Frequently Asked Questions:
Are there any Costs Involved?
A: Yes. You fund raise an $850 dollar donation for a 60 day cycle - which is the length of most of our cycles. This equates to just $106 per week. This donation covers the cost of airport transfers, accommodation, Breakfast & Lunch on weekdays, clean drinking water, Teaching Resources, one Visa sponsorship letter, comprehensive training and induction upon arrival, continued training and support throughout the placement, and MUCH MUCH MORE! You are responsible for your own flights, DBS checks, health insurance and visa.
Can i choose the dates of my placement?
A: The placement dates are fixed, however you can choose which placement best suits your plans. (See 'volunteer with us' for placement breakdown & dates).
Can i carry on travelling after i have finished my placement?
A: Yes! Many of our volunteers continue their travels after their placement with us. Just let us know when you apply that this is what you want to do.
What's the accommodation like?
A: You will be staying in one of our two dorm rooms at the Bukit Lawang Trust Community Centre. These are four bed dorm rooms. (please be aware these may be mixed gender based upon the ratio of male/female volunteers on any given placement). Alternatively, if you are volunteering on the Ecological Farming Programme, you will be staying with our project partner Erna in her incredible home stay just outside the village! If you are unhappy with sharing a dorm room, contact us as we have partnerships with several local guesthouses and home stays, but we strongly advise staying at the Trust for the full volunteer experience.
What VISA do i need, and how do i apply?
A: For placements on the Education programme or the Youth Led Sustainable Enterprise Programme you will need a 60 day Social Visa. This can be applied for at your local Indonesian Embassy. This can be done in person, in which case it usually takes between 1 and 2 working days. Or alternatively via post which takes around 7 - 12 days. If you are on the Ecological Farming Programme you will need a 60 day Tourist Visa.
Do i need to be a qualified teacher/TEFL to teach on the Education Programme?
A: In short, No. Teaching qualifications are preferable, however we do value good experience here at the trust so applicants with no qualifications but sufficient experience who do well in our interview can still teach on the education programme.
How long will it take to get there?
A: Naturally this varies depending on where you are coming from, but from most European countries the journey ranges from 16 - 24 hours depending on your layovers, stops and departure airport.
Do you have WIFI?
A: YES! we have WiFi at the community centre, this comes included in your volunteer fees. However there is no WiFi at Erna's Eco farm, so for those who want a real escape that is the place to be! (alternatively its five minutes to the trust if you need to catch up on your socials!
What's the commitment?
A: Before coming out to North Sumatra you will be asked to sign a volunteer code of conduct, which you will be expected to adhere to for the duration of your time on placement. Your placement will be 60 days, and during this time you will be held accountable to your programme manager. You will generally volunteer 8:30-5 Monday to Friday, although we do also have evening activities you can choose to join. Weekends are your own!
Do i have to fund raise?
A: We encourage all volunteers to fund raise as much as possible to reduce the cost to themselves, but if you would rather pay the $850 donation without fundraising, that is allowed. Additionally, You may wish to hold a fund raising event as part of your action at home project after leaving Sumatra. Please note that you may NOT fund raise for the cost of flights, visa, health insurance etc. If you raise money in the Trust's name then the Trust must receive that money. It can't be used on personal expenses.