Have a browse of our frequently asked questions below
Once accepted onto our program we will provide you with a full quote breakdown along with your welcome pack which will provide a set timeframe.
Before we can issue any supporting documentation for visas or fully book out your bed in the house we will need to take at least 1 month deposit ($192).
Most volunteers at this stage pay their full placement fees to prevent travelling with large amounts of cash however if preferred you can also make the final remaining payment upon arrival to Ghana in either US dollars or Ghana cedis.
Yes your quote will be reflected to show the VolunteerWorld deposit amount reduced from your total amount due.
This payment to VolunteerWorld is their operating/introduction commission for using their platform and services – the deposit paid to Atlas is taken off your remaining fees and used to fully confirm your booking and flights with us.
You will be living in a shared volunteer house in the quiet town of Pepease just a 5 minute drive from the main town of Abetifi. A member of our support team will also live on site in the accommodation with you to show you the local area and customs.
Unfortunately in this and most areas of Ghana we don’t have a fixed street address as they use a local house number reference. For reference if you would like to search the area online, the main local point of interest would be ‘Modak Royal Hotel – Pepease’.
Although we recommend staying with the other volunteers in the shared accommodation it is possible for us to arrange host family stays. The placement fee for this would alter as usually this would include some meals.
Visa & Entry Requirements
Yes, for the majority of countries across the globe you will require a short term tourist visa stamped into your passport before you are able to enter the country. Visa on arrival is available for some african countries on the continent but you will need to confirm this with your local embassy.
Most of the Ghanaian embassies require you to complete an online application form and then send off your passport however sometimes you may be required to book an appointment to visit the embassy depending on the timeframe.
Once you are confirmed onto our volunteering team you will receive further details on the type of visa required via email and in your welcome pack.
Most Ghanaian embassies only allow you to apply no earlier than 3 months before your scheduled departure. It is not always necessary to book a return flight beforehand as long as you can prove you have the neccessary financial means to support yourself for a prolonged period of time. For specifics you will need to query this with your local embassy.
All tourist visas whether it’s single entry or multiple entry over 1 year will be stamped upon arrival with a 60 or 90 day validity. This means that after this time you will need to extend your visa at the local immigration office.
We have an immigration office close to us in the town of Mpraeso which are able to process this for you for around $15 US dollars per month.
No, although we will assist you with supporting documents the visa application is processed and applied by yourself. In most countries it’s a fairly easy process to apply for by yourself online however they may request further documentation. As an organisation we are able to assist in providing; invitation letters, ID of inviting host, visa references and proof of address.
Along with your visa you will also require a yellow fever vaccination certificate and be required to produce both of these documents upon arrival to the airport in Ghana.
You may also wish to consider travel insurance & anti malarial medication.
Preparing For Your Trip
The local currency in Ghana is Cedis. This is a closed currency and therefore you cannot get it out before you arrive in the country. When you arrive in the country our team will help you exchange currency or get cash out. There are ATMs around the area that you stay and we often find it easier for volunteers to bring cards so that they are not having to carry around lots of cash. However, if you bring money you can exchange it either in Accra or one of the local towns to the house. US Dollars, Euros or British pounds are the best currencies to bring and you get better exchange rates if you bring large notes. It is very difficult to exchange notes smaller than 20s so we recommend bringing 20s, 50s and 100s to get the best deal.
Bedsheets and a pillow are supplied however for comfort and particularly if you’re coming for a longer time you may wish to bring your own, the most common beds in our houses are 1.5x sized single beds.
You will also need to bring your own towels, sun screen cream (which is difficult to buy here) and a mosquito net if you wish to use one.
You can get most toileteries, soaps, washing powder, kitchen supplies, medication and clothing in stores locally if required.
For education placements we recommend bringing creative art materials, reading books, colouring pencils, sharpeners and stationery. You can buy paper, exercise books, pens and pencils here easily.
For sports placements we recommend bringing coloured cones to be used for training and matches along with bibs, balls etc. We can get basic footballs and tenis balls here locally so it’s also possible to bring any funds in cash to spend whilst you’re here.
We arrange airport collections as standard (to be paid upon arrival) for our volunteers. One of our drivers will come to the airport to collect you upon arrival and bring you directly to the volunteer housing where you will meet the rest of the team. More details are provided in your welcome pack once you are confirmed onto our team. This is an additional charge and paid directly to the driver upon arrival – you can withdraw Ghana cedis the local currency from an ATM on your journey to the house or our support staff will help you change any monies required the following morning.
Yes once you have arrived to the volunteer house and rested the following day a member of our team will take you out around the local towns and stores to show you the basics and purchase some food items. You will then be linked up with another volunteer to settle in and learn the customs and way of life here.
Kotoka International Airport in Accra is Ghana’s only major international airport so all flights will land here into Terminal 3 mostly.
Food & Shopping
No, this is a self catering placement and you are supplied with a kitchen to be able to prepare this yourself.
If you are not comfortable in the kitchen we can arrange a meal package in addition where 2 of your meals are prepared by our support staff or a local member of the community.
In the area most food is bought in the local markets. Fresh fruit and vegetables are easy to buy and with amazing seasons like Mango season and Avocado season you will never go hungry. Upon arrival you will be shown around the local stores so that you know where to buy the essentials and most importantly how to.
There is also a large selection of street food and low cost restaurants available in the local towns. For example you can purchase a portion of fried rice, chicken and salad for less than $2 US dollars.
No the drinking water is not safe to drink however drinking water is readily available in local stores and is most commonly sold in 500ml plastic sachets (1 pack of 30 sachets is less than $1 US dollar) but you can also purchase branded bottled water such as Voltic easily.
Yes there are lots of local stores for buying clothes, shoes, electronic goods and beautiful materials that you can then have clothes tailor made for yourself. Sweets and treats along with tinned goods and housing items can be found at the largest supermarket which is Melcom in Nkawkaw an approximately 30 minute drive from the volunteer house.
We would advise against using your data roaming unless absolutely critical upon arrival to the country to notify your family and loved ones. Due to us being outside of any European or Americas data agreements the charges for this are usually very high in comparison to purchasing data whilst in Ghana.
For all our volunteers on the first day as part of your orientation we will take you to buy a Ghanaian SIM card, if you have an unlocked phone then you can get started with this SIM straight away otherwise you will need to purchase a cheap low cost phone whilst here to use.
As mentioned in the above point we will take you to buy a SIM card upon arrival. You will be able to use this to call and SMS your family. These sims are all on topup pay as you go which you can buy credit from nearly ever local vendor.
When you have credit on your phone we then use this to buy data bundles which then allow you to connect to the internet for a specific data package. For example around 6 Ghana cedis for 1GB .
Some of the local hotels have wifi available when you go to use their swimming pools and restaurants however most commonly people use their unlocked phone as a hotspot for their laptops and tablets by using the data bundles mentioned in the above point.