WHAT ARE MY CHANCES OF BEING OFFERED A PLACEMENT?
Nearly all our applicants are successful. We have an in-depth application process that involves and interview to discover more about your interests, skills and strengths. This is followed by a thorough matching system that finds the best available placement that meets your needs, fully utilizes your skills and will challenge, engage and inspire you
DO I GET A SAY IN WHICH PLACEMENT I AM OFFERED?
Yes! You’ll be asked to list up to five placement preferences on your application, and can modify these after your interview. Lattitude Global Volunteering takes your preferences seriously, but also looks at where your individual skills and experience might be best utilised. We offer a wide variety of experiences but some are particularly popular. We may be unable to offer you your first choice because it is already full. If your interviewer feels there is a more suitable option, we will discuss alternatives with you.
WHERE WILL I STAY?
As part of the agreement with our placement hosts, your accommodation is included with your placement. Most often this will be on-site at your placement, for example you might have your own room in a school boarding house or a cabin at an outdoor activities camp. In some cases you may share an apartment with other volunteers near your placement. In some countries you will have the opportunity to live with a host family and so really learn about a new culture from within. The quality of accommodation varies from country to country and placement to placement. In the developing countries accommodation can be quite basic – although we feel this contributes to why such placements are so memorable.
IS MY FOOD INCLUDED?
Your food is also included as part of the agreement with our placement hosts with one exception. In Malawi our volunteers buy food locally for an additional cost, about $20 per week. For all other countries, the way in which your food is provided will vary according to your placement country and host. For example you may have access to an on-site canteen, receive an allowance to purchase and prepare your own food if in a self-contained apartment. Alternatively, your meals may be supplied by your host family. If you are working in a particularly rural or poor community you may find that you need to supplement the basic diet.
CAN I GO WITH A FRIEND?
All applications are assessed separately because volunteers have better experiences when they’re matched to a placement that suits their individual skills and attributes. When friends apply together we may be able to send them to nearby placements so that they can meet at evenings and weekends, depending on availability
WILL I BE THE ONLY VOLUNTEER AT MY PLACEMENT?
This depends on the needs of your host. In most cases you will be placed with another volunteer or possibly with a team of volunteers; however some hosts need only one volunteer. Whatever happens, you will live and work alongside other young people. We try to cluster our placements as far as possible so that volunteers have the opportunity to meet up regularly.; our goal is for you to have a brilliant, life changing experience and recognise that sharing your experiences is part of the fun!
WHAT IF I GET SICK?
To ensure you are covered if you happen to get sick, you will need to have comprehensive travel insurance. Our hosts and in-country Local Representatives are always on hand as well and have a great deal of experience in supporting young volunteers. In the instance of an emergency, please call the Emergency Phone and Lattitude Global Volunteering staff will be able to assist you and help you to make any arrangements you may require. Don’t forget, you should always keep a copy of your insurance documents to hand.
WILL THE COUNTRY I'M GOING TO BE SAFE?
The safety and security of our volunteers is paramount and Lattitude Global Volunteering will never send volunteers to a country or placement that is deemed unsafe. While there is some risk involved in any overseas travel, through our pre-departure briefings and in-county orientations we seek to educate our volunteers and alert them to potential hazards. Lattitude Global Volunteering takes advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office about any major situations that may arise and monitors them accordingly. We also maintain regular contact with our hosts and in-country local representatives about the suitability of our placement locations.
WILL I RECEIVE ANY POCKET MONEY?
A small amount of pocket money may be supplied by our hosts for placements in developed countries. The amount will vary from placement to placement but, where paid, will generally be enough to cover daily living expenses. In developing countries, especially in resource poor placements, you are unlikely to receive pocket money; however your own savings will go a lot further
HOW WILL I DEAL WITH ANY PROBLEMS?
There is a large support network of staff and representatives in all our countries. These people are there to help you, to provide friendly and timely support whenever you need it. They will visit you at your placement to check that all is well. There’s Lattitude Global Volunteering Head Office in the UK too – contact us if you need help. We have the following five levels of support available to every volunteer: Host Mentor – member of staff employed by the placement host who is your first point of contact. Local Representative – part-time or volunteer member of staff allocated to a placement as a local point of contact. Lattitude Country Manager – volunteer or paid staff member with overall responsibility for you and your placement. This is your next point of contact if your Local Rep is unavailable. Volunteer Coordinator – paid member of staff based in our Vancouver office who is responsible for supporting the Programme Manager, assisting you pre-departure and during your placement if required. This person is also the key contact for parents. Regional Director – paid staff member based in our Vancouver office will deal with serious issues or formal complaints My son or daughter is going to volunteer with Lattitude Global Volunteering, do you have any information for me? Yes, we have developed a Parents’ Guide which aims to summarise in one place all you need to know about Lattitude Global Volunteering and answer many of the common questions or areas of concern raised by parents and guardians. This is sent to each volunteer once they have paid their deposit.
CAN YOU HELP WITH FUNDRAISING?
Yes we can. Our Fundraising team can provide you with ideas and information and help to publicize your efforts. We are constantly amazed by the ideas our volunteers have for raising money, which range from holding fashion shows and live concerts to running marathons or packing bags in supermarkets. We appreciate that raising the funds to pay for your placement can seem daunting. However it’s reassuring to know that many young people have been in the same situation in the past and successfully raised the money they required. It can be hard work but it certainly is achievable, and the process of fundraising is an experience in itself! So where do you start? • Work out your budget – how much will you need? How long are you going for? • Plan ahead – the sooner you start fundraising the more options you can try, and therefore the more you will raise • Approach prospective sponsors – think about why you are so passionate about volunteering overseas, what you hope to achieve, and write a letter to them • Stay positive – not everyone you approach will be able to support you. There are many causes in the world vying for people’s attention. Persevere and you will have success!