HelpStay connects independent travellers with farms, house holders, art retreat centres, ecovillages, backpacker hostels, surf lodges, vineyards, ranches, schools, monasteries and kibbutzim who are looking for a few hours of help in return for a place to stay. Food is usually provided too, while others perks can include horse riding, free use of bikes or surf boards, and the chance to learn new skills. HelpStay was started up last year in Dublin by Shay Gleeson who checks out each host in person or by phone. Membership for helpers is €19.99 for 1 year (or €26.99 for joint membership).
Tour Operator Internship, Tupiza, Bolivia
One volunteer is required for two months on this internship, to teach English to this tour operator’s drivers and cooks. The working hours are longer than with most work exchange gigs – 50 plus a week – but along with free meals and the dramatic landscape of the Salar de Uyuni, a bit of paid guide work is one of the perks on this project.
Marketing Placement Abroad, Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica
Outback Jack’s Beach Bar & Grill, a funky and fun restaurant in Costa Rica, is looking for an online media savvy person to take them to the next level in the marketing of their restaurant. A paid stipend is provided to cover food and lodgings costs.
Homestay in New York City, Brooklyn, New York
Paul the magician invites volunteers to join his magic show as his assistant. More mundane tasks include cleaning, washing, hovering, some renovation jobs and tidying.
Photography Trainer Peru, Trujillo, Peru
Peter and Janneke run a social enterprise producing fair trade greeting cards with photos taken by underprivileged teenagers. Intermediate Spanish and experience in required for the six week long roles training Peruvian teenagers in Photography, or in social ethics and civics, or in graphic design.
Gap Year Work Belize, Punta Gorda, Belize
Free drumming lessons are among the perks for helping to build this small locally owned cultural tourism business offering indigenous Garifuna drumming, drum-making and dancing lessons to locals and visitors. Some experience in marketing, small business development and cultural tourism is required.
Communal Living France, Lescar, France
This French commune has space for 80 volunteers. The main activity concerns recycling, repairing and selling unwanted goods and you can participant in workshops and learn new skills, including organic farming and eco-building.
Malaysia Hotel Volunteering, Ranau, Sabah
Surrounded yourself with nature and forest wildlife working three minutes from the entrance to Borneo’s Mt Kinabalu National Park. Volunteers should have an agricultural or horticultural background, or experience in construction work.
Ice-Cream Parlour & Hostel Exchange, Mayo, Ireland
Valarie runs a 1950’s style ice cream parlour and a small tourist hostel with the help of her family and a couple of volunteers who in return get a bed in the hostel, plus breakfast.
Galapagos Islands Volunteering, Isabela Island
One lucky volunteer could be spending the next ten months on one of the most biologically rich locations in the world. Depending on qualifications, volunteers work as full teachers or as teaching assistants in local schools. Fluent Spanish, a degree and teaching qualifications are required.
Documentary Film Maker, Cameroon, Africa
A savvy videographer with digital marketing skills is needed by this Cameroon based educative and research body. Accommodation and meals are provided with a local host family.
Self-Sufficient Living, Pisek, Czech Republic
This family brew their own beer and wine and have a two bedroom cottage ready for volunteers willing to muck in in the garden, fix things and help out with their animals.
Farm Volunteering in England
A 14 acre farm with goats, sheep, chickens, pigs, horses and geese, and a boutique glamping site with medieval tents to stay in needs help with tasks ranging from clearing nettles to stable building.
Mexican Teaching Paradise, Troncones, Mexico
Teach English to the local school kids and, in return, you can stay free in a hostel based in a surfing paradise on Mexico’s Pacific coast.
Cyprus Gardening Volunteers, Kyrenia, North Cyprus
A revolving group of International volunteers interested in permaculture, homesteading, healthy living and sustainability, keep this garden/farm in shape. Cooking on the farm is exclusively vegetarian/vegan and each volunteer is expected to contribute to the preparation and cooking of at least three meals a week.
Ranching & Horse Riding, Argentina
The role of the volunteer helping this family owned horse business close to Buenos Aires will be to help with the everyday care of their horses and dogs and a little bit of general maintenance.
Teach English in Poland, Warsaw, Poland
This Polish-Italian family also has a couple of horses available to their volunteer guests who will teach English to their students.
Builder or Carpenter Needed, Kingdom of Tonga
Cindy and Barry are two Canadians who relocated to the South Pacific who would love to hear from an experienced builder or carpenter to help complete the building of their home.