Sri Lanka community volunteering

“Like so many people, I went to Sri Lanka to help after the tsunami as I am a trained nurse. To go back and volunteer over a decade later was a truly wonderful experience. ”


Two weeks community volunteering in Sri Lanka | Wadduwa or Seenigama beach | Teaching assistant volunteering | Options for visits to Sri Lanka national parks

Description of Sri Lanka community volunteering

As with many places, Sri Lanka’s primary and secondary school system is broken down into public and private. Public schools are funded by the government to offer children from poorer backgrounds free education. Private schools tend to attract students from more privileged backgrounds as well as better equipment and better standards of teaching professional.

This is where our English-speaking volunteers come in. We work with a couple of public schools in the greater Galle area: a nursery/kindergarten and a secondary school. In addition to daily classes we also conduct evening classes at our own teaching centre in the rural community of Katugoda.

For the kindergarten schedule we ask volunteers to assist local teachers for 3 – 4 hours each morning. Children are aged from 3 – 6 years old and typical classroom activities include: English reading and writing, Maths, and playing educational games as well as singing, dancing and looking after children in a safe and caring environment.

The secondary school that we work with is for minority Muslim students aged from 8 – 12 years old. We encourage and assist our volunteers in running small groups. Full support and guidance is given as part of our volunteer project and the level of English taught takes students all the way from basic to intermediate. This class is incredibly important to our local community and to the kids.

Finally, evening classes, held at our teaching centre in Katugoda, are to assist women and children from our own rural neighbourhood. Children are aged from 6 – 15 years old and classes are set for 90mins. English language lessons - written and spoken - are very important to our community and volunteer help is essential for the on-going progress and development of students, staff and schools.

Lesson planning and preparation is a very important part of our volunteers’ daily routine and can often take at least an hour each day. Our programme is run to ensure volunteers gain confidence and support with our local team of teachers and staff on-hand to help out, every step of the journey.
Responsible Travel, Travel Team

Travel Team

If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need some help finding one we're here to help.

Check dates

2019: 27 Jul, 3 Aug, 10 Aug, 17 Aug, 24 Aug, 31 Aug, 7 Sep, 14 Sep, 21 Sep, 28 Sep, 5 Oct, 12 Oct, 19 Oct
Top tip:
Donations are always welcome, but sometimes it is better to buy things in Sri Lanka and then donate them. Please chat to us first before stocking up on donations. Thanks.
Trip type:
Tailor made but working with other volunteers.
Solo travellers welcome.
Choice of basic or higher standard volunteer accommodation depending on package. All clean and comfortable though.
Some meals included, with typical Sri Lankan cuisine.
Pre-trip support, transfers from Colombo airport, support staff 24/7, some meals, project training.
About this holiday company:
Ridhi set this organization up in 2014, after a life changing volunteering trip that she made to South Africa herself. After that, she returned from London to her home country of India to set up volunteering projects there and here in Sri Lanka, where projects range from medical to midwifery, turtle conservation to teaching.

Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Sri Lanka community volunteering


Our volunteer placements in Sri Lanka are designed to immerse you in a different culture, living and working with local people. There’s plenty to gain personally from this. But we make sure that local people benefit too by choosing projects that bring tangible improvements to their lives. Our local partners are leaders in sustainable tourism. All activities and itineraries are designed in collaboration with the villagers themselves, based around the principles of community-based tourism. We are committed to providing local people with a complimentary source of income while still continuing their traditional way of life.

Pre-departure preparation
All of our participants receive pre-departure guides. This covers topics on how to be culturally sensitive, how to best look after the environment when in the country and how to stay safe as well as up to date information on the political situation. They are also briefed on how to dispose of waste properly and where possible, to avoid using plastic water bottles as these are not easy to dispose of environmentally.

Meaningful Volunteering:
Our Volunteer programs are lasting and meaningful and have a long term impact on the communities we work with. These children have little access to quality education.This is where the volunteers come in. In order to attend formal school in Sri Lankan students must be at a certain academic level and you will be helping the children we work with to reach this standard. For the children, a good understanding of English opens up many more opportunities in the future particularly in Tourism.

Child Protection:
We have a strong child protection policy and require police checks and DBS from all our participants. Staff who take photos are required to ensure they are up to a standard approved by our local partners or schools. We have strict expectations of volunteers as far as how they interact with the children. We also give no information to the volunteers about the children’s backgrounds.

We send out comprehensive pre-departure briefing, which includes a section on protecting the local environment. In particular we advise participants to take care with water, which is an issue in many of our destinations. We recommend they avoid unnecessary washing, using hand wash gel where they can. We also instruct them on how to dispose of waste properly, not to litter and, where possible, to avoid using plastic water bottles which are not easy to dispose of environmentally.


All our volunteer programs are designed in collaboration with the community and based around the principles of community-based tourism. We are committed to providing local people with support while still continuing their traditional way of life. All our volunteers are housed locally in homestays that support the local community.

Volunteer and Service Placements:
Volunteer time, effort, and attention are of great value to our local partners such as NGOs, schools, and children’s homes that we serve. We make sure that whoever we are tied up with are operating with our values in mind and are for the improvement of life on ground.

Cultural sensitivity:
We emphasise the importance of showing respect for local people and their customs in our briefing material. Participants will work alongside permanent staff, forming close bonds and getting an insight into real life in Sri Lanka. Our policy is to send people to the developing world in small groups or individually. This minimises the environmental and social impact that the participants have on the destination and helps them to integrate into the local community.

Popular similar holidays

Family volunteering with elephants in Sri Lanka

Family volunteering with elephants in Sri Lanka

Family volunteering with elephants in Sri Lanka

From £745 7 days excluding flights

Women's empowerment in Sri Lanka volunteering

Women's empowerment in Sri Lanka volunteering

Experience Volunteering & Explore tropical southern SriLanka

From US $699 7 days excluding flights

Elephant conservation in Sri Lanka

Elephant conservation in Sri Lanka

Encounter majestic Asian Elephants in stunning Sri Lanka

From £764 - £2684 7 days excluding flights

Elephant & wildlife conservation volunteering in Sri Lanka

Elephant & wildlife conservation volunteering in Sri Lanka

Help wild elephants and wildlife in Sri Lanka

From £945 - £3105 7 days excluding flights

Convert currencies