Youth Empowerment Expedition

Cross-Cultural Collaboration in Fiji
Sustainable Development Through Global Work Experience

In Partnership with Fijian Government

Our 1-month Expedition is a challenging and purposeful team adventure, jam-packed with culture, new perspectives and self-developing experience. 

It’s no secret that employers hugely value ‘soft skills’,  global understanding and practical work experience. Through our 1-month expedition, you’ll develop all three, whilst we facilitate the same self-developing experience to young Fijians.

This expedition is for enthusiastic individuals who want to step out of their comfort zone, experience true cultural immersion and develop their skills, whilst exploring and contributing to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The result is one of the most rewarding and extraordinary experiences of your life.

Project at a Glance...
  • Meaningful 1-Month program in the Fiji Islands.
  • In partnership with Fijian Government, registered Youth Groups & Fijian Charities.
  • Complete cultural immersion in rural village.
  • Live with a traditional Fijian family.
  • Advance UN Sustainable Development Goals & Fiji’s National Development Plan.
  • Develop ‘soft skills’, cultural intelligence and leadership skills that employers really value.
  • Support the cross-cultural development and development of Fiji’s future leaders.
  • Project includes; food, accommodation, 24/7 in-country support, weekend adventures, domestic travel, charity donation. (Flights not included).
  • Expedition costs £1,695 for 1-Month in Fiji.
Apply Now - Before 28 Jan

Join a Discovery Session 🌴🌎 🇫🇯

Monday’s at 05:00 PM [LONDON BST] (Register Here)

Monday’s at 12:00 PM [NEW YORK, EST] (Register Here)

Why Join a Team Expedition to Fiji This Summer?

Whether you’re taking a rewarding summer break or looking to enhance your studies, on a Think Pacific project you can;

  • Experience;  Gain hands on service learning or work placement experience.
  • Contribution; Make an impact to sustainable development goals.
  • Challenge; Expand your comfort zone and throw yourself into island life.
  • Learn; Learn a new culture by living the ‘Kaiviti’ lifestyle.
  • Skills; Develop ‘soft skills’ such as teamwork, communication & leadership.

Team Challenge + Cultural Immersion + Contribution = Huge Personal Growth

Volunteer Testimonials...
Why Choose Think Pacific?
Global Impact with a Local Approach

Learn What Makes Us So Unique…

Only Fiji

All our focus is on Fiji.

Remote & Real

Go where only we can take you.

Teams Only

Teams of up to 25 students.

Fijian Charity

Sustainable development.

Partnership

Support Fijian Government aims.

What's Involved?
With Our Youth for Sustainable Development Project

Join a traditional village,  become a member of a Fijian family and work in partnership with Fijian youth groups of your village (aged 18-30) as you explore local and global issues, develop cross-cultural skills and innovative solutions to achieve Fiji’s National Development Plan and UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Cross-Cultural Collaboration
Work With Inspiring Young Fijians

Work alongside Fijians enrolled in local youth groups, to advocate key messages and learning outcomes across a range of aims, on behalf of our partners.

Cultural Immersion
Celebrate 'Kaiviti' Life

Through daily participation in ‘Kaiviti’ activities you will learn, appreciate and celebrate traditional Fijian lifestyle specific to each village.

The Youth Project...
Holistic Personal Development in Action

Supporting the Fiji National Development Plan & UN Sustainable Development Goals

Through fun and engaging collaboration with young Fijians of a similar age to yourself, we explore new perspectives, ideas, cultural sensitivity and innovation in achieving sustainable development. Each project comprises up to 25 international students, who  live at the heart of a rural community.

Physical Activity

Each day, we participate in a diverse range of engaging physical activity sessions.  From sharing ideas for team sports and warm ups with Fijian youth groups, to introducing yoga and Zumba for community members to inspiring kids with fun sports and games.

Mental Health

Promote discussion of rising mental health issues, potential causes and the prevalence of stigma. Plan positive messages of mental wellbeing and consider support structures that can be implemented with cultural sensitivity, both globally and locally.

Environment

Consider responsibilities to climate change in different global settings. Partake in relevant environmental action initiatives, which depending on location, may address plastic pollution, deforestation, mangrove replanting, renewable energy or coral protection.

Leadership & Life Skills

Facilitate workshops, team building and group challenges in areas of communication, decision making, self-leadership, time management,  presentation skills, positive mindset, empathy and leadership, which advance employability skills

Public Health

Promote awareness of rising Non Communicable Diseases and how healthy habits can be used as intervention. Address dangers of smoking and alcohol use, the rise in sugar and fats in rural diets and issues of reduced activity and discuss community based strategies. 

Micro Enterprise

Explore and understand different opportunities for business creation in global contexts. Consider model examples of success and deconstruct the challenges and viability specific to rural community and cultural settings.

Learn More About the Project Aims & Delivery...
How Do Volunteers Work with Fijian Youths?

You’ll spend each day working in partnership with the members of a Fijian ‘Youth Group’ made up of men and women from rural communities, aged between 18-30. The days are diverse, fun and incredibly busy.  Projects are led by our local Fijian Leaders, trained by partner charities and organisations to pass their skills and learning to international students and Fijian youths. However, ultimately it is up to the commitment of you and the local youths to come up with the ideas and implement project concepts.

Each morning, you’ll work on projects to address key themes from health to environment to lifeskills. This may include facilitating group activities such as brainstorming,  energizers, team building, leading break outs,  group challenges, buddy work, ‘conversation cafes’ or an amazing race.  Depending on the village setting, each day we could be working in a local community centre, a jungle clearing, on the beach or by the river, ideally a mix of all. Sessions finish with the completion of a set outcome – be this a village action plan, a global mind map, a quiz or poster presentation.

Testimonials From our Fijian Partners...

We aim to be the epitome of purposeful, responsible and empowering volunteer and experiential learning programmes. Central to this is the depth of our association with local communities, government departments and organisations within Fiji, which is unique and unrivalled.

Every programme is planned in collaboration and at the request of rural communities and directed and monitored by The Fijian Ministries to ensure our volunteering has real purpose and long term sustainability.  We are respected for working within the framework of the government, adding benefit to long term strategies and the advancement of education, access and opportunity for youths and children living in rural areas.

We work alongside many by leading international universities and hold many partnerships to support the formal delivery of global mobility. Through our structured projects, we guide hundreds of students annually who develop leadership, transferable skills and expand their cultural understanding, whilst contributing to the aims and initiatives of our Fijian partners.

The Fiji National Development Plan - 'Transforming Fiji'
The Government Policy & Strategy Directing Our Projects…

The 20-Year Development Plan provides the forward-looking vision for “Transforming Fiji” towards an even more progressive, vibrant and inclusive society. It outlines a framework that encompasses strategic policy manoeuvres, new approaches to development and the aspirations of all Fijians.

Click here to learn more about the Fiji’s National Development Plan

Your Learning Journey & Leadership Development...

Leadership Development of International Volunteers

Our aim is for every student to complete their project with a set of experiences, personal attributes and transferable skills, which can positively impact their future education, career ambitions and transition to life beyond study.

TP volunteers will be expected to undertake leadership activities in a challenging and changing environment, which means they can achieve the following learning outcomes;

Global Leadership Abilities

Able to communicate Think Pacific outcomes, goals and vision

Displays global Intelligence & empathy with open mind

Ability to lead activities & others without authority

Social & Cultural Awareness

Build relationships with Fijian community members

Adapt to Fijian culture with passion & empathy

Approaches new settings with emotional intelligence

Effective Communicator

Can language personal and team reflections

Can speak effectively to a group

Can communicate with individuals from different backgrounds

Self-Awareness

Has an understanding of own leadership style/s

Is open to feedback and open to change

Curious attitude and continual learner

Resilience

Ability to persist during within challenging environment

Motivates others through consistency

Persistently displays determination to achieve end goal

Critical Thinker

Decisive in new environments

Drives innovations and ideas

Takes initiative to implement ideas

Collaboration & Team work

Positive member of Think Pacific volunteer team

Can collaborate with Fijian Youth & Community members

Project Partners Include...
Who is a Youth Project For?

This project is great for students who want to engage in a broad range of activities, learn about sustainable development in a global context and develop their leadership and employability skills. You don’t need any prior experience and this project is open to all students. You will, however, need a thirst for sustainable development and a desire to step out of your comfort zone  and work collaboratively to implement our project aims.

Develop Your Skills & The Skills Of Others

By the end of our expedition, students and Fijian youths leave, not just a new family and friends but with new found skills, perspectives and confidence. Think Pacific firmly believe that anyone can be a leader and through daily project workshops, ‘Kaiviti challenges’ and team building and cultural activities. This is a chance to step out of your comfort zone and achieve remarkable personal development, whilst most importantly, helping the development of others.

Complete Your 'Kaiviti' Challenge...
Unique Cultural Exchange

Arriving into your Fijian village is the most exciting day of the expedition. Unique to Think Pacific is that each team visits a different community to complete the project objectives. The communities are so incredibly excited for your arrival that the entire village will gather to greet you and welcome you into their traditional village. By the time you depart from your project, you will feel like you have a second home at this tiny community.

Immerse yourself into every aspect of Fijian life and see the country through the eyes of the local people. Visit places only possible with Think Pacific. Being invited into rural communities by village Chief’s is our biggest privilege and something we are incredibly proud of. We require you to throw yourself wholeheartedly into Fijian customs, culture, values and traditions and if you do, you’ll gain so much in return and make so many amazing friends.

Ceremonial 'Kava'

Drink ceremonial Kava with the village Chief.

'Meke' Dancing

Learn the traditional ‘meke’ dance of your village.

Traditional Skills

Learn the traditional skills of your village.

Cook a 'Lovo'

Learn how to cook an underground earth oven.

Homestay

Be adopted by a Fijian family, our biggest privilege.

Community Activities

Get involved with games and sports within your village.

Learn More About Fijian Life...
What is the Kaiviti Challenge?

Each afternoon….

Culminating with…

Village Life Video...

Hear our Fijian staff talk about life in a Fijian village.

What to Expect from Your Village...
Life as a South Pacific Islander…
‘Kaiviti Lifestyle’

Fijian life is incredibly communal and friendly. The entire village live and work together. Fijians farm together, maintaining crop plantations which feed the whole village. They fish together, later dividing their catch, and families will all come together in the evenings to play cards, strum the guitar, chat and dance the night away as they drink Kava.

Accommodation

The villages are all relatively small and close knit communities with usually around 20-50 or so families. During the project, you will stay with your own Fijian family in the village. The Fijian families will treat you as one of their own. If you are lucky, you may also live with a family who has children and your little Fijian brothers and sisters are always so intrigued and incredibly excited by the arrival of visitors from afar! Conditions are basic; expect cold bucket showers, pit toilets and limited electricity.

Fijian Food

You will eat with your Fijian family, who provide all of your meals in the community. Think Pacific fund any costs of this food so our teams pose absolutely no burden on the local resources. You may often find many different people at your home for lunch and dinner – in Fiji it is custom to invite anyone who is passing into the home to eat. Food is very carbohydrate heavy, so expect lots of root crops such as dalo and cassava, and also lots of fish, as this makes up the bulk of a typical Fijian diet.

Culture Shock

Trust us when we say that there really is nothing like a Fijian village! However, the comparatively basic standard of living, the communal nature, the strong religious beliefs and the traditional customs and values in the village, may take time to adjust to. It is completely normal to feel a little out of your depth in the first few days. With the support of your Fijian family, your team and our leaders, we find it doesn’t take long to adjust to life in the South Pacific

Fijian Language

The majority of Fijians speak both Fijian and English. There may be some language barriers with pronunciation, but as long as you talk slowly and clearly in English there is little difficulty in understanding each other. Young children and some elderly members of the community may not speak any English at all and it’s great to learn a few Fijian words as early as you can.

‘Fiji Time’

‘Fiji time’ is something you will soon be accustomed to – and it has the ability to change everything. South Pacific Islanders take everything at their own unique, mystifying and incredibly slow pace. This can sometimes seem frustrating, but don’t let it get to you; its better to smile and take any changes in your stride and welcome this beautiful, relaxed and refreshing way of life!

Village Tour of Buliya...

Follow the village headman (Turaga ni Koro), as he gives you a guided tour of Buliya, Kadavu.

Lulu talks about Fijian Culture...

Hear from one of our Fijian Project Manager’s, on Fijian culture…

Community Testimonials...

Hear from villagers talking about their experience with Think Pacific volunteers.

Your Fijian Journey
An Expedition of Adventure, Culture & Ethics...
1 Month Expedition Overview
How It All Comes Together...
1. Bula, Welcome to Fiji!

Forget about the day job or the stress of exams by arriving in the exotic South Seas. You will land at Nadi Airport and be met by your Expedition Leaders for the first time.

2. Beach Resort Briefing

Every expedition starts with an all inclusive 6 day briefing at a beautiful tropical beach resort. This is time for you to get to know your team mates, acclimatise, prepare for life in the village and meet our Fijian partners.

3. Journey to Remote Fiji

Leaving your briefing paradise, we travel to your remote traditional Fijian community. Depending on your village, this could be a truck to deep jungle or ferry to an outer island.

4. Join a Fijian Village

Arriving into your Fijian village is an exciting and nervous moment! Every door is open in a Fijian community and the generosity and genuine excitement of the local people is profound. By the end of the project our volunteers feel as though they are leaving a second home in the South Pacific.

5. Kaiviti Life

Some of your greatest experiences will be the simple activities of daily Fijian life; learning how to weave palm leaves, cooking Fijian food in underground earth ovens, drinking ceremonial Kava with the chief, husking coconuts or fishing ‘Fiji-style’.

6. The Youth Project

We focus on the collaboration workshops in the morning, followed by the ‘kaiviti’ challenge cultural  activities in the afternoon. The days are rewarding and incredibly busy!

7. Adventures

Live at the heart of some of the most rural communities and immerse yourself into local village life, where everyday is an adventure. If you’re looking for the ultimate adventure then Fiji is waiting to be explored…

8. Leaving Your 2nd Home

Leaving your Fijian village is an emotional experience; such are the close bonds that are formed between our volunteers and the local community. Farewell dinners, tearful goodbyes and the pride in your achievements will sum up your final days.

9. Rest & Relaxation

We finish the project by enjoying time relaxing at a beautiful beach resort for 4 days. We ask for your all-important feedback as we reflect on the project and celebrate your achievements with a farewell dinner.

1-Month Project Costs
How Much Does a 1-Month Expedition Cost?

We pride ourselves on the delivery of a safe, structured and personally supported experience.

Your expedition fee includes your food, accommodation, in-country travel, resort briefings, R&R, weekend activities, emergency support and your expedition leader team living alongside you 24/7. Expeditions also fund the work of the Think Pacific Foundation (Fijian charity FJ 989) enabling us to support thousands of youths annually to ensure sustainability of the aims.

£195 Registration Fee

This secures your place in the team and gives you access to our Global Skills Programme, an online course to give you the foundations of success before departing for Fiji. It also provides personal support from your project co-ordinator, full access to our pre-departure resources, live online preparation webinars and your expedition t-shirt. Your registration fee is additional to your project fees.

University Scholarships

Students can apply for scholarships and bursaries to join our projects in Fiji.

To find out if there’s funding available at your university or in your area, download our funding guide. (Coming soon)

£1,500 Project Fees

Our philosophy is to provide a high quality and exceptionally well structured volunteer project. Our expeditions are packed full of adventure and cultural insight, whilst having safety and support at their core. Click ‘What’s Included’ below to learn more.

Travel Costs

Your travel costs are not included in the project fees. We support you every step of the way to book return flights, personal travel insurance and we process your visa when in Fiji. Please see the approximate costs below within ‘ What’s Not Included’.

Cost Breakdown
See Cost Breakdown
See the Details...
Scholarship Information

Think Pacific works in partnership with many universities across the world to support student mobility and employability. There are scholarships and grants available for students from individual university departments and/or governments in several countries.

Students can apply for scholarships and bursaries to join our projects in Fiji. To find out if there’s funding available at your university or in your areas, click here to download our funding guide. (Guide coming soon)

If you have any questions about funding prior to our funding guide being launched, please email info@thinkpacific.com.

What's Included

Our philosophy is to provide a high quality and exceptionally well structured volunteer project. Our expeditions are packed full of adventure and cultural insight, whilst having safety and support at their core. We also ensure that through our charity, the communities you support receive long-term financial and physical assistance year-round. Think Pacific is not the cheapest volunteer organisation around, but this is for all the right reasons.

All our expeditions include:

  • Airport welcome by Think Pacific Expedition leaders (or resort meet and greet if you arrive early).
  • All in-country expedition travel
  • All project accommodation
  • All-inclusive briefing and orientation from a beautiful beach resort.
  • All meals during your briefing, all meals for 3 and a half weeks staying with your Fijian village family and breakfast and evening meals during your final days of R&R at glorious beach resorts.
  • Guided weekend activities which means you can explore your remote location through treks and attend community events.
  • Organised evening Fijian activities including kava ceremonies, lovo feasts, mat weaving,
  • Think Pacific Leaders and Fijian Matanivanua guides living with you 24/7.
  • In-country Director, Fiji based Project Managers and UK team providing planning, risk assessment and 24-hour back up support.
  • Comprehensive pre-departure information & personal volunteer project planning.
  • Fiji expedition de-brief at a beach resort or castaway islands.
  • Your project donation towards the youth development goals in Fiji (which is used to purchase educational and sports equipment, fund scholarships and training for local people and build village facilities and school classrooms).
What's Not Included
  • International flights – £800 – £1100
  • Personal travel insurance £60-£100
  • Visa -£60

Apply for university funding to cover flights, insurance and visa.

Pre-Departure Support
  • Access to the Volunteer Portal.

This portal provides the step-by-step process to prepare for Fiji, including fundraising information, flight information, kit list, visa, cultural preparation. Student can watch videos with our team in Fiji and download document.

  • Contact our team.

You can contact our team anytime between office hours, either give us a  call on 0113 335 9919 or email; info@thinkpacific.com.

  • Online community/network. 

You can communicate with fellow volunteers, alumni and our team through our online community, hosted on the Might Network app. Within 3 months of you departing to Fiji, you shall be entered into a private group with your volunteer team.

  • Live Pre Departure webinars

Our team host live sessions in the months leading up to your expedition. These are a great way for you to ask questions and delve deeper into planning for your project. They also add to the excitement!

  • Global Skills Programme

We have created an online course to give you the set you up for success before departing for Fiji! Complete short-courses in: Fijian Culture, Sustainable Development & Global Leadership.

Project Itinerary Overview
  • Briefing (6 days) = Fijian resort.
  • Project aims (18 days) = Traditional Fijian village.
  • Rest & reflection = (4 days) = Fijian resort.

2022 Project Dates 👇🇫🇯

28 May – 25 June

4 June – 2 July

11 June – 9 July

18 June – 16 July

24 June – 22 July

2  July – 30  July

9 July – 6 Aug

16 July – 13 Aug

23 July – 20 August

29 July – 26 August

 

Volunteer Stories
Bailey Hodges
Ben Thompson
Alex Sherred
Sacha Ogosi
Aslam Norhan
Vicki Nguyen
Support these UN Sustainable Development Goals...