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Israel - ***Nazareth Hostel Volunteering
This is an exceptional opportunity to live and work with the local community in Nazareth. Volunteers stay at an historical inn, situated in close proximity to some of the most important historical sites in the city. Experience life in a multi-ethnic environment that is home to Jews, Christians, and Muslims.
|Location of Project||Nazareth, approximately 102 km north of Tel Aviv, israel.|
|Project Length||Min 6 weeks - Max 9 weeks|
|Arrival Airport||Ben Gurion International Airport, Tel Aviv|
|Volunteer Work||Hosting tourists, teaching and community work|
|Number of Participants||1 - 2 international volunteers|
|Age||18 - 40|
|Accommodation||Dormitory room suitable for 5 people|
|Food||Only breakfast (lunch and dinner are self catering)|
|Support||Local in-country team and 24hr emergency support|
|Orientation||GoEco volunteer and travel orientation in Jerusalem|
|Pre-Departure Kit||Full project details will be sent following registration|
What's Not Included
Nazareth is the largest city in the mountainous Galilee region of northern Israel, approximately 102 km north of Tel Aviv and 40 km east of Haifa. The population is made up predominantly of Christians and Muslims with a Jewish community in Upper Nazareth. The inn itself is situated in the heart of the Souq (Market) Quarter of the Old City. Just one minute by foot from the vegetable market, and only a few minutes from a host of restaurants and coffee shops, you are never far from anywhere. All of Nazareth's major sites, including the Basilica of the Annunciation, the White Mosque, and St. Gabriel's Church are only minutes by foot. Wandering through the narrow streets of the Old City is a delight in itself and both the Fauzi and other vantage points nearby afford wonderful panoramic views of Nazareth.
About the Project
The Fauzi Azar Inn is a beautiful 200 year old Arab mansion that was converted into an inn in 2005. The Fauzi Azar Inn promotes ecotourism in Nazareth and works with the community to contribute to its development in various areas. The inn uses local resources to create new employment opportunities, to raise the self-image of the local community, and to encourage economic growth while maintaing the universal values of natural and cultural preservation. The aim is to introduce in Nazareth, which is the largest Arab city in Israel, a new model of tourism and thus "bridge the gap" between Arabs and Jews. At the same time, the inn is creating a model for increased tourism along the Israel National Trail (Shvil Israel) and the recently completed Jesus Trail in order to promote both and the corresponding economic potential.
You will have the opportunity to contribute to the Fauzi Azar Inn and Jesus Trail, while gaining a unique cultural experience. This volunteer program is also recommended in the Rough Guide Clean Breaks addition.
Fauzi Azar Inn was the winner of the 2011 Best Accommodation for Local Communities in Israel award!
Orientation in Jerusalem
Your volunteer adventure will start off with a GoEco orientation at a fantastic hostel in the center of Jerusalem. The orientation is a great base to meet fellow volunteers and travelers and includes the following:
- Volunteer preparation and travel directions to your program
- Expert advice for travelling around Israel during and after your volunteer placement
- Walking tour of Jerusalem, including the Old City and the famous Machane Yehuda market
- Discount card to experience Jerusalem's vibrant nightlife
- 1 night dorm accommodation and breakfast (private rooms available for an additional fee)
The GoEco orientation will begin at 10:00 AM on arrival day. The next morning, you will travel to your project via public transportation. Full travel details to Jerusalem and your specific project will be provided upon registration.
Volunteer Work and Contribution
Activities for the first day in Nazareth include a brief meeting at the inn, with the rest of the day free so you can familiarize yourself with your new surroundings. The second day will begin with a welcome breakfast with all current staff and volunteers, followed by a tour of the Old City for an insider's view of the area. In the afternoon, you will begin your training regarding the operational aspects of the Fauzi Azar Inn. During the next two days, you will train with the seasoned staff, and by the third day, you will be ready to work on your own.
You will be involved in hosting guests, light housekeeping and help with breakfast service/clean- up. You will also have the opportunity to volunteer with other projects associated with the inn such as the Jesus Trail (a new hiking trail from Nazareth to the Sea of Galilee) where you will help clean and maintain the trail as well as other natural areas in and around national parks and nature reserves (seasonal). In addition to keeping the outdoors beautiful, this will also hopefully increase environmental awareness in the local community. You should be prepared to work about 6 hours per day, with 1 or 2 days off per week. At the beginning of each week, the inn manager will set a schedule and you will either have a morning/afternoon shift or an afternoon/evening shift.
There is a huge value placed on bringing your personal skills and talents to the inn and the general community. The inn encourages its volunteers to take intiative and create new projects. Past projects include:
- Website translation
- Eco-tourism development
- Brochure writing
- Event planning
- Guiding tours
A typical day: When you wake up you can head on over to the inn for breakfast. If you are working the morning shift, you may help set up breakfast for the guests and assist them with planning daily activities. In the afternoons you may be involved in a project to improve the website or marketing materials of the inn or you may even have the chance to take visitors on tours of the area. If you work in the evenings, you may have time to work on a special project, serve coffee and tea and help guests with evening activities.
*Please note that volunteer activities and schedules can change at any time based on the needs of the project.
Note: This project can not accept couples.
Accommodations: You will be staying in mixed gender, dormitories with up to 5 other volunteers. All volunteers will share the same bath, kitchen and common areas. Utilities and linens are provided. You are also welcome to use the Fauzi Azar facilities such as the kitchen for cooking meals.
Food: Only breakfast is included. You can purchase groceries from the local markets and prepare your own lunch and dinner.
Internet: WiFi is available and there is one computer that you can use for emails.
Laundry: one washing machine is available, however, you will need to line-dry your clothes.
On days off, you can travel to other beautiful locations in Northern Israel such as the Sea of Galilee and the historic port of Akko (Acre) on the Mediterranean coast. You can also hike part of the Jesus trail that starts from Nazareth. If you plan on traveling through Israel after you finish volunteering, you can explore Jerusalem even more, enjoy the hustle and bustle of Tel Aviv, take a mud bath and float at the Dead Sea or get back to nature in the Negev Desert.
- Minimum age 18, maximum age 40
- Cultural tolerance and open-mindedness
- A minimum 6 week commitment
- High level of independence and flexibility
- Good level of English
- Motivation to work with tourists and local community
- CV / Resume and phone interview
- Full travel & medical insurance
Check out our Volunteer Blog at blog.goeco.org to read experiences written by GoEco volunteers from all over the world!
It was great to see people showing us their hospitality. The work was educational, not only in the sense of getting to know the way a hostel works, but in the way it showed me a lot about Israel; that I would not have found out on my own. In the end I could answer questions such as "what would you recommend” or “where should we travel next?” We had a lot of time, (and thanks to Marwa we were always able to switch our shifts around), to travel ourselves, and we never left on a trip without good advice from the locals working at the hostel.
– Marianne von Blomberg, Germany, 2012
I really enjoyed the stay in Nazareth. The people at the Fauzi Azar Inn - the other volunteers, staff, Maoz, Suraida, the guests - were lovely. I felt like home just a few days after arriving. Also, Nazareth is a beautiful city with very nice and open-minded people
– Karen, Germany, 2010
It was a great time for me to work in Fauzi Azar Inn.I have opportunity and time to visit interesting places in Israeland also I could experience Israel from the "backdoor".
– Janek, Poland, 2010
My trip can be summed up in 3 dimensions that met on the same experience: visiting of the county of Israel, getting to know the culture differences and meeting people.
My volunteering was a good opportunity to visit deeply the Galilee Region as it is really easy to go somewhere with the bus in Israel and of course have a deep insight in the city of Nazareth. Moreover, I have been able to take days off to go to different places in Israel (Dead Sea, Jerusalem,...) and see how diverse the country was. This experience has enabled me to travel in a really easy and convenient way. If I should give a piece of advice, volunteers should keep some days at the end of their stay to travel around as it takes a lot of time to see all the spots of high interest. This proves how rich, interesting and beautiful the region is.
My experience was also about getting to know the cultural differences better. Indeed, Israel is full of people from different religions and different cultural backgrounds. This volunteering has enabled me to understand the cultural diversity of Israel. I have been able to talk to different people thanks to my stay in the Fauzi and try to understand what Israel is made of. Even if I came back with many uncertainties about the country, I know more and better about the people composing this puzzling region. Moreover, Nazareth is an Arabic city. You can then experience a different side of Israel that is off the beaten track. Indeed, the media often induce us to believe that Israel is only Jewish and the occupied territories are only Arabic. Nazareth proves the media wrong and makes you experience how much Israel is more complex than just 2 territories fighting.
Finally, my experience was also about meeting people. First, I met local people. Secondly, I met other international volunteers and tourists. I can say now that some have become friends. I met new people every day which is also a highlight of my trip. I tend to think that the people you meet on a trip are what make it unforgettable
To put it in a nutshell, I would say that this month and a half in Israel has been really fulfilling. It has also been a great opportunity to change my prejudice about the country and discover a land I want to go back to.
– Thomas, France, 2009