Residential Volunteering, India
The Big Umbrella Tours in India
Do you like the idea of making a difference in an abandoned child’s or a poor woman’s life, taking yoga classes, attending colorful cultural programs, immersing yourself in a simple and healthy ashram-like lifestyle, going on a pilgrimage to visit millenia-old holy sites, and exploring spectacular Himalayan landscapes… all combined in one package? You may be interested to become a volunteer for our Himalayan schools and training centres.
We are now accepting applications from qualified people to serve and reside at some of our humble educational institutions in Uttaranchal, the holiest and one of the poorest district of the Himalayas — Bhumi Devi — “the land of the gods”. Starting early 2007, three locations will be available for volunteer work: Uttarkashi, on the way to the source of the holy Ganga river; Haridwar, the holy city at the foothills of the Himalayas; and Champawat, close to the Nepalese border and near the famed Mayawati ashram of Swami Vivekananda.
No particular skill, experience, or creed is necessary — only the belief in the power of love and hard work to make a lasting contribution towards solving the problems of these innocent children and people. Anyone has skills which can be enormously valuable in this impoverished Himalayan land. Some of the most sought-after skills are:
- Building contractors and subcontractors (any field) - Teachers and educators (any discipline) - Moms! - Sports coaches (any sport) - Public health educators - Nurses and doctors - Solar energy technicians - Organic farming technicians - Environmental protection technicians - Documentary producers and technicians (film, video, or radio) - Office administrators
Length of stay; Two options are available: a three-month or a six-month stay. Longer periods of volunteering may be considered after the initial stay. Shorter stays for volunteering are usually not advisable, except in some cases. Please contact us directly for special requests.
Cost ; Participants are responsible for all travel costs (within and outside of the country), for their health and travel insurance, and for their medical and personal expenses.
Free room and board; Simple, nutritious, and hygienic vegetarian food will be served. Basic but clean lodging will be provided.
Classes and activities – Free yoga and meditation classes will be provided (when available) - Cultural programs and visit with local families will be organized from time to time - Special classes, pilgrimages, or activities may be arranged upon request at the participant’s own cost.
Dress and demeanor; Participants are expected to maintain a modest dress and demeanor at all times, and to respect local traditions.
Duties and responsibilities ; These will be determined at the moment of selection, based on the needs of the time and the applicant’s profile. Anything may be requested — from cleaning to cooking to building to teaching… so a flexible, humble, and creative attitude is the best resource to bring!
Personal time ; Three-month volunteers will get up to two weeks off for pilgrimage, touring, or personal activities. Six-month participants will get up to one month off.
Can’t make it to the Himalayas yet but still would like to contribute something from your own home? We are also looking for volunteers who can assist us in the following areas:
- Web masters
- Graphic designers (print and web)
- Production specialists (audio, video, print, and web)
- Video editors
- Sound engineers and editors
- Copy editors (in English, Portuguese, Spanish, French, and Hindi)
- Translators from English-to-Hindi and English-to-French
- Journalists and P.R. people