Free Summer volunteering opportunities in China

Are you looking for volunteer abroad opportunities? Are your dreams of volunteering abroad constrained by expensive fees? Are you wondering if there are actually any free volunteering abroad opportunities in the world? Then look no further and join our free summer volunteering abroad program in China.

  • Teach English to enthusiastic Chinese students during summer
  • Develop teaching skills while improving your resume and future career
  • A meaningful summer for you- that can change you and others
  • Absolutely free volunteer abroad- free food, food, and weekend activities
  • Also free Chinese language learning opportunities

Beautiful China is a great place to explore, volunteer, and learn. Though modernizing at a rapid rate, China is still rich in ancient culture and traditions. When you join our free summer volunteer program in China, you’ll explore this great country and witness the stark contrast between the new and the old, the rich and the poor, and the yin and yang of Chinese culture. This is without a doubt a colorfully diverse and rewarding opportunity.

By volunteering in a free summer English program in china, you will be a part of a fascinating transformation within the lives of the students to whom you dedicate your time, energy, and compassion. Global Crossroad offers an amazing free volunteer opportunity in summer in China. We invite you to join our summer camp, share your love and passion for children and make the upcoming summer unforgettable.

Summer Volunteer Program Itinerary (sample)

Day 1: Arrival for Summer Volunteering Program In Shanghai

Arrive at Pu-dong International Airport in Shanghai. You will be greeted and picked up by a Global Crossroad’s representative and transferred to a hostel in Shanghai.

Day 2: Orientation & Training

On the second day, you will be orientated on the English summer camp, its objectives & goals, room/food, local culture, traditions, dos & don’ts, customs and a basic introduction to the spoken Mandarin language. You are free to ask questions.

After orientation, you will get a brief training on how to teach English to young Chinese children of 3-10 years of age. Summer camp is a special and intensive English teaching program in China. The camp is mostly focused on improving overall English understanding, especially in conversation. Chinese students are very eager and excited to learn the English language. So the training will mostly focus on how to achieve the goal of the summer camp and how to teach in English to young Chinese students.

After the initial orientation and training, you will be assigned to a school where the free summer English camp in China will be held.

Day 3: Sightseeing through Shanghai and nearby cities

On the third day, you will explore the beautiful city of Shanghai, covering the popular tourist attractions. The tour includes cultural visits to Cheng-huang-miao, the City God temple Bazaar that is the heart of the city’s old town, and Jing’an Temple, one of the most important ancient Buddhist temples.

You will also join a cruise on the Huangpu River and enjoy the breathtaking night view of the Bund, a historic landmark of Shanghai. The whole day of exploration and travel will give you glimpses of China, its culture, people, land and much more.

Day 4-31: Teaching in Kindergartens in Shanghai and nearby Cities 

Teaching English to young kids is the core part of the free summer program in China. Depending on the program you choose (either one month or two months), you will be teaching English (mostly conversational English) to young students, starting in kindergarten through 5th grade.  In the camp, you will be using your skills and sharing your teaching experience to smart, energetic, and enthusiastic Chinese students who are always happy and eager to learn English. Though there will be teaching materials/books in the camp for you to use, we encourage you to bring any teaching materials that you think would be helpful for the students.

Depending on enrollment, there will be 5 to 20 kids to a class.  You will teach 30-45 minutes per class. Most of the summer camp classrooms are equipped with teaching aids such as computers, overhead projectors, and even touch display screens. The class will be well furnished and have air conditioning.

You will start your day with coffee and Chinese breakfast. After breakfast, you will arrive at the camp at 9:00 AM. The actual teaching session will start at 9:30 AM, after preparation. Each class will last for 45 minutes and there will be 15 minutes break between classes.

After the morning session, there will be a1 hour and 30-minute lunch break for students and teachers alike. You will be served delicious Chinese food every day. The lunch break is long enough to rest, relax, read, or even take a short nap. After the break, the afternoon session of the summer camp starts at 2:00 PM and lasts until 5:15 PM, with regular class and breaks similar to the morning session.  After 5:30 PM, the day will be over.

A standard work-week for free summer volunteer programs in China are between 30-40 class hours, with two days off. You will teach Monday-Friday.

Saturday and Sunday – Free time:

After 5 days of teaching and making memories, you will have a free Saturday and Sunday. This is a time for travel and exploration. China is a great country, rich in history, nature, culture, and tradition. The country is modernizing fast and there are endless opportunities to see it in action. Use the weekend to explore this incredible country full of friendly people and adventure.

Free Chinese Leaning Opportunity in summer camp- The Chinese language is increasing in popularity globally. If you are interested in learning or practicing any existing knowledge of the mandarin language, then we can arrange 1-2 hours of study for teachers each day. You can learn Chinese mandarin either after the workday is over, or during the lunch break. Just let the camp organizer know if you are interested.

Tips for your summer teaching in China

Using songs: If possible, try to sing a lovely song, preferably a nursery rhyme or good morning song with actions and sounds. You can bring your own disc or download something once you arrive to teach at your free volunteer opportunity in China, since that is easily accessed on domestic Internet.

Using Games: Funny alphabet songs and colorful flash cards can be great. You can stick the letters to the wall, and start a little competition to see who can run to the wall to touch the proper letters announced. Always remember to encourage!

More Games online: Use as many free ESL games online as possible to peak the interests of the kids.

A Typical Day for the Summer English Camp

Morning Session

  • 7:00- 8:30 – wake up at 7:00 and get ready for coffee and a delicious Chinese Breakfast
  • 9:00- 9:30- arrive at camp, go over materials, and prep for class.
  • 9:30-10:15 – start teaching, sharing, and learning 
  • 10:15-10:30 – short break & time to prepare for the next class
  • 10:30-11:15 – teach English, and share your passion with students
  • 11:15-11:30 short break & time to prepare for the next class
  • 11:30-12:15 Teach English to students eagerly looking for you

Afternoon session

  • 12:30-14:00 Lunch Break – eat a delicious lunch, chat with local teachers, students, camp organizers, or rest and relax
  • 14:00:14:30- Return to the camp, get ready for the next class  
  • 14:30-15:15 Teaching
  • 15:30-16:15 Teaching
  • 16:30-17:15 Teaching
  • There will be a 15 minutes break in each class
  • 17:30 free time

Skills and Qualification:

  • This program is open only to native English speakers (citizens of US, UK, Canada, Australia, Ireland and other English speaking countries with English as a mother language).
  • There are NO teaching or academic qualification needed to volunteer for free in China. We welcome college/university students who want to be future teachers or are eager to teach young children in China.
  • This is also a wonderful opportunity for retired teachers who want to share their experience and explore the world.
  • Ages 16-60 Years

Prices and Dates

Currently, we offer 4-week and 8-week free summer English camps in China. Depending on your interests, you are free to choose the program that suits you best.

Date (4 weeks program): July 1 - August 30th

Date (8 weeks program): July 1- Sept. 30th

Program Fee:

The program is absolutely free with the following benefits

  • Airport pick-up/drop off (upon request)
  • Accommodation (hostel or flat, depending on specific school and venue of teaching)
  • Food (Breakfast & Dinner at Hostel, Lunch Stipends provided)
  • One day of Shanghai sightseeing program (including Entrance fees and permits)

Program  Fee Does Not Cover

  • Visa
  • Airfare
  • Insurance (Insurance is mandatory to join the program. It costs $3.69 per day)
  • Any room/food expenses before and/or after the start of the program
  • Personal expenses, like soft drinks and food

Even though the program is 100% free, you still you need to pay $299 to apply (or to secure the position). We require this application fee to make sure that the application is legitimate. We will refund the $299 once you complete the program. No application will be considered serious or legitimate until we receive the application with the deposit.

Location(s)

Free English Camps in China are located in Shanghai and nearby cities. If we get a large number of teachers, we may run the camps in the other cities, so we expect location flexibility from our volunteers.

Most Frequently Asked Questions:

  • How do I apply for the program?
  • To apply to the free volunteer in China program, simply fill out the form. Even though the program is 100% free, you still you need to pay $299 to apply (or to secure the position). We require this application fee to make sure that the application is legitimate. We will refund the $299 once you complete the program. No application will be considered serious or legitimate until we receive the application with the deposit.

  • What happens when I apply?
  • Once we receive your application, we immediately forward it to our country coordinator, in China, who will go over your application very carefully. He may ask for your resume, photo, or more information to screen or process your application.

  • Is there a selection process? When do I get a notice of acceptance?
  • Yes, there will be a screening process to select the right candidates for the camp. Chinese schools that run the summer camps have some expectations or requirements when it comes to teachers.  Therefore, we screen the teachers to meet the needs of the camp. We may also set up skype interviews as part of the selection if necessary. You will get an acceptance letter from our China coordinator within 7 days of applying.

  • When should I apply for this program?
  • We strongly recommend volunteers/teachers to apply at least 2 months in advance. When you apply in advance, it helps you to get ready and have peace of mind. To visit China, you need to prepare your airfare, visa, vaccination, among other things. Since these require time, apply in advance.

  • What is the age limit required for volunteers?
  • The program is open for any native English speak of age range is between 16 and 60 years old.

  • Can I apply if I don’t know any Chinese?

  • Knowledge of Chinese language is not needed to join the program.  If you are interested in learning Chinese, we offer it for free.
  • Do we get a certificate after the camp? 
  • If you are thinking of developing your career as a teacher, or if you want to improve your resume, we would be happy to issue a certificate for joining the volunteer in China for free programs. We will send it to you with the official Letter Head of Global Crossroad. Anyone who needs this should inform us when applying, since we need get this certificate printed out and posted to you while you are in China.   

  • What type of visa should I apply?
  • The free summer camp teaching program in China is volunteer based. It is not a paid teaching program where you need a work visa. Since you are not getting a salary, and just coming to China to help and travel, please apply for a tourist visa (L). We do not manage visas, so please get a tourist visa from your home country However, if you need an invitation letter (which is really not needed to go to China for volunteering and travel), please let us know.

  • Do I need travel insurance? Who provides health insurance?
  • Travel insurance is extremely important to protect you during international travel. We do not accept anyone in the program if they do not have travel insurance. You can buy the insurance of your choice. Global Crossroad does offer insurance (in partnership with one of world’s leading travel insurance provider) at $3.69 per day.

  • If I have to arrive late, do you offer free airport picking-up? 
  • Yes, we offer free airport pick up for each volunteer. We will pick you up even during later hours. Please make sure to send your flight information to us. Our local staff/coordinator will be waiting by the exit, holding up a sign with your name on it.. If for some reason you can’t find our coordinator, just call him. You will find the phone number in the summer camp information ebook you get when you are formally accepted to program.

  • Is program safe? 
  • China is one of the safest counties in the world. Global Crossroad has been running volunteer programs in China for the last 10 years. There has never been a single incident that has threatened the safety of our volunteers. We make sure our free volunteer programs in China are very safe.  First, we run the summer English camps in established schools equipped with all modern facilities.  Second, the camps are managed and coordinated by local camp coordinators.  They will be with you during the entire camp period to help and make sure that things are running smoothly. We also only use safe accommodations.

  • Is there Internet in China? How do I contact home during the program?
  • China is a high tech country. There is Internet access and all ways of communication in modern cities like Shanghai. You will be able to contact your family through Skype and other apps like Whatsup.

  • What kind of room will I stay in?
  • You will stay in a nearby hostel, and either share or have your own room. All rooms are equipped with air-conditioner, 24hours hot water, cable TV, free wifi, phone access, and security guards who are on watch 24/7.

  • What about pocket money? Can we bring dollars?
  • Free summer volunteering in China programs cover most of your expenses (room and food). However, you may still need extra money to travel on weekends or for other personal expenses. We suggest you bring at least $100 per to cover expenses outside of your program.

  • What qualifications do I need to apply to free summer volunteer camp in China?
  • Native English speakers with clear pronunciation, the desire to teach kids, a clean record and background check, be aged 16-60 years old, and in sound health.

  • Do I need to submit any documents?
  • Yes, a passport plus one recent photo with your resume.

  • Is there any screening process? How long does it take to make final decision?
  • Yes, final decisions for free volunteering in China will be released within 7 days upon application. Sometimes, we will have to arrange a Skype interview to further help with a decision.

  • How far advance do I need to apply? 
  • Before 20th of June, 2017.

  • Once accepted, what preparation do I need to do before coming to China?
  • First, you should have a valid passport with at least six months valid time on it. Then purchase a return flight based on your itinerary. Last but not least, get some pocket money with you, say, $200-1500 based on your personal situation.

  • When do I need to arrive? How many days in advance?
  • You can make your arrival on July 1st. Early arrival is welcome but we won’t offer free accommodation and such.

  • Where I will be flying to?
  • Shanghai. We may run the camp in other cities, depending on the needs of the schools. If we need to run the camps in other cities, you may need to fly into another airport. We will let you know in advance.

  • Who will receive me at the airport?
  • A Global Crossroad staff will greet you at the exit, holding up a piece of paper with your name on it.

  • Where will I live?
  • We will book a hotel/hostel where foreigners are officially allowed to check in with the local police station.

  • Is this share or private accommodation?
  • In most cases, shared. But we will offer private if requested.

  • What kind of food will be served? When?
  • Breakfast (6:00-8:00 am) and Dinner (6:00 – 7:00 pm) will be offered at the hotel dining area. Lunch stipends will be offered.

  • Is there Internet (wifi) or how can I get wifi and how much it cost?
  • Yes, there will be free wifi at the hotel and work areas.

  • Will there be any weekend activities for the teachers?
  • Yes, when you are not volunteering for free in a China teaching program, free Mandarin lessons will be offered. We will also provide some local sightseeing tours if requested.

  • Where will it be run?
  • Shanghai and nearby cities, but might also include Beijing, Shenzhen, Qingdao, etc.

  • How many students will be there in the camp?
  • 20-100

  • How many teachers will be there in camp?
  • 10-30

  • What will the daily schedule look like?
  • Sample Work Day
  • Morning Session
    6:00- 8:00 Breakfast
    9:00-Arrive at School
    9:30-10:15 Teaching
    10:15-10:30 Break
    10:30-11:15 Teaching
    11:15-11:30 Break
    11:30-12:15 Teaching

    Afternoon session
    12:30-14:00 Lunch Break (outside coffee shop, sightseeing, etc.)
    14:00-Back to School
    14:30-15:15 Teaching
    15:30-16:15 Teaching
    16:30-17:15 Teaching
    17:30 Free time

    • Monday-Friday camp 5 hours and Free time in between
    • Saturday-Free day with 1-2 hour free mandarin lessons, if requested, this is also available on daily basis 
    • Sunday-Free day with 1-2 hours free mandarin lessons, if requested, this is also available on daily basis
  • What can I Do in my free time?
  • Sightseeing, leaning mandarin, etc.

  • Any important points that I need to know
  • Volunteers are expected to be very flexible as teaching in the free summer camp in China is different than teaching in a regular school. Summer camps are intensive English teaching programs with a specialized focus on conversation skills. Teachers are expected to be flexible, eager, patient, and willing to use different tools to teach. If you love children then you’ll love this opportunity.

Benefits of working in English summer camps

A free volunteering abroad opportunity

Volunteer Summer English Camps in China are an absolutely free volunteering opportunity. Unlike many volunteer programs, which can charge up to $2000-3000. this program is absolutely free. We take care of your room, food, and weekend activities. If you dream of volunteering and travelling the world but can’t fit the bill, this is the best opportunity for you.

You will have opportunity to share your love and Passion

During your free volunteer program in China, you will teach younger (primary school aged) students who are eager to learn English from native English speakers. By sharing your love and passion you are shaping their lives and changing your own.  If you really love kids and teaching children, this is amazing opportunity for you

It acts as a stepping-stone for future work in China

If your future dream is to become an English teacher in China or (or anywhere in the world), the summer camps are ideal practicing grounds. The programs offer a starting off point for beginners. It is also possible to know whether the area is perfect for you to settle into for the future.

The camps help you to expose your career

Enrolling in a summer English camp in China offers you a chance to prove your capabilities. You may find, after working in these programs, that employers were satisfied with your performance. After the session is over, directors can opt to offer you a permanent job in the school.

They offer the best time to interact with students and Chinese teachers

When you join the summer English camp in China, you will have a great time and get the chance to meet and interact with Chinese students, parents, and teachers. These interactions facilitate the exchange of ideas and give ample learning opportunities to understand more about Chinese culture, traditions, values, etc. Summer camps will give you a great opportunity to explore and understand China.