Mekong Delta Home Stay Experience

Mekong Delta volunteer and homestay experience in Vietnam. Stay in the heart of the Mekong Delta and immerse yourself in local way of life. You will also be able to volunteer, teaching English to university students! Help them prepare presentations and build their confidence in their English conversational skills. This is a unique and authentic volunteering experience.

we need you in Vietnam

  • Although improving, around 10% of the population in Vietnam sits below the poverty line
  • In 2016 around 30% of the rural population in Vietnam did not have access to clean water
  • Although Vietnam is doing better then some South East Asian countries, it does still suffer from a malnutrition problem in children below 5 years of age
  • 24.2% of women in Vietnam are believed to have anaemia, and around 5.5% of men have diabetes

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Ready to volunteer abroad? Complete your application online in about 5 min.

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does Mekong Delta Stay Involve?

  • Stay in the heart of the Mekong Delta and immerse yourself in local way of life
  • Stay with a welcoming local host family and get involved in family life
  • Assist in teaching English at the nearby local college
  • Have an authentic experience and immerse yourself in this cultural exchange opportunity

Why Involvement Volunteers International?

  • Non Profit Organisation & Charity
  • Over 30 Years Expertise Globally
  • Low Program Fees - From US$295
  • Excellent Safety Record, In-Country 24/7 Support & Emergency Assistance
  • 1 Application Fee - Multiple Countries
kindergraten teaching with IVI-Phan Thiet

  PROJECT NAME: MEKONG DELTA HOMESTAY 

LOCATION: CAN THO, VIETNAM

  START DATES: WEEKLY (SAT/SUN ARRIVALS)

  ACCOMMODATION: HOMESTAY

  MIN DURATION: ONE WEEK

  MIN AGE: 16+

  SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: N/A

  PROJECT COSTS: From US$315 + APPLICATION FEE

Overview

Embark on an exciting cultural adventure and immerse yourself in the local way of life, situated in the Mekong Delta region of Vietnam. You will be staying with a local host family, as well as volunteering with university students, teaching English. The students are all very eager to learn and are always excited to meet a westerner and to learn about your home country. You will be interacting with the students and your host family, gaining valuable knowledge about Vietnamese culture.

You will help the students research and put together a presentation on chosen topics, all presented in English. They may be a little shy at first, but with your help in building their English speaking skills, they will develop the ability to use their new knowledge.

Your homestay is a great opportunity for a real authentic experience and for a cultural exchange, learning about each other’s different lifestyles. They can provide you with insight into their daily life, take you to shop in local markets and show you how to prepare meals with them. This experience will give you a broader awareness about life in Vietnam. Your homestay will be near to your project and you will be able to use the bikes that will be provided for daily transportation.

Location

The Mekong Delta River consists of swamps, islands, rice paddies, Khmer temples and the local floating markets. There are many small villages situated along the river front. It takes 2-4 hours by bus from Ho Chi Minh. The Mekong River flows through several countries in Southeast Asia and is a great location to get an authentic feel for the slow and relaxed way of life in Vietnam.

Project Tasks

  • Gain valuable and practical teaching experience
  • Develop your teamwork skills through hands on presentations and activities
  • Immerse yourself in the culture and learn the local customs and history of Vietnam

Food & Accommodation

All accommodation and meals are included in the cost of the programs. All volunteers are expected to be environmentally aware and to use all resources with restraint, especially water, paper and electricity. You will be expected to clean up after yourself, and to play your part to keep the accommodation neat and organized.

Your accommodation in the Mekong Delta will be at one of our designated homestays. Staying with a local family is a great way to get more involved, and you can help with the shopping and preparation of family meals. You will be able to engage with the local community and become fully immersed in the culture, for a truly authentic volunteering experience.

Our project is in a convenient location, nearby local shops, markets, ATM, banks, pharmacy and clinics.

3 good meals are provided every weekday during your project, with 2 meals on the weekends (breakfast & dinner). Bottled water is easily available in Vietnam and volunteers should budget approx US$1 per day.  

You will be eating local Vietnamese dishes, with predominantly rice at most meals. The Vietnamese cuisine is known for its fresh flavours, soups and stir-fries. The food will be typical Vietnamese cuisine, cooked by your host family and using local ingredients.

Testimonials...

FAQ...

If you would like to experience the ‘real’ Vietnam, live with a local family, and do the things they would usually do, then this would be an excellent experience to really immerse yourself. Since you have the opportunity to teach English to local college level students, this project would also suit aspiring teachers. 

  • Accommodation
  • 3 meals p/day weekdays / 2 meals p/day weekends
  • Arrival airport transfer (Sat/Sun arrivals)
  • Filtered drinking water, coffee & tea
  • 1 day orientation
  • Daily transportation to project
  • In country 24/7 support & emergency assistance
  • Fundraising support
  • University course credits (where applicable)
  • Certificate of Completion
  • Airfares
  • Travel Insurance
  • Tours, Souvenirs & spending money

A free arrival airport transfer is provided only on the Saturday and Sunday before your program begins. A transfer coordinator will meet you at the airport upon your arrival and arrange your transfer from the airport. He will be awaiting you at the arrival section with you name.  From here he will take you to your accommodation.

Volunteers arriving before the weekend or by land, are required to meet at our meeting point.  All this information will be provided in the program pack prior to departure. 

Monday

  • Travel from Ho Chi Minh City to Can Tho via bus
  • Lunch and free time
  • Meet the students and be provided with your English teaching topics
  • Introduction to host family and homestay rules
  • Cook dinner, eat with family and interact with them
  • Free time

Tuesday

  • Head to your volunteer project at the university
  • Have breakfast
  • Receive teamwork presentation topics and pair with students in the class
  • Lunch break
  • Receive teamwork presentation topics and pair with students in the class
  • Return to homestay to assist with meal preparation.
  • Enjoy dinner with host family
  • Free time

Wednesday

  • Early morning visit to the floating market
  • Breakfast
  • Visit to local fruit garden
  • Lunch
  • Tour around the village on bicycle and see more of the local area or enjoy a nice coffee and/or coconut water while relaxing in a hammock.
  • Return to homestay to assist with meal preparation
  • Enjoy dinner with host family

Thursday

  • Head to the school for breakfast
  • Teamwork presentations for each group
  • Lunch break
  • Teamwork presentations for each group
  • Return to homestay to assist with meal preparation
  • Enjoy dinner with host family
  • Free time

Friday

  • Enjoy breakfast at the school
  • Teach English with the lesson plan you made, based on topic provided on the first day
  • Lunch
  • Continue the English lessons
  • Relax before preparing for a gala dinner
  • Gala dinner and performance: A night of cultural exchange with singing, traditional dances, storytelling and community engagement
  • Back to homestay

Saturday

  • Farewell to host family
  • Breakfast at the school
  • Receive certificate from FPT University
  • Departure

The volunteer working week is generally Monday to Friday from 9:00am – 4:00pm with weekends free to relax and explore your local surrounds. Our ground operators will help you organize additional trips with special (non tourist) rates which can be paid directly in local currency.  

Within Ho Chi Minh City…

As a large city, Ho Chi Minh has a lot to offer from shops to Vietnamese water puppet shows. Here are a few suggestions:

Backpacker street

Bui Vien Street is the main street in Ho Chi Minh City, also called ‘backpacker street’. There are many cheap restaurants, bars, souvenir shops, massage parlours, markets, tour agencies and hotels/hostels. This is a great place for tourists to shop, dine, entertainment and to party!

Landmark 81

Landmark 81 is the tallest skyscraper in Southeast Asia. It towers over the rest of Ho Chi Minh’s buildings and has incredible views form the top. Not only that, it also has an ice rink, virtual reality game, restaurant and shops!

Bitexco tower

Another place to go for a great view of the city. There is an observation deck (Saigon Skydeck) open daily and offering panoramic views of Ho Chi Minh City. From floors 50 to 52, there are more entertainment facilities, including a fine dining restaurant and bar/nightclub.

Dam Sen cultural park and Water Park

Fun for adults as well as kids, this water park is guaranteed to get you smiling! Plus, it also has some lovely gardens to walk around too. There’s animals, musical shows and restaurants too, making it a fun day trip.

Thien Hau temple

Thien Hau Temple is a beautiful Chinese temple, situated in district 5 of Ho Chi Minh city. It is dedicated to Thien Hau, (also named the Lady of the Sea). Inside there are many intricate carvings, statues and paintings, a very pretty and atmospheric place to visit.

Vietnam Quoc Tu pagoda

The Quoc Tu Pagoda is located in District 10 of Ho Chi Minh City, and is another interesting temple to explore, with its lovely incense smells, colourful statues, murals and shrines. It’s one of the tallest pagodas in the city with 7 floors. Usually only the first and second floors are open, but they open up the third and seventh floor to visitors every 15th of the month.

Monkey Island

A couple of hours out from the city is ‘Monkey Island’, also known as Can Gio Island. This huge 80,000 hectare nature reserve contains mangrove trees, water coconut forests, and yes- monkeys! Hundreds of them live wild here and they will be sure to say hello to you- just be sure not to bring food with you, they are pesky little creatures!

Ba Den mountain (The black virgin mountain)

The Ba Den Mountain trail takes you through lush jungle, mountain streams and caves, before reaching its rugged top. You can also take a cable car up to the top to see some wonderful views from above, sometimes from above the clouds!

Outside of Ho Chi Minh…

Can Tho

Can Tho is a town in the heart of the Mekong Delta and is a great starting point to explore this region. You can float on a traditional boat through the palm tree lined canals and visit the floating markets and local villages. You could also take a tour to learn about the local cacao farming or simply relax at one of the riverside bars.

Red & White Sand Dunes, Mui Ne

Situated very close to where you will be staying, these huge sand dunes are seriously impressive- you can even go quad biking, sandboarding or hot air ballooning over them. Or just sit and watch the beautiful sunset. The white dunes are the biggest and most popular and look as those they belong in the Middle East rather than Vietnam! The red dunes are smaller but look amazing at sunset when the red colour is really heighted.

Vung Tau beach

If you fancy a beach trip, only a couple of hours from the city is Vung Tau beach. There are 4 beaches in this town but try Pineapple beach for calm waters, which are great for swimming and getting away from the more crowded Front beach. There is also a culture and ecotourism park here which has rides and other outdoor activities to have a go at.

Mui Ne beach

Taking around 5 hours by bus or 4 hours by train (from Ho Chi Minh), this is a long sandy beach, lined with palm trees. There are many restaurants, shopping venues and luxurious resorts along the seafront, as well as a fishing village (great for photographers). It’s also a popular place to kitesurf.

Da Lat

Located high in the mountains, Da Lat is pleasantly much cooler and is surrounded by hills, pine forests, lakes and waterfalls. Close to the town is Datanla Falls, where you can walk to see a pretty waterfall (for the adventurous you can try water abseiling). You can also visit Elephant Falls, go tobogganing or just enjoy the beautiful jungle scenery.

Nha Trang

Nha Trang is a busy beach resort with a great nightlife, located along the South-central coast of Vietnam. There is a long stretch of white sand and palm tree lined beach, as well as many island hopping tours to gorgeous islands. This is a great place to go and enjoy some nightlife.

Hoi An

Hoi An, along the Centre of Vietnam’s coastline, is a very pretty town, known for its lanterns and its Japanese covered bridge. Although popular with tourists, the town still feels very authentic. There are many French architectural buildings, markets, nearby beaches and colourful lantern stalls to explore. This lively town also has a very relaxed and romantic vibe.

Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park

A UNESCO Heritage Site in central Vietnam, Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park hosts the largest cave in the world (Son Doong). There are also many other stunning caves to explore, on top of lush jungle, mountains, lakes and native wildlife. This is an adventure lover’s paradise, with the views you can get here being absolutely stunning.

Hue Ancient city

There are plenty of things to do in beautiful Hue, central Vietnam. This is a great place to explore temples, as there are many around. A Visit to the Tombs of the Ancient Emperors will take you around 19th and 20th century tombs, statues and carvings, with stunning backdrops of the countryside. Other popular places to visit are the Citadel, the Imperial City and the To Mieu Temple complex, all colourful and intricate temples.

Hanoi (Capital City)

Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, has a rich culture and is known for its Southeast Asian, Chinese and French influence, as well as it’s antient architecture. Located in the North of Vietnam, you can explore the old quarter, watch a traditional water puppet show, wander through the maze of streets or visit some of the many museums.

Halong bay

Easily done as a day trip from Hanoi, Halong Bay is known for its emerald green waters and giant limestone imposing cliffs. Hire out a traditional junk boat and cruise through the beautiful scenery. Or hire a kayak and explore the many different and colourful caves as you go!

Sapa

Sapa is a stunningly beautiful part of Vietnam, popular with trekkers. For miles you will see green rolling hills, mountains and rice paddies. Explore this beautiful area, stopping in the small villages as you go for an authentic experience. You can reach Sapa by an overnight train from Hanoi, taking 8 hours (or 6 hours by direct bus).

Ninh Binh

Ninh Binh’s surrounding countryside is absolutely stunning and a great place for those who love the outdoors. Take a trip to Tam Coc, which is similar to Halong Bay. Drift through big limestone cliffs and bright yellow and green rice paddies. There are many things to do in this area from the Mua Cave, Bich Dong Pagoda, Bai Dinh Temple, a nature reserve and boat trips.

There are no further requirements for this program.

Vietnam’s history is one of war, colonization and rebellion. Less than forty years since the savagery and slaughter of the American War, this resilient nation is buoyant with hope. Few countries have changed so much over such a short time as Vietnam. The speed with which Vietnam’s population has been able to put the bitter events of its recent past behind it, and focus its gaze on the booming future is incredible.  

However, there are broad regional variations in the distribution of poverty. The regions with the highest relative poverty rates include the north-west, north-central, central highlands, central coast and north-east. But in terms of absolute numbers, more poor people live in the north-central and north-east regions, in the Mekong Delta and central coastal regions, which are home to seven out of 10 of Vietnam’s poor people.

Volunteers have the opportunity to work in medical institutions caring for children and young people affected by Agent Orange, or in schools and community clinics looking after mentally disabled children. Volunteer work is varied and dependent on the institution where the volunteer is placed.

The weather in Vietnam can vary form North to South, with tropical and temperate climates. March to April is one of the best times overall, to visit the whole country, although Vietnam is a year-round destination.

June to August are the summer months and very hot and humid in Northern Vietnam, whereas this region experiences cold winters (as low as 4 degrees). Southern Vietnam is generally pleasant year-round but does have a rainy season from June to November. February to August is the best time to visit central Vietnam, as it gets hit with heavy rains in the wet season.

Vietnam has one of the oldest cultures in South East Asia, creating a rich history with ancient traditions dating back thousands of years. It also has a large Chinese influence. Elders are very well respected in Vietnamese culture, the older you are, the more respect is shown to you. ‘Saving face’ is a concept shown by most Vietnamese people and is thought of as extremely important in their culture. This means that if you feel angered or annoyed by someone, you do not show it and remain respectful. If you lose your temper/ are rude, then this is seen as losing face and therefore a loss of reputation and self-respect.

Vietnamese is the most widely spoken language, other languages include Chinese, Khmer, Cham and tribal dialects. Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism are the main religious beliefs in Vietnam, and you will find many temples dotted around the country. You will often see the local people giving fruits and burning incense to give as offerings.

30 Years Non Profit Experience

IVI is an Australian charity & non profit organisation founded in 1989 and is one of the pioneers of overseas volunteering successfully placing over 20,000 volunteers globally.

Affordable Volunteer Travel

We’re not motivated by shareholder profits.   Our fees are fully transparent to ensure maximum benefit where it is most needed. 

Safe & Responsible Projects

All projects include a dedicated 24/7 in-country management team, operational & risk assessment & overseas support contact.   All projects are personally inspected to ensure very high quality.
 

Work Experience & University Credits

We place thousands of Uni students and can assist you with course credits and in-field experience points.   Many of our project coordinators are qualified practitioners in their respective fields allowing unique in-field supervision and Uni accreditation options

Check out this amazing blog with step by step info on how to raise funds for your overseas volunteer experience to help maximize your impact abroad. Guide to Fundraising

Weekends & Extra Tours

Ready to Volunteer in Vietnam?

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Ready to Volunteer abroad? Complete your application in about 5 min

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