Free (or Cheap) Volunteer Work in China

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Free (or Cheap) Volunteer Work in China

Grassroots Volunteering in China

The organisations listed below have either got in touch with us to add their details to this or another of our websites, or we otherwise have reason to believe they are actively looking for international volunteers and charge reasonable or no fees to join in, live and work with them:


Shanghai Meiji Culture Communications Co. Ltd

SMCC have an internship programme allowng candidates to experience classroom teaching experience without the need to make a long term commitment to pursuing a career in teaching abroad. Applicants should be between 20 and 40 years old, need a good command of English, both written and spoken, hold at least a high school diploma, and are able to stay with the programme for six months.

Where: Shanghai and elsewhere in China.
Accommodation & Costs: There’s no cost. Accommodation and a monthly allowance is provided, plus a flight allowance and TEFL training.

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Volunteer English Teacher (VET) Program

VET places volunteer English teachers in poor rural schools to give underprivileged children an advantage in learning the English language, and an introduction to foreign cultures and visitors so that they may learn to feel comfortable among people from all over the world. Volunteer Teachers give the amount of time they choose, ideally staying for a week or more, teaching two 40 minutes classes each day in the afternoon.

Where: Poor rural areas of Yangshuo and Guangxi Province.
Accommodation & Costs: Free accommodation and some meals will be provided.

Free (or Cheap) Volunteer Work in China

Just Volunteers

This non profit organisation introduces volunteers to small charities in China, Hong Kong, Mongolia and Malaysia. They take no fees from either volunteers or the small number of charities on their books, which when we looked included an English teaching centre for the handicapped, and a foster home in China.

Where: At the time of writing they were working with organisations in Guangzhou and Beijing.
Accommodation & Costs: Most projects offer free accommodation and food but volunteers need to pay their own travel expenses and take some pocket money.

Help Exchange Networks in China

HelpStay Work Exchanges

Workaway –

More Volunteering in China Resources

Hao Laowai – This commendable resource lists a great array of rewarding volunteer projects in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen.

Other Ways to Travel or Stay for Free in China

Stay free in return for caring for local residents’ homes or pets. Join Trusted Housesitters to live rent free as a house sitter.

Volunteer Experiences*

Volunteering At An English School In Yangshuo – Vicky and Dave converse with English students in a Chinese school. In return, the school allows them to live free of charge in the student dormitories.
Saving the World! My Experience Volunteering in China – Despite moving to China Chris still has to put up with an office full of Queenslanders, one of whom sets him on an adventure to the Liquor Sea.

* not all these volunteer experiences are with grassroots NGOs or low cost organisations

Image copyright Volunteer English Teacher (VET) Program




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