from 1,166€

Outstanding 5rating (14)

Support Staff in Women's Shelter

location
4 - 24 weeks  ·  Age 18 - 50+

rating  Outstanding 5  · 
  Verified by Volunteer World
  Moderate response rate

Especially suitable

Age 18+
Singles
Couples
Families
Groups
50+

About the program

Volunteer in a women’s shelter and help rehabilitate and empower some of the most disadvantaged and abused women in the Philippines.

About the Program

The Women's Shelter that VFV works with is officially called Regional Haven. It is a social welfare residential centre run by the Department of Social Welfare and Development. It was set up to provide responsive intervention and rehabilitation programs to women who are victims of ...

About the program

About the Program

The Women's Shelter that VFV works with is officially called Regional Haven. It is a social welfare residential centre run by the Department of Social Welfare and Development. It was set up to provide responsive intervention and rehabilitation programs to women who are victims of gender-based violence or who are vulnerable to abuses and exploitation.The centre aims to enable disadvantaged women in difficult circumstances to resolve their problems. It also aims to restore the women’s normal social functioning to regain their self-worth and dignity. 

These are achieved through the provision of protective and rehabilitative services. The centre provides temporary safe haven to women from 18-59 years old and to those below 18 years old if they are pregnant upon admission to the centre. Most often the women institutionalized at the shelter bring their dependent children. They are provided with basic and vital services such as residence, medical, psychological/psychiatric, livelihood skills development, legal, formal and non-formal education, and other relevant services. 

Role of the Volunteer

The volunteer will be working alongside staff composed of social workers, nurse, houseparents, and support staff. The centre chief is a registered social worker. The volunteer is required to work at this placement five times a week, from Monday to Friday, even on holidays since the program is always open. Usually the required number of work time is only 4 hours but volunteers commonly render more than 4 hours. Due to the fact that the women have assigned tasks, there are certain periods daily in the morning and afternoon in which they are free and these would be allocated for the activities organized by the volunteer. On Tuesdays, the women attend non-formal classes, hence there is no session with the women. Instead, the volunteer may choose to take care of the children.

The volunteer’s role is basically to empower these women by organizing activities that can aid in restoring their self-worth. Empowering can be in the form of education, awareness of their value as human beings, and livelihood and skills training. The volunteer should always incorporate fun and relaxing activities. The objective is to prepare them for reintegration to the community. They must be prepared mentally, socially, and physically to be able to function normally again. They must have skill sets in order for them to be self-sufficient and dependent only to themselves.

Dress Code

To conform with the Filipino conservative culture and to look professional, volunteers must dress modestly. The volunteer must report to work wearing the appropriate clothes.Top must consist of shirt of blouse or t-shirt with sleeves. No singlet or tank top. Top should not have plunging neckline. Bottom wear must be long pants or knee-length skirt. Footwear must be shoes or sandals.Outside work, a volunteer can wear more comfortable article of clothing such as shorts and tank tops and wear flip flops.

Transportation to the Placement

During placement, volunteer will take any of the following public transportation vehicles, depending on his/her destination: jeepney or multicab. Patience is required when traveling to and from placement. The volunteer’s daily commute takes at most 15 minutes and requires him/her to travel from Bliss to Pawing, Palo on a multicab for “St. Paul’s Campetic.” This ride costs 0.16 USD only. On the way back, the volunteer has to take the "Tacloban/Bus Terminal” jeepneys. The return trip also costs the same. The volunteer will be briefed on getting to placement and back during the placement orientation at the beginning of the program.


Typical day

A typical day for a volunteer at the Women's Shelter starts as early as 5:30 rising up from bed to have breakfast and prepare to leave for work. At 7:15 am, the volunteer should be already on the road riding a jeepney going to the shelter. The volunteer will be working alongside social workers and ...

Typical day

A typical day for a volunteer at the Women's Shelter starts as early as 5:30 rising up from bed to have breakfast and prepare to leave for work. At 7:15 am, the volunteer should be already on the road riding a jeepney going to the shelter. The volunteer will be working alongside social workers and house parents who also rise up early for their daily routines with the girls. 

The volunteer is required to work five times a week, from Monday to Friday. Usually the required number of work hours is only 4 hours a day but volunteers commonly render more than 4 hours. 

As a rehabilitation facility, the volunteer’s role is basically that of a support staff. Aside from helping the houseparents and social workers facilitate the overall programs, the volunteer can also assist the in the individual management programs being provided like counselling. A day is usually spent hanging around with the girls, talking to them, teaching basic education lessons, or providing skills training like handicrafts, hairdressing or playing musical instruments. 

The center also provides the girls with alternative learning system education and skills training so the volunteer on some days needs to adjust his/her schedule and coordinate with the social workers to avoid conflicting schedules. During lunchtime, the volunteer is free to leave or may choose to stay for extended work in the afternoon. The volunteer should however be heading back to his/her homestay before 6 pm which is dinner time.


Free-time activities

Our volunteers can use their free time either for their personal activities or for organizing side projects with our sponsored kids, with the Boys and Girls Club or with the moms under our Laura's Craft and Mother's Club. 

The former may include a trip to some of the beautiful white-sand beaches and ...

Free-time activities

Our volunteers can use their free time either for their personal activities or for organizing side projects with our sponsored kids, with the Boys and Girls Club or with the moms under our Laura's Craft and Mother's Club. 

The former may include a trip to some of the beautiful white-sand beaches and sandbars, islands, waterfalls, underground river, surf camps, and caves found in the region while the latter can include baking sessions with the local moms, dance tutorials with the teens, or teaching any other craft or life skills to the locals. 

Our volunteers would usually organize those activities as a group during long weekends or holidays. We also have our Volunteer's Lounge which has wi-fi and where volunteers can hang around with fellow volunteers. They can also use the lounge for a movie night once a week. 


Requirements

Requirements

Minimum Age: 18 years

In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s) or if your are accompanied by your parents.

Language Skills

You need to speak English (basic level)

Criminal Background Check

required

Required Documents

CV with photo, Passport, Police Check and and Character References

Nationality Restrictions

No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.

Other Skills

No formal training is required though it is important that volunteers be compassionate, non-judgmental, and adaptable. Prospective volunteers who had similar life experiences should have received counseling for themselves as working in this type of setting may result in the surfacing of painful, unresolved personal issues.

Time Commitment

Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 08:00 - 17:00

What's Included

What's Included

Services by Volunteer for the Visayans

Included in the Program Fee are the following:

  • Airport Reception and Drop-off
  • Accommodation with Local Host Family with 2 meals a day (breakfast and dinner)
  • Comprehensive Program Orientation
  • Basic Waray-Waray (local dialect) Language Lesson
  • Volunteers Excursion
  • Project Tour
  • 24-hour Local Staff Support

Airport Pickup at Ninoy Aquino International Airport

Upon arrival in Tacloban, a coordinator will meet you at the airport and introduce you to the rest of the VFV staff and your homestay family. After this you will be provided with a full orientation on Volunteer for the Visayans as well as a short comprehensive health and safety briefing.

Following this, you will be escorted by one of our coordinators and shown how to use the local transport system. You will be shown how to get back and forth from your volunteer placement as well as being briefed on how to get to a variety of different points of interest.

Accommodation

Volunteers assigned to our Tacloban area projects will be placed with homestays in Bliss, where we are located. Bliss is a congested, low-income neighborhood but it has a low crime rate and is safe. There is strong community cohesion and pride, and the neighborhood homes and surroundings are relatively well-maintained. Our community center is located in the middle of Bliss. 

An adjacent basketball court area serves as a gathering place for the community. Here you’ll see youth playing basketball; tethered cocks staking out their territories on the sidelines; children keeping busy; adults sitting on benches, exchanges stories; slabs of meat being cut on portable tables; and vendors selling their wares.

Most of our homestay families have been with us for many years and are experienced in working with international volunteers. They take pride in their role and view the volunteer as a valued member of the family. They want volunteers to experience Filipino culture and participate in the family’s daily activities as well as special celebrations that come up. 

All homes have electricity and running water. You will have a private bedroom for you alone or that you share with another volunteer, and you will sleep under a mosquito net. A fan will be provided as none of the homes are air-conditioned. There is just one bathroom in the house that is shared by all family members. Your home will be safe, clean and comfortable, but living conditions will be much lower than in developed country.

The bathroom accommodations, in particular, are very basic and volunteers will be taking cold water, bucket baths. Because the weather in the Philippines is tropical, volunteers typically say that the cold water baths have been refreshing. However, each person needs to consider whether these conditions will be acceptable. 

There will be other things to adjust to, including the neighborhood roosters who will announce the start of a new day with pre-dawn crowing. You will be taken out of your comfort zone, at least initially. Most volunteer report they adjusted fairly quickly to these conditions.

Food & Beverages

You will eat the same local food as the family (though the homestay parents know what foreigners typically enjoy). Homestays can cater to the special dietary requirements of some volunteers, so please include this in your application form. You will also be provided with filtered water to drink, as it would be best for travellers to be cautious and not drink tap water.

You will be provided with two meals a day (breakfast and dinner) by your homestay. All meals will be served with rice and typically include fish, chicken or pork. 

Local café’s and restaurants can also be found all over the city, with most meals costing from around 2 USD to 6 USD. Bottled water is also available in most food establishments and in grocery stores.

Internet Access

Limited access at the project site

What's NOT included?

What's NOT included?

Flight Tickets

The nearest airport is Ninoy Aquino International Airport (MNL) in Manila. We assist you to find cheap flights to Philippines. FIND CHEAP FLIGHTS

Travel Insurance

Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Philippines provides security and is a plus to have. GET A QUOTE

Vaccines

If you are intending to volunteer in Philippines you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Philippines. VACCINE CHECKER

Details on arrival

Volunteers can apply and join the program anytime the whole year round. They may choose to arrive at anytime of their convenience and a volunteer coordinator is always available to pick them up at the airport. 

Pre-departure information is sent during application process and an in-depth program orientation is also conducted upon arrival. The project may start at once the following day after arrival and the minimum working hours required is 4 hours a day, Monday to Friday.



Availability
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Program fees

4 weeks (min. stay) 1,166€
5 weeks 1,284€
6 weeks 1,401€
7 weeks 1,519€
8 weeks 1,637€
12 weeks 2,107€
16 weeks 2,577€
20 weeks 3,048€
24 weeks (max. stay) 3,518€
Average fees 219€/week

Program fees

219€ per week 4 - 24 weeks Age 18 - 50+

Payment methods

Visa Master Card Maestro American Express PayPal

NO CREDIT CARD FEES


Duration

4 - 24 weeks

Deposit

The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.


Final Payment

Your final payment will be agreed with Volunteer for the Visayans during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.


Meet your organization

Volunteer for the Visayans

Outstanding 5 rating (14 reviews)

Non-profit - founded in 2004

Verified by Volunteer World

  Moderate response rate

Coordinated by

Helena Claire "Wim"

Spoken languages: English

About the project

Volunteer for the Visayans is dedicated to sustainable development projects in the areas of child welfare, community development, education, and public health.

Meet your organization

Who We Are?

Volunteer for the Visayans (VFV), is a registered non-profit, non-government organization located in Tacloban City, Philippines. It is registered with the local Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to distribute planned and professional social welfare services to assist underprivileged and underserved local communities.

Since being founded in 2004, VFV has dedicated itself to contributing towards sustainable developments in the areas of child welfare, community development, education and public health through its broad based social welfare programs. In particular VFV has invested time and resources to develop a number of long term Community Projects as well as a comprehensive Child Sponsorship Program which combined have led to over 150 children from disadvantaged backgrounds to have the means to go to school and pursue mainstream education.

Year after year, VFV has been recruiting international volunteers to help provide energy, skills and support to a number of ongoing Volunteer and Community Projects whilst at the same time educating the volunteers on the unique people and culture of the Philippines.

Over the last decade, VFV has tailored its Volunteer Program to provide not only the best volunteer projects for those looking to volunteer in the Philippines but has also provided a program that includes some of the best methods of cultural immersion, allowing each volunteer to truly experience the one of a kind ‘Pinoy’ culture. Today, VFV still takes pride in providing one of the most unique volunteering and service based learning environments in the world.

Brief History

The origins of  Volunteer for the Visayans (VFV) date back to the early 1990’s when U.S. volunteers from Jacksonville University, Florida led by Troy Peden traveled to Tacloban City in order to volunteer on a project known as Building Hope, which was the original precursor to Volunteer for the Visayans. The volunteers participated in a number of community development and social welfare projects, including the renovation and repair of Sagkahan National High School which had been damaged by a recent typhoon.

During their visits, Peden and his volunteers set foundations for the future by working closely with the Tacloban City Social Welfare and Development Office, building trust and creating a model which would serve as VFV’s underlying structure for years to come.

The volunteers continued to return on their own each year, and in 2004 were instrumental in establishing the Volunteers for the Visayans as a non-profit organisation. With support from the GoAbroad Foundation Peden provided a gateway of financial support which slowly enabled VFV to develop the resources needed to become a successful on-ground NGO. With every year that passed, VFV strived to reach out and improve the lives of communities and individuals in a manner that was responsible and sustainable; this led to a number of projects developing under VFV’s three core programs - the Volunteer Program, Sponsorship Program and Community Program. It is the combination of these three core programs that makes Volunteer for the Visayans a successful, broad-based social welfare organization.

Where We Work

VFV is based in Tacloban City on the island of Leyte in Eastern Visayas. Tacloban is approximately 360 miles south-west of Manila and is well-known as the site of U.S. General Douglas MacArthur’s Leyte Gulf Landing, which marked the start of a fierce campaign to regain the Philippines from Japan during World War II.

Tacloban is also the site of the prestigious San Juanico Bridge, which is the longest bridge in the Philippines. This bridge connects the islands of Leyte and Samar, and is a key link in the Pan-Philippines Highway, which connects the Philippines islands of Luzon, Samar, Leyte, and Mindanao through a network of roadways, bridges and ferries.

Tacloban is the capital of the Province of Leyte and has a population of about 218,00 people. The city offers international volunteers an opportunity to be immersed in a unique Asian culture, which is at least partially left untouched by Western Culture, especially in the rural areas. In November 2013, Tacloban was one of the most devastated areas of the Philippines when Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) ravaged through the Philippines; therefore, the city and surrounding areas now present an even greater range of opportunities for international volunteers.

In addition to servicing Tacloban City, VFV has a community center near the local dumpsite in the Barangay of Sto. Nino and a community center in the rural village of Cangumbang, Palo. 

Why choose us?

There are many organizations that offer volunteer-abroad placements in a multitude of countries. Selecting the right program is an important decision for you to make. Here are the reasons why Volunteer for the Visayans may be your best choice for Volunteering Abroad in the Philippines.

We understand that poverty in our community cannot be alleviated just through hand-outs. We also recognize that there are national issues, including a depressed national economy, low wages, large families, and an unequal distribution of income,  that we are unable to address at our level. What we can and are doing at our grass-roots level, is to identify individual and community needs and to establish programs to address these needs. We actively collaborate with other community organizations and local government agencies. We strive to provide comprehensive, multifaceted services that address all aspects of poverty. Despite the recent affects of Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan), the landscape surrounding our work has changed very little, other than there being a much greater need from the communities we work in than there ever was before. As a result, our grassroots services continue to strive to bring hope and rehabilitation to more than 200 families in Leyte.

Who are we looking for?

Diversity makes us a stronger program as everyone  has unique life experiences and backgrounds that we can draw on. Volunteers, of course, should have a strong desire to help others and should be healthy enough to perform the required project tasks. Personal traits that are needed include the following:

Adaptability: Living standards in the Philippines are much lower than what you have been accustomed to. (However, Filipinos are known for their hospitality and will provide a guest with the best of everything they have in their home.) Individuals who wish to Volunteer in the Philippines, must be able to adapt to new living environments.

Sensitivity: Your values and expectations may be markedly different (due to cultural and socioeconomic differences) from those you will work with. A lack of awareness and sensitivity to this will offend those you interact with. Volunteers must be sensitive and open minded to Filipino culture. (There is reference material on the internet that will help you understand Filipino culture and traits.)

Perseverance: The volunteer project you are assigned to may lack basic supplies. Our rural schools are poorly funded and classrooms typically lack basic supplies. (While VFV does its best to solicit donations for these schools, funds are limited.) Some of our orphanages are overcrowded and understaffed. Creativity to find a solution and persistence to carry on are needed.

People volunteer because they have a strong desire to help those in need, and generally seek to volunteer in a foreign country for specific reasons, such a desire for a cultural immersion experience, to gain real life experiences during a “gap year,” or to gain experience in their career field. Whatever your reasons are for volunteering, we believe that we can provide you with a placement that will meet your needs."

14 reviews · rating5

I am really happy and grateful to have this wonderful experience in Tacloban. I am really appreciate all the people I met there. Children are super cute and lovely!!! My placement SDCC staff, VFV staff, homestay family, barangay Bliss people and peer volunteer friends… everyone! They are all ...
Sequoyia Farr rating5

2019 at Rural Elementary School Teacher Aide

I spent 5 weeks volunteering in the Philippines. I taught at a local school during the weekdays and I even got a chance to attend some other volunteer programs like the health clinic and nutrition project. I loved everything about the program and how much love was radiating through this community. ..
I spent 5 weeks volunteering in the Philippines. I taught at a local school during the weekdays and I even got a chance to attend some other volunteer programs like the health clinic and nutrition project. I loved everything about the program and how much love was radiating through this community. ..
Wayne Amos rating4.8

2019 at Rural Elementary School Teacher Aide

I took my wife and 3 kids to do volunteer teaching at a rural Elementary School in January, 2019 through VFV. It was such a wonderful experience working with the school children and staff. We have formed some great friendships with them and staff members at VFV. The people of Tacloban are friendly ...
The best thing I have ever done in my life. Extremely worth while and such a valuable experience. Volunteering in the Philippines with VFV was fun, supportive and eye opening. They showed me things that I would never have seen if I had not embarked on this experience. I was welcomed with open arms ...
I had a wonderful experience traveling in the Philippines. My only critique is the price. If i had to do it again I would choose a cheaper option. ...

Location

Asia > South East Asia > Philippines > Tacloban City

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Contact Helena Claire "Wim"
  Moderate response rate
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