- What types of volunteer programs does IHF Offer?
IHF has two types of volunteers: At-Home (Remote) Volunteers, who help us from their homes around the world, and At-Center Volunteers, who stay with us at our Children's Homes or Educational Centers.
- What are the requirements to become a volunteer?
IHF is seeking forward-thinking, dynamic individuals of all ages and backgrounds to contribute to our Children's Homes and Education Centers. We seek people who are interested in learning from impoverished and marginalized groups. Volunteers should always seek to understand the communities we serve, rather than change or push their own values.
- How many hours per week do volunteers commitment to IHF?
IHF offers various volunteer programs to fit the availability of those wishing to volunteer with us. The At-Home Volunteer Program requires a commitment of 2-3 hours per week, depending on the assigned role. The At-Center Volunteer Programs vary in minimum hour dedications from 24 to 48 hours per week (4-8 hours per day, 6 days per week). Those wishing to volunteer locally for the IHF center near them (not living with us at our center) can adjust their time commitment to fit their availability each week.
- How much does it cost to join a volunteer program?
The cost to participate in our volunteer programs depends on the amount of time you are able to spend with us. Currently, we have the following programs:
- At-Home Volunteer: no cost; must have a laptop and reliable internet connection.
- At-Center Short-Term Volunteer - 4 hours per day, 2 weeks minimum: $200 USD Per Week
- At-Center Short-Term Volunteer - 8 hours per day, 4 weeks minimum: $100 USD Per Week
- At-Center Long-Term Volunteer - 8 hours per day, 16 weeks minimum: No Cost
- At-Center Specialty Volunteer - medical, legal, building trades, etc. - duration and cost will vary.
- Local Volunteer - time commitment varies, no cost.
- How long does it take to process my application?
Generally an application takes from 2-4 weeks to process, although this is dependent on the response time of your references. Following a review of your Volunteer Interest Form, we'll assess the current needs of our centers against your skill-set and, if we can move forward, will connect with you to setup an audio-only interview via Skype or WhatsApp.
If we are able to offer you a position as a volunteer, we'll send you an Offer Email. In order to accept our offer, you'll need to provide us with the following:
- A clean criminal background check that is not more than 1 year old (not applicable for At-Home volunteers)
- A receipt showing payment of $100 USD non-refundable deposit (if applicable for you program)
- Signed Volunteer Program documents relating to your program and/or center.
Once we receive these items back from you, we can formerly accept you into our Volunteer Program and will connect you with the leadership at the IHF Center you will be serving, as well as provide details regarding visa requirements, travel suggestions, and training for your role.
- How can I get my application processed faster than 2-4 weeks?
Many applications take longer because we are having to wait to hear back from your references, and we know they are busy. If you'd like to send them a note letting them know to watch out for a reference request from IHF, that can help them to prioritize their response. We are unable to move forward with applications without responses from references.
In the offer letter, we will be requiring a copy (english translated, if necessary) of a criminal background check which is not more than 1 year old. This is for the safety of our children, fellow volunteers, and communities we serve. Some countries have a lengthy process to request a criminal background check. We suggest you research this early on in the application process, so you are aware of the turn-around time once you request it and it does not delay your application.
- What is the Program Deposit requirement?
All accepted volunteers (accept At-Home volunteers) are required to provide a $100 USD non-refundable deposit to hold their spot in the program. Instructions on how to make this deposit will be included in the Offer Email. Once this deposit is made, it will not be refunded for any reason.
This deposit helps to cover the costs associated with hosting our long-term and At-Home volunteers, so that we do not need to use the children's sponsorships to cover these costs.
What expenses are included in the Volunteer Programs?
As a volunteer, shared accommodation is provided, as well as three meals per day based on a traditional, local menu. IHF will also provide any necessary supplies, wifi access, and a productive work environment. Transportation required on behalf of pre-approved activities for the IHF Center is also included.
What expenses are NOT included in the Volunteer Program?
A IHF volunteer is responsible for covering the following costs: flight(s), international or domestic, in-country travel between the airport and the center, initial visa and extension fees, international travel and/or health insurance, personal food or supplies beyond what is provided by the IHF Center, costs relating to tourist activities, and any spending money a volunteer wishes to bring with them.
Are IHF volunteers paid?
As a volunteer organization, we do not provide a salary for any of our positions. This allows us to direct our donations almost entirely towards the needs of our children.
How does a volunteer get to the IHF Center?
Coordination and costs associated with travel to and from the IHF Center are the responsibility of the volunteer. Questions about travel logistics, such as which airport to fly into, which time of day is best to arrive, or how to get from the airport to the IHF Center, may be directed to our Travel Team after official acceptance into this program is granted.
When should a volunteer book their flight?
It is important that an applicant realizes that noone is fully accepted until they have received the official acceptance letter from IHF. A volunteer should only book their plane ticket once the official acceptance letter has been received.
What about the visa requirements?
Obtaining a visa, including the required documents and cost, which allows a person to legally carry out volunteer activities in the specific country of placement is the responsibility of the IHF Volunteer. IHF will do their best to answer any visa-related questions based the experiences of previous IHF volunteers, however IHF does not take any responsibility over specific visa details, the application process, or approval. The process in each country of origin can differ, and therefore IHF requires a volunteer to communicate directly with the embassy to fully understand the process and requirements. IHF does not provide a visa sponsor letter for volunteers in our short-term programs (less than 30 days).
Is there anything else a volunteer needs to do before arriving to the center?
We ask our At-Center Volunteers to begin their volunteer work at home by asking them to donate some hours of work prior to their departure. During this time, you will work closely with our long-term volunteers at the centers. Most of this work is done through email, although we encourage volunteers working from home to hold meetings and fundraising events if they can. In doing this, you will not only be helping IHF, but will also start to familiarize yourself with how the organisation works, allowing yourself to be better prepared for your time at the center.
**Special Note: Used Laptop Donations: IHF is always especially looking for donations of used but working laptops at our centers. If you or your family or friends have a used laptop, we would welcome the donation at the IHF Center. We use these for our computer classes with the children, university programs, and special projects.
- What about questions not covered above?
If you have any questions at all about the process of becoming a volunteer with IHF, or about what volunteering entails, please feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.