Fiji is an archipelago of 333 sun-kissed, picture perfect islands tucked away in the South Pacific, close to Australia and New Zealand. It’s famed for its rugged landscape of blue lagoons and palm-lined beaches, and eco-activities from mountain climbing and surfing to soft-coral diving and zip-lining. Its major islands, Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, contain the lion’s share of the population, meaning much of the country is uncrowded. As the country now diversifies into small-scale industries, the economy is strengthened and revenues provide for expanded public works, infrastructure, health, medical services and education. The country’s central position in the region has been strengthened by recent developments in sea and air communications and transport. Today, Fiji plays a major role in regional affairs and is recognized as the focal point of the South Pacific.
ABOUT CORAL COAST
Known as Fiji’s adventure capital, Coral Coast is the coastline connecting Suva and Sigatoka, stretching over a large area along the Southeast coast of Fiji. The area lives up to its reputation as a spot for adrenaline junkies, offering a wide variety of activities to get your heart racing, from surfing and shark feeding to four-wheel-drive tours. For a more laid-back experience try a round of golf on the championship course, or enjoy a spot of fishing. Offering lush rainforests, rivers and waterfalls at your back door and a beach looking across to Beqa Island which is world famous for fire walking.
Volunteers must be 18 years of age or older, though exceptions to this age requirement may be made on a case-by-case basis. Successful volunteers are hardworking, flexible, and open to truly immersing themselves in the culture. Keep in mind that all countries have different visa restrictions for varying types of passports.
World Endeavors volunteers in Fiji choose from projects in the following areas:
Volunteers interested in Childcare Assistance can participate in the following project:
Coral Coast Kindergarten Teaching
Fiji is a country in much need of external help, especially with its younger population. You will experience life in both rural and urban areas, which is quite different from the average journey followed by a tourist. Most locals in Fiji can’t afford to travel and in the villages there is little chance of contact with the outside world. You will enable students to form relationships with someone from another culture and the teachers can learn different teaching methods and techniques. You will mainly assist the regular school teacher, so you do not need to have any teaching background.
The class sizes are large at the kindergartens so it’s difficult for the local staff to give each child as much attention as they need. Your work here is to provide a helping hand by looking after and caring for the children. It is also the perfect opportunity to put any skills and interests you have to use, whether you make arts and crafts, or teach games and songs to the children - your suggestions will be well received. By showing initiative and enthusiasm the options are endless.
You can work on achieving the goals set out in the Kindergarten Plan, including running educational games and group activities, providing emotional support and helping to improve the quality of life for those living in deprived communities. Some of the activities during the program could be teach basic English, plan activities for the understanding of English, playing games with the children, organize dynamic age appropriate activities, develop students conversation skills or help children relate to the English language, etc.
Volunteers interested in Community Development can participate in the following project:
Coral Coast Construction and Renovation
We have initiated the construction project to support the local community by sheltering those in need and start reconstructing some of what had been lost during the cyclone disaster. This project is based in the Sigatoka area and is a fantastic opportunity to provide tangible benefits and assistance to the local community in general and schools in particular. Bring out your carpentry skills and participate along with the local community in the construction project.
In addition to the basic project, you may also take part in landscaping the surrounding area, painting local schools and renovating classrooms. Many of the schools we work with do not have the funding to renovate their classrooms or build libraries and resource centres and this is where you can participate. In the past, we even built a library for a village school. In many areas of Fiji, thousands of families live in inadequate accommodation and children attend school in crumbling buildings. Our construction project allows them to move to new, better quality homes and for the children to receive an education in secure, new classrooms. On an average, you will be working for about 6 hours a day on the project.
This project is an additional $70 per week.
Volunteers work with nonprofit organizations on a variety of initiatives that focus on conservation and sustainable development.
Volunteers interested in Healthcare can participate in the following project:
Coral Coast Healthcare Project
The general health of average Fijians is quite good and robust as most of the youth are interested in sports and they begin their training at an early age. However, as they get older, especially the women, tend to get obese after the birth of their children. Since most of the local populations live in the villages, they have little or no knowledge of hygiene and diet. This leads to a wide range of diseases like high blood sugar, cholesterol, hypertension etc. The other common diseases in the villages are skin eruptions/lesions, urinary infections, gum and heart diseases.
Our healthcare education initiative is in its infancy and requires the skills of both established medical and healthcare professionals and those who are interested in teaching basic first-aid and personal hygiene. This need for having project participants on either end of the medical spectrum arises due to the great extremes in hygiene and health practices. Apart from needing qualified professionals in order to conduct health camps and dental checkups, we also need participants who can educate people in the areas of basic first-aid and personal hygiene such as washing hands, brushing teeth and general cleanliness. This works towards the prevention of many avoidable health problems and easily communicable diseases.
If you are interested in educating simple hygiene techniques, you are welcome to join the Healthcare Education project. Medical professionals who can offer guidance on the project’s development would be immensely valuable; however, it is not imperative that participants have a medical background to join. As a participant of this project, you can support to run healthcare campaigns in local schools/villages around Sigatoka, actively teach the importance of basic hygiene – emphasize brushing teeth correctly, washing hands and general body cleanliness. Many of the daily routines that we carry out without thinking are not common practices with the children you will meet, but starting simple education early can go a long way for immediate and future healthcare. If you have a medical background, check-up clinics for local children and adults can be organized with your help.
Volunteers interested in Teaching can participate in the following project:
Coral Coast Teaching Program
Fiji has over 700 primary schools and 150 secondary schools spread across both the public and private sectors. Most expats send their children to a private schools, with the majority selecting the international schools located in either Sigatoka or Nadi. Public schools in Fiji are open to expat enrollment, but are rarely used due to somewhat erratic educational standards. Furthermore, parents are often reluctant to send students to these schools as they find the curriculum one-sided and children who regularly move in and out of school systems may find the experience limited. While public schools are theoretically mixed-race, socio-economic issues and the geographic distribution of ethnic groups mean that, in practice, the schools often comprise a single race. In many villages, there will be a small school with teachers doing their best to serve the students spread across a variety of educational levels.
Fiji is a country in much need of external help, especially with its young population. You will experience life in both the rural and urban areas, which is quite different from the average journey followed by a tourist. Most locals on Fiji can’t afford to travel and in the villages there is little chance of contact with the outside world. Your teaching will enable students to form relationships with someone from another culture and the teachers can learn different teaching methods and techniques. You will mainly assist the regular school teacher, so you do not need to have any teaching background.
The children in Fiji are in desperate need of two types of teachers, those with experience and those without, we have found both can make a very significant and worthwhile contribution. The experienced teacher will find the freedom to be creative and design their own lesson plans, a refreshing change for some of our more mature participants, who tell us it takes them back to the “good old days”. Those with less or no experience will have whatever support and guidance is needed from our Teaching Center, a relaxed environment matching the Fijian way of doing things, but with up to date teaching methods from experienced teachers. You have to love children and understand their behavior, as you will be surrounded with loads of them every day and their friendliness can sometimes become over exuberant, but they are children after all.
Culture Week is a great way to get acclimated and get to know other volunteers before starting your project! During this week, we'll introduce you to Fiji’s diverse geographical and cultural environment by fostering a deeper understanding of cultural similarities and differences through experiential learning. Various crafts give Fiji a unique identity that along with traditional etiquette and local architecture tells a story of culture and its evolution over time. You will be invited to join a kava ceremony, visit the Fijian markets, attend a weaving class, learn the Fijian language, take a cooking class, and get to know your fellow volunteers and more about the projects. The week consists of three days of activities to introduce you to the Fijian culture and surroundings, and the last two days you will visit your volunteer project for training.
Some highlights of Culture Week include:
- Discussions about the culture and people of Fiji
- Tours of Sigatoka town and the village
- Classes in weaving, Fijian language and cooking
- Traditional Fijian welcome ceremony called, "Kava Ceremony"
- Make new friends from all around the world! - take part in our cultural exchange session and share your culture with your fellow participants while learning about theirs
Volunteers stay in a shared volunteer house and stay in shared rooms by gender. Three meals a day on weekdays (two on weekends) are included during your stay. Breakfast is western style and lunch and dinner are typical Fijian style.
The World Endeavors Volunteer in Fiji program is flexible in duration, and can be tailored to last between 1 to 12 weeks. Admissions are rolling, and World Endeavors volunteers can choose when they would like to start their program. Due to holidays, traditional vacation schedules, and seasonal work availability, there might be better times than others to volunteer at a specific location or in a specific project.
When you are ready to start planning your volunteer trip to Fiji, contact us. Our experienced advisors will help you sort through any timing considerations unique to your destination or your volunteer project.
Please wait until after you are accepted into the program and you have received the confirmed arrival and departure dates before you book your flight.
|Program Name||First Week||Each Additional Week|
|Volunteer In Fiji||$1,790||$300|
- Program Advisor: dedicated, experienced, and accessible for one-on-one guidance
- Local Onsite Coordinator with 24/7 availability; pre and post arrival orientation
- Visa guidance and support
- Comprehensive travel medical insurance
- Travel Protection with 24/7 Emergency Travel Assistance
- Re-entry Support
- Airport reception
- Shared, single gender dorm style rooms
- 3 meals per weekday and 2 meals per weekend provided
OTHER BUDGET CONSIDERATIONS
- Round-trip transportation to Fiji
- Visa expenses
- Optional trips and excursions
Congratulations on your decision to embark on a life-changing experience abroad! We look forward to working with you to make your trip a memorable, meaningful one. We can accommodate applications received 4 weeks prior to the intended start date up to a year in advance. If your intended start date is less than 4 weeks away, contact World Endeavors for more information.