Teen Volunteering Abroad

Teenagers 16-18 can volunteer on a United Planet program in several countries.

Program Highlight:

Summer Quests for Teens

Teen Volunteers

teens volunteer abroadUnited Planet's Volunteer Abroad Quest program is a perfect opportunity for 16 to 18 year olds looking for an international opportunity. Our dedicated team is happy to work with you to provide you with the most meaningful experience possible. Download the flyer for teens and parents.

As a teen volunteer on a United Planet Quest you will have the opportunity to develop many skills including:

  • Language skills
  • Cross-cultural communication abilities
  • International work experience
  • Participate in many exciting excursions and activities

United Planet teen volunteers can expect to work between 30 and 40 hours per week at their project placement. As part of your program fee, you will also take part in cultural activities and go on excursions to sites of historical and archaeological importance, such as Machu Picchu in Peru, and Dracula's Castle in Romania.

If you are a parent or family member of a teen thinking about volunteering abroad, check our our Friends and Family page, where you will find answers to many of your questions about international volunteering. You can also visit our Frequently Asked Questions page to find more answers.

Teens (16-18) are invited to join our 1 to 12 week volunteer abroad Quests in 7 countries worldwide:


Program Costs

The costs for United Planet’s programs are dependent upon the location of the project and duration of your stay. The estimated cost per volunteer for a one week program starts at $1985. This fee includes the following:
  • Program feesAccommodations/Meals 
  • Extensive pre-departure training from United Planet Quest Team
  • Parent information session (via phone) for under 18s
  • Full orientation upon arrival by United Planet in-country coordinator
  • Travel Insurance
  • Round-trip airport transfers
  • Full Coordination on the ground by United Planet in-country coordinator
  • Excursions
  • Cultural activities (such as dancing or cooking classes)
  • Language lessons in some destinations
  • Optional excursions and activities as requested
If you are interested in finding out more, please Contact Us. The United Planet team will work closely with you both before your departure and during your stay to provide a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience.


"My experience in Peru was truly life-changing. My host family was absolutely amazing, and the language classes, salsa lessons, and cooking lessons were also fantastic. United Planet does a wonderful job of organizing trips for people in which they have lots of freedom, but also lots of organized cultural activities. I would highly recommend a Quest to anyone."

--Blair Bishop, United Planet Volunteer, Peru

 Image preview

Quest Program Briefs

Current Opportunities for Teens Aged 16 and up

teen volunteer in Romania   


United Planet volunteers work and stay at a rural orphanage, where looking after the children is the main focus of most Quests, however there are also other needs and options for volunteer opportunities at the orphanage. There is no language requirement for this Quest. Read more
teens volunteering in Costa Rica  

Costa Rica

High school students and anyone interested in a gap semester under the age of 18 can choose from four different Environmental Quests in Costa Rica. These four programs have been selected for their suitability for this age group and vetted for their safety by the United Planet staff. There are no Spanish language requirements for the environmental projects, though basic Spanish is very helpful. Read more
international volunteer China  

China Summer Teaching Program, July 21-August 16, 2014

Students 16 and up are welcome to spend three weeks in rural China, teaching wonderful Chinese students. Itinerary includes a tour of Beijing, travel to local villages, teaching English and environmental studies, authentic Chinese cuisine, and much more! Read more.

"I think anyone interested in doing something really extraordinary should go. Don't think you want to challenge yourself? Go anyway, you'll find resources within yourself that you didn't know were there. And for the rest of your life you will know that you made a difference in the lives of a few students in Hunan. All in all, it was amazing."   
--Maggie Harrison


teens volunteering in Peru  


Teens can choose from a variety of projects in Cusco, Peru, including working with children at orphanages and after school projects. This Quest includes a weekend excursion to Macchu Picchu. Spanish is required. Read more
teen volunteer in Ecuador  


Volunteers have a variety of options at community development Quests, such as teaching or working in a day care center in Quito. Spanish is required. Read more
teens volunteering in Chile  


Volunteers are based in Santiago, Chile with the opportunity to exlpore other areas in the region. Volunteers can choose between home building, teaching and working in a women's shelter. Spanish language skills are required. Read more
volunteering in South Africa  

South Africa

Teens aged 17 and up can choose to coach at-risk youth players in different sports or work in a number of social projects, including teaching, arts and crafts, or orphanage care work. Volunteers stay in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, and have the opportunity to go on excursions to the Kragga Kama Game Reserve and more. Read more

Three Easy Steps to Apply

Questions about applying? 1-800-292-2316

Call one of our friendly regional Quest coordinators today. We will walk you step-by-step through the application process and answer any questions you may have.

Step 1: Choose your Quest. Contact us at any time for help!  We'd love to talk to you. Email or call  1-800-292-2316.

Step 2: Enroll online. Please fill in the enrollment form. Then reserve your spot with a deposit (which will be credited toward your program fee).

Step 3: Meet your Quest coordinator and iron out the details. Once you've applied, someone from the United Planet Team will contact you, and arrange a time to talk about your Quest of interest. THANKS!


Special Discounts:
  • Introduce someone who signs up for a Quest program and you will receive a 10% discount!
  • Participate in any two Short-term Quests to receive 10% off your second Quest.
  • Participate in any two Long-term Quests to receive 5% off your second Quest.
  • Participate in any Short-term Quest followed by a Long-term Quest to receive a 5% discount on your second Quest.
  • Participate in any Long-term Quest followed by a Short-term Quest to receive 10% discount on your second Quest.