Care Volunteer Projects in Jamaica
- Placement locations: Mandeville
- Types of care projects:Care centres, homes for the elderly and homes for people with severe disabilities
- Ages: Working with babies, children or the elderly
- Number of people cared for: 10+
- Role: Assisting with local staff including playing with children, cleaning, counselling, feeding basic teaching and giving general help
- Accommodation: Host families
- Price: From
- What's included? Food, accommodation, transfers to and from our specified airport,transport to and from work where required, insurance, personal webpage, induction and orientation, 24/7 support
- What's not included? Flights, visa costs, spending money
- Length of placement: From 1 week
- Start dates: Flexible
You can volunteer on a Care project in Jamaica, working with either children or adults. We offer projects in care centres, pre-schools and special needs schools. You can also choose to volunteer in homes for the elderly, with our Child Rights Initiative project or in a home for people with severe disabilities. These projects are based in and around the town of Mandeville or in Montego Bay.
Volunteers can also work on a challenging HIV/AIDS Project which is based in Montego Bay.
You have an important role to play when volunteering in Jamaica. Our aim is to make a difference in the lives of underprivileged children and adults. We simply cannot do this without the help of our dedicated volunteers.
You can read more detailed information about the aims of the project in our Jamaica Care Management Plan.
Our Care Project Officer in Jamaica organises regular workshops for our volunteers. The workshops will provide tools and tips on how to better organise your work at your placement. They will also give information on key issues relating to the placement, problem solving ideas and offer an opportunity to receive and give feedback. You will also learn some new activities and informal educational methods to use at your placement.
Everybody is welcome on a Care project in Jamaica. The key is that you are determined to work hard and are committed to your role. You can find out more about the different options available below:
Volunteering with children
Some of our Care projects are based in care centres. Many of the children here have had very difficult lives and may require special care and attention. Some children have special needs, which range from mild to severe disabilities and are on individual diets. They may also require physiotherapy and special education plans. Your job is to help improve their lives in whatever way possible. This will be quite varied but may include tasks such as:
- Playing games and sports with the children.
- Helping with their homework.
- Helping with bathing, feeding and doing laundry.
- Taking small groups out on a trip.
Helping with basic education is also very important. Many of the children arrive at the homes after being abandoned, or placed there by the courts. They may have received no previous formal education.
Another option would be to teach in a local pre-school. Volunteers at these placements assist with interactive activities that enhance the growth and development of the children. Finally, you could be placed at a special needs schools for children with mental, physical, and learning disabilities.
Working at a care placement in Jamaica offers you the opportunity to help with the emotional, social, educational, and physical development of children. Please be aware that you will be asked to do more than just play with the children and a flexible attitude is always appreciated. All the care work in Jamaica focuses on providing a worthwhile service, which will show real results for the children or placement. This work also expands the skills of the volunteer.
Volunteering with the elderly
Projects Abroad also offers Care placements in homes for the elderly. This is a chance for you to really get creative and touch the lives of the elderly in a meaningful way. Many of the residents have been neglected or abandoned by their families. They are in real need of support at this stage in their lives. You can get involved in tasks such as:
- Helping to feed the elderly residents.
- Reading to the residents, playing games and engaging them in conversation.
- Taking them for a walk around the compound.
The aim is to engage the elderly in wholesome activities that will stimulate them mentally, physically, and socially. Volunteers who have experience working with the elderly can even develop new programmes.
Volunteering on the Child Rights Initiative project
The final option for Care volunteers in Jamaica is to work on the Child Rights Initiative (CRI). This is a project that combines the work of various government agencies and professionals. Volunteers work in one of four areas of children's rights: Participation Rights, Survival Rights, Developmental Rights or Protection Rights.
You will be working alongside various professionals such as social workers, psychologists, counsellors, or doctors. As a volunteer with CRI you will work directly with clients and take on a wide variety of work. This may include the following areas:
- Adoption and foster care.
- Trauma and career counselling.
- Family support and reintegration.
- Conducting psychological and educational evaluations.
- Conducting investigations, preparing reports and going to court.
- Teaching remedial classes, dance, drama and art.
Volunteers need to be computer literate and have excellent communication skills. You may need to prepare reports, participate in seminars and conferences or develop plans and programmes. Your knowledge and skills will determine the extent to which you are involved in some highly technical and clinical components. This may include psychological evaluations and counselling. All volunteers requesting to work on the CRI project must be fluent in English.
You can join the Care project in Jamaica for one, two or three weeks if you don't have time to join us for four weeks or more. This project has been selected by our local colleagues as being suitable for short term volunteering for both the host community and the volunteer Although you will gain a valuable cultural insight and work within the local community please be aware that you may not be able to make the same impact as someone volunteering for a longer period.
Volunteering abroad on a Care Project in Jamaica
Over the years, our volunteers have worked with children at orphanages and residential care homes in Jamaica. They have done incredible work at these placements, improving living conditions there and creating opportunities for children by supporting their education and care. However, we have decided to move our focus away from orphanages and homes toward community and family-based care. This is because we believe stable family environments are best for the children we work with. Read more about orphanage volunteering and our position on it. This means that instead of volunteering in orphanages in Jamaica, volunteers will work in placements like day care centres, kindergartens and schools, or support groups for the elderly and mothers and babies. This will help Projects Abroad build stronger relationships with local communities and – most importantly – help families stay together and flourish.
If you have qualifications or experience in this field then we can make use of your skills. Read more about the opportunities for skilled volunteers in Jamaica.