Frequently Asked Questions

Everything that I need to know to prepare my mission with Gawad Kalinga

Frequently asked questions

Here are the answers to the most common inquiries raised by our volunteers! Some questions are dedicated to specific missions so make sure you read everything carefully.

A well prepared trip!

Raising funds

Fundraising is not required, however it is highly recommended if the mission you will be doing requires material resources. If you do not have the time or if your fundraising efforts were not as successful as you hoped, tap your personal network and try to gather small amounts (between 5 to 10 euros per person). This effort could bring you a small amount which could already mean a lot in a Gawad Kalinga village. It is entirely up to you – it is not obligatory to come with funds, but it is always more practical.

A visa to the Philippines

The visa required to conduct a volunteer mission in the Philippines is a « tourist visa ». The objective of the stay in the Philippines is classified under the category  « vacation ».

If you wish to apply for a visa before your departure, we recommend contacting the Philippine Embassy at 4 hameau de Boulainvilliers et 45 rue du Ranelagh, 75116 Paris. Telephone number: 01-44-14-57-00 (embassy) and 01-44-14-57-01 (consulate). The consular section is open from Monday to Friday, 9 AM to 4PM.
Email address: ambaphilparis@wanadoo.fr.

Note that no visa is required for French nationals for a stay of up to 29 days.

If you will be staying for longer than 29 days, there are different types of tourist visas you can obtain:

Single entry tourist visa

If you wish to arrive with a visa valid for up to 59 days

The tourist visa in the Philippines is renewable every 59 days. If you will go out of the country on the 58th day, upon returning, you could stay for another 29 days without renewing your visa, but beyond the 29th day, you will have to request for an extension of another 59 days (around 30€).

You will have to count the number of days precisely to be certain that you will not go beyond the number of days permitted in your visa.

Beyond 59 consecutive days in the Philippine territory, you are required to apply for an Alien ID (around 100 euros for 1 year) and pay an extension which costs around 30 euros.

If you will be staying in Philippine territory beyond 59 days, you must also get an I-card which costs 100 euros + the extension of 30 euros.

Multiple entry tourist visa

If you wish to arrive with a multiple entry visa valid for 6 months 

With a multiple entry tourist visa, you can return to the country multiple times. The period of stay each time should not exceed 59 days. Upon exiting the country on the 58th day and returning afterwards to the Philippines, you will be given a 59-day visa. If you will stay in the country beyond that, you must get an « Alien ID » and an extension (like you have the 59-day visa).

We would also like to remind you that Philippine legislation is updated from time to time; therefore, we advise you to contact the embassy to confirm this information.

Behavioral guidelines in the village

Staying in a GK village requires discipline and respect of rules instituted by Gawad Kalinga. These rules were defined based on the principle that the problem of poverty is not only an economic problem, but also a behavioral problem.

To lessen the negative impacts that the integration of European groups in the village could bring about in the community, we have defined a set of rules that must be respected: romantic relationships, dress code, cigarettes, alcohol, etc…

We ask you to read and understand the rules and behavior agreement in the following page: Rules and Behavioral Guidelines in a Gawad Kalinga Village.

Make a donation to Gawad Kalinga

You can make donation through the online platform of Hello Asso: Gawad Kalinga Europe Hello Asso

In some countries, making a donation allows you to benefit from tax deduction. However, be aware that the receipt you will get through this website will be written in french.

How do I pay the fee for my volunteering?

Responding to all the demands and making the necessary preparations for the missions require a lot of time and organization, especially in terms of logistics. This is why interns and volunteers have to pay a fee of 250€ to Gawad Kalinga Europe at least TWO months before the departure date.

What are the payment procedures?

Payments must be made before submitting the “in-kind donation” folder two months before the departure date in order to execute tax deductions for your plane tickets. There are two ways to settle the payment:

Pay by check

Check payments can be sent by mail to the following address: GK-Europe, c/o Olivier Girault, 10 rue de la justice 75020 Paris. Please make your check payable to “Gawad Kalinga Europe.” At the back of the check, indicate the name of the volunteer/intern, the departure date and the location of the mission.

Pay online by making a donation to the organization (with fiscal receipt)

The fiscal receipt can be used for tax payers in France only.

It is possible to pay in the form of a donation to the non-profit organization “Gawad Kalinga Europe.” This can be done by clicking on this link: Intern and volunteer donations. Do not forget to indicate in the comments section the complete name of the volunteer/intern and the departure date to the Philippines. An electronic fiscal receipt will be sent automatically to the person whose name appears in the credit card used for the transaction. When an individual makes a donation to GK Europe, he/she gets a tax deduction amounting to 66% of the donation. This will be accounted for in tax payments to be settled the following year.

How will the fee be used?

Of the 250€ paid, 160€ will be sent to Gawad Kalinga’s headquarters in Manila, “Gawad Kalinga Community Development Foundation,” at least two months before your arrival in the Philippines. This amount will be used to cover the following expenses:
  • Transportation from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila to the Gawad Kalinga Enchanted Farm (2 to 5 hours depending on traffic),
  • Transportation from the Enchanted Farm to Manila (2 to 4 hours), then to the airport for those taking a flight to reach their assigned GK village (1 to 3 hours),
  • Roundtrip transportation from the local airport or bus terminal to the GK village upon arrival, and upon departure after the mission,
  • Contribution to the transportation of GK Area Coordinators & GK Caretakers who are in charge of all the preparations for your mission and who will, from time to time, visit you during your stay,
  • Organization and coordination fees for your “Onboarding Camp” (upon arrival in Manila), along with your stay in a GK village together with the the farm or GK headquarters personnel,
  • Transportation fees for a visit to 1 or 2 GK communities in metropolitan Manila (with a small donation to the management of each village),
  • A “build kit” for potential construction work in the community with the villagers,
  • Contribution to the “Assurance Responsabilité Civile” (covering all activities during your stay in all GK villages, excluding personal activities done outside), and
  • Contribution to the management fees of GK headquarters (including office management and accounting, certification of a public accountant, and audit by PWC) equivalent to 15% of 160€.
Please note that the costs of air, land and sea transport from the airport in Manila to the location of your assigned GK village are not included in this fee, but could be declared as an “in kind donation” for tax deductions.
 
The remaining 90€ is allocated to GK-Europe for administrative expenses, particularly for the coordination of internship programs. It allows the organization to provide for the following:
  • The availability of 2 to 5 coordinators in France 356 days/year to respond to various requests relating to the internship or volunteer mission (including the submission of internship contracts),
  • Design, programming and maintenance of the website www.gk-europe.org, as well as the Facebook page “Gawad Kalinga France”, which are used to communicate important information about the internships and volunteer missions,
  • Management of donations and tax receipts, monthly and annual accounts management, and the annual public accountant certification,
  • Contribution to other expenses (transportation, hotel and meals) during the annual visit of Filipino delegates from Gawad Kalinga to present the organization to university students,
  • Financing of “Volontariat de Solidarité Internationale (VSI)” contracts for French nationals working in the Philippines with Gawad Kalinga, and contribution to their transportation expenses relating to the internship/volunteer mission, and
  • Bank transfer fees from France to the Philippines.
The amount of the donation equivalent to 250€ is the same for all volunteers and interns, whatever their assigned destination and the transportation time required.
Additional costs shall be incurred, should a volunteer or intern decide to travel to the Enchanted Farm separately from his/her group upon arrival in Manila. Please prepare an additional budget of 2,500 pesos for the taxi (around 50 euros, real cost with no commission or contribution to the organization). This amount is to be settled on site with the driver of the taxi which we will book in advance.

Who is going to sign my internship agreement?

Gawad Kalinga Headquarters (Philippines) can sign your internship agreement. During your interview, an email will be send to you with information that will allow you to fill it up. Then you will have to send it back to the GK EU coordinator.

Do I need an insurance?

It is required to have insurance that will provide coverage during your stay in the Philippines. Before submitting a request to a private insurance company, consult the CPAM, your insurance (or that of your parents) or your bank, as some already include insurance coverage under certain terms and conditions.

Gawad Kalinga has civil responsibility insurance coverage, which means that if a volunteer has an accident within the compounds of Gawad Kalinga, the organization will not be responsible for the reimbursement of the damages. The contract number may be requested during the interview with the GK Europe coordinators.

Once in the Philippines!

Am I authorized to bring gifts for the residents of my Gawad Kalinga village?

Numerous groups of interns wish to distribute some gifts to the residents of the village upon arrival (usually to the children). If you wish to do so, you can bring a souvenir from France for the family with whom you will be staying. Please read further about the rules and behavior in our website.

How many days of vacation/leaves am I allowed to have?

Interns and volunteers have 2 non-working days per week.

If you will be organizing activities in partnership with the community, avoid taking your break during the weekend because the kids are not at school and certain adults do not work during these days. It is therefore easier to organize community activities during the weekend.

If you wish to take a vacation, inform the GK Caretaker as well as your adoptive parents (time of departure and return in the village), because they worry easily. In the Philippines, a guest is considered a member of the family, so the adults will be looking for you like one of their children.

How is my arrival organized?

It is very important that group members arrive at the same time on the same date in order for us to arrange airport transfers. If this is not possible, members of the group will have to adjust to the solutions given by the Gawad Kalinga team.

A member of the Gawad Kalinga team will pick you up at the airport. An onboarding camp will be organized at the GK Enchanted Farm in the following way:

  • Day 1: pick up at the airport and visit of a GK village nearby
  • Day 2: introduction to the phase 1 of GK – afternoon at the GK Enchanted Farm
  • Day 3: introduction to the concept of the GK Enchanted Farm
  • Day 4: heading to the airport or Manila bus station to travel to your assigned village.

Please note that the onboarding camp agenda might change depending on the schedule of your arrival.