Volunteers Guide

   Maitreya Foundation Nepal  

Namaste and Welcome to Maitreya Foundation Nepal. We are more than grateful to have you volunteer with our organization. Below we have provided some information about volunteering at our organization and details about what to do when you get here.


Volunteer Positions

Volunteers are required to have a strong willingness to help and serve others and help our children although you are not required to have professional qualifications. The following volunteer positions are ways in which you can help out at our organization. After working in one, or more, positions you are free to change to another if you want to try helping in another way. Our volunteer positions include:

  • English Teacher/Tutor
  • Web Design/Promotion 
  • Book Keeping/Accounting 
  • Housekeeping and painting

English Teacher/Tutor

You are welcome to get here and teach at the children’s school once you become acquainted with the classroom. TOEFL or other language training classes are not required although they are recommended. Teachers often need to be highly motivated and patient as it can be rigorous working with multiple children of a different language and culture. You are also welcome to simply tutor the children before and after school or in between the time of school operating regular hours.

Tips and suggestions:

  • Visit the school and sit through a class before deciding to teach
  • Help them understand the homework problems but do not do it for them; the children will try to get you to do problems for them.  
  • If they fail to understand your lesson, or it doesn’t go as planned, relax. It may take a couple of times for them and you to get used to it.
  • Please remember to be patient. If the children do not understand or if they become difficult to control – do not try to discipline them.
  • If you have difficulty engaging them in learning try to start by showing an object and have them repeated it in English, “pencil”. Then begin commands like, “please, pass me the pencil.”  Or similar drills. 

Volunteers are welcome to help our staff improve their English which helps our organization.

Web Design and Promotion

We’re always seeking volunteers interested in updating and making changes to our website. This requires some experience.

Book Keeping and Accounting

These volunteers help organize our finances and create documents to reply to people who request this information. They can work closely with our staff auditing income and expenses. Some previous experience in this area is helpful but is not required.

Individual or Group Projects

These volunteers either come with a project in mind or create one once here. Let us know if you have a project or idea in mind. Examples of previous projects were:  

  • painting rooms at our orphanage and school
  • a film about street children in Kathmandu

Fundraising

If you wish to do a fundraiser while working at Maitreya Foundation orphanage and school you can do so in any of the other volunteer positions, or to help fund a project. 

Monthly Newsletter

Every couple of months we send a newsletter to supporters, and previous volunteers. You are welcome to write your own personal newsletter and or include a testimonial in the main newsletter.

Volunteers Abroad

These volunteer travel outside our main orphanage in Kathmandu to teach at a village school, checking up on needy children within our contact, and or carry out a service project in the village (ie help build a house or school in a village). We also include under this position volunteers who extend their time beyond Nepal, establishing associations abroad and continue to support our mission of helping our children.   

Volunteer Locations

Maitreya Foundation Intl School

Maitreya Foundation International School  

Maitreya Foundation Intl School is a newly established school for the children of underprivileged backgrounds who are unable to continue their schooling due to poverty and various social barriers. It is located in Dhapakhel-23, Lalitpur. This school operates under the Ministry of Education which means our curriculum is based on the national standard of Education in Nepal. You can help teach various subjects of art, science, math, chemistry and languages. Please talk with our staff if you have a lesson in mind that you want to teach to make sure it fits with our curriculum.  

Maitreya Foundation Children Home

Our children home is in Dhapakhel, Lalitpur and is a home for street children, child laborers, and children of single or deficient parents who cannot support their children. Please see our volunteer guide for general wake up times, school hours, and daily activities at this children home. Once homework is complete after the children return home from school volunteers are free to engage in songs, dances, board games, outdoor ball games and art projects with the children. On Saturdays and public holidays when school is out you are free to participate in the celebrations, plan a field trip to a local historical site, or plan a picnic to a local park after first consulting with the staff. 

Children Home  

 

Accommodation

What a volunteer may do for accommodation in support of orphanage

Volunteers are more than welcome to stay at any of our orphanages in a room provided by management. We do not require payment from volunteers however a donation of 5 or 6 USD per night is helpful towards our running costs. Food (breakfast, lunch and dinner) will be provided during your time spent at our orphanage. You are welcome and encouraged to eat with the children whenever possible. If you are creative in the kitchen we would love for you to make a cultural dish for our children.

Home Stay

We can arrange for you to stay with a family near our orphanage. Host families typically charge 5-6 USD per night. You pay directly to them and not through us. If you plan to stay with a host family we do ask that you volunteer at the orphanage and/or school for a minimum of one month.

Travel

Visa’s

Volunteers need to meet their own costs of airfare, visas, and transportation (bus fares, taxis) within Nepal. The majority of foreigners can obtain 15 and 30 day visas upon arrival but check online with our visa requirements if you are unsure.  http://www.immi.gov.np/.

Visa Renewal office in Kathmandu:

Please remember to renew your visa on time to avoid a penalty. The Department of Immigration is located at Kalikasthan, Dillibazar, Kathmandu.
Tel :          977 – 01 – 4433934 / 4429660 / 4438862 / 4438868
Fax :          977 – 01 – 4433935
Email :        [email protected]

Office Hours
Sunday to Thursday:   10 a.m. – 5 p.m. in summer
                                    10 a.m. – 4 p.m. in winter (Nov. to Jan.)

Friday:                         10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Visa Application Hours
Sunday to Thursday:   10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Friday:                         10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Map:

Arrival in Kathmandu

So now how do I get to Maitreya Foundation’s main orphanage?We may be able to pick you up at the airport upon arrival if requested. The taxi ride from the airport to our orphanage is about 1000 Nepali Rupees. If you are coming overland from India please contact us when you arrive in Kathmandu either by phone +977-985-105-6640 (Bishwa) or e-mail [email protected] on where to go, or meeting place.   

Our address is:

Maitreya Foundation Nepal

Dhapakhel-23, Lalitpur, Nepal

(Opposite of GEMS School)

If the taxi driver is having trouble finding it, or doesn’t know where to go it is best to say that it is next to Gems School in Dhapakhel not far from the Satdobato roundabout.

Weather

Generally speaking the Fall/Winter months are warm during the day but cold at night. Spring and summer months are hot, day and night and during the summer are when the monsoons come.   

What to bring

  • Personal medications
  • Sunglasses
  • A good book(s) (they can be traded in the main tourist areas)

What not to bring

  • Anything you are worried about getting lost, damaged, or stolen.

Please know that strikes, power-cut, sometimes natural disasters (from monsoon to extreme heat) and frequent holiday’s are normal. These sometimes affect transportation and the children’s school schedule.

Donations

If you plan of bringing a donation please be mindful of the overweight baggage charge. Donations may include children’s medicine, toys, art supplies, sporting equipment, teaching aids and clothes.   

Tourism

There are a several historical sites and recreational activities in Kathmandu and throughout Nepal. A few in Kathmandu include:

  • Boudha Stupa
  • Patan Durbar Square
  • Swoyambhunath (Monkey Temple)
  • Kathmandu valley trek

Outside Kathandu popular sites and activities include:  

  • Citwan National Park
  • Trekking (Annapurna circuit, Langtang National Park, Everest Base camp)
  • River rafting
  • Paragliding (in Pokhara)
  • Bungee jumping (in Pokhara)
  • Canyon Swing (in Pokhara)

Volunteers are free to venture from their service at Maitreya Foundation for a reasonable amount of time to participate in one or more tourist activities. We can give recommendations for other activities, trekking routes and historical sites as well. For costs and how to plan a trip please speak with Bishwa.

Health

Make sure that you have the appropriate doctor checkups before you arrive. Also let us know if you have any allergies, or medical conditions. Make sure you bring medication for potential illnesses because the medication might not be available in Nepal. Vaccinations and medications might include tetanus, typhoid, Hepatitis A and B and Malaria. Upon arriving in Kathmandu there is a possibility of getting sick. This could be due to the altitude, climate and or different cuisine. Please be prepared for this and bring appropriate cold and flu medications.  

Code of Conduct expected from volunteers:

  • Respect the Nepalese beliefs and culture
  • To protect our children and staff – you must have no criminal record, history of pedophilia, or warrants issued for your arrest in any country you have visited or lived in
  • Volunteers are expected to respect main religious beliefs
  • Never physically or verbally discipline the children. If you witness or become involved in a conflict please inform the head of the house immediately
  • Illegal drugs,alcohol and tobacco are strictly prohibited
  • Volunteers must use appropriate language and behavior – swearing on, or off the premises when accompanying the children will not be tolerated
  • Do not invite any visitors into the orphanage without prior permission from the staff
  • Dress code around the children should be modest and clean. Both men and women are advised not to wear any revealing clothes.
  • Be honest and responsible for the tasks you have been assigned 
  • Volunteers who come and stay at one of our orphanages must work at least 20 hours a week.
  • Never discuss sexually explicit topics with the children, or show commercial movies meant for adults to any of the children.
  • Please understand and respect the on-going or existing daily routine of the management and please do not try to change or execute to any of these.

If a volunteer fails to adhere to something mentioned within the code of conduct a discussion and or suspension may result. In very extreme cases the tourist police, and or a countries embassy will be contacted.

Having volunteers helps support our organization by fostering a diverse environment where our children can learn and grow. It is most important to make sure the time you spend with us at Maitreya Foundation is fun. Volunteers are esteemed guests at our orphanage and country and are often treated as divinity. 

The following paper work is required either upon arrival at Maitreya Foundation or sent via e-mail:   

  • A completed volunteer application
  • A photocopy of your passport and Nepali visa    

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