Blog | World Volunteer

Blog of the founders, Jesper & David

Learn about challenges, Participate in solutions – in India

Posted on by jessica1

The World Volunteer team would like to say welcome home to one of our volunteers, Mr. Abishek,  who has been volunteering in incredible India this summer.

Here you can read about some of his experiences and thoughts of the trip.

“The next day I had the opportunity of visiting some classes in the local school. I sat in on an English lesson that very morning and saw many children who really were keen to learn. Then upon interviewing some of them I saw that these children wanted to become doctors, teachers and engineers. They also said they enjoyed going to school and the teachers were role models for them.”

“Soon I began working at the “Stars Matriculation School” I taught many different students during the school hours but I also taught the children whom I lived with. During school my chosen subjects were English for all ages and Math for the younger ages. I also tried teaching some drawing classes in addition to instructing students about how to play badminton. I realized Stars School offered many different kinds of activities for students to take part in as well as a good education. I found no discrimination or any other problems relating to caste or social class. I found the interest in education positive because most students were keen on learning and they had the potential to understand the teachings. Later, on the weekends I taught a small group of older students IT.

This use of technology is important for everyone in today’s modern world. I thaught them the basic programs such as Word and PowerPoint. The group was well behaved and I believe they came out of class with some positive feelings and new tools to help them.”

“Throughout this entire project I believe I have learnt a lot. It has become clear to me how fortunate most people really are and how important education is. Working at Stars School has also showed me that you will need to enjoy your learning if you truly want to succeed because that is what learning is all about. Additionally, I have learnt that strict discipline is a great way to progress in the future and is absolute in education.
I will definitely take the lessons I have learnt and use them to help me grow in the future.”

Thank you very much for sharing this with us Abishek!


We are now looking for new volunteers to join our team in India, if you are interested check out Tamil Nadu – India under Short volunteer trips.

India Programs

Posted on by evelina

World Volunteer now offers volunteer placements in India!

Women’s Education for Development Trust (WED Trust) our new partner which we are very proud to serve with volunteers. WED Trust is based out of Tamil Nadu state located in the southern parts of India. The state was severely damaged by the tsunami in 2004, leaving many and already very poor families without a home. Through the partnership with WED Trust, volunteers will be able to participate in several social programs including education, economic development and infrastructure projects, which will benefit the poorest part of the population.

Many of the families that live in Tamil Nadu are from the caste Dalits or Adivasi. These two castes are the only ones outside the Indian caste system. Many of these children, because of their caste, don’t have and can’t have the same opportunity to a good education as other children. WED Trust STAR school program gives these children the opportunity to an equal education.

As for the women in our Self Help project, together with WED Trust we give them the opportunity to change their present situation and to develop it to something better, and not just for themselves but also for others that is in a similar situation. Projects like these are needed in states like Tamil Nadu and World Volunteer, together with WED Trust and our volunteers are very happy to be a part of these projects!

Update from Jesper Lejfjord, direct from Laos

Posted on by jesper

Team World Volunteer

Posted on by evelina

This year, World Volunteer welcomes two new interns to the team together with new exiting programs and challenges. The team will during the year be located in different parts of the world. We will be in India, Sri Lanka, Laos, US and Sweden.

Everyone is very exited to get started with all the new tasks and challenges. Together we are working to develop World Volunteer to make it a better association for you to find volunteer trips that are suitable for you.

Introducing; Team World Volunteer spring 2012:

Jesper Lejfjord
Stockholm, Sweden
Founder of World Volunteer







”World Volunteer is now in its most expansive phase ever and it’s great fun! We receive an ever increasing interest from volunteers, partner organisations, donors and companies. We are very grateful for the support from our advisors, interns and people from all over the world who supports us.”

Number: (+46) 70-835 19 20
Recommended volunteer trip: Sri Lanka, Project based volunteering

David Jonsson
Stockholm, Sweden/Oklahoma, US
Founder of World Volunteer
US Coordinator











”I started World Volunteer in 2006 together with Jesper. During the spring I will be situated in the US working with new programs and contacts. I think this will be a year full of exiting news.” 

Number: (+46) 73-322 01 03, +1(405) 365-1370
Recommended trip: Long trip to Laos

Malin Törnvall
Stockholm, Sweden









”I’ve been working as a coordinator for World Volunteer since 2011. I took part in the school building project in Ban Na Luang in October, which was an incredible experience. This year World Volunteer will create amazing volunteering opportunities for individuals from all over the World and we are very excited.”

Number: (+46) 70-413 71 59
Recommended volunteer trip: New projects in Tamil Nadu, India.

Victoria Haglind

Stockholm, Sweden
Sri Lanka Coordinator






”I lived in Sri Lanka for a couple of years and since 2011 I am helping World Volunteer with the Sri Lanka projects. Apart from World Volunteer I study Economics at Lund University.”

Number: (+46) 73-500 58 13
Recommended volunteer trip: Long trip to Sri Lanka, Matara Children Centre

Mr. Hatthaphone Sisouvong
Vientiane, Laos
Laos Coordinator

”I’ve been working for World Volunteer since 2006 with Laos’s related tasks. Coming to Laos as a volunteer is a great experience and gives you the opportunity to explore the Laotian people and culture.”

Number: 02055454137
Recommended volunteer trip: Short trip to Laos, Ban Na Luang School Project.

Jessica Jäntti:
Stockholm, Sweden










”I am right now located in Nelson, New Zeeland studying International Culture Tourism. I’m really looking forward getting started at World Volunteer as an intern.”

Number: (+46) 76-319 09 22
Recommended volunteer trip: Long trip to Laos.

Evelina Norvell
Stockholm, Sweden
Administrator and responsible for social media







“I’ve started to work at World Volunteer as an intern in January and are very exited to work with this team the coming year. Except working with World Volunteer I study Global Politics at Stockholm University.”

Number: (+46) 73-818 34 24
Recommended volunteer trip:
Long trip to Sri Lanka, Matara, Children Centre.


The Eco-Bungalow

Posted on by jesper

We have recently arrived back from the Ban Na Luang school building project which goes according to plan. Hopefully the whole building will be done by the end of February (if we manage to find the last group of volunteers).

Approaching the start of  2012 equals planning for new building projects in Laos! We are currently planning on building a house which has an opportunity to generate alternative income to a village in the Luang Prabang province autumn 2012. The idea is to build a clay eco-lodge to be used and rented to smaller groups of visitors with an interest in sustainable tourism accompanied by well-trained guides. Since the tourism in Laos is increasing dramatically, as well as many of them are interested in enjoying a sustainable holiday, the timing seams very good. The eco-lodge will be completely owned by the village and all accommodations fees will go 100% to the village.

The clay eco-lodge will provide the village with a facility that will generate cash income as well as labor opportunities for years to come. During the construction process we will transfer knowledge in building with earthen materials to the villagers as we work alongside in the project. This will create opportunities for them to build their own eco-friendly and cost effective houses. The pictures below shows our model. Thank you Carl Svahnström for your creative illustrations.

We already have one group interested in helping out November 2012. Do you have any suggestions on improvements in this project or other inputs that you would like to share with us?


1. The village today
The main source of food is generated through rice cultivation.The village has limited alternatives sources of income.

2. During the construction
World Volunteer in cooperation with volunteers constructs the ECO lodge. External funds will be raised by World Volunteer to cover the cost for external materials. Building expertise from World Volunteer will be surveying the process. The villagers will help and learn during the construction process.





3. Project social output
Small tourist groups are able to stay in the village which will generate labor opportunities and direct income to the villagethrough a village fund. Know-how and experience in how to build and maintain a clay house will be transferred to the villagers in the second and third phase.





Updates from Ban Na Luang

Posted on by jesper

So we have just arrived back in Luang Prabang from our week in Ban Na Luang. It has been an amazing week, that’s for sure. Two walls are up by now and the volunteers has done a great job! Thank you SSHL for sending a team!
Since we don’t use watches, I’ll describe a typical day in the village with few words and more pictures. Is this something for you? Let me know!

Before sunrise
Roosters starts doing their chicken business. You’ll go back to sleep.


Volunteer in Asia


At sunrise

Heading down to the school
building site, work starts.








Work, work.










Great, simple tasty food. Time to rest.





Work work.








Sum up the day. Playing with the children. Wash off in on of the streams. Dinner is served. Conversation with the villagers and time to go to bed.








Do you wish to help us out? We need more volunteers! Click here to gain more information and sign up.

The world’s most bombed country

Posted on by admin

There is so much to engage in when you are in Laos. An organization that really deserves attention is COPE. An organization that helps the Lao people who have lost limbs because of landmines and bombs that still remains after the Vietnam War. COPE assists with prosthesis, rehabilitation and assistive devices.

There are few people who know that Laos is the world’s most bombed country. There is a huge problem with unexploded bombs and landmines (UXO). Both adults and children are often severely damaged followed by death or amputations.

For many poor people in Laos, scrap metal taken from the bombs is worth a lot of money. For a few cents per kilo, they can scrape together money for food and other things that the family needs. This of course exposes a deadly risk to all children and adults who wants to support their family in this way.

Even those who are not actively looking for scrap metal are constantly exposed to danger. It is mainly farmers who are victims of explosions when they farm their land that contains mines and/or bombs.

Clearing UXO is both costly and time-consuming, and many organizations are trying to inform people in rural areas about the dangers.

If you are in Vientiane we recommend you to visit COPEs exhibition and learn more about this issue.

Laos – The wonderful country!

Posted on by admin

We thought we would shift focus from volunteering for a moment and instead make room for emotions and feelings about Laos – a country that so often leaves beautiful memories to the ones who visits it. Which is why we organize volunteer placements there and why we are so devoted to make life better for the Lao.

It is now extremely popular to visit Thailand on holidays, especially amongst Swedes. Often tourists miss out on what else there is to explore once sitting comfortably on the beach. If you just travel a bit north, you end up in Laos – “the land of a thousand elephants”.

The moment you arrive in Laos, you can feel the mystique and a sense of something exciting and different. Everywhere you go, you see beautiful colors on the local temples houses and trees. The smells from the street kitchens challenge the senses, and you can almost taste the chilies and spices.

The impressions will be with you long after coming home, but it’s often the memories of the people you have met that you will remember most vividly.

Whatever situation you might be in, there is always someone willing to help. They laugh happily at you when you are dragging on a motorcycle with a flat tire so bad that you can run your hand through the hole. But with a calming “Bowh pehn yangh” (no problem) you succeed despite language difficulties, and a moment later you can go home with a repaired tire.

In Laos you get the feeling that you are never alone. Everyone is family and friends and you are always welcome.

Who travels as a volunteer? And why?

Posted on by admin

We have seen a growing interest in volunteering during the last few years and the Swedish are diligent when it comes to volunteering in poor countries (mainly countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America). It is often orphanages, health improvement programs and various types of construction work projects.

The reasons why we choose to work for free or even pay to work is often simple. We simply want to make a difference because we can. The media reports when a natural disaster has taken place, about war and its victims, which often result in children in urgent need of help. In which we naturally feel compassion, while hoping for a better world.

Previously it has been a lot of students who have had months of time to spend on volunteer work, but the possibility of a shorter action in the style of our school projects has increased the number of travelers between the ages of 25-50.

For those wishing to make a difference but cannot be away from work and family for too long, these short journeys are a great option. There is often a desire to combine volunteer work and vacation. Travelers want to learn both about culture and people in a foreign country while making a difference.

We believe there are many ways to make a difference and at the same time get a great vacation. Please tell us what your experiences are of volunteering. We are very curious and would love to hear your stories and opinions!

The importance of the Lao language

Posted on by admin

In Southeast Asia, especially in Laos, lives many minority tribes in remote villages and areas. The minority tribes such as Akha, Mhong and Lao Sung, are speaking languages that are completely separated from the Lao language. This means that their never get the chance to learn the national language, Lao, and then they are condemned to remain in the village and work in the fields or within the family.

Most of these areas have a lack of basic educational facilities and by far are all the children are capable of attending school.

By building schools and ensuring that the Lao language is taught, we make it possible for these children to attend higher education and/or find work in the rest of the country.