Sri Lanka, Care

Company : Budget Volunteering
Location : Ja-Ela, Sri Lanka
Duration: 1 week to 1 year
Approx Costs: 500 to 3000+ £ Pound (UK)

Make a difference in an Orphanage, Children’s Home and Elderly Persons Care Home. This is a small Home with around 10 boys and 15 elderly ladies. Your love and care is the most important contribution you can make to their well-being.



Volunteer with disadvantaged children and elders on this varied project. The Care Centre is home to children who have been removed by government agencies from their family situations for a number of reasons, such as abuse, being orphaned, etc. The aim is to give the children a safe home. The children live in the Home and attend the local schools. The Care Centre is also home to elderly women who need a safe place to live.

 Some of the time you'll work with the children, some of the live you'll care for the elders, and some of the time you may teach in the local school.

You'll assist at the Centre from 8.30 am to 5.00 pm, on Monday to Friday. In the morning you will assist with the old ladies while the chldren attend the local school. If you prefer, you can use these hours to teach at the local school near the volunteer house intead, thus giving variety to your project. 

When the children arrive back from school, usually around 12.00 noon, your attention  will be given to them. You'll help by playing with the children and teaching them various skills. Love and care is the most important job required. The types of activities the children do include sewing & handicraft, music, English lessons, Math's classes, and so on. Each day has a different programme.

If you have specific experience or interests that you'd like to incorporate into your programme, such as in teaching, counselling, care work, handicrafts - you will be most welcome to put them to good use here!

You'll stay in our volunteer house in Ja-Ela and you'll leave your accommodation at around 7:45 am. Lunch and tea are provided at the Care Centre/Orphanage so that you may stay all day – there is much to help with!

Getting there: 
The Orphanage is about 38 kilometres from the Volunteer House in Ja-Ela that is shared with our Travellers volunteers on other projects in the Ja-Ela area. The commute time to the Care Centre is roughly 45 minutes each way. It’s a beautiful journey with very little traffic on the road to the project.

The orphanage/home is based just near the town of Gampaha, the house itself is in quiet shady grounds. The orphanage currently houses around 12 young boys aged between 6 and 11, each with their own background story. The orphanage aims to offer them a caring and safe environment to grow up, develop and learn in.

Due to the small nature of the orphanage, you will be able to work with the children on a very personal basis and really give them the care and attention they deserve. You will work along side the small network of staff that are based there. There is a very important focus on them learning English, so you will be able to do this with the children on a daily basis as well as taking part in other activities such as handicrafts.

The orphanage is made up of separate houses, one of which acts as a dormitory where the boys sleep. All the buildings are based in beautiful shady grounds, giving the boys a great area to run around and play in.

In addition there is an old people’s home within the same grounds. This is a great set-up as it means the boys are constantly under the watchful eye of the old ladies, whilst the old ladies get to be surrounded by the energy of the young boys. The old ladies love the attention from our volunteers as much as the boys do, so even if you've chosen not to work with the, do take a moment to go over and say hi!  You'll be greeted by huge grins!!

Travellers has a traditional Sri Lankan house in Ja-Ela. It has marble floors and 13 bathrooms! It is spacious and comfortable, with a garden, several balconies, two lounge rooms and many bedrooms. You will most likely share a room with other Travellers volunteers. There is a TV and DVD player for evening entertainment, in the upstairs lounge area and with the latest DVD copies just a pound to buy locally, there is usually something to watch!  A chef will cook all your meals and we have other staff at the house 24 hours a day for cleaning, assistance, security and comfort.

Teaching, Work Experience and the Colombo Zoo placements are all based in Ja-Ela and so the house is often full and offers a lively, sociable atmosphere – there is usually no shortage of friends to spend weekends at the beach with! Ja-Ela volunteers also have the advantage of easy access to Colombo’s facilities, major bus stations and also nearby Hotel's that allow you to use their fantastic facilities (such as the swimming pool) for a small fee. The hotels are all only a short trip away from the volunteer house: perfect for those lazy afternoons!

There is a local live-in cook at the Travellers house who will prepare your breakfast, lunch and dinner each day, throughout the week. The food is usually local cuisine which means lots of curry, rice and salads. Whether a curry fan or not, you will be by the time you return as Sri Lankan food is delicious! You can buy snacks and treats, including a growing variety of Western tastes (chocolate!) from the local store. There is also a KFC in Ja-Ela for those who need a fix of home.  The area of Ja-Ela is an industrialised town and although it is not one of the paradise beauty spots, it's a good point at which to start your exploration of the island's many beaches and beautiful inland resorts.


Start Dates

All year round - you choose the start and finish dates

Costs / Benefits

Costs vary depending on length of placement, but starts at £595 for one weeks. You may be able to participate for up to one year, subject to visa requirements.
Included is full support from the moment of booking and throughout your placement to your return home. There are support staff 24/7 in all our destinations worldwide and a 24 hour emergency international telephone line direct to the Head Office. All meals are provided, unless otherwise stated. Accommodation is provided (whether a rented house, a hotel/hostel, homestay, apartment or flat).
You’ll be met at the nearest airport on your arrival by our in-country manager who will take you to your accommodation and give you a full induction into the area. He/she will also be on call 24/7 and you’ll see them frequently.
Pre-departure you’ll receive an information pack about your placement and necessary preparations, ranging from what to pack, to what to do on your weekend travel in the country. Your safety, well being and happiness throughout your placement are our primary concerns and we will keep in touch with you throughout. International flights not included.


No qualifications or previous experience are necessary, just a good dose of enthusiasm! Everyone is welcome on a BVOL programme, whether gap year, undergraduate, on a career break - or even retired! From 17 years old upwards, and all nationalities. This placement would suit anyone who wants to make a real difference, wants first-hand experience of a different culture and has initiative.

Booking / Enquiry

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