Gift for project/host families
Bringing a gift to your host family is a nice gesture that a lot people volunteering abroad like to do. While this is by no means a requirement, it is a nice way to say thank for them for their hospitality and kindness in welcoming you into their home. This can be an easy way to break the ice and show them your gratitude upon your arrival.
If you start reading testimonials from past international volunteers, you will no doubt notice people singing the praises of the wonderful relationships they formed with their host families, and how much they appreciate the chance to become so fully immersed in the culture. Since you’ll be spending so much time with your host family, a gift can be a nice way to get started on the right foot.
What kind of gift will be good for host family?
What type of gift you decide to offer to your host family is a highly personal choice, and the only limit is your own creativity. Perhaps you’d like to offer them a favorite treat of yours, or a small token or souvenir which will give them a taste of your own home country or culture. Small boxes of candies, chocolate, or a little souvenir are great choices.
Make sure you keep it small, and don’t buy anything extravagant. Many people in other countries, particularly ones you will be volunteering abroad in, don’t have a lot of money. You don’t want to unintentionally offend your host family with a gift that is worth too much, or that they don’t feel they can reciprocate.
You will find hundreds of gift ideas for host families while volunteering abroad. There is no definite rule for giving gift to host families while volunteering abroad. However, small boxes of candies, chocolates, and souvenirs would be good gifts for your host family. They will definitely appreciate your thoughtfulness and kind gesture!
Do I need to bring gifts for the project?
It is never compulsory to bring gifts to your volunteer abroad project. However, if you are working in an orphanage or teaching project, the children you will be helping would be absolutely delighted by even simple inexpensive gifts or toys. Wildlife projects often need donations of medical supplies or items they can’t get in their own country.
Another way of looking at this is that you are likely coming to support communities in need or projects that have very little money to continue operating. They may be in dire need of even basic supplies, so your gesture of some basic gifts could really make a huge difference.
Reach out to your coordinator ahead of time and request of list of some things that are truly needed. You don’t want to waste time, money, and space in your luggage buying a bunch of things your volunteer abroad project isn’t going to be able to use or have room for.
What kind of gifts would be good for the project?
The answer to this question really depends on what type of project you are going to be volunteering abroad at. If you are volunteering at a teaching English project, some books written in English would be a great gift idea, or maybe the kids need pencils or notebooks. Orphanages may need basic items like clothing, blankets, powdered milk, or vitamins. If you’d like something a little more fun, maybe you’d like to bring coloring books, crayons, toys, games, or sports equipment.
As mentioned before, wildlife projects are often in need of medical supplies or hard to get items. Stuffed animals might be needed for orphaned animals, sand even mascara wands can be used to help clean out the delicate fur of little babies found in poor conditions. Research based projects might need waterproof notebooks for recording scientific data or headlamps for night observations. Maybe the local staff living in remote conditions might like some goodies they can’t get like Twizzlers or fashion magazines.
Reaching out ahead of time and finding out the wish list of your volunteer abroad project can help your gift have a personal touch and may actually contribute to the important cause you are traveling all that way to support.
While it is not required to give gift to your host family or project, it is indeed a nice gesture that would be greatly appreciated by them! You do not need to buy expensive items, even small, cheaper souvenirs would be nice, as it is the thought that counts! Check out https://www.goabroad.com/articles/adventure-travel-abroad/presents-for-your-presence-giving-your-host-family-the-perfect-gift for more ideas!