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FoVIN FAQs

Answers to questions related to Volunteering in Nepal

Nepal Questions

Where is Nepal?

Nepal lies in Southern Asia between India and China. 

Wiki Nepal

How is the climate in Nepal ?

Spring (between March – May): The temperature is mildly warm in low lands while moderate in higher altitudes with plenty of opportunities to have tryst with the mountain views. It is also the time for flowers to blossom and the national flower of Nepal – rhododendron sweeps the ascending altitudes with its magnanimous color and beauty.

 

Summer (between June – August): This is also the monsoon season in Nepal. The weather is hot and wet at times. It rains almost everyday with occasional thunderstorms in the evening. The rain spreads the pleasantness around with lush green vegetation.

Autumn (between September – November): This is the best tourist season in Nepal with the summer gone by and the winter to set in. The weather is highly pleasant so are the mountain views. This is the peak season for trekking as mountain views are guaranteed so better book your flight in advance. This is also the season of festivities as Nepal celebrates the biggest Hindu festivals Dashain followed by Tihar.

Winter (between December – February): The weather is cool and the sky is clear with occasional snowfalls at higher elevations. This season is good for trekking in lower elevations. The morning and night is cold and the days are warm when sunny.

 

Temperature & RainfallNepal is the country of extremes. The low-land plains of the Terai can have tropical temperatures and also the mosquitoes. The Himalayas can get to sub-zero temperatures, but the sun blaze can bring some warmth during the day, even in the mountains. The temperature of Kathmandu goes below 1 Degree Celsius (34 Degree Fahrenheit) in winter and rises to an average of 25 Degree Celsius (77 Degree Fahrenheit) in summer.

The average temperature in Kathmandu during the four seasons:

* Spring season ranges between 16-23 Degree Celsius (61-73 Degree Fahrenheit)* Summer season ranges between 23-25 Degree Celsius (73-77 Degree Fahrenheit)* Autumn season ranges between 15-24 Degree Celsius (59-75 Degree Fahrenheit)* Winter season ranges between 9-12 Degree Celsius (48-54 Degree Fahrenheit)

During the rainy monsoon season between June to August, it rains to an average between 200-375 millimeters in Kathmandu. There is occasional rainfall during the other seasons too. In an average, 1300 millimeters of rain falls in Kathmandu every year. 

Click here for current Weather 

When should I arrive in nepal?

Training begins on the 1st and the 15th day of each month, however, there may be a change to the starting date during the Dashain and Tihar festivals around September/October. As these festivals are determined by the lunar calendar we will advise volunteers wishing to begin around this time of the year regarding training start dates. You are expected to be available to begin training on the first scheduled day. We suggest you arrive at least one day prior to training to allow time to settle yourself before training begins.

The training is a 3-day program which prepares you for Nepali culture and to teach you enough Nepali language to function in your placement.

You will be met at the airport and accommodation will be arranged for you during the training program and during your volunteer stay. If you arrive earlier than when the training begins, you will have to pay your own expenses. The volunteer program coordinator will contact you regarding additional accommodation.

How safe is it to volunteer in Nepal ?

  • Volunteer safety is our primary concern. Please rest assured that if VIN, at any time thought it unsafe for volunteers to be in Nepal they would close down their operation until such time as it was deemed safe for volunteers to return. As with any country we recommend that you do not travel alone late at night. We strongly recommend that you avoid political gatherings, demonstrations, and protests.

  • We highly recommend that you register with your Embassy or Consulate prior to travelling. This can be done online or in person.

Volunteering Questions

When does the program start ?

The 1st and the 15th of every month volunteers can join the programs.

What kind of Volunteer work is available ?

Please check our Volunteer Programs for more detail. 

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When will I know specific details about my placements?

As soon as the program booking fee has been paid, you will receive more detailed information from VIN along with Volunteer information package.

Do I need to speak English to become a volunteer ?

Yes, you will need to speak and have a good command of English. English may be your second language and that is fine.

Am I able to take a break while volunteering ?

You can take short breaks while volunteering. However, this should be agreed with VIN and the people with whom you will be working.

What are the accommodation arrangements while volunteering ?

  • Accommodation during training and whilst on placement is covered by your program fee. During the induction days, you will stay in a local guesthouse which is located in Thamel.  Depending on availability, during training you will either have a single room or you may have to share a room with a same-sex volunteer.

  • During your placement you will live with a local host family near to where you will work. After your induction period, you will sleep in your own bedroom with your host family. You can expect a bed, a mattress and a pillow, a lock on your door, and access to a toilet and shower. Water can be unpredictable, but you can expect to have running water. Electricity can also be unpredictable but host houses are likely to have plug sockets and electricity for charging electrical goods on most days.

How many volunteers are there on site at ones ?

This depends, usually there are between 5 and 10 volunteers starting training together, however, it is common for volunteers who started with the program in previous months to still be in placement when you arrive, so there could be as many as 20 volunteers in country in any one month.

What resources are available for teaching when I’m volunteering? Do I need to bring my own?

Specific programs are in need of the following:

  • Toys

  • Inflated Balls 

  • Story/ Text/ Curriculum/ Teaching English Books

  • lesson Plans

  • Games (Memory games, Bingo etc..)

  • Nursery rhymes

  • Paints/ Brushes, Papers

Are there any times of the year that I can’t volunteer?

You can volunteer at any time of the year in Nepal. Some of the programs (e.g. the ECD program, teaching English in a monastery/nunnery) can be disrupted at various times throughout the year due to festivals, exams, holidays and strikes. We would like to ask that volunteers in these programs consider a second choice of program for these times or consider combining two programs. There are many festivals throughout the year which can interrupt all programs however, festivals are also a wonderful opportunity to see a special part of the Nepali culture

How do I pay ?

Program booking fee can be paid online via Paypal or by making a bank transfer to our account. 
All VIN's program fees are in Euros; however, you can pay in cash in Euros, or the equivalent in USD, GBP, or Canadian Dollars.

What does the booking fee cover ?

  • VIN will meet you at the airport and take you to the guest house they have booked for you. Your induction period will include: a day of sightseeing, language classes, culture lessons and schedule planning with a volunteer coordinator. After approximately three days, the volunteer coordinator will take you to your placement and introduce you to your host family.

  • The program booking fee is a non-refundable fee which covers processing your application and pre-departure support and is not deductible from the program fees.

Can partners, children, siblings, friends accompany me on the program?

Volunteers are welcome to join a program with their partners, children, siblings, and friends. To do so will entail all persons formally joining the program. Those who wish to be located in the same placement will need to be flexible about which program they do. As placements vary from month to month it cannot be guaranteed you will be placed in the program of your choice if you want to be placed with another person in particular.

Travel plans Questions

What should I bring with me ?

Your packing list will vary depending on the activities you wish to participate in whilst you are in Nepal. With the exception of medical supplies and first aid kits you can buy the majority of your equipment here:

Sleeping bag

Refillable water bottle

Currency (Euros or US Dollars can be easily changed in Thamel)

Hiking Boots

Walking Sandals

Flip Flops

Fleece Jacket (for colder months)

Lightweight Cotton Clothing

Waterproof Jacket

Mosquito Repellent/Mosquito net (Community Posts)

Sun Cream

Flashlight/Torch (including Spare Bulb and Batteries)

Pen Knife 

Music

Nepali Language Book

Map of Your Home Country

Photos of friends and family

Travel Towel

Water Purification Tablets

Diarrhea Medication

First Aid Kit

Antibiotic Cream

Antibiotics (normally recommended to bring 2 types)

Malaria Tablets (if recommended by your doctor)

Vaccination Card

Hand Sterilizer/Antibacterial Gel

Soap

Wet Wipes

Laptop and Charger 

Adaptor Plug

Unlocked Mobile Phone and Charger

Camera/Memory Card/Spare Battery and Charger

Padlock for Luggage and Room Security

Tampons

Passport Photos

Travel Guide to Nepal

Book(s) to Read

Will I need a vaccines?

Please consult your doctor or travel clinic 3 months before departure to Nepal You will need to get some vaccinations before you start your program. Some of these are available at the Health Centre in Kathmandu. This may be a cheaper way of doing it; however, most volunteers prefer to be fully vaccinated before their arrival. Please remember you are entering a country where sanitation is poor. You should not drink the water unless it has been treated or boiled for three minutes. Plastic bottles are bad for the environment so bring a refillable bottle or buy one in Thamel. They cost about € 5.

Do I need travel insurance ?

Yes, all VIN Volunteers must have insurance. You are free to take out insurance cover through any provider of your choice. However, as some policies do not cover volunteering, we recommend you check you are covered during your volunteer placement.

Who organizes my travel visa for the volunteer placement?

You can purchase your visa (US$25 for the first 15 days, US$40 for a 30 day visa and US$100 for a 90 day visa) at Tribhuvan International Airport when you arrive in Nepal, if you have not already purchased in from a Nepalese Embassy in your own country. Tourist visa extensions are US$30 for 15 days. You can stay for a total maximum of 150 days per calendar year in Nepal.

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