Volunteer in Indonesia
Indonesia consists of over 16,000 islands and when volunteering here you will get to sample an ancient culture, try tasty food and also make a difference to communities, animals and the environment. There are lots of inspirational volunteer programs available to book during summer and all year round.
Volunteer Programs in Indonesia
Search structured, low cost and free volunteer opportunities in Indonesia and apply today.
Guide to Volunteering in Indonesia
As a tourist you simply don’t fully experience the culture and local side to the country. You don’t meet the local people like you would if you are volunteering and living here. This will be a magical experience where you can spend time helping in locations. Many tourists to Indonesia only ever experience life as a tourist and this is the beauty of doing a volunteer project, you can have them both! You will have lots of opportunities to sight-see as a tourist on weekends (or your days off), taking advantage of the best rates possible which is one of the benefits of booking a program.
Top Reasons to Volunteer in Indonesia
- Few people are disappointed when volunteering in Asia, if you are looking for a relaxing authentic experience where you can give back then you are not going to be let down by choosing Indonesia
- Incredible beaches
- Experience one of the most laid back cultures in the world
- Meet people from all over the world
- Do more than most people when they visit, this is your chance to give back and see the benefits you bring
- Eat the food, meet locals, get away from the tourist resorts
- There are some many different programs to choose from!
- Incredible wildlife
Location of Projects
There are programs you can join throughout the country for example in large cities and also more tranquil islands. It really depends on what programs appeal to you to where you could be based and there are spectacular sights to see in all areas of the country so be sure to take advantage of any free time off you get. Here is a run down of the top destinations you might want to consider...
Types of Volunteer Programs in Indonesia
- Conservation Projects in Indonesia
- Volunteer with Animals in Indonesia
- Volunteer with Orangutans in Indonesia
- Volunteer with Sea Turtles in Indonesia
- Building Volunteer Programs in Indonesia
Volunteer with Orangutans in Indonesia
On mainland Indonesia you could travel to the highlands and participate on oranguatan conservation volunteer projects. There are lots of roles where you might get to touch, stroke or feed wild animals in a controlled environment whilst others are more based around awareness and protection.
Volunteer with Sea Turtles in Bali
Sea turtles have inhabited our oceans for millions of years. They have survived the dinosaurs, continental drifts, ice ages and several natural catastrophes. Turtle numbers in Bali and Indonesia are on the decline due to loss of habitat, human encroachment on the shore where they lay their eggs and poaching. There are international agreements in place to help and you can apply to join inspiration projects which local NGO's and international charities have set up to provide sanctuary and a safe environment for the turtles. Turtle sanctuaries have been working to help release baby turtles and give aid to injured turtles and you can get involved too.
Tasks can include:
- Collecting food, preparing food and feeding sea turtles
- Preventing poaching
- Cleaning pools
- Monitoring the turtles
- Help education and awareness campaigns within local villages
- Releasing the turtles
- Give talks and guided tours to visitors and school groups
Indonesia has a huge population of around 250 million people living here making it the fourth most populated country on the planet. Unfortunately a large number of people live in inadequate conditions or below the poverty line which is where international charities and local NGO's work to help.
Education, Sports Coaching & Volunteer Teaching Programs
There is the opportunity to get involved in sports activities and counselling sessions for local people. You can also find volunteer work in Indonesia teaching English and improving education in primary and secondary schools and community centres whilst childcare volunteer work can be found in nurseries and orphanages in Indonesia. You will not need to be a professional teacher to apply as full training and support wil be given. Popular destinations for teaching projects in Ubud/Bali.
Environmental & Conservation Projects in Indonesia
Illegal logging and also rain forest destruction is a real problem in Indonesia, natural habitats are being whilst many of the country's 6,000 inhabited islands islands also face problems with rising sea levels. There are increasingly difficult obstacles facing wildlife and communities in Indonesia, the environment is under threat by expanding industry and palm oil plantations and you can join volunteer programs to help. If you stay a bit longer in one place on a development initiative you will be amazed by local people.
You will see more and interact to get to know you and (perhaps) learn you more about their culture as show you how they live and what they do all day. It can be truly rewarding to see how joyful they are. For a Westerner it’s hard to believe to be so cheerful with so little means. The people from the city are more materialistic, but in the villages its like travelling back in time. The villagers live from the fruit that grows everywhere and from their own livestock. They are blessed with fertile land in places like Java, a positive effect of all the volcanoes which helps for development and long term sustainable living projects.
Short and Long Term Placements are available all year round, you can generally join from 1 week to 6 months+. Volunteering is not all work, there will be plenty of time to travel and see more of this country / continent,
Most organisations will require you to be in good physical condition and aged over 18. Previous experience is usually not required especially for non skilled placements but you will be required to show medical certifications if you are looking to work in healthcare. Programs are open to all Nationalities as long as you qualify for a tourist visa. You can search and book a place in advance through our website.
Food & Accommodation
If you apply with a sending agency or even a local NGO accommodation is usually included in the package, this can be either a shared house, hostel/hotel or even a local home stay. Please note sometimes in remote areas of the country conditions can be rustic. If you are looking to volunteer independently there is an enormous range of accommodation is available throughout the country. If you do want to stay longer, try to find an apartment to rent, ask around. This will save you money. Expect to pay around 125 – 250 euro per month, depending on the facilities and location. Local food is very tasty, expect lots of rice, vegetables and meat dishes. In more touristy areas like Bali you can find an array of Western dishes too.
How to Apply
On our website you can browse free, low cost and structured programs. If you apply through a sending agency you might need to pay a fee, this usually includes placements, transfers, training, orientation, accommodation, meals and in-country support. Even if you apply to some local charities and NGO's you might still need to pay a fee or donation - most organisations rely on donations to keep operating and also some can't afford to cover the cost of your food/lodging. You will need to pay for your flights separately.
Volunteer in Indonesia for Free
To volunteer for free in Indonesia you will need to apply with a local organisation, charity or NGO. Sometimes you will still need to cover your accommodation and food though. If you would like to volunteer for free / low cost in Indonesia then the key word here is be independent. Unless you don’t like to make your own arrangements, there is no need to book a structured program in advance as long as you are willing to take a chance. There are lots of local opportunities you can search out around the country and if you find a cheap hostel room close by you might be able to keep costs down.
If you need any help arranging a volunteer placement in Indonesia please get in touch.
Indonesia Volunteer Reviews
If you have ever volunteered in Indonesia and would like to review an organisation/project, share your experience or give any advice for future participants write an article for us.
"I am volunteering for Bali WISE, a charity focusing on women empowerment through skills education. We believe that women all over the world deserve to be appreciated everyday. The program is a 6 months in duration and the students come from all over Indonesia, including Flores, Sulawesi, Sumatra and other parts of Java. The program includes a 3 month section that sees the young women living at the Nusa Dua campus and having intensive classes daily. Offering skilled learning and education to these young women provides them with job opportunities previously unavailable, helps break the poverty cycle by being able to provide more for their families, and also turns them into role models who other girls and young women from their community can look up to. Every woman deserves to be recognised, heard and empowered." - Clare Srdarov, USA