Spend your week full of playing and singing with the children in the orphanage. On the weekends, venture out of your steeple-filled city to discover colorful neighboring towns and villages.
Romania is a country home to old traditions — the perfect place to uncover legends you grew up on (like Dracula), site-see the most stunning castles, or delve into quaint farming villages. All these postcard-worthy sites are sprinkled across rolling hills dotted with sheep and towering churches. It’s unreal. Whatever part of Romania’s untapped charm steals your heart, know that the kids you’ll be spending time with will really be the reason you love this country.
Give a bit of your heart to the kids in Romania by volunteering our orphanage program. Volunteers in this European country dedicate their time and love to the kids who don’t have someone like a parent to give them that one-on-one encouragement and attention. Besides your service, you have lots of opportunities to explore the charming and colorful villages Romania has to offer. There are so many towns to see! On vacation, travel to countries you’re dying to see like Greece, Italy, and Poland. However, the focus week to week is all about helping the kids in the orphanage program, and experiencing local life in your Romanian city …
Glimpse a day in Romania
HELP IN OUR ORPHANAGE PROGRAM
Romania is really unique because it’s the only ILP location where you are not teaching English. Here, your service goes towards children in an orphanage program, helping them progress while adjusting to a more home-like setting. The kids and orphanage children you’re working with a range in ages and in health and ability. Some are completely bedridden and many have severe disabilities. Others need your encouragement and attention to do basic things like learning how to walk and play.
Volunteering and Costs
A small city in northeast Romania: Iasi
—Spring: Depart early January – return end of April
—Summer: Depart end of April/early May – return middle of August
—Fall: Depart end of August – return middle of December, just in time for Christmas
—10 to 15 in a group
—Single males/females and married couples
—18-about 25ish years old
—US and Canadian volunteers
—No experience needed!
A QUICK NOTE ABOUT COVID-19
We paused our Romania program at the start of the pandemic and are so excited to be back again (and have been here since Fall 2021)! So what’s life like in Romania now? After shifting border policies and working with the local government, volunteers have again been allowed to help with the orphanage program here. There are some stricter standards for volunteers here to help protect the health of the children they work with. Masks are required, as well as frequent testing even if you’re vaccinated. Travel around Romania (as well as the EU at the end of your semester) is allowed. Volunteers going to Romania must have their Covid-19 vaccine.
We are so happy to have volunteers in Romania again!
Romania may be small, but it’s packed full of colorful and peaceful towns hidden away from the tourist crowds. While we love exploring Romania (and highly recommend that you do!), it is also situated conveniently close to several favorite travel destinations. Time to country hop on vacations! You can cross the border and be in another country in less than a day. A semester in Romania makes it easy to cross off more than a handful of countries from your bucket list.
Plan on explore Romania, and planning vacations to countries throughout the European Union and Ukraine. Here’s just a few of our recommended spots to choose from …
Brasov, Romania — Heavily influenced by Germany, this city makes you feel like you just stepped into western Europe. Visit old churches and of course … the oh so famous Dracula’s castle. Also home to the narrowest street in Europe (4 feet wide!). It’s a volunteer favorite.
Sibiu, Romania — Spend the day wandering just one of our favorite hidden gem towns in Romania. Take photos of the streets lined with colorful buildings, wander art museums, and snag some treats from a vendor on the street.
Italy — Eat to your heart’s content in Naples! Then, stand in awe of historic architecture in Rome, or take a boat tour of Venice.
Poland — Learn WWII history firsthand by touring historic sites like Auschwitz and the Jewish District. Spend the day exploring Old Town Krakow, and take a trip out to the mountains.
Czech Republic — Arrive early, before other tourists, to walk along famous Charles Bridge. Then, wander up the hill to Prague castle, and shop a little in this capital city.
Austria — Visit museums and photograph incredibly detailed and beautiful architecture in tranquil Vienna. Your favorite artists are found in the museums here.
Ukraine — Soak up the sun at the Black Sea by visiting Odessa, spend a day in charming Lviv and don’t forget the capital, Kiev.
France — Fulfill your childhood dreams by having a picnic in front of the Eiffel Tower. You also have to spend an afternoon in the Louvre, and soak up the sun on the coast.
Slovenia — Boat across the lake to medieval Bled castle, or take the train through the underground network of caves. You’ll need more time to hike through ravines and canyons.
Bulgaria — Stroll the streets of the capital, relax in famous mineral spas, and bike the mountains along the Black Sea coast.
Moldova — This country is all about cave monasteries, beautiful churches, and another chance to head to the coast. Get the true feel of a Russian culture here.
Croatia — Ancient coastal towns like Dubrovnik, Roman amphitheaters, and some of the most beautiful coastlines in Europe. We love Croatia!
Greece — Head to one of the top destinations in the world. The Parthenon, Mykonos, hilltop monasteries, incredible town views…need we say more?
Slovakia — Travel to Slovakia to take a boat ride to historic castle ruins, then visit Old Town Bratislava. The tiny city of Kosice is hiding one impressive castle.
Hungary — Spend the weekend in Budapest, relaxing in famous thermal spas, walk around castle hill, and take a short cruise for sites of both Buda and Pest.