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Vina Volunteer Service

Organic Farmer

Mai Chau, Viet Nam show on map

Participants have the opportunity to experience authentic local culture by staying with locals as well as joining in their daily activities.

Are you looking for a new travel style? Do you want to gain an insight into Vietnam? Do you want to experience volunteer work on organic farming abroad?

What does the project do?
This project lasts at least 10 working day. Individuals or groups work in a rural village, assist host family, local people to do farm work. The project site is hand-picked, for the best possible place to do agricultural work. This project offers a great opportunity for international volunteers to learn more  about Vietnam – the homeland of agricultural culture. Moreover, locals can learn more about the outside world via cultural exchange program and during the time working with international volunteers  whom they have met in their hometown for the first time. This project is also a good way not only for locals to change their life but also for international volunteers to change their mind and give a helping hand to support local community.

This project is in a hill-tribe village. Spending your free time at a slower pace of life, enjoying fresh air every day and participating in wonderful farm work will be an incredible experience for you on the trip. Furthermore, fresh fruits, vegetables and animals are available for processing foods. Enjoy local cuisines, which will be unforgettable memories for you.

Volunteers play an important role in this project. The project  aims to enlarge the organic farm and reduce environmental impact of pesticides. Through volunteer activities, we would like to start a campaign call “fresh products produced in organic farms”. If you have some experiences in farm work, tell us your thoughts in term of improving productivity. Through those activities, it not only produces fresh organic products, but also creates a good working environment to gain skills& experiences for both volunteers and the locals.

About the Location

Mai Chau is located in Hoa Binh province, approximately 135 km from Hanoi and 60 km from Hoa Binh. From the top of Cun Mountain, one can admire the superb panorama of Mai Chau surrounded by a green valley and stilt houses. Many minorities, including the Thai ethnic group, live in Mai Chau.

Stilt houses border both sides of the roads. The houses are quite large with palm leaf roofs and polished bamboo-slat floors. The kitchen is located in the center of the house; the cooking as well as the making of the colorful tho cam, the material used by Thai minority to make their clothes, takes place in the kitchen. The windows are large and decorated with patterns. Each house also usually has a pond to breed fish.

The Sunday market brings a lot of people into town. People from different minorities living in the mountains come to Mai Chau market to sell their specific products: honey, bananas, corn, and tho cam made by skilled Thai women. The Sunday market is also an occasion to enjoy traditional Thai dishes and to participate in traditional dances.

Mai Chau can be a base for some trekking tours to the villages around, this is with homestay overnight on the traditional houses of the H’Mong and the Thai. It’s worth a guided trekking tour there, tourists especially enjoy the minority specialty dishes including rice cooked in bamboo and grilled meat. They also enjoy watching traditional dancing, music performances (bronze, drums, gongs), and Thai minority singing and dancing. The remote minority villages are attractive sites for tourists.

Your Itinerary 

Day 1 - Arrive in Hanoi city (Noi Bai airport)

This is the first day you come to Vietnam joining in our project. VVS staff will pick you up from Noi Bai airport and take you to your hotel in Hanoi. You are at leisure.

Day 2

We will take a local bus to the homestay owner will be your home during your stay in our project. After that, you can take a rest. If there is still time , we will have a short orientation at the homestay to go through produces for your stay and get involved in the project.We will show you how to be safe during the trip. After that, you can stroll around the village, say hello to local people, visit the field and staffs whom you will be working with.

From Day 3 to the end of the duration - Working day only

From Day 3, you will be working with full-time support of Vietnamese staff members and will be involved in a variety of tasks that will be scheduled for you every day You will join in the farm works and help local people plant trees, vegetables, fishing on the river and feeding the animals. Everything will be run smoothly if you are actively working, it is very helpful for you to make friends with the local people, give them the best and you will be very happy to work with locals.

Saturday & Sunday - You are at leisure during the weekend

You can choose to stay in Mai Chau and relax in a homestay, visit Mai Chau or Pa Co market, 1000 steps cave or travel off the beaten path to Pu Luong natural reserve. Depart from Mai Chau, you’ll have a good chance to trek remote and wondrous ethnic villages where you can gain a deeper understandings of local culture and traditions . It’s worthwhile to spend your weekend holiday in such as  fascinating, beautiful place like Mai Chau with so many things to see and do.

Your Final Day

You will have a small farewell party to all your new friends to say goodbye, take your final photos and pack your bag with souvenirs. You’ll travel back to the airport, or off for further adventures elsewhere. The return transfer from your accommodation in Hanoi to Noi Bai airport is not covered within your project fee, VVS is able to make recommendations and help you arrange a transfer if you want to. You should estimate US$12 for this trip.

Typical day

Participants have the opportunity to experience authentic local culture by staying with locals as well as joining in their daily life activities.  We also participate in organic farm works such as planting vegetables, cutting grass, fishing on the river, collecting snails on the rice field. Especially, we can enjoy the rustic beauty of Vietnamese countryside as well as do a range of travel activities such as hiking, biking, swimming,  cultural exchange

Therefore, a typical day might look like this:
  • 7:30 am - Wake up & have breakfast
  • 8:00 - 10:00 am -Working on the farm
  • 12:00 - Lunch
  • 3:00 - 5:00 pm - Working in the farm
  • 7:00 pm - Dinner

Free-time activities

You are at leisure during the weekend.

You can choose to stay in Mai Chau and relax in a homestay, visit Mai Chau or Pa Co market, 1000 steps cave or travel off the beaten path to Pu Luong natural reserve. Depart from Mai Chau, you’ll have a good chance to trek remote and wondrous ethnic villages where you can gain a deeper understanding of local culture and traditions. It’s worthwhile to spend your weekend holiday in such a fascinating, beautiful place like Mai Chau with so many things to see and do.

Swimming
Climbing
Hiking

Program Requirements

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). Of course, there is an exception for children that are accompanied by their parents.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (basic level)
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
As a volunteer on this project in Mai Chau, Vietnam, you should be prepared to get your hands dirty and have a real enthusiasm to get stuck in wherever you are needed. Volunteers with skills and experience in working with crops, doing farming works and an interest in organic farming and nutrition will find this project interesting.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday

Suitable for

Singles
Couples
Families
Groups

Included Services

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Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by Vina Volunteer Service.
Services by Vina Volunteer Service

Registration fees - Written materials pre-departure - Facilitating a volunteer experience in program site that specifically meets your needs - Accommodation: Dorm bed accommodation in a house with a few others, communal areas - Food: 3 meals per day - Transport to and from work where required - Round trip transfer Hanoi – Mai Chau – Hanoi - Assisting with local transport and providing advice on public transport routes - Airport meet and greet service - Complete English preparation and orientation information pack - Advice, assistance and guidance before, during, and after your stay - Support: 24-hour support from on-site coordinator - Assistance with planning your weekend excursions from local staff

Airport Pickup at Noi Bai International Airport

Airport pick up at Noi Bai airport in Hanoi: You will be picked up at the airport by a driver and transferred to your hotel in Hanoi. He will hold up a printed sign with your name on it. Please double check your belongings before getting on and getting off the car to make sure that you don't forget anything.

Accommodation

Accommodation: Dorm bed accommodation in a house with a few others and communal areas.

Bedroom (Single)
Food & Beverages

A water bottle per day

We provide you with three meals a day : breakfast, lunch and dinner

We also cater vegetarian/vegan. If you have any special requests for food, please inform us in advance.

Internet Access
Good access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Noi Bai International Airport (HAN) in Hanoi. We assist you to find cheap flights to Viet Nam.
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 Viet Nam provides security and is a plus to have.
Vaccines
If you are intending to volunteer in Viet Nam you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Viet Nam.
Costs (Prices in USD)
2 weeks (min. stay)
$589.00
3 weeks
$718.00
4 weeks
$847.00
5 weeks
$976.00
6 weeks
$1,105.00
7 weeks
$1,234.00
12 weeks (max. stay)
$1,879.00
Average fees
$226.00/week

You can volunteer at the project site in Mai Chau/Viet Nam between 2 weeks and 12 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Vina Volunteer Service will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Crowdfunding Service
Generally, volunteering abroad involves certain costs. In case you need financial support, we will assist you to fundraise your volunteer program in Viet Nam.
Deposit (15%)
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 (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with Vina Volunteer Service during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.
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