Volunteer: Steps to Volunteer
Research and Planning
You read the pages of this website about the volunteer program and familiarize yourself with the costs of joining. You decide whether the program is a good fit for you and whether you're comfortable making a commitment to cover the major costs by fundraising, paying out of pocket or both. You check the calendar of upcoming programs and determine the dates you'd like to join.
You submit an application form on this website.
After you submit your application form, a volunteer agreement is emailed to you. You read and print the volunteer agreement, sign it, photograph or scan it, and email the photo or scan to Buds to Blossoms staff.
Provisional Admissions Decision
Buds to Blossoms staff inform you whether you're provisionally admitted to the program. If you're provisionally admitted, they send you an email containing step-by-step instructions on how to prepare for the program. At this stage, your admission is provisional in the sense that it must be confirmed by your passing a criminal background check.
A check of your criminal background is performed, and the results are reviewed by Buds to Blossoms staff. Your admission is confirmed or cancelled on the basis of this review.
If, at the time of applying, you chose to delay committing to specific program dates until you raise enough funds to cover key expenses, you inform Buds to Blossoms staff when you've decided on dates.
You secure a space and confirm your enrollment in specific program dates by paying, or fundraising to cover, a deposit of US$300 per week you'll join. The deposit is normally due by 6 months before the program, but an extension may be granted, if needed.
You pay, or fundraise to cover, the portion of your participation fee remaining due after you've covered your deposit. The fee is normally due by 4 months before the program, but an extension may be granted, if needed.
If you wish, you bring your immunization records to a doctor or travel clinic to get any vaccinations recommended for travel to the city where the program will be held. No vaccinations are required by Buds to Blossoms or the sites where our team works.
You get a passport, or renew your passport, if needed. You provide Buds to Blossoms with a photo or scan of the page of your passport that displays your identity, for legal and emergency purposes.
You ask Buds to Blossoms staff to confirm the program dates are firm, and then you book your own flights and lodging and buy travel insurance, with the help of information they provide. Volunteers who wish to get in touch with each other for purposes of sharing lodging or taking the same flights are offered a means to do so. You provide Buds to Blossoms with your lodging, flight and insurance details, for emergency purposes.
You get a visa to enter the country in which the program will be held, or the documents you'll need to apply for a visa on arrival. Buds to Blossoms provides you with information on how to get a visa.
As you prepare for the program, Buds to Blossoms staff provide you with the support and guidance you need by email and phone. They give you an extensive guide to the program that explains what to bring and many other details. You read the guide before the program.
You travel to the city where the program will be held and check in at your lodging.
You attend the orientation meeting on the first day of the program.