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Volunteer: Costs: Pay your own way

If you don't want to fundraise you can choose to cover all expenses on your own.

What are the out-of-pocket costs?
  • ▸  participation fee
  • ▸  airfare
  • ▸  lodging
  • ▸  travel insurance
  • ▸  background check
  • ▸  visa
  • ▸  food and drink (typically $15 to 30 per day, but may be $5 to $75, depending on your needs and preferences)
  • ▸  passport
  • ▸  airport transfers (typically $30 to $40, round trip)
What does the participation fee cover?
  •   monetary donations to orphanages and other sites where we work
  •   ground transportation for all program activities
  •   a share of program overhead costs
  •   funding to sustain Buds to Blossoms

What is financial aid?
Buds to Blossoms provides financial aid to every volunteer who requests it. Financial aid is in effect a discount that reduces your participation fee, so that volunteers for whom this would be a hardship are still able to join the program. A space to request financial aid appears near the end of the application for the volunteer program.

Financial aid is provided on the honor system. Please only request financial aid if it would be impossible for you to pay the full participation fee.

Participation fee
The amount of the participation fee depends on the number of weeks you join the program and whether you request financial aid. See the table below for details. Note that all amounts are in US dollars.

1 week2 weeks3 weeks4 weeks
With Financial Aid $900 $1,800 $2,700 $3,600
Without Financial Aid $1,200 $2,400 $3,600 $4,800

If the US dollar is not your home country's currency, you can look up the official exchange rate at to find out what these amounts are equivalent to in your currency.

Use our budget calculator to find out what your total expenses will be.

Budget calculator