Being a CCS volunteer means more than just traveling, or just volunteering. It means becoming part of a unique community; an international network of CCS alums, in the fellow-volunteers that you’ll meet at the Home-Base, and of course, the local people in your new home away from home. The CCS experience is all about creating community and meaningful connections, and all of this happens organically from the comfort of your Home-Base and with the support of a full-time in-country staff.

A Day in the Life

With its endless opportunities for exploration and cultural immersion, you’ll find that each day in the Himalaya brings with it new possibilities for eye-opening adventures and “ah-ha” moments. CCS provides you with all the basics that you’ll need for a memorable, safe, and insightful experience, while leaving you enough space to fill in the blanks with your own passions and experience. And no matter how you choose to experience CCS India, we guarantee that you’ll quickly become “a part of the crew” as you exchange stories, laughter, and knowledge with your new neighbors.

Here’s a taste of what you can expect:

7:00 a.m.
Fill up on a healthy breakfast of eggs, pancakes, tea, and freshly squeezed juices, and then get ready to hit the ground running.

8:00 a.m.
Pile into the CCS vans or taxis and head out to a busy and rewarding morning at your work assignment. Whether you are teaching English in a school, working with people with disabilities, or finger-painting with children in an Aganwadi (daycare), your love, attention, and care makes a big difference.

1:00 p.m.
Join your fellow teen volunteers back at the Home-Base to share a healthy and delicious lunch of tikka masala—a traditional dish of either chicken or veggies simmered in a creamy tomato sauce.

3:00 p.m.
Join our staff for an afternoon cultural activity. Maybe you’ll improve your Hindi during an informal lesson on basic phrases with the CCS staff, tour a Sikh temple, or engage in discussion about the history of India with one of our famous guest lecturers.

7:00 p.m.
Enjoy another tasty home-cooked meal and free time to relax, unwind, and start preparing for your next day of volunteering.

The CCS Home-Base

Located in a quiet residential neighborhood, the CCS Home-Base was designed with your safety and comfort in mind. We know the importance of a cozy bed and a nutritious and authentic meal to help fuel your volunteer work, and that’s exactly what we’ll have waiting for you when you arrive.

As soon as you walk into town, you’ll be greeted by the beautiful landscape of the Himalayas in the background along with the warm and friendly staff. Your home away from home is completed with views that will take your breath away!

Just a short taxi ride from the Home-Base, you’ll find yourself among two distinct cultural groups: Tibetan and Indian. Whether you’re looking for the a history lesson on the Tibetan Government in exile or want to learn more about how rural Indians live and work, The Himalaya has you covered.

Get a taste of the CCS Himalaya Home-Base from a volunteer-led tour:
Cross-Cultural Solutions – Himalaya

Krishna Niwas, Dharamkot, Dharamshala
Himachal Pradesh - 176219
Phone: (91) 9418 166534

Can’t wait to share your experience? We got you covered! Staying connected at the Home-Base is easy with a landline for incoming calls (or pick up a phone card for international calls), and there’s always Wi-Fi available.

Enjoying Local Dishes

At the CCS Home-Base, you’ll enjoy three home-cooked meals each day, all safely prepared using locally grown produce and authentic, regional recipes so you’ll get a taste of the culture in every bite! Enjoy some of India’s favorite dishes like tikka masala and mango lassi—a refreshing juice drink.

Your comfort and safety is our top priority and that doesn’t change when it comes to mealtime. Our cooks are all highly qualified in preparing delicious dishes for your dietary needs. No matter what you require, we can make the appropriate arrangements in the CCS kitchen to cater to your specific needs.

**Our High School Volunteer Abroad locations are all peanut-free. Please do not bring any food items that contain peanuts on your program.

CCS Policies

As part of the CCS community, you’ll not only represent your home community, you’ll also be representing the CCS mission, vision, and values, and not to mention a community of over 35,000 intrepid alumni. This is not a typical travel experience – it’s an opportunity to make a real impact and real connections with the local community in a truly unique way. The safety of our volunteers is essential to our programs, and our policies are designed not only to keep you safe, but also to ensure that your shared experience is comfortable, respectful, and as impactful as possible.

While some policies, such as Gift Giving & Donations and Alcohol & Drug use, are included in your volunteer paperwork, there are a few others we’d like you to be aware of:

Drug & Alcohol Use: The use of illegal substances is not permitted on any Cross-Cultural Solutions program, worldwide. Any volunteer who uses or distributes any illegal narcotics will be immediately terminated from their program, and may face local legal action.

Alcohol use is also not permitted in any of our Home-Bases worldwide. In India the drinking age is 25 and alcohol cannot be consumed by any individual of any age in the local community, whether during free time or as a part of the program activities. For the HSVA Program, all Volunteers are strictly prohibited from alcohol use and will be terminated at the director’s discretion if necessary. Any violations of this policy will result in immediate termination from the program. Please review the full Drug & Alcohol Use policy.

Donations & Gift-Giving: Our impact in-country is based on volunteers offering love, care, attention, and to support the organizations with which we partner. For that reason, we do not allow donations or gift-giving on CCS programs, as this alters the motivations and sustainability of our work. Please review the full Donations & Gift Giving Policy for more information.

Curfew: As an international volunteer, it’s important to be well-rested for each day of work and to be mindful of the quiet hours. HSVA Volunteers are not allowed to leave the Home-Base at any time. Please always check in with our staff if you need anything or want to go somewhere.

Sexual Relations: On CCS programs, out of respect for the in-country staff and fellow volunteers, sexual relations are not permitted in the CCS Home-Base.

Weapons: To protect the safety of all volunteers, weapons are not permitted in the Home-Base.

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