Secret Garden Disaster Relief volunteer cutting bamboo

Volunteer with us

Volunteering to help in a crisis like this could be one of the most rewarding things you can do.

Every one of us is an ordinary person, who chose to volunteer. from chopping bamboo and building houses, to fundraising, strategising, and social media stuff, theres been a huge variety of roles. It’s tiring, demanding, back-breaking work, but not one of us has looked back.

Anybody who is prepared to work hard is welcome to come and help. We have a guesthouse in Kathmandu where you can stay to be right in the middle of the action.

Apply now

Planning on coming to Nepal? Here already? Apply using the form below and get involved.

Be sure to read our FAQ first. If you can’t find an answer to your question, don’t worry we’ve left some space in the application form for your questions.

FAQ

I’ve heard about this ‘monsoon’ thing… what’s it like?

Monsoon season is a period of heavy rainfall, starting in June and continuing until the end of August. It varies from one part of the country to another, and from year to year. Last year in Nepal was very low rainfall. Generally during monsoon it rains once or twice a day, in heavy, fairly short showers, so disruption to work is not such an issue, but the monsoon does bring other risks you should be aware of. The rains disturbs the soil in the mountains and cause landslides. After the earthquake the rock structure is weakened, so landslides will be more common, and already roads are becoming blocked, making some areas inaccessible. Secondly, flooding brings water contamination, which leads to an increase in cases of water-borne diseases like Cholera and Dysentery. Do some research before you decide to come during monsoon, and make sure you know what your getting in to.

Is there work for me to do?

Lots of the volunteers who were in Nepal during the earthquake have now left, and so have many of the big relief organizations, so more volunteers are always needed. Our projects may change, and monsoon will bring complications, but even if there’s no work with us directly, there are many groups in Kathmandu who will need you.

What should I bring for myself?

Be prepared for outdoor work and wet weather. Bring a sleeping bag and good work / walking shoes. If you have a laptop it can be very helpful if you plan to be helping with administrative / office work. Remember that Kathmandu has some of the best outdoor and camping equipment shops in the world, and you can buy good quality copies for a fraction of the prices in the west.

What can I bring to help?

We source all our food, medicine, tarpaulins and tin in Nepal, and its often cheaper here than elsewhere. If friends or colleagues want to give you supplies to bring, we would suggest 2nd hand electronic equipment, smart phones and electronics are very expensive in Nepal, and are in short supply amongst grassroots groups. Aside from that, money, and yourself.

What are you working on right now?

Right now we are in our build phase, building temporary shelters and school buildings for monsoon. This will likely continue through July. There is lots of building to be done, but also many other kinds of work. Check our blog and Facebook page for updates.

Is there somewhere for me to stay?

Secret Garden Disaster Relief is run from the Secret Garden guesthouse in Kaldhara, Kathmandu. While not in the field there is space to stay here, in a dorm or room, depending on your budget. The guesthouse is 5 minutes from Thamel, the tourist centre of Nepal, where you can find anything from ice cream to steak. While out on missions we stay in tents, and tea and two meals a day are provided.

Do I need to have any experience?

Absolutely no experience required, but any kind is appreciated. Being here will be an experience in itself, and you will learn quickly on the job. Whatever your level of experience, be sure to tell us what your into, don’t keep your talents hidden. Looking forward to meeting you!