Volunteering FAQ’s

Q- Does it cost to volunteer?

A: Yes. You fund raise a total donation of $106 per week for the time that you spend with us. 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.


Q- What does the Volunteer Fee not Cover?

A: You are responsible for your own flights, criminal background checks, health insurance and visa. You are also expected to buy you own evening meals and food on weekends – although we usually operate on a cooking rota!

Q: Can I choose the dates of my placement? 

A: The placement dates are fixed in order to provide stability for all our students. However you can choose which placement best suits your plans, but be aware that our minimum placement length is one month. 

Q: What's the accommodation like? 

A: You will be staying in one of our dorm rooms at the Bukit Lawang Trust Community Centre, or at Erna’s Homestay. Accommodation is basic, but clean and comfortable. 

Q: What VISA do I need, and how do I apply? 

A: To legally volunteer in Indonesia 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 via post which takes around 7 - 12 days.  

Q: 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. 

Q: 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. 

Q: Do you have WIFI? 

A: We have WiFi at the Trust, although we do also have frequent power cuts! There is no WiFi at Erna's Eco farm, so for those who want a real escape that is the place to be! 

Q: 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. 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!

Q: 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. 

If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch!


Yayasan Bukit Lawang Trust Dusun III,

Timbang Jaya Jalan Besar,

Bukit Lawang,


Langkat Regency,

Sumatra Indonesia 20774,


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