Teen Volunteer Abroad High School Specials
HIGH SCHOOL SPECIAL
Teens 16 to 19 years old who are interested in helping developing communities abroad can join other students from around the globe on WIN-NEPAL’s High School Special programs. Lasting two to four weeks, these teen volunteer abroad programs are designed for young adults to make the most of a short time abroad while contributing to community service credit requirements or college applications.
We are one of the most reputable volunteer organizations and are committed to ensuring that our young volunteers feel safe and supported at all times. Each volunteer project follows a schedule of taught sessions, hands-on and observational service work, as well as evening activities and weekend excursions, all under the constant guidance of our team of dedicated staff.
Read more about the structure of High School Specials; learn how travel arrangements work, and explore below the variety of High School Special projects available to find the right project for you.
Volunteer Abroad Programs for High School Students
We work with thousands of teenagers and high schools students looking to volunteer abroad during their summer vacation. It is fantastic to see people volunteering at such a young age. Due to the high demand for international volunteer work catered to teenagers (16-19), we’ve created specially designed volunteer programs for high school students – High School Specials.
Why do a Volunteer Program as a High School Student?
Over our, we’ve found that volunteering abroad in high school fosters a great sense of responsibility and maturity. International volunteer work is seen by both universities and employers as a positive use of time; something that sets individuals apart from others when applying for colleges and jobs.
Volunteering abroad is a great resume booster and many high school students write their college essays about their time overseas. We also suggest speaking with an advisor about academic or community service credit through your school.
Check out some stories from our former teenage volunteers to get a more personal sense of the benefits of a volunteer program for high school students.
How is a High School Special program different?
The High School Specials are volunteer programs geared towards individuals between 16 and 19 years old. There are a few benefits to structure of the high school specials that are particularly useful to younger volunteers:
- Variety of 2 and 4 Week programs during Summer Vacation
- Specific start dates to guarantee a group atmosphere
- Extra staff support and structure
- More cultural events and escorted weekend trips
We understand that many high school students have very tight summer schedules. Most of the volunteer programs for high school students offer multiple sessions from June through August. Both Volunteer and internships placements are available as High School Specials.
Do I have to do a High School Special?
Volunteers that are 16 or older can also join one of our year round volunteer programs. It is very common for graduating High School students to join a standard placement, where the average age is generally 18-24. The standard programs are more independent and are usually better suited to high school students that have traveled before.
What are High School Specials?
High School Specials are short-term international volunteer service projects and internships that are specifically designed for teenagers. Back in 2010, we put our many years of experience in community service into creating a new program just for high school volunteers. The result is our High School Specials – a collection of more than fifty projects that engage over 1,000 young people each year on projects in several parts of Nepal.
High School Specials are structured differently from other types of WIN-NEPAL programs, taking into consideration the requirements of younger and typically less-traveled volunteers. We also make some changes to better channel youthful energy and optimism into worthwhile projects!
“The staff at WIN-NEPAL are thorough and professional with their organizational and personal skills. As a parent they assured me complete confidence in the program my 16 year old daughter was enrolled and that all aspects of her well being while travelling in Nepal would be look after. The staff at WIN-NEPAL did not disappoint and it was a rewarding experience for both me and my daughter.”
Tony, father of Victoria
Care & Community in Ghana
Safety & Supervision for High School Volunteers
We understand that young volunteers traveling abroad need structure, a safe environment, and support from qualified staff. With this in mind, we have tailored our High School Specials to provide a full timetable of events to keep the volunteers busy.
While on the project, volunteers spend every day with our full-time professional staff. During the working week, volunteers roll up their sleeves with our staff and work elbow-to-elbow. In the evenings and on the weekends, volunteers go with our staff to soak up various cultural activities and historical tourism sites.
High School Specials volunteers are never alone. After their busy daily schedule is completed, volunteers return home to their host family in groups of two or more volunteers per family. (In a few cases noted in the project description, volunteers stay all together in a dorm-style building that we manage.) In any case, volunteers have at least one roommate of the same sex and approximate age.
This is a fantastic program for volunteers to receive structured support. For any volunteers wishing to have the independence to explore by themselves in the evenings or over the weekends, we recommend taking part on one of our other programs.
Group Experiences with Other Teens
High School Specials volunteers come from all around the world to join the group. Start dates are fixed so that everyone arrives and departs on the same day, staying on the project for 1-4 weeks (depending on the project).
If volunteers choose to extend their trip, having spent some time gaining a solid foundation on a High School Special program, they then can transition to work an additional week or more along with our longer-term volunteers at one of our projects offered throughout the year. Volunteers will have more freedom and independence during this time. Our staffs are always on hand should any additional support be required.
Many volunteers are surprised to find how international their group is. Typically a group of fifteen High School Specials volunteers consists of teenagers coming from five to ten different countries. Working together overseas is a fast bonding agent for any group, so even after a short time abroad most volunteers return home with life-long friends and knowledge of cultures and countries far beyond their project location.
Air Travel There and Back Again
Unless participating in a project with an Escorted Flight option, High School Specials volunteers travel independently to their designated airport to start the project. Our trained in-local staffs meet any flight and bring the volunteers back to our office for introductions and training.
Each year, we offer a few Escorted Flight options which give volunteers the option to join a staff member on a flight leaving from Nepal for their destination airport. If an Escorted Flight option is available for a specific project, it is noted in the project description for that project.
In all cases, the cost of air travel is not included in the program fees for High School Specials. However, we do have an in-house travel team that contacts volunteers with a proposed itinerary in case they would like to purchase flights through us. Of course, volunteers are always welcome to book their own flights instead.
What is Included in the Program Fee?
Aside from the extra staff support as well as tourism excursions that are unique to the High School Specials, all Projects Abroad volunteers receive room and board,medical & travel insurance, a personalized my WIN-NEPAL project’s webpage to help you prepare, 24-hour support from our full-time staff and (of course) a worthwhile job to do.
We are also happy to help with any paperwork required to claim community service hours credit for your time overseas with us. Typically volunteers receive credit for twenty hours of work per week.
“My granddaughter’s experience proved to have had an amazing impact on her and increased her confidence in many ways. Gloria wrote her college essay on her cultural and linguistic interactions with her house mother. She seemed to have been a warm and caring individual who helped Gloria learn Nepali quickly. Gloria had enough exposure to Spanish that she skipped first year Spanish and so far, is getting A’s in second year Spanish. We have only the highest praise for her experience in Nepal.”
Lois, grandmother of Gloria
Care & Spanish in England
Community Service Credit for High School Students
Community service is often a requirement for high school graduation, not to mention critical to the college application process. Universities look for both service and international experience from applicants, so showing that you have community service hours abroad from a High School Special is a way to set yourself above the rest on a college application.
Students can usually apply their time volunteering abroad with WIN-NEPAL toward any community service requirements for high school or university graduation. If you intend to do this, it’s always a good idea to get in touch with us well before your project start date so that we can coordinate with your school or university.
Credit for Service Hours: How does it Work?
On most High School Specials, students will typically work for 6 hours a day, 5 days a week. On a few days, volunteers will finish work early to partake in cultural activities, training courses or tourism. A typical 2-week High School Special will involve approx. 40 hours of work and a typical 4-week High School Special will involve 80 hours.
If you are planning on using this experience to receive credit for community service, please tell us on your application form exactly how many hours of work you will need to do, and if there are any other requirements for your experience.
Upon returning home, you will receive a certificate verifying your participation in a High School Special and recognizing your international volunteer work or internship experience. In most cases all you need to do is show this certificate to your school or university to receive credit for community service hours.
If your school requires a form to be completed and signed by us, just bring the forms with you on your trip and WIN-NEPAL in-country staff will be happy to fill it out at the end of your trip.
Returned volunteers can send any other paperwork to our office for processing. Please make sure you include your full name, project dates and location – as well as information about where to send the completed paperwork.
If you have more questions about how you can earn community service credit for a WIN-NEPAL High School Special please contact us.