ABOUT US

BASICALLY WE'RE DIFFERENT

Plan My Gap Year provide a safe, structured and social platform with volunteer, travel and immersion opportunities available from 1-40 weeks. With over 10 years of experience and expertise, PMGY is widely regarded as the global leader in affordable and trustworthy international volunteering experiences.

 

We work extremely hard to ensure that our opportunities are affordable for everyone who wants to make a difference. So fees are 100% transparent, something our volunteers really appreciate.

 

Our structured programmes create the perfect platform for you to see the world, meet like-minded people and engage in meaningful volunteer work. We have teams in the UK, the US and in our host destinations who will support you 24/7 throughout your time with us.

 

There is also a great social element to our programmes. We put you in touch with all your fellow volunteers via Facebook before you set off. Our projects receive volunteers from around the world throughout the year, so even if you’re travelling solo, you’re going to meet heaps of people along the way. Plus you’ll have plenty of opportunities to travel the country with your newfound travel buddies – it’s all part of the PMGY experience!

 

So if you’re thinking of doing something a bit different on your next trip abroad, then why not drop us a line and find out what extraordinary things you could be doing.

Our aim is to make our programmes accessible to motivated travellers irrespective of their financial capacity. We focus on providing the core requirements of a volunteer programme: safety, structure and sustainability.

 

We are 100% transparent with our fees. That way you know exactly how much of your money goes towards the local community.

 

Compared to the large majority of volunteer organisations out there, even most charities and not-for-profits, PMGY’s opportunities are significantly cheaper. Furthermore, as our reviews will testify, our support service and structured programmes are second to none.

Your safety is our top priority. All our programmes have been personally inspected and vetted by the PMGY team – which is not an industry standard by any means. We carry out independent risk assessments on an annual basis and our local teams constantly review the safety precautions we implement. This includes regular staff and safety appraisals.

 

Our local teams are made up of highly experienced volunteer coordinators. They have hosted international volunteers for many years and are prepared to react in the unlikely event of an emergency. Whatever the problem, big or small, our local teams are available around the clock.

 

As part of our commitment to your safety, we keep in constant communication with local embassies and the Foreign & Commonwealth Office to ensure we can identify potentially dangerous situations and act upon them immediately. Our International Team are available 24/7 to assist volunteers and their families.

We support our volunteers every step of the way. Before you go we will provide you with a detailed Volunteer Handbook, which will guide you through how to prepare for your trip. This Handbook contains literally everything you need to know – from what to pack, to how to obtain a visa, to local language guides.

 

Our experienced International Team are always available to provide assistance. We’re always available to answer our questions and support you in anyway we can.

 

On arrival, a member of our in-country team will collect you from the airport and help you settle in. Your orientation course will teach you everything you need to know about the country, how to stay safe and what to expect from your upcoming volunteer experience. Our local team are on-call 24/7. Whether you’ve lost your passport or just want some help in planning a weekend trip, our friendly in-country coordinators provide that safety net to ensure you are well looked after.

Our responsibility is not limited to our travellers but also the projects we support. That is why all our volunteers must provide a Criminal Background Check before they travel.

 

It is essential that our projects are need-driven and sustainable. We work closely with our local partners to ensure that our volunteers are contributing to bring about long-term development.

We really know our programmes. Our International Team have stayed in the accommodation, volunteered at the projects and met the volunteers. We carefully assess each application we receive so that your personality and skills are suited to the project. Whatever your query, you can feel assured that you will be speaking to someone who can tell you exactly what to expect.

One of the best aspects of volunteering is meeting some amazing like-minded people. We place over 4,000 volunteers every year so wherever and whenever you go, you have the peace of mind in knowing you will be living and working alongside other PMGY volunteers. In many of our destinations, we run our own Volunteer House accommodation, which ensures all volunteers live together, and therefore guaranteeing a strong social element. In addition, our local team are always there to help you plan any independent travel or give you some tips for what to do at the weekend.

JUST A HANDFUL OF OUR WORLDWIDE TEAM

AT YOUR SERVICE 24/7

STEPH SMITH

Steph started her PMGY adventure in 2014 as a volunteer in India, and has since coordinated in Sri Lanka and Bali. Steph is an adventure lover, who really enjoys exploring new places, experiencing new cultures and meeting new people!

QUE NGUYEN

After graduating as an English teacher Que wanted to give back and help her Vietnamese community by introducing new skills and ideas. This well travelled, professional mum and her fab team will welcome you to Vietnam with open arms.

KETUT SRI ARIANA PENDIT

Ketut has been hosting volunteers for almost a decade after recognising a lack of opportunity for children from less well-off families in Tabanan. Commonly referred to as the ‘Bali mum’, Ketut welcomes everyone to Bali with arms wide open.

SETH KARIKARI MENSAH

Seth or ‘KK' has devoted his life to development work, is a huge Chelsea football fan and adores lasagne. With a strong sense of community he loves being in the thick of things and will certainly be your Facebook friend for life!

DHARSHAN JEGASUNDARAM

A core member to everything backstage! Dharshan is our accounts guru from the V-Ignite team in Sri Lanka. With over 5 years of expertise, Dharshan may be the biggest WWE fan and is the go to guy for anything finance related.

DARRYL CLEMETT

Darryl or 'Kiwi' is a cool, laid back New Zealander who has spent a number of years living in the UK before settling down in Thailand. A keen golfer he also loves his rugby and cricket. Along with his wife Sopida they will ensure you have a ball on your trip.

JAMES & CHELSEY NATAI

Married in late 2018, James (from Tanzania) and Chelsey (from the US) together coordinate PMGY Tanzania’s programme. From James’ cracking sense of humour, to Chelsey’s down-to-earth wisdom, you couldn’t really ask for a more well-balanced duo!

JOSH MCENANEY

A real NewcastleLAD, Josh has a wealth of volunteering experience across Africa and Asia, including hosting large groups of PMGY volunteers. This party loving, globe trotter loves spending time with his family, mates and watching footie.

EMMA GOVER

Emma began her PMGY journey volunteering in Vietnam, continuing with the team in Sri Lanka for a couple of years, until joining the PMGY International Team in 2019. Emma is a travel addict who loves to immerse herself in a new way of life!

JASON HAN

Jason hosts all PMGY Cambodia volunteers in a rural village south of Phnom Penh. A lover of sports and socialising, a day in Jason’s company is never boring, advising all volunteers to ‘expect the unexpected’ during their time abroad.

VISHY BHANDU

Vishav is a busy man. He is a dad of two and coordinates all of PMGY’s projects in India. He loves rock and reggae music and is passionate about cricket - surprise, surprise! He also likes to cool off each day with some yoga or meditation.

ALI BENSEBAA

Ali is a smart cookie with lots of qualifications from his time studying in both New York and Morocco. He's also multi lingual, crazy about travel, hard working, committed and a right laugh. So you'll be in excellent company!

ASIM NARESH

Our Big Bro is a funny character, full of many talents! Asim manages all of the PMGY projects across Nepal and welcomes all participants in Kathmandu. Outside of the projects, whether it’s sports, theatre or politics, Asim is your man!

ASHIKA SENEVIRATHNA

After winning PMGY’s In-Country Director of the Year Award 6 years running, Ashika really is the backbone of PMGY and has hosted hundreds of volunteers. His big loves are his family and travel. He always goes above and beyond for PMGY volunteers.

 

UK: +44 800 321 3564

USA: 1-813-422-5109

hello@planmygapyear.com