Have you thought about volunteering overseas?

Programme Update

HOPE is delighted to announce that we are re-opening our Overseas Volunteer Programme in 2022. This will initially be for a limited number of volunteers with specific skill sets, with placements available from September 2022. For further details please see below.

Would you like to make a real difference as a HOPE volunteer and experience a truly rewarding time working with street and slum children in India? To volunteer overseas please read on…

Volunteer in Kolkata

HOPE welcomes a large number of volunteers and visitors to our projects every year. Join the HOPE Overseas Volunteer Programme and you will be working to change the lives of the poorest street and slum children in Kolkata (Calcutta).

Volunteers will be placed, as best as possible, according to their skills and experience. Please read the relevant skills below before applying to the programme.

Volunteer Ruth
Volunteer Ruth
Volunteer Cathal
Volunteer Cathal
About the HOPE Volunteer Placement Programme

Placements may be offered to volunteers who meet the below requirements.
Please read carefully to ensure you are eligible.If you wish to progress your application please fill in the Online Application Form

Relevant Skills

HOPE is currently seeking the following volunteers for our projects in Kolkata:
  • Primary School Teachers – and also Primary Teaching Students with some work experience
  • Secondary Teachers – Note: teaching is mostly to younger children
  • Office Administrators (Word, Excel & writing skills)
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Physiotherapists
  • Professional Make-Up Artists
  • Professional Hair Dressers

In addition to the above, we are also seeking previous HOPE volunteers who have worked on our Kolkata projects in the past and are familiar with the work. Applicants must hold an Irish Passport or have been a resident in the Republic of Ireland for at least 2 years. All overseas placements are subject to granted visas.

Length of Placement: 1 to 3 months

Date: from July 2022

You will be required to make a commitment to fundraise for The Hope Foundation’s projects. Fundraising targets depend on your proposed length of stay. Targets begin at €2,000 for a placement of up to 6 weeks. Full details are given upon application.

Note, this is treated as a donation to HOPE. Accommodation is provided for during your stay at no cost, however travel costs need to be covered privately by volunteers.

You must make a commitment to organise and fund your own travel arrangements, including:

– Flight
– Travel Insurance
– Vaccinations
– Visa (with assistance from HOPE)

You need to be organised and have an ability to work on your own initiative. You also need to be flexible and prepared to turn your hand to different tasks as required. Applicants must be prepared to fill roles subject to current requirements on HOPE’s projects.

First and foremost, you will need to be the type of person who has a positive, open attitude and gets along well with others. Volunteers work with lots of different HOPE staff and are involved in a range of work structures and environments.It is important that the children you work with feel comfortable and safe.

To be successful in your volunteer role, you need to be an organised person and have an ability to work on your own initiative. You also need to be flexible and prepared to turn your hand to different tasks as required.
Applicants must be prepared to fill roles subject to current requirements on HOPE’s projects.

You need to be realistic about what to expect in a culture that may be very different to your own and what you can expect to achieve during your placement. We recommend that you thoroughly research Kolkata, the work of HOPE and volunteering in general before making a decision to apply

How to Apply

The Hope Foundation recruits volunteers in Ireland and India for residents of those countries only. If you are an Indian resident please apply through our Branch Office website here.

Please note – Only apply if you can answer yes to the below:

  • Over 19 and finished school
  • Resident in Ireland or India
  • Fluent speaker of English or Bengali
  • Able to commit to a minimum of 1 month (up to a maximum of 3 months)

We will respond to all queries as soon as possible. If you are eligible for HOPE’s Volunteer Programme you will be provided with further details and a programme Application Form if you would like to officially apply for a volunteer placement with HOPE.

The Comhlámh Code of Good Practice (CoGP) for Volunteer Sending Agencies.

The Hope Foundation is a signatory of the Comhlámh Code of Good Practice (CoGP) for Volunteer Sending Agencies.

Comhlámh’s Code of Good Practice is a set of standards for Irish Volunteer Sending Agencies facilitating international placements. The Code is based on a vision of volunteers working in solidarity for a just, equitable and sustainable world. It promotes responsible and responsive volunteering to ensure a positive impact for the overseas project and community, the volunteer and the sending agency. The Code promotes development education, which enables people to more deeply understand the world around them and to address the root causes of inequality and poverty.Every Volunteer Sending Agency, which is party to the Code of Good Practice, commits to the implementation of the Code’s five values that underpin the work of international volunteer programmes. These are solidarity, respect, social justice, ecological sustainability and integrity.

Full details of the Code are here.

Comhlámh is a member organisation that works to mobilise for an equitable and sustainable world. As the Irish association of development workers and volunteers, Comhlámh promotes responsible international volunteering and development work. We support people in their journey of working for social justice. We work with returned volunteers, partner organisations and member group to foster just, inclusive societies, through progressive grassroots activism in Ireland and internationally.

More details of Comhlámh work can be found here.

If you feel we are not adhering to the Code please email fiona@hopefoundation.ie or info@comhlamh.org.

For further information on overseas volunteering visit the Comhlamh website:
VolOps: http://comhlamh.org/volunteering-opportunities-overseas/
International Volunteering: http://comhlamh.org/international-volunteering/

Code of Good Practice
The Global Citizen Award

The Hope Foundation is a partner with The Global Citizen Awards. The Global Citizen Award is a personal development award that enables you to share your overseas volunteering experiences and help raise awareness of global issues in Ireland. The Award is free and open to all returned international volunteers. It offers you an opportunity to take what you have experienced overseas and continue to make a difference to Global Justice issues right here at home.

Read more about The Global Citizen Award here.

Gaisce Challenge Partner

HOPE is a Challenge Partner with Gaisce, a self-development programme for young people between the ages of 15-25. As a Challenge Partner we support and involve young people to participate in one or more Gaisce Challenge Areas, allowing Gaisce participants to use relevant activities to count towards achieving their Gaisce Award.

Read more about Gaisce here.