A gap year volunteer abroad teaches a child the alphabet in Thailand as part of her Childcare Project.

Gap Year Volunteer Abroad Programs

Use your gap year to explore other countries, realize your potential, and gain real-world experience

Unlock your potential and use your gap year abroad to discover what you’re capable of. With Projects Abroad, you’ll gain real-world experience and support communities in need at the same time. It’s an exciting and different way to start the next chapter of your life after high school.  


On a gap year program abroad after high school, the experience can be designed to benefit your exact interests and goals. You can explore a career you’re interested in, like medicine or law, and add relevant work experience to your resume. We have options for students who’ve deferred their college acceptance, and for those who don’t feel they’re ready for university just yet. Whatever your motivation, we’ll be there to help you find what you’re looking for.   


There’s a lot you can get involved in by volunteering abroad on your gap year. You can protect endangered ecosystems and wild animals on a Conservation Project. Or, give children the educational support they desperately need on a Childcare Project. If you’re eager to be more independent, we recommend our Flexi Trips. You can also join a group of gap year students on our Global Gap program, or join shorter Team Trips.   


All of our programs focus on implementing long-term, sustainable solutions. We don’t believe in quick fixes. So no matter how short or long your gap year abroad is, you’ll be part of ongoing efforts to make a real difference.

1-9 of 198 Projects

Featured
Projects Abroad male intern waits to examine patients at a medical outreach in Kenya.

From $2,745 CAD

Medical Internship in Kenya
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Gain medical work experience by learning directly from doctors and doing health checks during outreaches

  • Completely flexible dates
  • Anyone aged 16 or over can join
  • From 1 week
A volunteer working with children in Peru sits with a child in a classroom to help them with an activity.

From $2,295 CAD

Volunteer with Children in Peru
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Work with local teachers to support early childhood development at disadvantaged childcare centres

  • Completely flexible dates
  • Anyone aged 16 or over can join
  • From 1 week
Projects Abroad volunteers interact with a child in Argentina during a community day at a local care centre.

From $2,520 CAD

Volunteer with Children in Argentina
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Live in vibrant Argentina and prepare children for school through general development and teaching them basic life skills

  • Completely flexible dates
  • Anyone aged 16 or over can join
  • From 1 week
Female volunteer working with children in Romania at a care centre for her Childcare Project.

From $3,415 CAD

Volunteer with Children in Romania
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Gain childcare experience and support early childhood development in disadvantaged care centres

  • Completely flexible dates
  • Anyone aged 16 or over can join
  • From 2 weeks
An intern participates in health screenings as part of their medical work experience in Nepal.

From $1,970 CAD

Medical Internship in Nepal
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Gain invaluable medical experience while working alongside knowledgeable nurses and doctors in Nepal

  • Completely flexible dates
  • Anyone aged 16 or over can join
  • From 1 week
A student finishes an English exercise on the white board at a volunteer teaching placement in Peru.

From $2,290 CAD

Volunteer Teaching in Peru
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Work a at schools in Peru and help young students and teachers improve their English language skills

  • Completely flexible dates
  • Anyone aged 16 or over can join
  • From 2 weeks
Projects Abroad volunteer working with children in Mongolia helps a child draw around their hands during an educational acitivity.

From $2,520 CAD

Volunteer with Children in Mongolia
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Work with disadvantaged children in Ulaanbaatar and support early childhood development

  • Completely flexible dates
  • Anyone aged 16 or over can join
  • From 1 week
A group of sharks pictured by Projects Abroad volunteers whilst diving on their Shark Conservation volunteering project in Fiji.

From $4,690 CAD

Shark Conservation Volunteering in Fiji
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Dive in the stunning waters of the South Pacific and play a vital role in shark conservation efforts

  • Completely flexible dates
  • Anyone aged 16 or over can join
  • From 2 weeks
Legal clinic in session in Mitchells Plain, Cape Town

From $3,740 CAD

Law and Human Rights Internship in South Africa
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Live and work in Cape Town and gain work experience while learning from lawyers and human rights professionals

  • Completely flexible dates
  • Anyone aged 16 or over can join
  • From 2 weeks
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Can't find what you're looking for?

We’d be happy to talk about creating a custom gap year for you. Most of our staff have had gap years abroad themselves, so they’re ready to answer your questions, big or small.

1 888 839 3535

or email:

to start planning your project

Students volunteering with Projects Abroad for their gap year help plant mangroves in Fiji, South Pacific.

Why should I volunteer during my gap year?

We want you to get the most out of your gap year. So, depending on your goals, we’ll help you put together a gap year travel program that will benefit you the most.


Here are six of the most popular reasons our previous volunteers chose to volunteer abroad for their gap years:  


  1. Explore a career path: Explore potential career paths and discover what you’re passionate about. It’s also a great way to find out if you have what it takes to pursue a especially challenging career, like medicine or law. If you’re not sure what you want to do, you experiment and spend time on various programs and internships. 
  2. Gain practical experience: Get your career off to the best start with global experience. You’ll learn directly from local professionals by working alongside them. For example, you can shadow doctors in Kenya, or sit in on meetings with lawyers in China. With real-world experience under your belt, you’ll give your resume an extra edge over the competition.
  3. Get an international perspective: People around the world are struggling with different challenges and issues every day. You’ll gain a deeper insight into these global issues, and you’ll learn about different ways to help people where it’s needed most. 
  4. Become a part of positive change in the world: At Projects Abroad, our first goal is to benefit the communities we work in. Each of our volunteer projects and internships is ethical, well-supported, and part of a better future. We work with continuing management plans to make sure our impact is sustainable. We track our impact using resources like our own Global Impact Database. You can read about our impact to find out what you’ll be a part of.
  5. Travel and tick countries off your bucket list: Use your gap year to broaden your horizons, immerse yourself in new cultures, and explore breathtaking landscapes. It’s an opportunity to see the world as a new classroom!
  6. Discover what you’re capable of: Travel can be a transformative experience. Seeing a different part of the world will give you a fresh perspective of who you are in the world, how you can help others, and what your strengths are.


Projects Abroad will support you every step of the way. We can help you choose where to go and which projects to select. Wherever you go, our staff will be available to make sure you have the gap year of your dreams.

What can I do for a gap year program?

Our gap year programs are individual plans designed specifically for you. You can choose to gain experience on an internship, or do service work. We can help you customize the perfect gap year for you, and you can also combine different projects and countries.


Our Flexi Trips are ideal for customized gap years. You can choose various types of work, such as:



You can also participate in a Team Trip if you’re interested in teaming up with a set group to tackle a specific challenge in a short period of time.

Global Gap Program

We offer a fully planned 27-week volunteer adventure that will take you around the world. Our Global Gap Program is designed to give you the full volunteer experience. You’ll experience new cultures, contribute to sustainable projects, and learn something new about the world and yourself.


You’ll team up with a group of other volunteers from around the world. Together, you’ll travel to five countries and participate in various programs. These include:


  • Childcare in Ghana
  • Community development in South Africa
  • Teacher training in Peru
  • Conservation work in the Himalayas and a medical internship in Nepal
  • Marine conservation and diving in Thailand


On Global Gap, our staff also include organized excursions to amazing sights and attractions, like Machu Picchu in Peru or Table Mountain in South Africa!

Next Steps