A Broader View Volunteers Corp
Rating: 4.94 stars 110 110 reviews 9,324
Human Services, Philanthropy
236 Glen Place Elkins Park PA 19027 USA
A Broader View Volunteers is a 501(c)(3) based non-profit organization based in Pennsylvania. With a love for humankind, and a motivated spirit to help others, A Broader View was created on the belief that one person can make a difference in the lives of others. Our US office is operated by an enthusiastic staff with almost 20 years combined travel and hospitality experience.
We managed to finish 3 classrooms/dorms in an orphanage in Uganda, we need to finish the other 3 classrooms and dorms, as well as bathrooms, and a kitchen. We have 180 programs that we need to help as well.
Woman, orphan children, medical/health clinics, animals/mammels
Direct beneficiaries per year:
Over 15.000 people and thousands of sea turtles and other mammels
Geographic areas served:
Worldwide (Belize, Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Honduras, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, Ghana, Uganda, Cameroon, Tanzania, Kenya, Zambia, South Africa, Nepal, China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Philippines)
Teaching project, child care programs, woman's shelter support, rehabilitation and medical missions.
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Reviews for A Broader View Volunteers Corp
The premedical program in Honduras was an amazing trip for me and I would recommend it to anyone considering a future in medicine. You will see and do things you never thought possible being an undergrad and hopefully it will help solidify your career path in medicine. After this trip I realized medicine is for me and I want to pursue medical school. I also realized OB-GYN is not for me. I was really fascinated with emergency trauma and surgery. In the ER we saw gunshot victims, stab victims, firework victims, and many motor accident victims. You will see some things here you are not prepared for like possibly witnessing death. Seeing someone die was hard for me, but it is part of life and you have to realize there are more people who need help so you need to move on and be focused on them. Aside from the medical aspect, I became very good friends with the other abv volunteers. Every weekend we went to different locations and traveled around Honduras. I would recommend Cayos Cochinos which is an island where survivor was filmed and also Utila which is a big party island.
Five weeks volunteering was not long enough in Bulenga, Uganda. I had a life changing experience -meeting so many wonderful people both at the orphanage and the house – even strangers on the street. I learned most from the kids and they gave me more than I could teach to them. I will always be thankful for this experience and thank A Broader View for this opportunity. I more than highly recommend volunteers considering volunteering in Africa to come to Bulenga Uganda. You will not regret it!
I had no idea what to expect when traveling to Xela. When I got here, I was so surprised by the number of people, the colors, the sounds, the smells – it was truly walking in to a different world. I try to keep an open mind solely to have experiences like I did when I first got here. It was amazing. I have to say that this was by far one of the most rewarding experiences I have ever had. Having the opportunity to utilize my clinical skills to help those who so desperately need it was truly incredible. I was blown away by the kindness and gratitude of the patients that we came into contact with. I would love to return to Xela in the future when I have more experience and more to give, and can speak more Spanish.
From the moment I submitted my application for the Pre Dental Program in Ecuador, to online chats, right before leaving the US, to arriving in Quito. It was extremely helpful to have pictures of my coordinator and host family before hand. It was comforting and stress reducing to have a visual of the first individuals you would meet and count on during your stay.
I was surprised at how quickly my host family felt like my real family. They were very accommodating. I may not have always understood what was said in Spanish but at the same time I was still always apart of family activities and discussions. This is also true with the extended family. Within one week I met extended family from both sides of my host parents and it made this experience even richer.
I had an amazing experience within the short time I was able to volunteer, 4 weeks. I loved basking in the breathtaking scenery. No picture could capture the essence of the mountains in Quito. Even though I wish they could, it made me absorb what I can in the moment.
I just happened to stumble across ABV by diligently searching abroad volunteer programs on the internet. I can now say I found the perfect organization for my first experience abroad.
1 person found this review helpful
I really enjoyed working with the girls from the orphanage. I worked in both the kitchen and the ceramic classes and it was fun to chat with the girls and I think they also had fun asking me about the United States.
The accommodation was very nice. The local coordinator has a comfortable house. She has a large tv in her family room with lots of movies if you want to watch and relax. The meals were very good, I loved the soups that were served every lunch. I never felt concerned about my safety, even at night. Lunch will be your biggest meal and breakfast and dinner will consist of bread and jam or bread and meat. There was always boiled or bottled water to drink so I didn't have to work about the water quality. Maria Elena is a great host and really wants you to feel comfortable and at home. She is flexible and if you won't be there for a meal it's not a problem.
I also was in Peru over Thanksgiving and Maria Elena surprised me with a Thanksgiving meal, that was so nice of her.
1 person found this review helpful
This volunteer trip to Guatemala did certainly opened my eyes to the fact that I am so lucky to have been born into a financially comfortable and healthy family – other people are not so lucky. Because of this I want to continue giving back! This was my second time in Xela with Abroaderview and I have fallen even more in love with this city. From the culture to the friendly people, I will certainly miss it. Our host family kept us very comfortable. I was always warm enough, fed and rested. It was great that they only spoke Spanish because it really helped me improve my own. I will forever be amazed by the warmth and hospitality of these wonderful people. I came here to help them, but they really ended up helping me to be a better person!
3 people found this review helpful
I had researched several volunteer organizations before I decided on A Broader View. As I have run an international volunteer organization, I know what a good organization looks like. So, I was a "tough customer".
A Broader View not only met my expectations, it exceeded my hopes.
No, I am not kidding, nor am I exaggerating.
During the informational phase and the application process, employees at A Broader View were thorough, professional and prompt, not to mention helpful, kind and understanding. I never waited more than 24 hours for a response (sometimes even on weekends!). I was relentless with my questions (in part because of my background, and in part because I was heading off to an unknown part of the world, where I knew no one and didn't speak the language). I received polite and informative answers from seemingly tireless ABV employees Sarah, Lynn and Lori. Everyone I had contact with was attentive, helped me find the right volunteer job and calmed my fears. They also checked in during my stay and followed up after my stay.
One of the beauties of A Broader View is that I was able to leave when I wanted; I wasn't tied to particular program dates. This was a distinct advantage for me. They also helped me get an extremely reasonable flight to Quito and very inexpensive travel insurance.
With their partner in Quito, they provided me with a host family and a volunteer job within weeks, and several weeks before my departure. I received a packing list and other helpful suggestions to help plan my trip.
Once in Quito, the incredible service and support continued. I was met at the airport by Germán, and brought to my WONDERFUL host family. My family greeted me warmly (at 1:30 AM in the middle of the week), and I was pleasantly surprised with the standard of the lodgings. I was taken into the family and shown much love and acceptance throughout my 3 months with them. There was another volunteer there for the first two months, and we became fast friends, despite our 40 year age difference! We worked at the same place and lived in the same apartment, and together we laughed, cried, complained, encouraged each other, went out, and participated in the family.
From past experience with host families, I knew that living with a host family can have its problems. Since I was over 20 years older than my "host parents", I wasn't sure how that would go. There were a few very small hiccups (and not for the difference in age), that, because of the willingness of all of us to discuss things together openly, were resolved in easy discussions.
My volunteer jobs were wonderful. The first 6 weeks, I worked with 2-year-olds at a day care center in one of the poorest sections of the city. I am not going to tell you it was an easy transition. The poverty I had to pass every day, the conditions I saw, the real suffering of some of the children and families were all extremely difficult to assimilate. The differences between Euro-American and Ecuadorian cultures are not small. Yet, the children... oh, the children. They captured my heart. I'll never forget the day about 2 weeks after I started, and they were going down for their naps (the time I always left each day). I said goodbye to them as usual, and for the first time, 9 little hands waived from their beds and several voices were saying goodbye ("chao"). One little voice, said, "Chao, Burbuja!" They couldn't yet remember "Barbara", so they called me the closest thing they were familiar with, "bubble". From then on, I was putty in their hands...
After 6 weeks, my Spanish was improving, and I was able to change programs and work at a shelter for abused women and their children -- something I had experience in, from the U.S. Again, the staff at La Fundación (A Broader View's partner in Quito) had arranged for me to volunteer there. It, too, was challenging -- and rewarding.
I also signed up for 4 hours of Spanish per day. I will say, it was tiring that first month, volunteering for 4 hours a day and then having 1-on-1 Spanish lessons for 4 academic (4 45-minute) hours, 5 days a week. HOWEVER, the teachers at S.B. are excellent! I learned so much in 4 weeks. I continued to take Spanish twice a week after my first month.
The Spanish school really takes wonderful care of its students, as well. In the evenings, there are cooking lessons, salsa lessons, football (soccer) games to play or watch, cocktail evenings, weekend trips -- all either free or at very reasonable prices. I especially recommend the weekend trips. What a wonderful way to see other parts of the country. It's also a great way to get to know others who are sharing the same experience.
I just want to reiterate that I cannot say enough about A Broader View. It is, at least in my experience, one of the best-run volunteer organizations I have ever come into contact with (and remember, I have worked in a few and run an international office of another). I don't believe I could have chosen a better organization or had a better experience.
Thank you to all of you at A Broader View.
2 people found this review helpful
I went to Colombia with a broader view in the midst of a breakup hoping to find a distraction, but what I got was much more.
I felt like there were so many elements to the trip. There was the volunteer work at the foundation and my relationships with the ladies who worked there, the mothers and the babies. And although there was a lot of work there was also a LOT of laughter.
There was my home life and my relationship with my host family which was fun and warm.
Then there was my individual exploring which I really enjoyed.
All these elements made for a trip that was truly rich in its blessings.
2 people found this review helpful
Chile is a wonderful country and La Serena is a very beautiful city. Downtown is very cute and some days there are artisans tents lined up in the plaza. I never felt unsafe in La Serena or Coquimbo but I always tried to be aware of my surroundings. Everyone I met were very friendly and helpful. People were often intrigued about where I was from and what I was doing in Chile. I met a tia at my orphanage and she made me feel like one of her family. She and her daughters showed me all of the beaches of Coquimbo (they are all very beautiful but COLD in winter!)
The orphanage provided the kids with everything they needed. It was much better kept and supplied then I had expected. My favorite part of the orphanage was the smile on the little kids’ faces when I walked in the door every morning. I worked with the toddlers: four months to two years old.
My host family was fantastic. My home was very comfortable, having warm water and wifi. My host mom and I spent many evenings jogging on the beach or Zumba-ing in the living room. Her food was delicious and the family was always welcoming. I had a “sister” and “brother” at the house who hung out with me and helped me figure things out here in Chile. One of my favorite moments with my host family was watching a U17 soccer world cup game with my host parents – it was Chile versus United States. My host father is very into soccer so he was yelling and shouting at the TV and whenever I watch sporting events I end up doing the same. The house was full of celebrations and frustrations during the course of the game. Chile won in the end but the game was a highlight of my trip and it gave me something to connect with my host dad on.
I really had no problems at all with my host family. The only challenging part was the "Chilenismos/slang" and the difficult Spanish accent (they speak way to fast). I did improved a lot over the two months in Chile.
I would definitely do my whole trip again and not change a thing. My project was rewarding, Vilma was supportive and understanding, and my host family were fantastic. La Serena and Coquimbo were wonderful places to base the program out of because they provided many different opportunities.
2 people found this review helpful
I loved my time in Chile and La Serena. Everyone there was very patient and kind, and Vilma and Tania were super-helpful if you needed anything.
Working at the nursing home was an incredible experience for me. I made a whole bunch of new friends there with whom I hope to keep in touch. If you decide to work at the nursing home (and I think you should!), try to learn as much Spanish as you can before you arrive.
I found the support from Abroaderview to be excellent. Whenever I sent an email, I got a response within 24 hours (although usually it was much quicker), and the staff was always very helpful and kind with all my questions. I also used the chat system with Lori a few times, and she was also very patient with my many questions!
I received a few emails after arriving in country, and they were a pleasant surprise. Mostly they were just checking in, wanting to know if I was enjoying myself, and if there was anything they could do for me. Sarah also sent an email after we had a big earthquake just to make sure we were ok here, which I found very thoughtful.
This is actually my third trip with Abroaderview. (I went to Vietnam and Cambodia back in 2010 and 2011.) I have volunteered with four different organizations/companies, and I feel that Abroaderview is the best in terms of value and support, so that’s why I looked them up again for this trip.