost between Euro 6 and Euro 30 a night. However, the cost of living varies depending on where you live, what you eat, and where you eat. It is also possible to live with a Nepalese family who you can eat and socialize with. It costs between Euro 175 to 200 per month to live with a Nepali family, including your accommodation and Nepali food.
Will I be paid anything for accommodations or food?
Unfortunately, as a non-profit organization and non-governmental organization, we are unable to cover the cost of any of your expenses. However, CN can advise you and help you arrange your accommodation.
What type of food will I eat?
This depends on where you are living. If you are living with a family, you will almost certainly be eating the Nepalese food dhal bhat. This consists of rice, lentil soup and vegetables. Most people who come to Nepal end up loving the taste of Dhal Bhat and every meal seems to taste different. In the guest houses and restaurants of Lakeside and in supermarkets it is possible to buy all kinds of Western foods.
What shall I do about a visa?
To enter Nepal, you will need a 30, 60 or 90-day tourist visa, which you can buy at major overland entry points from India and at Kathmandu airport. You can also purchase the visa before you leave your country, from your Nepali Embassy. Before your visa expires, you will need to extend it. You can do this without leaving the country, month by month, until you have been here for five consecutive months in any one year. You will then have to leave the country to renew it again. For example, if you arrive in Nepal at the start of August, it will be possible for you to renew your visa through to May in the following year, without leaving the country.
What will the weather be like?
There are basically three seasons in Nepal:
February to May: temperatures are warm to hot and it’s pretty dry, thus the second busiest tourist season
June to mid-August: rainy season (monsoon), thus the least popular tourist season; at this time of the year, it rains for part of most days (usually in the afternoon), but it is still warm
September to May: dry season, thus the busiest time for tourists and trekkers; from October to January the temperatures fall and warm clothing is needed
What should I bring?
Keep in mind that you can buy most things in Pokhara. The following are only some recommendations.
Clothes It is a good idea to bring clothes that respect the culture – women should bring tops that cover the shoulders and are not too low-cut, and trousers or skirts that fall at least a couple of inches below the knee. Men should also bring long or three-quarter length trousers and tops that cover the shoulders. Bring clothes that you can either leave behind in Nepal or that you don’t mind getting a little dirty. Western style clothes are sold in Lakeside and the town centre, and you can get tailors to make clothes for you quickly and quite cheaply.
Books A good range of English language novels and books on Eastern religion and philosophy are readily available in the shops of Lakeside (and there is more choice in Kathmandu). The choice in other languages is much more limited. If there’s a book you particularly want to read during your stay, it’s worth bringing it with you!
Medicines and toiletries If you take prescription medication, ideally you should arrange to bring a supply for your whole visit. If you plan to be away for more than 6 months, and this is impractical, please seek advice about the medication’s availability in Pokhara medical centres. You can buy pain killers, ointments for grazes and insect bites, and medication for colds from local pharmacies. If there is a brand you feel particularly comfortable taking/using, you may like to bring a small supply with you. A good range of shampoos, conditioners, facial washes, sunscreens and moisturizers are sold in the supermarkets of Lakeside and the city centre, so there is no need to bring a large supply with you, unless you have particularly sensitive skin or have other special requirements.
Electrical equipment While ‘load shedding’ is no longer common in most of Nepal, one essential item is still a torch – head torches are particularly useful. Electrical sockets are usually of the 2-pin European variety. If you like to use a hairdryer, bring a small one designed for traveling.
How much will things cost?
This depends on where you are eating or shopping. One meal in the touristy area will cost at least Euro 6 for food and drink. If you are eating with a family or more rural area, a dhal bhat meal will cost around Euro 4. To buy a simple bike will cost around Euro 100.
What type of immunizations will I need?
For immunizations, you will need to visit a doctor in your home country at least two months BEFORE you arrive in Nepal as some immunizations take one month to become effective.
Will anyone meet me when I arrive?
If you would like us to meet you on your arrival in Pokhara – either at the bus station or airport – we will be pleased to arrange this. Pokhara is a 7 to 8-hour bus journey (buses leave at about 7/8am in the morning) or a short internal flight from Kathmandu. If necessary, it can be arranged for someone to pick you up at Kathmandu airport.
What kind of support will I have during my stay?
If it is your first time in Nepal, attending a one-week program with Insight Nepal is strongly recommended. This program involves a basic language course, cultural program, a local tour, and includes accommodations for a week with a Nepalese family all for Euro 100. Having said this, throughout your time with CN, we will help you with any challenges that may arise in your volunteer work. Unfortunately, at this time CN is unable to provide supervisors for students needing to do an internship for their studies. If you are a student needing to complete an internship, and you need a supervisor, you will need to pay for the supervisor.
Do you have a Child Protection policy at CN?
Many children are abused at home, at school, in the community, and even in social organizations in Nepal – often in the name of promoting discipline. We are concerned about it. CN is a safe place for children and does not practice corporal punishment.
How do I apply to volunteer, and what happens next?
To apply, please complete the attached application form and send it to CN (preferably by email), along with any questions you may have. We will then consider your application and get back to you with any questions we have – normally we are able to inform you of the result of your application within a couple of weeks.
Can you recommend other sources of background information?
Most tourist guide books contain useful background information about Nepal, what to bring, and what to expect. The Rough Guide and Lonely Planet are particularly helpful.