The Fine Print
Whether you want to work with animals, the environment, children, or communities; GOAT Volunteers is here to provide you with some of the finest opportunities to volunteer abroad. Our projects are run by transparent, ethical, and hard-working NGOs around the globe.
Contrary to popular belief, volunteering isn’t free. When a volunteer arrives in country, they’re incurring costs just like someone on vacation would: accommodation, meals, transportation, etc. In addition, NGOs do not receive government funding and typically rely on the contributions of volunteers to continue the noble projects they support. GOAT Volunteers is dedicated to bringing you the best possible opportunities to ensure your contributions, both physical & financial, are put to the best possible use.
There are 2 fees that you’ll be responsible for when volunteering with GOAT Volunteers:
NGO Project Fee
NGO Project fees, charged for each project, reflect the cost of providing in-country support for the volunteers. Each project page lists what is covered by the fee.
Please keep in mind, the project fee covers only what is listed in the project overview.
Flights, bank/wire transfer fees, visa costs, vaccinations, travel insurance, personal items, extra meals/beverages, etc. are not covered and are the responsibility of the volunteer.
In some instances, especially in developing countries, transportation between the volunteer’s accommodation & project site may not be provided, thus incurring transportation costs if walking/biking is not possible. These costs are usually minimal and your local coordinators will assist with explanation of expected pricing.
All project fee funds are paid directly to the NGO; so you see exactly where your money is going. Project fees can be found on the individual country pages. This is done to ensure total transparency. The NGOs do not pay anything for GOAT Volunteers’ services.
As such, 100% of project fee funds go to the NGO/project.
Bank / Wire Transfers
As GOAT Volunteers does not handle the project fee transaction, you will most likely incur a wire transfer fee if that’s the method of payment the NGO accepts. This fee is usually $35-55 depending on your bank. This gives you the piece of mind that 100% of the project fee goes to the NGO/project and no markups have been added by GOAT Volunteers.
If you are having trouble with your wire transfer and prefer to pay via the same method of paying the GOAT Volunteers application fee, that can be arranged but will incur a $50 wire transfer fee and a 5% processing fee (this covers the accounting costs incurred by GOAT).
All projects incur a $250 application fee paid to GOAT Volunteers, except where indicated otherwise (see below). This is the only revenue GOAT receives from volunteer placements. This fee is in line with the industry standard – you’ll see it in nearly all volunteer placements through agencies. The application fee accomplishes 3 things:
- It allows GOAT Volunteers to add more projects in more countries
- It allows GOAT Volunteers to continue to reach more volunteers via marketing & advertising
- It sustains Justin. I live a fairly minimalist lifestyle nowadays, but I do have to make some money to survive!
Discounted Application Fee
Projects in countries that Justin hasn’t visited/volunteered or sent an ambassador to volunteer incur a reduced rate application fee of $150 for the first volunteers on each project. This reduced rate will be discontinued at the sole discretion of GOAT Volunteers.
The reduced rate application fee is subject to a request for these initial volunteers to share photos, videos, personal updates and a review on the projects to ensure that the local organizations are in compliance with GOAT’s Code of Ethics for NGO Partners. This fee is not subject to further discounts.
Returning Volunteers receive a discounted application fee of $150 for all subsequent projects with GOAT Volunteers. This fee is not subject to further discounts.
That’s it. There are no hidden fees, thus providing you with some of the most affordable (and fully transparent) volunteering opportunities available!
The 2 fees paid by volunteers are subject to the following conditions:
Application fees are non-refundable once the placement confirmation is received from our local NGO partner and the volunteer candidate has been notified. Failure to read the email notification of placement confirmation is not grounds for a refund.
Kenya Teaching Project Exception
In the case of a denied placement following a phone/video interview with our NGO partner in Kenya, the volunteer candidate’s will be refunded if a suitable alternative option is not agreed to by the volunteer within 30 days of denial notification. Failure to read the email notification is not grounds for an extension unless approved solely by GOAT Volunteers.
Project fee refunds depend on the amount of time prior to the project start date that a refund request is submitted.
No refunds will be issued once the project start date is reached for any reason, unless it is deemed warranted by GOAT Volunteers and at GOAT Volunteers sole discretion.
Additional information regarding project fee refunds is available in the Terms & Conditions that all volunteers are required to agree to when submitting an application.