What Should I Bring
This will vary depending on the time of year in which you visit Nepal and what additional activities you intend to participate in during your stay in Nepal.
With the exception of some medicines and high-tech trekking gear, you can buy everything that you would need for your placement in Kathmandu (and it is likely to be cheaper than in your home country). Here are a few suggestions on what to bring:
Basic First Aid Kit
A full supply of any medication which you require for the duration of your stay, along with the prescription.
If you wear contact lenses – spare lenses and enough solution
Torch / Flashlight (a head torch is especially useful during power cuts)
Sleeping Bag / sleeping bag liner (depending on season)
Waterproof jacket (a lightweight fold-away jacket is fine)
Fleece jacket (during winter months)
Light-weight cotton clothing
Water purification tablets and/or high quality water purifier
Face mask (depending on the time of year, Kathmandu can become very polluted and dusty).
Passport photos (you’ll need these for trekking permits, buying a SIM card and for your VIN volunteer card)
Photos of your family / friends / home
Souvenirs from your country for your host family etc
A few examples of your local currency
Basic Learner’s English/Nepali dictionary
Coloured pencils and pens, drawing books, stickers
Books on teaching English/English Grammar for your reference
It is also a good idea to bring with you a photocopy of your passport and visa, and keep this in a separate location to the original documents. If possible you should also e-mail yourself a scanned copy of important documents before departing for Nepal, as this will facilitate things in the event of loss or theft of the original documents.
If you wish to get a Nepali SIM card for use during your stay in Nepal, then you can bring an unlocked mobile with you from your home country.
The Nepali people are very friendly and generous, and giving gifts to volunteers on their day of their departure is common. If you would like to bring gifts from your home country for your host family, below are some suggestions (but this is not compulsory):
A small photo album with pictures of you and your family/friends from home
A ‘coffee table’ book of your home town or country
Posters, stickers or magazine pictures from your country
Children’s books from your home country
T-shirts (new) from your country
Flags Alcoholic beverages are not encouraged to bring as a souvenir.
Alternatively many volunteers choose to take and print photos of their host family as a gift at the end of their stay.
In addition, if volunteers have any old laptops/ digital cameras/ mobile phones which they no longer require, VIN would highly appreciate these and can put them to very good use for the organization.