Reviews

Volunteer Abroad ReviewsRead reviews from volunteers to help you find the best volunteer abroad program for you.

Wonderful Experience

If you’re planning to go to Ghana and want to volunteer I will sincerely recommend going with OGVO! I stayed for two weeks in Ghana. I worked at the Hope Christian Hospital in Gomoa-Fetteh, Central Region of Ghana. I was welcomed by the whole staff. They were all caring for me and wanted me to show as much as possible. As a psychologist, I got an insight in the way Ghanaian people look at emotional problems and mental disorders. I believe this place is excellent to come to if you want to become a trained nurse, midwife or doctor with a special interest in tropical diseases and fertility issues. You will focus on your observation skills even though modern equipment is available. You can also find out more about the traditional believes about medicine and the state-of-the-art of modern medicine. Seth Barnes, OGVO local coordinator, picked me up at the airport. If you enter an unknown country, it’s always nice to have a smile awaiting for you. Special thanks go out to Naomi, who was a mother as well as a sister to me. Thank you for taking such good care of me, not only, but especially when I was sick. I liked my Ghanaian experience and, I would highly recommend the volunteer experience and OGVO to others.

Bieke De Wilde

Nationality: Belgian

Age: 39

Country: Ghana

Program: Mental Health & Psychology Experience

Date: September 2017 – 2 weeks

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Dentistry student internship

OGVO quickly stood out as a safe and trustworthy organisation. All my emails in advance of both booking and going to Ghana were answered quickly – usually within few hours. In Ghana everything went smoothly. OGVO met me and my travel partner at the airport and followed us to our lovely host family. OGVO had organized for me to work at a great dental clinic in Kumasi. I thank OGVO for a great experience in Ghana.

Liva Lone

Nationality: Norwegian

Age: 26

Country: Ghana

Program: Dental Elective Internship

Date: August 2017 – 3 weeks

 

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Dental internship in Kumasi

My friend and I came from Norway for a 3 week stay in Kumasi. We were having a dental internship at a private clinic where the people there were so friendly, welcoming us and treating us as family from day one. The family we stayed with was very friendly and helpful. We got good food, they made sure we felt comfortable at all times and helped us with planning and following us to the transport we were taking for weekend trips. The experience with how friendly people are here is one that I will take with me home and remember. All in all it has been three fantastic weeks full of work, culture and good experiences. I would absolutely recommend to travel with OGVO to Ghana!

Lise Mustad Ludviksen

Nationality: Norwegian

Age: 25

Country: Ghana

Program: Dental Elective Internship

Date: August 2017 – 3 weeks

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Great experience

My experience abroad was great and challenging at the same time. I was a caregiver at an orphanage, my job was feeding the kids, playing, changing, cleaning around the orphanage etc. My first week was very difficult. I was extremely homesick (i had never traveled far from home before) and culture shock but after I got over it, the fun began! I started to open up more and actually talk with people and in doing so, I made the greatest connections with people who I’ll never forget. Volunteering abroad also helped me grow up, be a stronger person, learn more… I overall feel like a better person and more confident person in making decisions. If you are thinking of doing this, DO IT. You will not regret it but do understand it will take a few days to a week to adjust.

Sydney Ewell

Nationality: American

Age: 21

Country: Ghana

Program: Care & Orphanage

Date: June 2017 – 4 weeks

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Very nice

I did enjoy the program very much. I really like the personal development and the safety and care that people showed me. Regarding the accommodation, the family was very friendly and open, but the house itself was a bit dirty. The project I was volunteering at was the school. The kids was very engaging and the teachers was very helpful. I would have wished I was told that they had exams and where vacating the two weeks i was there, so I could have prepared myself for the activities instead of education. The different sightseeing i did during my stay was very interesting and educational, which I am very happy about. I also like the fact that I could decide for myself what I wanted to see or not. You should be prepared to pay for attractions and some food plus water yourself. My total experience has been very great! I think for me, it was very important for me to have some other volunteers around me. In my case there were no one other than me to attend the high school special but one girl, who attended the healthcare project.

Helene Kaas

Nationality: Danish

Age: 16

Country: Ghana

Program: High School Volunteer Abroad

Date: April 2017 – 2 weeks

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Amazing Experience

I came to Ghana for two weeks with my wife to volunteer in a orphanage and learn about the local culture. We had an amazing experience with our placement at Liberty Family Home and school. It was located in a small town where everybody knows you. OGVO was a great program, they helped us all along the way with any questions we had both before and during the program. We appreciated all the hospitality of OGVO and Liberty Home.

Jeremy Fisher

Nationality: American

Age: 30

Country: Ghana

Program: Care & Orphanage

Date: March 2017 – 2 weeks

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Wonderful experience

OGVO was very attentive throughout the volunteer process. I volunteered with my husband, and we had many questions before the program started and they always responded very quickly and attentively. We were well taken care of with travelling to and from our volunteer location and our weekend to Mole National Park, and it was reassuring to have the support from OGVO throughout the process. We worked at a rural orphanage, and had wonderful opportunities to interact with the orphans and other people in the community. We felt very well taken care of and this let us have a really positive experience in our time in Ghana.

Jackie Fisher

Nationality: American

Age: 30

Country: Ghana

Program: Care & Orphanage

Date: March 2017 – 2 weeks

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Microfinance volunteer placement

Overall this was an amazing experience. My program placement organization completed different work than I was expecting initially coming over, but exposed me to the true microfinance industry within Ghana. The individuals that I worked with daily welcomed me with open arms and were there to teach me all they could every day. Definitely have learned a lot throughout my 3 weeks in Ghana. Frank was also a huge part in why I had such a good experience. He was consistently there to ensure I was adjusting well and was comfortable in all situations. He went above and beyond and I am thankful for him during my time here. The only slight drawback during my time here was my living situation. I was often asked for things and did not feel completely comfortable here at all times which made the adjustment initially difficult. Other than that amazing experience!

Julia Burlas

Nationality: American

Age: 25

Country: Ghana

Program: Microfinance Internships & Volunteering

Date: January 2017 – 3 weeks

 

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Good times in Ghana

I chose this program because I was immediately taken by the personalized responses I received from the program director. I had contacted multiple organizations and felt like a little fish in a big pond. Also, most of the larger organizations I contacted were outside of Ghana and I really wanted a local program. For 3 or 4 months before, I exchanged emails with the director. I had many many questions and Frank always responded within 48 hours and never made me feel like I was a hassle. He also developed the program to meet my very specific needs. I did this program on my own accord, so I was not part of a school or work program. I wanted to challenge myself in a new country and help as well. I was concerned about traveling alone, since this was my first solo trip abroad. But I can honestly say, I never once felt unsafe the entire time I was in Ghana. Although, I was rarely alone. I decided to volunteer in a rural area of Ghana, about 30 minutes outside of Kumasi. I’m glad I did, because Kumasi was a little bit more polluted so I had to have my inhaler handy a few times as I passed through. Onwe was a terrific little town and very friendly. I was placed at the Onwe Government Hospital. I arrived at a challenging time, the pharmacies were on strike, so there were less patients than usual. I rotated around the different wards and helped when I could. I specialize in dermatology, so I got to help with a lot of the dermatology cases. Overall, I didn’t get to do as much as I wanted, but like I mentioned I came at a trying time. I highly recommend doing the cultural immersion portion that is offered. Those were some of my favorite moments of my time here. I learned lots of Twi (local language spoken) and cultural traditions. It’s definitely worth the extra money. I also signed up for the weekend tour to Cape Coast which was amazing. Overall, I really enjoyed my time in Ghana. I’m glad I did the cultural immersion and weekend tour, I learned a lot about the country through those activities. I would’ve liked to have gotten more from my time at the hospital, but that wasn’t really anyone’s fault. The selling point of this program though is director Frank’s individualized attention and sincere care to make a program that meets your needs as well as the local coordinators and Twi tutor that are part of the organization. The people really made this whole experience memorable. I definitely will return to Ghana and I highly recommend this program.

Ame Phitwong

Nationality: American

Age: 32

Country: Ghana

Program: Medical & Healthcare Internships

Date:  September 2016 – 2 weeks

 

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Great experience

It was such a great experience to spend our time here, doing something little, but good. I hope that me and my sister have done every of these children a little happier. Of course not everything here was amazing, but we understand it, cuz life here is absolutely different than our life in Russia. So, we’re so excited about this program, we also will help these children in future, will try to send them different things that they need most and of course will try to come back in the future.

Hleb Belehau

Nationality: Russian

Age: 17

Country: Ghana

Program: Care & Orphanage

Date: July 2016 – 2 weeks

 

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Fantastic

It was a great experience that gave us the understanding of different problems that the kids in Ghana meet. It was a pleasure to share this experience in our family. The kids are very kind and hardworking, they like to study despite the fact that they have no all opportunities for this. They don’t have a lot things, but they always share everything with each other. Here we saw how the simple things can make kids happy.

Aliaksandra Belehava

Nationality: Russian

Age: 25

Country: Ghana

Program: Care & Orphanage

Date: July 2016 – 2 weeks

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Two wonderful weeks

I spent two wonderful weeks in Kumasi, Ghana. The food, the host family, the work – everything was excellent! You really get to see Ghana from within which is such a fantastic experience. Still, the security always felt very high.

Ellinor Segersten

Nationality: Swedish

Age: 16

Country: Ghana

Program: High School Specials

Date: June 2016 – 2 weeks

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Truly amazing

Traveling to a place like Ghana is such a unique amazing adventure to have so young in your life. Volunteering although tough is so rewarding, you get to experience the culture full on always. It was truly incredible I completely suggest to travel and volunteer in Ghana to anyone.

Erin Pulkownik

Nationality: American

Age: 15

Country: Ghana

Program: High School Specials

Date: June 2016 – 2 weeks

 

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King Jesus Christ Orphanage Assignment

As a 20-year old pursuing this program alone and with no contacts in Ghana to begin with, I was astounded by the care and support I received by Frank, one of the program directors, and my host family. I was immediately welcomed into a loving household that was always checking on me to make sure that everything was okay. Frank was marvelous. A very sweet-hearted gentleman, he always made sure I was safe and that I was having a good time. As for my volunteer service, I now wish I had chosen another avenue. This is not because my experience was negative, as the children never ceased to make me smile, but for the sole reason that I believe the significance of my impact to be minuscule and I feel as though I could have gotten more out of the program( due to language barrier issues with the children) if I had pursued another line of service (although I was only with the program for two-weeks) Recommendations for future volunteers in this program: – Study at least some teaching-related twi words, they will come in handy (sit, listen, stop etc.). – Be prepared to see children all-out fighting each other ( this is a common occurrence as the children enforce their own punishments often) – Especially if you are white, be prepared to have children no matter where you go, asking you for money or shouting ” Obruni!”( meaning white person) – Do not come with pre-conceived notions of how things will work. -If possible, go on the Cape Coast excursion. You really learn a lot about African history from a perspective you might not readily be approached with if you were to study it abroad.

Victoria Sunseri

Nationality: American

Age: 22

Country: Ghana

Program: Care & Orphanage

Date: June 2016 – 2 weeks

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Coaching football in Kumasi

Hello everyone, I’m Robin, an international volunteer from the Netherlands. I volunteered for 2 weeks in Kumasi, Ghana doing teaching and coaching football to children. I really enjoyed my time in Ghana doing voluntary work! My host family were very nice, caring and helpful people, I never hesitated to talk to them about anything. Their kindness I sincerely appreciated. The work I did, I really loved and I looked forward to going to work everyday because I knew that every day would be a good day. The children really appreciated me being there and respected me very well. I am very passionate about football and also working with children, so this program was a perfect fit for me. I experienced the great Ghanaian culture through visiting museums and places during weekends, eating from the lovely Ghanaian cuisine but mostly through the very friendly people! I have also made good friendships whilst being here with the school staff, the school children, my host family and also my resourceful OGVO guide. To sum everything up, I would just like to say that it was an amazing, unforgettable experience for me and that I highly recommend volunteering through Our Generation Voluntary Organisation to all people looking to volunteer in the great country of Ghana.

Robin Fleskens

Nationality: Dutch

Age: 16

Program: Teaching & Sports Coaching (Football)

Date: February 2016 – 2 weeks

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Medical Volunteering in Kumasi

Overall very pleasant experience working with OGVO. Frank, our program coordinator, was very helpful and made sure that we had a rewarding experience while we were in Ghana. I spent four weeks volunteering at Aniniwah Medical Center where I was exposed to many areas of health care from consultations to surgeries. All the medical professionals we encountered were knowledgeable and willing to teach. I found the whole experience invaluable as it helped me gain a better insight into how medicine works in developing countries such as Ghana.

Stephanie Grunberg

Nationality: American

Age: 26

Program: Medical & Healthcare (Elective)

Date: November 2015 – 4 weeks

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Great place for students

“Great place for students! I learned a lot and was very impressed with all the doctors. Dr. Addison, Dr. Mawuse, and Dr. York were particularly excellent, and please thank them for letting us follow them around!

Being with a host family is a wonderful experience. Thank you to everyone for helping us.
FRANK & OGVO – FRANK IS AMAZING!! Frank took very good care of us, and made sure we were safe and happy. Frank made the experience of being in Ghana very good!

Frank is fantastic, and I really appreciate everything he did”.

Mindy Eklove

Nationality: Canadian

Age: 34

Program: Medical & Healthcare (Elective)

Date: November 2015 – 4 weeks

 

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Amazing

“Frank was very helpful throughout our whole trip in guiding us through Kumasi at first, and accompanying us on our weekend tours to Cape Coast and Mole National Park. Thank you for showing us around!
Always easy to reach / contact. We were well prepared from all Frank’s emails before we arrived, they were very thorough.
Frank was very generous with his time and energy; he worked very hard to make sure we were comfortable.
We were very grateful for Frank’s help and support at EMINA HOSPITAL when our friend became ill. This would be a good place to bring any volunteers who get sick in the future. Overall, OGVO is a wonderful organization”.

Alessandra Stepanko

Nationality: Canadian

Age: 27

Program: Medical & Healthcare (Elective)

Date: November 2015 – 4 weeks

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My three weeks of work in Boabeng Fiema monkey sanctuary

I wanted to try to travel somewhere alone and do something different while exploring a new country I didn’t know much about so I decided to look into volunteer works. It was just by chance I stumbled across OGVO on worldwidehelpers.com and I decided to give it a shot.

The fast and friendly e-mail replies from the head of the organization made me decide that I wanted to try it out and so I started all the preparations for the new adventure I was throwing myself into.

I went to Ghana in the middle of January 2014 and stayed for 5 weeks. I had 3 weeks in the village of Akrudwa #2 close to the Boabeng Fiema monkey sanctuary where I worked during the afternoons and weekends, I also spent some time in school, teaching third graders and hanging out with teachers.

Right from the moment I stepped outside the airport and a guy from the organization picked me up I was thrown into the Ghanaian way of life which was my hope for the trip. I made some European friends, fellow volunteers (there’s a lot in the southern Ghana especially) but mostly I spent time with locals, in the village where I stayed, traveled to Mole national park and Kintampo falls with a few local, really nice guys I got to know in the village.

Larger organizations might connect you to more volunteers but I like that OGVO really gives you the opportunity to explore and be a part of Ghanaian culture, which is really, really different but very, very interesting and nice.

I would surely recommend OGVO to people who wants to explore a whole new country in Africa, Ghana is rather safe and the people is mostly really nice. The work is quite relaxed but I liked doing tours and do some guiding! I would recommend you to stay a bit longer than 5 weeks in Ghana though, the schoolwork could become really interesting if you stayed a bit longer so you get more into it than I did.

Ultimately Ghana is well worth visiting and OGVO is a very friendly organization that will help you during your stay!

John Hannes Olof Olsson

Nationality: Swedish

Age: 24

Program: Wildlife

Date: January 2014 – 5 weeks

 

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An experience that you will not forget

Without a doubt, this will be an experience that you will not forget. I volunteered at Adehyee school in a small town 30 minutes from Kumasi. The town did not have much, but it was great getting a real life experience of people that live in Ghana. If you want a real experience, I would suggest going to a smaller town instead of the city.
The town was amazing, the people are so loving there. Everybody loves seeing visitors in their small towns, everybody will know who you are very quickly. Everybody will want to talk and meet you, so be ready to meet people. “Brownie” means white person there, everybody/kids know this word so get use to it.
At the school, I was an English teacher and a swimming instructor. Teaching swimming was the highlight of my experience. The kids had never been in water before, and seeing their smiles and excitement is the best feeling ever. Instructing swimming was teaching them lessons that could save a life sometime.
Try and meet new friends that you can trust, but be very careful. Keep your room locked and do not trust people with your stuff. Many people in Ghana are poor and you never really know who you can trust for the longest time. You will have to meet friends though, it will make the experience so much better.
Just some information for future volunteers, be ready to not have all the luxuries that you have been granted in life. Running water and electricity are not always available, but this allows you to enjoy the culture and nature around you. I would REALLY recommend OGVO programs!

Joshua Busick

Nationality: American

Age: 22

Program: Teaching

Date: February 2013 – 10 weeks

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Want to challenge yourself and see what real medicine is all about? OGVO makes it happen.

My experience in Kumasi was instrumental in my successful application to medical school in Australia. Based in a small, hands-on clinic in Kumasi, I was actively learning from day one. It was hot, humid and the small waiting room was full of prenatal women, patiently waiting their turn with the doctor. Staff were busily attending to patients with barely time to raise their eyes to notice the awkward Obruni half-cocked and hesitating in the doorway. “Alex!” Frank gestured in his direction, “come and meet the team”. I needn’t have worried: within five minutes, I realised that I had just made 10 new friends. And I realised that I didn’t have time to be nervous! Primarily a maternity clinic – and given the high fertility rate in Kumasi – you are going to be busy. You are given as much or as little responsibility as your experience will allow. However, it must be said: you will be permitted to be involved in procedures that would otherwise be impossible back home. This is an unparalleled opportunity to observe, learn and even practice the messy, chaotic and REAL side of primary care medicine in a developing country. That kind of hands-on experience was indispensable and is a driving factor of my recommendation for OGVO. I began simply shadowing a GP while he went about doing consultations. During this time I learned about all the prevalent maladies affecting Kumasi’s many residents: malaria, typhoid and more malaria. After some time just observing, the GP got me consulting with patients, before I went into the lab to learn how to identify different pathogens under the microscope and make a proper diagnosis. You get to check for malaria, sickle cell anemia – the list goes on. I also weighed and immunised infants, helped deliver two babies, and gave talks to antenatal women on how to stay healthy during pregnancy. This educational role saw me head out into (very) regional villages to give out medication and give more talks on primary healthcare. It was challenging and daunting at first, but entirely awesome and a hugely important experience for me. Undertaking a medical internship through OGVO is a life-changing experience and something that I would recommend without hesitation. Frank and the organisation will ensure that you are happy and well looked-after, from the moment he meets you at the airport to the time you say a difficult goodbye. At times you will need to draw on your inner-strength and the new friends around you, but I promise that you will leave a different, more-resilient person with a better-developed global outlook. Not to mention an impressive set of skills to aid you as you begin or continue your medical training.

Alexander James Godfrey

Nationality: Australian

Age: 25

Country: Ghana

Program: Medical & Healthcare Internships

Date: January 2013 – 8 weeks

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