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Volunteer in Europe

Map of Europe

"Europe is the world’s wealthiest continent and the need for international volunteers is quite different from the world’s poorer regions such as Africa or Latin America. But despite well-developed welfare, education and health programs, there are communities all across Europe that are in need of volunteers, be it for teaching English, child care, summer camps, or preservation work. In addition, a volunteer vacation in Europe is not only a great way to help people and communities in need, but it is also a great opportunity to get to know Europeans and their cultures and experience Europe in a different way." —Living Abroad Contributing Editor Volker Poelzl.

Volunteer Reports from Europe
Volunteer Work and Vacations Abroad in Europe: An Overview
We explore options for volunteer work in Europe while highlighting sample organizations, including those which offer volunteer vacations or work camps.
Volunteering at Organic Farms in Italy with WWOOF
Volunteer in Italy Inside a Tuscan Village: Converse in English, Receive Room, Board, and Transportation
Volunteer Vacations Working on a Farm in Europe with Association Dynamo, Ferme Cravirola
Volunteer in Europe with Nature Conservation Programs
Volunteer in Europe at a Youth Hostel
A Summer Job Volunteering in London with the Winant and Clayton Volunteer Program
Explore the U.K. as an Insider with The British Trust for Conservation Volunteers
National Trust Holidays: Work with U.K. Locals for a Worthwhile Cause
A Volunteer Vacation in Britain with National Trust Working Holidays
Volunteer Work at an Archeological Dig in Greece
Adventures Volunteering in "Wild" Greece
Volunteer in Spain and Make the Desert Green with Sunseed Desert Trust
Speak English? Volunteer in Spain
Work as Volunteer in France and Learn to Restore a French Village with La Sabranenque
Volunteer Workcamps in France with Volunteers For Peace
Volunteering in Ireland
Volunteer Work with Somali Refugees in Denmark

See our listings of volunteer programs in Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

Diverbo's "Pueblo Ingles" — Discover Spain in an English Conversation Holiday
Pueblo Ingles has been described as an inspiring cultural adventure, an enriching personal journey, and a unique, human experience. Each week twenty Native English speakers are sponsored to stay in a beautiful, picturesque 4-star resort in Spain so they can converse with Spanish professionals who want to improve their English. Accommodation, food and wine are provided in exchange for your conversation. It's a unique and enjoyable experience and the best way to learn about Spain if you don't speak the local lingo.
Volunteer Teaching English in Spain Cost: Free / Low-cost
Dates: Week-long programs January-November
Contact: Diverbo — More than Pueblo Ingles (Anglo volunteer department), Calle Orense 4, 7th floor, 28020 Madrid, Spain.
Tel. (+34) 913 913 400. Fax: (+34) 913 910 112
Email: volunteers@diverbo.com
Website: www.diverbo.com/volunteer-in-spain
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Volunteer in France with Geovisions Volunteer in France with Geovisions Conversation Corps in France
Volunteer 15 hours each week in exchange for free room and board in France! Weekends are normally free to experience the culture by traveling around France. Conversation Corps volunteers are placed all over France. This is a great program for people who want to experience life in France and the French culture in-depth. The program has a focus on cultural exchange and host families are not only excited to learn English but also love to share the characteristics of their country, culture and cuisine. Dates: Year ‘round
Cost: Please see website for prices.
Contact: GeoVisions, 63 Whitfield St. Guilford, Ct 06437 PH:203-453-5838..
Email: programs@geovisions.org
Website: www.geovisions.org
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Volunteer in Italy with Geovisions Volunteer in Italy with Geovisions

Conversation Corps in Italy
Live with an Italian Family and teach them English 15 hours each week. Volunteer 15 hours each week in exchange for free room and board.
Weekends are normally free to experience the culture by traveling around Europe. Imagine living in Rome, Florence or any of the amazing Italian cities and receiving free room and board from your adopted host family.

Dates: Year ‘round
Cost: Please see website for prices.
Contact: GeoVisions, 63 Whitfield St. Guilford, CT 06437.
Tel.: 203-453-5838. Toll free 1-877-949-9998..
Email: programs@geovisions.org
Website: www.geovisions.org
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Volunteer in Spain with Geovisions Volunteer in Spain with Geovisions Conversation Corps in Spain
Volunteer 15 hours each week in exchange for free room and board in Spain! Weekends are normally free to experience the culture by traveling around Spain. Conversation Corps volunteers are placed all over Spain.  

This is a great program for people who want to experience life in Spain and the Spanish culture in-depth. The program has a focus on cultural exchange and host families are not only excited to learn English but also love to share the characteristics of their country, culture and cuisine.

Dates: Year ‘round
Cost: Please see website for prices
Contact: GeoVisions, 63 Whitfield St. Guilford, Ct 06437 PH:203-453-5838 toll free 1-877-949-9998.
Email: programs@geovisions.org
Website: www.geovisions.org
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Volunteer in Germany with Geovisions Volunteer in Germany with Geovisions Conversation Corps in Germany
Live With a German Family and Teach Them English 15 Hours Each Week.

Volunteer 15 hours each week in exchange for free room and board in Germany! Weekends are normally free to experience the culture by traveling around Europe.

This is a great program for people who want to experience life in Germany and the German culture in-depth. The program has a focus on cultural exchange and host families are not only excited to learn English but also love to share the characteristics of their country, culture and cuisine.
Dates: Year ‘round
Cost: From $1,360 for 1 month.
Contact: GeoVisions, 63 Whitfield St. Guilford, CT 06437.
Tel.: 203-453-5838. Toll free 1-877-949-9998. Toll free from the UK 0800-043-4822.
Email: programs@geovisions.org
Website: www.geovisions.org
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Volunteer Abroad in Europe with United Planet!
United Planet's Quest Volunteer Abroad program offers you or your group a life-changing opportunity to build relationships with local communities through customized volunteer work, enriching cultural activities, and home stays with local families. Our programs in Western Europe run either 6 or 12 months and welcome volunteers ages 18 and up. You can volunteer in education, healthcare, environment, and more. Visit our website for more information!
Volunteer in Europe Cost: Varies according to country and length of stay. Please visit our website for details.
Dates: Quests depart in January or August.
Contact: United Planet, 11 Arlington St, Boston MA 02116, USA.
Tel.:
800-292-2316 or 617-267-7763.
Email: quest@unitedplanet.org
Website: www.unitedplanet.org
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Volunteer in Spain
Beef up your resume at Instituto Hemingway. Instituto Hemingway Spanish School is an excellent choice to spend your vacation, enjoy sun, mountain and sea views. Make new friends and learn a new culture. You will have the time of your life! We offer Spanish lessons throughout the year plus jobs, internships and volunteer programs.
Volunteer in Spain with Instituto Hemingway Dates: Throughout the year, any time, any program.
Cost: From US $100 per week.
Contact: Instituto Hemingway, Bailen 5, 2 Dcha. 48003 – Bilbao 48003 Spain
Tel.: +34 94 416 7901. Fax: +34 94 416 57 48
Email: info@institutohemingway.com
Website: www.institutohemingway.com
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Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise National Park, c/o National Parks Office, Viale Santa Lucia, 67032 Pescasseroli (AQ), Italy; 011-39-0863-91131; info@parcoabruzzo.it; www.parcoabruzzo.it. Volunteers carry out research and protection of flora and fauna in remote locations.

Adriatic Dolphin Project, Blue World Institute of Marine Research, Kastel 24, 51551 Veli Losinj, Croatia; 011-385-51-604666; adp@blue-world.org; www.blue-world.org. Students with a background in biology or geography may be accepted as interns. Paying volunteers join researchers in the ancient village of Veli Losinj over the summer.

APARE/GEC, www.apare-gec.org. Runs volunteer workcamps at historic sites in Provence, France (plus a few in Morocco and Lebanon).

Archaeology Abroad, 31-34 Gordon Sq., London WC1H OPY, England, United Kingdom; Tel./fax 011-44-20-8537-0849, arch.abroad@ucl.ac.uk, www.britarch.ac.uk/archabroad. Based out of University College London's Institute of Archaeology since 1972, Archaeology Abroad provides information about archaeological fieldwork opportunities through its twice-yearly publication. About 1,000 places are advertised annually for volunteers, professional staff and specialists on a wide variety of projects covering all historical periods (Review by Alison Gardner).

ARCHELON, the Sea Turtle Protection Society of Greece, www.archelon.gr. Enthusiastic and committed volunteers are required for demanding sea turtle conservation projects run by ARCHELON in Greece. Zakynthos, Peloponnesus and Crete are major nesting areas for the loggerhead (Caretta caretta) turtle in the Mediterranean and have been monitored by ARCHELON, a non-profit making organisation, for 20 years. In Athens, ARCHELON also runs the only Sea Turtle Rehabilitation Centre in Greece. Volunteers are invited to work on the island of Zakynthos where the first National Marine Park for sea turtles in the Mediterranean was established in 1999 and assist the Management Body of the Park in its task to protect the nesting beaches. In Peloponnesus, volunteers will protect nests from foxes and other mammals, experience the pilot project of sand dune restoration, help maintain nature trails and the running of the newly established Nature Information Centres. On the island of Crete, participants will work for the implementation of a Management Plan for the nesting areas. At the Sea Turtle Rescue Centre, volunteers will have the opportunity to assist our staff in daily treatment of sea turtles that suffer from accidental and deliberate injuries.

Balkan Sunflowers (Volunteers for Social Reconstruction in the Balkans), Youth, Culture and Sports Hall #114, Luan Haradinaj St., Prishtina, Kosovo; 011-381-38-246-299; office@balkansunflowers.org, www.balkansunflowers.org. Projects, many involving children, take on volunteers in Kosovo, Macedonia, and Albania. Minimum age 21, minimum stay 6 months, and minimum contribution $240. Offices also in Spain and the U.S.: P.O. Box 21641, Washington, DC 20009-1641.

Barretstown Gang Camp Fund, Barretstown Castle, Ballymore Eustace, Co. Kildare, Ireland; 011-353-45-864115; fax. 011-353-45-864711; recruit@barretstown.org; www.barretstown.org. Positions for paid and volunteer activity leaders, summer carers, and drivers at residential therapeutic camp for children with serious illnesses and their families.

Canadian Alliance for Development Initiatives and Projects (CADIP)
Short-Term Volunteer Projects in Europe
Participating in an international short term volunteer project (so called Workcamp ) can be an exciting prospect. It is an interesting and meaningful way to travel with purpose and spend 2-3 weeks in a foreign environment. Working and living together with other young people from around the world provides an excellent opportunity to make many new friends, learn about unknown places and culture, gain new skills and experience. Your time, energy, and enthusiasm can make a difference in areas where help is really needed. Contact: www.cadip.org.

Gruppo Volontari della Svizzera Italiana (GVSI), C.P. 12, 6517 Arbedo, Switzerland; 011-41-79-354 0161; fmari@vtx.ch, www.gvsi.org/en. Conservation workcamps in July to help mountain communities in Ticino region of Switzerland. Participants pay a fee to cover expenses.

CSV (Community Service Volunteers), Overseas Program, 5th Fl., Scala House, 36 Holloway Circus, Queensway, Birmingham B1 1EQ, U.K.; 011-44-800 374991; www.csv.org.uk. Largest voluntary placement agency in the U.K. places volunteers in socially worthwhile projects alongside British volunteers from 4 months to a year. North American volunteers must apply via Alberta Overseas

Conservation Volunteers Ireland, www.conservationvolunteers.ie. Coordinates unpaid environmental working holidays throughout Ireland. Contributions by volunteers.

EcoForest, Apdo Correos 29, 29100 Coin, Malaga, Spain; 011-34-661-079-950; info@ecoforest.org, www.ecoforest.org. Small fruit farm in southern Spain (Costa del Sol) that offers a place to live at low cost (5, 10 or 15 euros a day) while changing to a healthy, sustainable way of life. Working visitor program (e.g. see website) where work contributed subsidizes keep; vegan diet, all raw food.

Earth, Sea and Sky, P.O. Box 1063, Saxilby, Lincs. LN1 2TN, U.K.; yannis@earthseasky.org, www.earthseasky.org. Volunteers carry out summer projects like cleaning up wildlife habitats on the Greek Ionian island of Zakynthos and rescuing sea turtles.

Earthwatch
Volunteer Conservation Expeditions in Europe
Spanish Dolphins
On a fantastic 10-day boat trip help gather vital data that is leading directly to the implementation of conservation measures.
Whales and Dolphins of Moray Firth, Scotland
Stay in a beautiful village surrounded by majestic cliffs and rolling farmland. Spend your days on the water looking for Whales and Dolpins and gathering crucial population data on these populations to improve their conservation.
Icelandic Glaciers
Stay in a remote part of the beautiful Skaftafell National Park and collect important data on glacial retreat to help understand how climate change is affecting glaciers. This is a unique opportunity to explore one of the most geologically active areas in the world with a team of leading earth scientists.

Visit: www.earthwatch.org/europe

Englishtown, Vaughan Systems, Eduardo Dato 3, 1ª planta, 28010 Madrid.; 011-34-91-591-4840; www.vaughanvillage.com. Cultural exchange project. Native English-speaking volunteers of all nationalities exchange conversation in return for room and board. The project takes place in an isolated Spanish village (between Madrid and Barcelona) and lasts for 7-10 days at a time. English speakers are required to speak English to Spanish clients throughout the period of the exchange.

Global Volunteers in Greece, www.globalvolunteers.org/greece/. Volunteer to teach English and care for the disabled on the island of Crete in Greece.

Global Volunteers in Italy, www.globalvolunteers.org/italy/. Volunteer to teach English to students in the Puglia region of southern Italy.

Global Volunteers in Poland, www.globalvolunteers.org/poland/. Volunteer to teach English to children in Poland, help disabled youth, and participate in creating community gardens.

Global Volunteers in Portugal, www.globalvolunteers.org/portugal/. Volunteer to teach youth and adults.

Gruppi Archeologici d’Italia, Via Baldo degli Ubaldi 168, 00165 Rome, Italy; Tel./fax. 011-39-06-3937-6711; segreteria@gruppiarcheologici.org; www.gruppiarcheologici.org. Regional archaeological units coordinate 2-week digs that paying volunteers can join.

IBO Italia: Workcamp and Solidarity in Beautiful Italy. IBO Italia is an NGO volunteer organization which has created workcamps in some of the most trying settings of Italy. It is specifically looking for English-speaking volunteers to join one of our many missions: Bologna, Ferrara, Florence, Rome, Sicily ,and more. We are an organization focused on diversity and exchange, thus warranting our desire for international volunteers who speak English. No Italian is necessary; you will pick that up throughout your journey with us! Contact: info@iboitalia.org, www.iboitalia.org.

Independent Living Alternatives, Trafalgar House, Grenville Pl., London NW7 3SA, U.K.; Tel./fax. 011-44-20-8906-9265; enquiry@ilanet.co.uk; www.ilanet.co.uk. Volunteers needed for at least four months to provide support for people with disabilities to enable them to live independently in their own homes. Vacancies in the London area and the Lake District.

Katelios Group: Volunteer for Turtles in Kefalonia. Volunteers help with all the Group's activities, primarily the conservation of Loggerhead turtle on Kefalonia's sandy beaches, but also environmental education, promotion of sustainable development, raising awareness and information about wildlife Kefalonia.Volunteers have to pay for their food and their trip.The participation cost for each volunteer is 50 Euros per month. This covers administration and accomodation costs.The minimum stay is one month, because of the training that volunteers need in the beginning. Accomodation is provided to all volunteers in a basic private campsite. Contact: volunteer@kateliosgroup.org, www.kateliosgroup.org.

La Sabranenque Restoration Projects, rue de la Tour de l’Oume, 30290 Saint Victor la Coste, France; 011-33-466-50-05-05. Volunteers needed to help preserve and restore monuments in France (and Italy). U.S. inquiries to Jacqueline Simon, 124 Bondcroft Dr., Buffalo, NY 14226; 716-836-8698; info@sabranenque.com, www.sabranenque.com. New off-season 1-week programs, e.g. volunteering with technical training or hiking.

Ministry of Culture, Sous-Direction de l’Archéologie, 4 rue d’Aboukir, 75002 Paris, France; 011-33-1-40-15-77-81; chantiers-de-fouilles. DAPA@culture.gouv.fr; www.culture.gouv.fr/culture/fouilles/index.html. Government department that deals with archaeological digs. Every May they publish a list of summer excavations throughout France that accept volunteers; searchable by region on website.

National Trust Working Holidays, P.O. Box 84, Cirencester, Gloucestershire GL7 1ZP, U.K.; 011-0870 429 2429; www.nationaltrust.org.uk. Britain’s National Trust cares for more wildlife, including 1,250 vulnerable species, than any other European charity. It owns more than 240,000 hectares of land and 575 miles of coastline, making it the largest private landowner in Britain. A virtual army of staff and volunteers assist in managing these habitats with 450 well-organized holidays a year in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland. The catalog is online. Bookings from overseas volunteers between 18 and 70 are welcome and very inexpensive, including food and hostel accommodations. Most older adults choose projects classified as Oak, Oak Plus, and Archaeological Holidays because they are less physically rigorous. (review by Alison Gardner).

NJBG (Nederlandse Jeugdbond voor Geschiedenis), Prins Willem Alexanderhof 5, 2595 BE Den Haag, Netherlands; fax 011-31-70-335-2536; www.njbg.nl (partially in English). Archaeological and building restoration camps.

Projects Abroad: Archeaology in Romania. Work with the National Museum of History researching Dacia and medieval Transylvania in Romania. Contact: info@projects-abroad.org, www.projects-abroad.org.

* REMPART, 1 rue des Guillemites, 75004 Paris, France; 011-33-1-42-71-96-55; www.rempart.com. Needs volunteers to care for endangered monuments throughout France. Projects charge €5-8+ a day, plus €36 membership plus insurance.

Sunseed Desert Technology aims to develop, demonstrate and communicate accessible, low-tech methods of living sustainably in a semi-arid environment. They are based in the province of Almeria in the eastern part of Andalucia, Southern Spain.
Every year up to three hundred international volunteers come to work at Sunseed Desert Technology staying for between a week and several months. Volunteers can work in all of our departments which include: Appropriate Technology, Organic Gardening, Dryland Management and Construction and Maintenance. All volunteers and staff also share the communal cooking and cleaning duties. Volunteers pay a weekly donation towards food and accommodation, this money almost entirely funds the work of the project. Contact: Sunseed Desert Technology, Apdo 9, 04270 Sorbas, Almeria, Spain, sunseedspain@arrakis.es, tel. + 34 950 525 770, www.sunseed.org.uk.

TCV (The Conservation Volunteers), www.tcv.org.uk. Organizes working breaks and conservation holidays throughout England for environmentally concerned volunteers.

Thistle Camps, National Trust for Scotland, www.nts.org.uk/ThistleCamps. Scottish counterpart of the National Trust (as above). Includes archaeological digs and trail building camps.

Volunteers for Peace. VFP offers over 3000 projects in more than 100 countries/regions every year, including Europe! Project cost starts at $500, which includes food and accommodation. Types of project include construction, environmental, agricultural, social, work with kids, renovation, art and culture and more! Since 1982, VFP has exchanged over 30,000 volunteers worldwide and organized more than 850 volunteer projects in North America. Start planning your volunteer adventure or learn how to get involved at VFP.org! Contact: www.vfp.org.

Winant & Clayton Volunteers, 109 E. 50th St., New York, NY 10022; 212-378-0271, info@WinantClaytonVolunteers.org, www.winantclaytonvolunteers.org. Since 1948, has arranged for U.S. citizens to volunteer during the summer in community social service agencies in Britain, followed by independent travel for 2 weeks.

WWOOF (Willing Workers on Organic Farms) provides a list of countries worldwide, including, throughout Europe where members may exchange volunteer farm work for food, accommodation and opportunities to learn about organic lifestyles.

Learn and Teach Languages with Diverbo
Volunteer in Europe with United Planet