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Volunteer abroad, Gap year in Seoul

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Korea offers a great number of volunteering possibilities. Clubs and association will often ask its members to sit on committees join their board of directors. Typical community service options also exist in Seoul, including:

Play with abandoned pets on the weekend.
Contact, or

BEAN is a mentoring organisation which sets up regular visits to orphanages. Young professional thus have the opportunity to play with children and teach them English, as well as take part in other monthly volunteer and social events.

The mission of HABITAT FOR HUMANITY is to build home for low income families or families who have lost their home as a result of a natural disaster. You can e-mail Habitat for Humanity Korea at

HELLO FRIENDS has a twice-yearly programme which involves volunteers visiting schools throughout Korea and introducing English to young schoolchildren. Through Hello Friends Korean children meet and interact with people from other countries. All the costs of Hello Friends trips are covered by the organization. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, please contact the Hello Friends Chair at Note that you must already be in Korea to volunteer.

The Canadian organisation H.O.P.E. (Helping Others Prosper through English) has the goal of providing a safe and accessible place for underprivileged children to develop their English skills and equip them for a brighter future in further education, free of charge. Note that an E2 visa will usually be required.

MUSTARD SEED arranges for volunteers to teach English to underprivileged children roughly twice a month. For more information on how to get involved contact

GLOBAL VILLAGE VOLUNTEERS organises a range of projects including visits to old age homes, teaching English at centres for underprivileged kids, sport and food provision for the homeless. For more information write to:

HOUSE OF SHARING - International Outreach Team organises and conducts tours in English of the House of Sharing, a home for the survivors of the Japanese military's 'Comfort Women' – sex slaves at the service of the army. To get involved with the group you should first come as a visitor on one of the organised tours. To reserve send an e-mail to

MRS - Medical Referral Service is a round-the-clock information service staffed by expat volunteers who have a medical background. To volunteer, call 010-4769-8212 (one of their emergency numbers) during business hours or contact the Seoul Global Center.

KOEM - The Korea Marine Environment Management Corporation is dedicated to managing and improving the marine environment in South Korea. They work to prevent pollution caused by oil spills etc. and also organise educational activities. For more information or to volunteer contact

PSCORE (People for Successful Corean Reunification) is a non-profit, non-religious, non-partisan NGO in Seoul working for the reunification of the Korean peninsula. PSCORE is comprised of young North Korean defectors and also foreigners who share a common interest and passion for the reunification of Korea, are concerned about North Korean human rights issues, and would like to help North Korean defectors become self-supporting.

PLUR (Peace, Love, Unity and Respect). Members volunteer with local communities, NGO's, and other aid associations to tackle social problems such as poverty, street children, the disabled, the elderly, etc. The contact person is The group is also listed on Facebook as: Volunteer for PLUR!

The SEOUL VOLUNTEER CENTER organises environmental clean-ups around the city and also helps the elderly and needy children. On their website go to the “Foreigners” box and fill out the application form.

UNESCO Cross Cultural Awareness Program (CCAP) offers foreign residents the opportunity to share their culture with Korean youths. Typical activities include school presentations and visits. The volunteer programme is open to anyone. Tel: (02) 755-4623, Email:

The dynamic organisation WOMEN'S HUMAN RIGHTS KOREA helps connect volunteers to various women's organisations in Korea - teaching English, editing, etc. Volunteers should speak English and if possible a little Korean. For more information contact or

Update 17/05/2010


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