Welcome to The Singing Tree Volunteering Page.
In the past, through our Community Centre and activities, we have has an substantial role in informing, directing and coordinating volunteers and supporters of local NGOs and orphanages. In recent months, since we changed our location we had to curtail down our direct involvement with day-to-day volunteer coordination. However, we have experience in dealing with the sector, which we are most happy to support enquiries (email Michael at singing…).
Two words of caution:
Over the last few years, the volunteer world – some call it voluntourism! – has become big business. There are quite few organizations – some more transparent than others, which charge large sums to ‘manage’ placements and logistics for keen and well-intentioned visitors. Without getting to bogged in details, we strongly recommend
that you enquire properly as to the motives and financial structires of anyone that is taking on helping you to find an avenue for your altruistic intentions. A common ruse is to claim that some (even most) of the money that is collected/charged will go directly to assist the organizations you will help.
Working with children – it is highly inappropriate to expect that one can waltz into an orphanage and start interacting intensively with children without a proper code of conduct and even better background checks. We are not talking about visiting (organized properly in advance please) and taking pictures or donating books, but about expecting to turn up at the door of a local school, orphanage or any other organization that works with children and take on a job/position without some scrutiny. Any organization that let’s you do that potentially works against the benefit of the children
. For an example of excellence in this area please check out the Green Gecko Project website here
We also recommend that you connect with conCERT Cambodia
(Connecting Community, Environment and Responsible Tourism). Their information center provides up-to-date and accurate information on NGOs that have been checked and approved for genuine activities and transparent management.
In addition, we can recommend the following places – make sure you write and network with them in advance: