Mongolia is one of the most picturesque places on Earth, and you could have the opportunity to live and volunteer in this breathtaking country. This vast land is filled with striking mountains, unending plateaus, sand dunes, and even permanent glaciers. The Gobi Desert is partially located in Mongolia and the terrain from steppe to mountain top is filled with interesting flora and fauna. Whether you choose to stay in the growing capital of Ulaanbaatar or traipse around the countryside with nomadic populations, you will come away with an unforgettable experience and plenty of unique photo opportunities.
Mongolia at a Glance
Domestic Population: 2.95 Million People
Capital City: Ulan Bator/Ulaanbaatar
Language: Khalkha Mongolian
Trivia: The world’s tallest statue of a horse is located in Mongolia and it comes with a gigantic statue of Genghis Khan.
When is The Best Time to Volunteer in Mongolia
You can find programs throughout the year depending on the type of volunteer work and the organization. If you are a university student, there are plenty of projects that can be done during your summer or winter breaks. If this is for your gap year or you would just like to give back to a community, then there are volunteer projects that can be adjusted for start date and the length of time that you would like to volunteer in Mongolia.
Programs and Popular Cities
Volunteer projects in Mongolia range from health care work to helping out in orphanages to business management and even including working in media and television. There is a variety of projects that should appeal to all interests and backgrounds. The minimum time for you to volunteer is one week, but you can extend up to a year or more.
Ulaanbaatar: This city is filled with monasteries, museums, and a multitude of other historical and significant sights. If you have the time and can work out the timing, you should consider attending Naadam, which is an extremely famous festival for wrestling, horse racing, and archery.
- Volunteers for Peace Greening Mongolia
- Projects Abroad Volunteer in Mongolia
- Love Volunteers Mongolia
- Mongolian Volunteer Organization
Housing Options in Mongolia
As a volunteer in Mongolia, you will either be placed in a volunteer apartment with fellow volunteers or in a homestay. In a volunteer apartment, you will either be provided with food to prepare yourself or left to your own devices in the local supermarkets. Depending on where you are located, homestays will either be a house or a Mongolian Ger (a yurt/nomadic tent). You will have the opportunity to live with local families and to experience home cooked meals, which are heavy on meats and stews.
If you are a vegetarian, make sure to inform your program of this, and if you are placed in a homestay, remind your host family so that they do not accidentally serve you something that you cannot eat.
Costs of Volunteer Abroad Programs in Mongolia
The cost of a week of volunteer work is anywhere from $100 to $2195. The price depends on what you will receive from the hosting program and you can choose for them to be very involved or very hands off. The more expensive programs tend to include travel insurance, airport pickup and drop off, as well as an on-site orientation. Always double check to see what the perks are.
The cost of a two week volunteer program increases $385 and then the three week goes to $500. Some programs also require an on-site fee or they will charge an initial deposit fee in addition to the weekly fee that goes to cover housing and meals.
For some of the less expensive programs, you can get away with $2830 for a six month volunteer placement.
Mongolia is a beautiful country with a rich history and culture. The people are warm and friendly, and the adventures to be had are unlimited. You can go horseback riding amidst the vast steppes, learn how to hunt with an eagle, and go on a camel ride in the desert. If you choose to volunteer abroad in Mongolia, you will be able to experience an extraordinary place, and to see how Mongolians live, work, and love. Get out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself by learning a new way of seeing the world. You might even be able to take the skills you learned and translate them to a future career or another volunteer project. Give volunteering in Mongolia a try, you will not regret it.