Frequently Asked Questions

What kinds of volunteers do you work with?
Cost of program?
What’s the ‘registration and program’ fee paying for?
Payments Mode
Visa Entry/Exit Requirements:
Will there be any volunteers present during orientation time?
Do you select my placement area?
Do I have to speak a foreign language?
What are the living conditions of my placement?
Is there anything I can bring with me that would be useful to your organization?
Are their any special items that I should bring that I may not have thought of?
Can I change my volunteer placement if I get dissatisfied?
Can I schedule my own volunteer service for the dates that interest me?
How will I get to headquarters from the Airport?
Will I have time to explore Kathmandu during my language and culture program?
How much extra money should I bring?
Will I have access to communications such as, e-mail, telephone, and post office?
Can I come with a friend or can I be placed near other volunteers?
What happens if I decide to return home before the placement is over?
What Vaccinations will I need for Nepal?
Food and accommodation
Is it safe to drink tap water in Nepal?
Traveling
How can I familiarize myself with the country I will be traveling to?
Where do I fly to and how long will it take to get to my host site?
What is the best time to travel in Nepal?
Clothes and Climate in Placement Areas
What clothing is appropriate? Any cultural restrictions?
Is it safe to volunteer in Nepal?
Emergency Contact

What kinds of volunteers do you work with?

HOPE and HOME: travel and volunteer program has worked with universities and colleges, other organizations and clubs, church groups, youth groups, and families to arrange for meaningful volunteer experiences
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Cost of program?

HOPE and HOME: travel and volunteer program needs a reasonable fee for its service. Please communicate directly with our national coordinator at info@hopenhome.org for any question regarding cost of program.
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What’s the ‘registration and program’ fee paying for?

The registration and program fee is needed to run the organization (office space, computers, Internet, supplies, office and field staffs, donation to school, orphanages and administration). Our volunteer program maintain one central office at Kathmandu and field office at Pokhara. It has 11 orphans in our orphanage which we support and part of the fee goes to maintaining these children food, tuition fees and clothes. Registration fee is non refundable.

Furthermore, our volunteer program has been running school construction and renovation project in Chitwan to offer more schooling opportunities for children of Nepal. We are also developing some conservation projects. The remaining money of the program directly goes to support these programs and our offices. Volunteer; please find time to visit these projects.
Payments Mode

All payments have to be done at the beginning of the volunteer program. HOPE and HOME: travel and volunteer program doesn’t accept monthly installments. If you want to stay longer than your committed period, you have to inform us and pay accordingly.
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Visa Entry/Exit Requirements:

A valid passport and visa are required to travel Nepal. Travelers may obtain visas prior to travel or purchase fifteen-day multiple-entry visas ($30), one-month multiple-entry visas ($40), or three-month multiple-entry visas ($100) upon arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu and at the following land border points of entry: Kakarvitta, Jhapa District (Eastern Nepal); Birgunj, Parsa District (Central Nepal); Kodari, Sindhupalchowk District (Northern Border); Belahia, Bhairahawa (Rupandehi District, Western Nepal); Jamunaha, Nepalgunj (Banke District, Mid-Western Nepal); Mohana, Dhangadhi (Kailali District, Far Western Nepal); and Gadda Chauki, Mahendranagar (Kanchanpur District, Far Western Nepal).

Our volunteers qualify as volunteer tourists and therefore the only visa you will require is a tourist visa. When passing through immigration and applying for your visa, this means the purpose of your visit to Nepal is tourism.

Tourists may stay in Nepal no longer than 150 days in any given calendar year. A non-tourist visa is difficult to obtain and are twice as expensive as the tourist visa. It is the responsibility of volunteers to manage their own tickets and visa.

Volunteers occasionally report immigration difficulties with Chinese authorities when crossing the Nepal-China border over land in either direction. Chinese authorities often require American and other foreign tourists to organize “group” tours through established travel agencies as a pre-requisite for obtaining visas and entry permits into Tibet. U.S. citizens planning to travel to Tibet from Nepal may contact the U.S. Embassy in Kathmandu for current information on the status of the border-crossing points. Travelers may also wish to check with the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Nepal for current regulations on entry into Tibet.
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Will there be any volunteers present during orientation time?

We receive 4-8 volunteers a month (depending on season) most long-term volunteers join the language and culture program. We offer a language and culture program in fixed dates to make a small group. For short-term volunteers, we offer a short orientation program about project, host family, villages, working conditions, etc. individually at our Kathmandu office. We encourage volunteers to ask many questions during orientation and make adjustment in program to ensure that our program meets your need.
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Do you select my placement area?

Yes, placements are decided based upon program vacancy and volunteer’s skills, but we try to take into account any special preferences / needs of the volunteers. If you have any preferences, please let us know as soon as possible so that we can accommodate them. Your placement village will be finalized during the orientation period.
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Do I have to speak a foreign language?

Volunteers on our short-term (2-3 week programs) do not need foreign language skills. Those volunteers interested in participating on one of our long-term programs need to have intermediate language abilities in the spoken language of the program country.

As part of your program, you will learn the basics of the Nepali language and you’ll learn Nepali language quickly. Although you may not achieve fluency, the Nepali people are generally very warm and friendly and willing to help.
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What are the living conditions of my placement?

The living conditions of the placement depend on the area. One should not expect luxurious accommodations here in Nepal. You will be placed within a family setting with your own room. Most placements have electricity. (If electricity is an asset it can be arranged). Our host families are mostly educated, well respected in society, and experienced with international students. Some members of host families may speak English.
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Is there anything I can bring with me that would be useful to your organization?

We would be very grateful for educational books (Grammar, TEFL, science, health, etc.,) illustrated books, English novels, children’s books, Organizer, Camera. Also very much appreciated are donations of clothes and stationery.
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Are their any special items that I should bring that I may not have thought of?

This will vary depending on what non – HOPE and HOME activities you want to participate in (trekking, whitewater rafting, etc.) and how much you need to be comfortable during your placement. With the exception of medicine, first-aid-kit and high-tech trekking gear, you can buy everything that you would need for your placement in Kathmandu (likely cheaper than in your home country). Here are a few suggestions:

• Sleeping Bag
• Hiking boots
• Tevas/ flip flops
• Fleece jacket (during winter months)
• Light-weight cotton clothing (see Program Guide and Volunteer Room for details)
• Waterproof jacket (a fold-away windcheater is fine)
• (Women) Sarong (or you can buy a lungi cheaply in Nepal)
• Mosquito repellent
• Sun cream
• Water purification tablets and/or water filter
• First aid kit
• Flashlight
• Penknife
• Books about your country
• Photos of your family / friends / home (essential!)
• Small presents for your family from your country
• A few examples of your local currency
• Ipod/Laptop/Music/Portable music player
• Basic Learner’s English/Nepali/English dictionary – for simple definitions (buy a Nepali dictionary on arrival in KTM)
• Magazines
• Colored pencils and pens, drawing books, stickers
• Inflatable globe
• Books on teaching English/English Grammar for your reference
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Can I change my volunteer placement if I get dissatisfied?

We will consider request of volunteer seriously for the change of place and in many cases it is possible to change the working areas to meet the expectation of volunteers. We cannot change position frequently with out genuine reasons.
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Can I schedule my own volunteer service for the dates that interest me?

Our programs run throughout the year. Our volunteers usually arrives on 1st and 15th of the month. However, we are making program start dates quite flexible so volunteer can join any date of their choice (except Saturday), though there may not be as many volunteers doing orientation with you.

Saturday our office remain close.

Volunteers must arrive in Kathmandu at least one day before the program orientation begins. Depending on your departure location, you may experience jetlag or “culture shock” for a few days after your arrival, therefore, we recommend arriving in Kathmandu at least 2 days before your orientation begins.

Note: if you couldn’t schedule your flight date in above-mentioned date, please write us for other alternative date. We are very flexible on volunteer’s arrival regards and our program is very flexible and it would be possible to start any time.
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How will I get to headquarters from the Airport?

There is nothing to worry about, our office is 5 km distance from airport and cost Rs 500 (approx. $7) by taxi. One of our representative will be waiting for you at the airport terminal. He will be holding a sign with your name on it. Please do not forget to send your detailed flight itinerary. Please call this number in case of emergency or stand-by flight situation.

Mobile : 9841356924 or 9841554428
Kathmandu Peace Guest House Number: 4380369 or 4384272
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Will I have time to explore Kathmandu during my language and culture program?

There will be plenty of time for you to explore the Kathmandu Valley during orientation. We offers full day guided tour of Kathmandu valley as a part of the language program.
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How much extra money should I bring?

We manage food and room for volunteers after training. You may need some extra money if you plan on taking part in adventure activities outside the organization or if you just want to buy some souvenirs. You must also remember the VISA fee, which can range from 40-100 US dollars depending on the length of your stay.
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Will I have access to communications such as, e-mail, telephone, and post office?

This all depends on your placement. Almost all placements will have access to a Post Office. If you are in a city placement there are many places in which you can use phone or access e-mail.
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Can I come with a friend or can I be placed near other volunteers?

We allow people to come with a friend or even in a large group. You sometimes may be placed in different homes located within 1-2 miles. We can place any volunteer near to another volunteer already working in the field. Please be reminded that two different genders of volunteers are not allowed to stay in same house unless they are a married couple.
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What happens if I decide to return home before the placement is over?

Once the volunteer makes a decision and pays for the program fee, upon receipt of invoice, HOPE and HOME does not refund any registration fee and program fee under any circumstances. S/he should be for that particular program. But if the volunteer have unavoidable circumstances (such as illness, death of in the family etc) may request to leave the program, we will consider to return 25% of the host family cost, if volunteer are registered for more than 30 days program. No refund will be made if program is less than 30 days and if volunteer leave program in their own decision. volunteer position are non transferable.
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What Vaccinations will I need for Nepal?

This all depends on what vaccinations you already have and what country you are coming from. We suggest that you consult a travel doctor from your country before you arrive. (NOTE: Some vaccinations are needed as much as 2 months before arrival to Nepal). Please take malaria pill as a precautionary measure. This volunteer program does not cover liability and insurance of volunteers. Therefore, volunteers must have an appropriate insurance before joining the program.
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Food and accommodation

We manage food and accommodation from the first day of the program to the last day in collaboration with local host families. Nepali staple foods include Rice, Dal (Lentil soup), vegetables, meat (occasionally), and pickle.
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Is it safe to drink tap water in Nepal?

It is recommended that you drink bottled water during your volunteer stay in Nepal. You can buy bottled water from any supermarket and most shops in Nepal. The most common water-borne diseases in Nepal are cholera and typhoid.
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Traveling

If you are planning to travel in Nepal after or before work camps or volunteer programs, you will need some extra money. Nepal is a cheap place for shopping and traveling. If you want to buy gifts for family and friends, you can buy it in Kathmandu. You can change your major currencies and travelers checks in Kathmandu and at the airport.
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How can I familiarize myself with the country I will be traveling to?

Once you have registered for HOPE and HOME, you will receive a volunteer booklet that includes a short-introduction to the country and region you will be traveling to. Other sources of information can be found at your local library, bookstore, or on-line. Please visit our links page for great websites that will help you get ready for your volunteer experience
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Where do I fly to and how long will it take to get to my host site?

Tribhuvan International Airport (Nepali: त्रिभुवन विमानस्थल) Kathmandu is the only international airport in Nepal, so all international flights arrive and depart from there. Our representative will meet you at the airport. After completion of your orientation phase in Kathmandu you will be escorted to your assigned placement.
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What is the best time to travel in Nepal?

Any time of year is a great time to be in Nepal. If you wish to trek the best times are from September through November and March through May. The summer is the rainy season and as a result trekking is difficult. The winters are mild in Katmandu with no snow. Even though Nepal is home of the worlds highest mountain range, the country is at a warm latitude, the altitude offsets the sub continental heat leaving a very pleasant climate.
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Clothes and Climate in Placement Areas

Nepal is not always as cold as people think. The country is geographically divided into three parts. The Himalayan region of Nepal is very cold in winter while the mid hill region (Kathmandu and Pokhara) and mid-terai region (Chitwan) of Nepal have a different climate in different seasons. The weather is cold from December to March but warm and moderately hot in the summer. The spring and fall are cool and very pleasant. Please bring your winter cloths (think layers!) if you are coming in Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb and summer clothes for the rest of the months. General suggestions for clothes

Regions Jan -March April – August Sept – Dec
Chitwan Winter and warm clothes Summer and light backpacker clothes Warm and winter clothes
Kathmandu Winter clothes Summer and light backpacker clothes Warm and winter clothes
Pokhara Winter clothes Summer and light backpacker clothes Warm and winter clothes

* We suggests incoming volunteer to find placement areas in map of Nepal and prepare for climate and clothes accordingly. volunteers changing placement, please aware of changing climatic condition. warm and winter clothes are necessary during trekking
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What clothing is appropriate? Any cultural restrictions?

It is important to be dress properly for work at schools, and other office work and to avoid backpacker dressing! Appearance is very important in Nepali societies.

Bring along some comfortable, casual and semi-casual clothing: sweat shirts, shorts, jeans, skirts and any other clothing that you would ordinarily wear.

When out in the community, it is good to follow local etiquette. Female volunteers need to wear pants or long skirts. Please ask when you are not sure what is and is not appropriate.

Footwear can be hiking boots, old sports shoes or open-toed sandals. For health projects, bring white apron and latex gloves!
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Is it safe to volunteer in Nepal?

Our answer to that is YES! Nepal is safe to travel in, not only is it safe but its fun, amazing and incredibly beautiful as well.

You will be well looked after during your volunteer program. We ensure you are placed in a safe environment while volunteering. Nepali people are friendliest and very hospitable in the world.

However, it is essential to take simple precautions.
Do not carry your valuables around.
Take a copy of your passport and visas to carry with you.
Leave your passport, credit cards, debit cards and other valuables such as cameras and laptops at home.
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Emergency Contact

If you failed to meet our representative at airport or if your flight changed suddenly. Please call us 9841356924/ 4380272 /4380369

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