Reasons to Volunteer Abroad with AWdF
AWdF has developed a reputation as an affordable volunteer travel provider, with thousands of volunteers traveling with us over the years. By working directly with local stakeholders in the countries where our programmes are based, we are able to keep our fees low and ensure these go towards meaningful community projects and local employment.
Having placed over 20,000 volunteers abroad since 1996, AWdF is a trusted and experienced volunteer travel provider. Our Trustees and staff have traveled to our program destinations to experience our programs first-hand. We have lived in the accommodation and we have experienced the hospitality that our volunteers are offered. We have visited the placements and inspected the projects that our volunteers contribute to. We have helped thousands of AWdF volunteers to prepare for their trips and we understand what it is like to travel to a new country for the first time. Our in-depth knowledge and experience means we can provide outstanding service, support and advice to thousands of volunteers every year.
AWdF is renowned for providing affordable volunteer programmes, and we pride ourselves on the programmes and support services we provide to our volunteers. AWdF and our local teams are passionate about facilitating rewarding travel experiences and as a result we are joined by hundreds of returning volunteers every year.
Quality and responsibility go hand in hand. At AWdF we are dedicated to ensuring our volunteer programmes are responsibly run and have a positive impact that is sustainable over time. We set tough standards for responsible volunteer travel and we work hard to ensure our programmes meet all of our expectations. AWdF volunteers are also briefed about our standards for responsible volunteering before they begin a program, and they are required to adhere to these standards at all times, particularly in relation to interacting with children. We measure the long-term impact of our programmes and we work with community stakeholders to understand how specific projects support local needs.
From your first point of contact with AWdF until the time you finish your volunteer program, you will receive dedicated support and service from us. Once you become a registered AWdF volunteer, you will gain instant access to information booklets and checklists that help you to remember key things you need to do before you leave home. Once you reach your program destination, our local team will become your main point of contact until the day you depart your program. Once you’ve completed your volunteer program, we’ll get back in touch to hear how you got on, and to say a big “thank you”!
Volunteer safety is a top priority of AWdF which is reflected in our outstanding safety record. We have clear standards for risk management which we enforce on each programme. AWdF staff members conduct regular audits of every programme to ensure risks are appropriately mitigated and to confirm that we are meeting our duty of care for volunteer safety and security. We also have a big focus on supporting volunteers to keep themselves safe while abroad, and we provide this support and advice through pioneering volunteer training tools and through face-to-face briefings delivered by our local teams.
On our programmes it will be no surprise if you find yourself forming life-long friendships with other volunteers. Although our volunteers come from vastly different cultures and backgrounds, the experiences that volunteers share forge strong ties that can last a lifetime. AWdF volunteers are always in the company of like-minded international people.
AWdF actively seeks local organisations that are in genuine need of volunteer assistance. Whether your stay is a short or a long one, our partner organisations will ensure that you make a valuable contribution.
Loyalty is one of the foundations that AWdF has been built on. We show strong loyalty to the communities in which we work through setting up long-term partnerships with local organisations and institutions. This allows us to make a long-term contribution to the social needs and economic prosperity of the communities where our volunteers are placed. We also reward our returning volunteers with programme discounts.
At AWdF we recognise that there is more to an awesome volunteer travel experience than simply volunteering. While we maintain a strong focus on providing top quality programmes, we also understand that many AWdF volunteers are first-time travellers and want to make time for sightseeing and exploring. To ensure that you get the most out of your AWdF experience, our local teams have established partnerships with local travel companies to provide our volunteers with access to trustworthy travel and tour activities.
To learn more about the volunteer programs provided by the Atlantic Whale and Dolphin Foundation, visit our Volunteering page, or read first-hand reviews from our volunteers here.