Is volunteering with children in Fiji right for me?
If you’ve ever dreamed of living on a tropical island and want to do some good at the same time, volunteer work with children in Fiji is for you!
The project is open to anyone who loves working with children and wants to get some practical experience. It will also add skills to your CV, like leadership and planning, that can help your future career.
You don’t need any prior childcare experience. All you need is energy, a touch of creativity, and a desire to help. Our staff are there to help and guide you. We also provide you with training, workshops, and resources.
Some of the children we work with have special needs and require speech therapy. If you have a background in these fields, your assistance would be welcomed.
Our Childcare Project in Fiji runs year round, and you can join at any time from a minimum of two weeks. We encourage you to stay longer so you can have a bigger impact on the children you work with.
What will I be doing on this project?
As a volunteer doing childcare work in Fiji, you’ll support teachers and caregivers in kindergartens or special needs centres. Here are some of the tasks you can expect to do during your placement:
- Promote early childhood education through fun, educational activities
- Work with small groups to Increase the level of stimulation each child receives
- Share knowledge about wellness through health and hygiene workshops
- Improve the lives of those living with special needs
Your work will focus on the following areas:
Promote early childhood development through fun activities
You’ll help local teachers and caregivers create activities that develop the children’s physical, cognitive, and social abilities. This could involve:
- Playing educational games
- Doing arts and crafts
- Singing songs
- Playing sports
Increase the level of stimulation each child receives
In Fiji, large class sizes often prevent teachers from dedicating individual attention and support to each child. You will work closely with students who may be struggling with lessons, bringing small groups together to provide extra support.
Improve awareness of healthy living and the environment
Many Fijians suffer from conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. This is normally caused by a relatively sedentary lifestyle and poor diet. Currently, almost 80% of deaths in Fiji are caused by these types of conditions that could be prevented and managed quite easily with the correct knowledge.
You can help increase wellness levels in Fiji by using class time to present workshops. Topics could include:
- Personal hygiene
- Healthy cooking demonstrations
- Examples of what a healthy lunch box looks like
- Fitness and exercise-related activities
The children can go home and share their knowledge with older family members, encouraging them to consider a more healthy lifestyle.
Improve the lives of those living with special needs
We also work with a number of centres for children with special needs. Here, you can make a big impact by providing individual support and stimulation to the children. Arts and crafts and music lessons are always popular.
If you have a qualification in any sort of therapy, you could also help out with this.
Where will I be working in Fiji?
You will be based on Viti Levu, Fiji’s main island, in one of two cities: Nadi or Lautoka.
They are the second and third largest cities in Fiji respectively, and located about 24 km apart on the western side of the island.
We mostly work with kindergartens in these cities, but do also have a few special needs placements.
While Viti Levu is the largest island in the archipelago, Fiji actually consists of more than 330 islands, of which 110 are permanently inhabited. Over weekends, you will have free time to explore this real-life tropical paradise with fellow volunteers.
What will my typical day be like as a Childcare volunteer in Fiji?
You will start your day with breakfast, prepared by and enjoyed with your host family. After breakfast, you’ll take public transport to your placement. On your first day, Projects Abroad staff will travel with you so that you learn how to get to your placement.
Your day will normally run from about 8.30am to 3pm, coinciding with kindergarten times.
In the mornings, you’ll help teachers with more academic class activities, such as literacy and numeracy. After the children’s morning break, it’s time to have some fun with arts and crafts, games, and reading. Our assessment checklists will help you determine which activities to focus on with the children.
If you work close to where your host family lives, you can head home for lunch. If not, your lunch will be provided at the placement.
In the afternoons, you can offer remedial classes to small groups of students who may need extra attention.
Evenings and weekends are your free time to relax and explore with fellow volunteers or new local friends.
What are the aims and impact of this project?
The main aim of this project is to support local kindergarten teachers and caregivers in Fiji and promote early childhood education. With a good educational foundation, young children then have the skills they need to succeed at school.
We work in low-income areas where class sizes are far too big to allow teachers time to work personally with children. As a volunteer, you provide an extra pair of hands to reach more children. We also work with a special needs centre which almost 100 children attend. They greatly benefit from receiving experienced and qualified volunteers to support them in their daily care.
We’ve laid out five goals in our Childcare Management Plan to help us make this project sustainable:
- Promote early childhood development
- Increase literacy
- Improve the quality of life for those living with disabilities
- Improve awareness of healthy living and the environment
- Improve the level of stimulation to each child
You can help us reach these goals by signing up to be a Childcare volunteer in Fiji.
We set out the aims and objectives of our projects in documents called Management Plans. We use them to properly plan the work you’ll do. They also help us measure and evaluate our achievements and impact each year.
Ultimately, our Management Plans help us make our projects better. This in turn means you get to be part of something that makes a real impact where it’s needed. Read more about our Management Plans.
Measuring our impact
Our projects work towards clear long-term goals, with specific annual objectives. Every volunteer and intern we send to these projects helps us work towards these goals, no matter how long they spend on our projects.
Every year we take a step back and look at how much progress we've made towards these goals. We put together a Global Impact Report, which documents our achievements. Find out more about the impact our global community of volunteers, interns and staff make, and read the latest report.
Leisure activities and free time
Experience the beauty of the South Pacific while volunteering with us in Fiji. This tropical island country has plenty of activities and must-see sights for you to enjoy in your free time.
We can’t talk about Fiji without mentioning the beaches. With their soft, white sand and clear, blue seas, they are the ideal place to relax and wind down after a day of volunteer work. With the beaches come a bunch of other exciting activities, like water sports and snorkelling.
For a culture-rich experience, you can explore the bright, rainbow-coloured Sri Siva Subramaniya Temple. You can also spend time wandering through art galleries or browsing through stunning handmade pottery in Nadi.
The Kula Eco Park gives you the opportunity to see local plants and animals. For thrill seekers, they also have a zipline going through the park!
You can explore all these different sights on your own or with a group. With so many volunteers joining us in Fiji each year, you’re bound to make some new friends to travel with.
Safety and staff support
Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have the support you need to enjoy your trip with peace of mind. Our Projects Abroad staff are available 24 hours a day to help, and will be on-hand to make sure you settle in well at your accommodation and placement. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.
Find out more about safety and backup.
Meet the team in Fiji
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