Conservation Research and Advocacy

ECCA - Lalitpur, Nepal
Quick Facts: Placement ID: IND-168 Location: Lalitpur, Nepal Sector: Wildlife and the Environment Category: Conservation Min Duration: 2 weeks Lodging: BaseCamp or Host Family Language: Basic Placement Fee: 50 USD / week
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Volunteer Job Description

Environmental Camps for Conservation Awareness (ECCA) has initiated School Environment Improvement Programs to improve the basic environment at schools. The lack of proper school facilities is one of the main causes of school dropouts (especially of girl students). It is envisaged that enrolment of students would increase when the schools provide drinking water, proper toilets and green space to exercise and work in. Classroom management and relationships among children, teachers and the community also plays an important role in improving the school environment.

Conservation awareness volunteers would be asked to help create programs, with the cooperation and participation of the teachers, that highlight ways and means for the students to make a difference in their schools, as well as their homes and the communities in which they live.

Volunteers have a wide range of environmental issues that they could address. Be it health and hygiene, sanitation, care of the environment, (plants & trees), or the importance of nutritional food keeping in mind the local foods available and what the average family in that community could afford to buy; at the same time stressing the harm that a diet of junk foods and fast food items do to the body.

Foreign volunteers can do much in the educational development of environmental issues for these children. It depends on the dedication of the volunteer to the project, their commitment to research the material for the best approaches to take towards each initiative and their ability to create enthusiasm in the students to take an active part.

Volunteer Tasks Required

Health and Hygiene

A conservation awareness volunteer may be asked to conduct health and hygiene classes. These lessons could include a wide range of topics from: proper nutrition, the importance of good grooming, (washing of hands, brushing of teeth etc.), what types of diseases are easily spread and how to lessen the chances of this happening etc. Volunteers could make flip charts or show computer presentations or conduct classes that involved student participation.

Plant a Tree

A conservation awareness volunteer may be assigned to a school that has a ECO Club (most do). A volunteer could encourage students to help conserve plants and to become involved in a plant a tree project. The volunteer may develop and implement an event to raise money to obtain trees and then organize a tree planting project to plant the trees in the most needed areas in the community or on school grounds.

Painting Art and Murals

A conservation awareness volunteer may be asked to organize a school project that would involve the painting of murals on school walls. These murals should emphasis good environmental issues and include the participation of students.

Teach English

Some of the government schools have implemented English teaching of all subjects. A conservation awareness volunteer may be asked to help teach the English language especially if the volunteer's native tongue is English. This would ensure the correct pronunciation of the English words. They may also be asked to help some of the teachers in their pronunciation, as well.

Nature Clubs

The "Nature Club" groups in schools promote educational conservation awareness seminars to youth. Currently there are 30 Nature Clubs in different schools in Nepal where children focus on environmental issues through art, nature-related competitions and presentations in their schools and communities. A conservation awareness volunteer may be asked to work with these clubs in providing current information regarding conservation issues.

Host Organization Details


Environmental Camps for Conservation Awareness,(ECCA), is a non-governmental organization that is focused on educating individuals about environmental issues that are currently prevalent in Nepal. The main environmental issues that this organization is working to improve includes: contamination of fresh water supplies through fecal matter and textiles, air pollution in urban centers caused by vehicular and industrial emissions, deforestation and land degradation.

ECCA strives to encourage citizens of Nepal to learn about how to improve one's quality of life by learning how to maintain and preserve the resources that are naturally provided. This organization also strives to provide educational forums for people of all ages to learn about what natural resources are and the different ways that people can reuse or reduce the amount of natural resources that they consume on a daily basis.

ECCA actively investigates options of different forms of renewable energies and how they can be implemented within their country. This organization believes that their main role is to promote social mobilization through education, find new forms of renewable energies and try to implement these ideas by educating their peers on why it is important to be conscious of the environment and how each person can make little changes to improve the situation.

Currently ECCA has a number of programs that their members are organizing and implementing. One program is ECCA's," Youth Empowerment Program." which is an environmental awareness program that strives to educate Nepali youth on environmental issues and how they can become social agents for change.

ECCA has implemented the, "Nature Club", concept at different schools in Nepal for environmental improvement and awareness for children. The "Nature Club" is for children in classes from 6 to 9 and their ages range from 11 to 17 years of age. The "Nature Club" works as a small organization/club with a president, secretary, accountant and other members that are elected to the board by all "Nature Club" Members. They meet frequently and perform environment related activities within the school premises and community.

ECCA also strives to develop programs that are not only for children. Although educating youth is a primary focus of this organization, ECCA strives to diversify their programs to include research, adult education workshops, leadership seminars and create and implement programs that are designed to promote recycling and water purification.

Water purification and conservation is an important topic as the water levels in Kathmandu are continually dropping. Traditional water reserves are either becoming contaminated or drying up. This problem is exemplified as the population growth continues to increase as more people move to the city in hopes of finding employment. Nepal has the poorest drinking water and sanitation coverage for its population in South Asia and a large percentage of its drinking water contains fecal matter on a regular basis. ECCA strives to help address this issue through their water purification program.

ECCA also implements educational seminars for people from all over Nepal where an individual who wants to become an active environmental leader in his or her community can attend seminars to help them receive the education and tools to be able to share with their peers environmental issues and teach others about possible solutions. At the end of these seminars, many of the attendees become active leaders in their community. Currently ECCA has trained over 4,000 people in 46 districts of Nepal and a few people in Bhutan and India to be environmental leaders in their community.

ECCA has been recognized as one of the leading organization in their sector for social mobilization and community development. ECCA has renovated 20 schools in Nepal where they have improved the environment to include toilets, better classroom space and provided safe drinking water for all children who attend that school. ECCA has also trained over 100 youth counselors to help implement the "Nature Club" groups in schools that helps promote educational awareness seminars to youth. Currently there are 30 Nature Clubs in different schools where children focus on environmental issues through art, nature-related competitions and presentations to their schools and communities.

ECCA has also won many awards for their efforts and contribution to environmental issues in Nepal. A few awards that they have won include: "Nepal Development Marketplace (for safe-drinking-water campaign)", "Global Development Marketplace (for Solar Tuki)" given by World Bank and awarded in 1991 by the Government of Nepal, the first NGO to be awarded CITATION (for conservation awareness).

Does this organization have any religious affiliations?

No, This organization does not have any religious affiliations.

When They Were Founded

ECCA was founded in 1987 by a group of Nepali individuals who decided that they wanted to start an organization that addressed many of the environmental issues that were continuing to increase in their country. At first they decided that education campaigns and research were the primary goals and since they were founded they have vastly extended the programs. ECCA was established in 1987 as a non profit, non political, non government organization. ECCA is registered in Government of Nepal, District Administration Office, Kathmandu and affiliated with Social Welfare Council, Kathmandu. ECCA Constitution enables trained members to vote for a policy when 11 members or more are present. ECCA now has a network of over 4,000 trained manpower in 46 districts of Nepal and a few places in Bhutan and India. ECCA pioneered the concept of the children's," Nature Club", (in Nepal), in 1992. ECCA was the first NGO to establish a paper-recycling unit, (named Pap Again), in 1994 with the objective of producing recycled paper from the waste paper collected from offices and schools, etc. ECCA Head Office was shifted to its newly constructed building in Kopundol, Lalitpur on March 14, 2004 (Chaitra 1, 2060).

Who They Work With

ECCA has over 46 branches throughout both Kathmandu and rural regions of Nepal. The primary goal of ECCA is to provide training to youth about the environmental issues that are impacting Nepal.

ECCA trains their volunteers to be knowledgeable on certain environmental issues that they have chosen to highlight in their workshops. These volunteers then conduct workshops to children ages 9 to 17 years of age in both Kathmandu and rural communities throughout Nepal. The primary focus is to have these youth become facilitators and teach others in their schools and communities about the importance of conserving their environment.

In addition, they conduct a number of campaigns that demonstrate the use of alternative energy sources in hopes that more adults throughout Nepal will decide to adopt some of these alternatives in their daily lifestyle.

ECCA`s main office is located in the Kathmandu valley which is where all of our volunteers are placed. However, volunteers may be able to travel to other branch offices in rural communities if work is required.

How Are They Funded

ECCA has a number of funders. All of their educational projects are funded by a Finnish group called Taksvark. ECCA has also received funding for short term projects through government grants, international non-government organizations and private donors.

Donation Requests

Any kind of donations will be greatly appreciated as ECCA is continually trying to find resources to run all of their programs.

The members of ECCA have suggested donations include: pens, papers, books about environmental issues, overhead projectors, notebooks, cameras, prizes for essay writing competitions, solar powered flashlight, facilitator materials, file folders, markers, lamented maps, books about different alternative energy resources that are used in other parts of the world and paints for art murals.

Placement Location Information

Lalitpur, Nepal

After getting off of the local bus it is a five minute walk along narrow roads in a peaceful neighborhood, to get to the placement.

ECCA, constructed its own two and a half story building in 2004, and named it, "Wise Use House", with parking spaces at the front and a small garden. Guests are welcome to visit.

On the ground floor level there is a reception area, and a sectioned off area for the accounting department, as well as the ECCA Hall for conferences and seminars and to conduct various projects. The first floor is all office space with partitioned areas for each program officer to have their own desk and private section. The second floor has a storage room and a kitchen with a rooftop sitting area.

It is only a five minute walk to the bank of the Bagmati River.

Transfer From BaseCamp

From the BaseCamp Center in the Naya Bazaar district of Kathmandu, walk for five minutes to SoraKhuttay and get a local bus to Old Bus Park. The drive takes approximately 15-20 minutes and from there you will walk one minute to get another bus to LaganKhel. Get off at Jwagal, and on your left hand side there is a two way road; take the road on the right. Walk straight for five minutes and then take the left concrete road and within 10 meters you will see a black gate on your left hand side.

Distance & Time

Distance from BaseCamp: 7 Km
Travel Time from BaseCamp: 0:35

Weather in the Area

Lalitpur has very hot summers, with an average temperature of around 30 degrees Celsius. They have very mild winters with temperatures rarely dipping below zero degrees Celsius at night. However, the fog makes the winter nights and mornings feel very cold and damp.

The lack of central heating requires warmer clothing than you would expect. Afternoons warm up to an average of 15-20 degrees Celsius. During monsoon season, which is late June to late September it becomes extremely wet, rainy and humid.

City/Village Description

Lalitpur, a beautiful medieval city of art and culture is situated in the south-eastern part of the magnificent Kathmandu Valley.

The altitude of the city varies from a minimum of 1266 m. to a maximum of 1366 m. above sea level, which shows the relative flatness of the ground on which the city is located.

The city is located over a plateau like area with its outer edges fanning out in gentle slopes towards the rivers that form its boundaries. The reason they were located in this area was because the land was on relatively high ground and therefore good land to use for farming purposes.

Judicious planning efforts assured the optimization of the use of urban space and the farmlands have been carried out in a responsible manner, to economical, as well as environmental significance to the urban residents.

Lalitpur has some sections of the city that are considered to have semi-urban infrastructure. However, there is a large part of Lalitpur that has not been developed, as well as other surrounding cities such as the major city of Patan under similar condition.

Because of its rich cultural history and the fairly recent rise in tourism, Lalitpur is an interesting mix of old and new with areas of narrow cobblestone streets that feel unchanged since the middle ages. Lalitpur is also known for its ancient and intricate architecture and has numerous beautiful Hindu temples and Buddhist shrines.

There are two other cities located in the Kathmandu Valley: Kathmandu and Bhaktapur which have rich architectural and cultural heritages. Both cities are accessible from Lalitpur and offer good options for day trips.

Nearest Medical Clinic

CIWEC Travel Medicine Center
TEL 1: 4424111
TEL 2: 4435232

Placement Address


Accommodation and Meals

All of our volunteers begin their stay in Nepal at our BaseCamp Center in Kathmandu. Given that this placement is less than a 1 hour and 15 minute commute from BaseCamp, volunteers working here will have the option of living with us at BaseCamp or living with a host family.

The following information outlines a brief description of life at BaseCamp and also what someone can expect living with a host family in Nepal. Once you have completed our application, you can let our staff know if you would prefer to live with a host family. Otherwise, your application will default to having you live with us at BaseCamp.

If you have any questions about the difference between life at BaseCamp or life with a host family in Nepal you can always give us a call or send us an email. Our contact details are listed in the footer of every page of the site.

BaseCamp Nepal

BaseCamp Nepal
BaseCamp Nepal Address

Uttam Chowk, Ekikaran Road
Ward No 16
Kathmandu, Nepal

BaseCamp Nepal Contact Details

Tel: (977) 1-438-9397
Mobile: (977) 980-314-1173

BaseCamp Nepal is located in the Naya Bazaar district of Kathmandu just a few minutes walk from the popular backpacker district of Thamel. We are situated in a beautiful four story building, with nine rooms and a capacity for almost forty guests. Each level of the house has four balconies, plus the hostel has two roof top patios. Pillows, sheets and blankets are provided.

The second and third floor of the hostel each have a spacious common area. The kitchen and large dining room are on the fourth floor. A fire pit and plenty of seating make the roof top patio a favourite gathering spot. Great for viewing the rising or setting sun, planning your next adventure or relaxing with a cup of chiyaa.

Back on the ground, there is an organic community garden in our courtyard in which interested guests are always welcome to help tend. Wireless internet access is available throughout the house, making it easy to stay in touch with friends and family back home.

The meal plan at BaseCamp is a 14 day rotation of various dishes from around Nepal. The idea behind our plan is that volunteers will familiarize themselves with local dishes and meal table etiquette before moving on to a host family. For the volunteers who stay in BaseCamp throughout their program, the meal plan offers a diverse and authentic diet.

BaseCamp Nepal is also where language training and orientation workshops take place. We have a classroom area for the more formal parts of our orientation and each day we will visit various parts of Kathmandu as volunteers become familiar with life in Nepal.

Living With a Host Family in Nepal

Living with a host family in Nepal is a fantastic way to gain a deep understanding of and appreciation for the people and customs of the country. Each home-stay will provide a bed and three meals per day for our volunteers. The majority of host families offer private rooms with only one or two volunteers living with the family.

Living with a host family can greatly enhance your performance at your placement. For one, it will have a huge influence on the speed with which you gain familiarity with the local language. This, along with your deeper understanding of cultural practices and beliefs that you are likely to gain in this environment, can go a long way to improving or strengthening your relationships with your team mates at work. Furthermore, a significant percentage of our host families are closely affiliated with the organizations with which our volunteers work. As such, even the evening meal or hanging out around the house can become valuable time during which volunteers can share their ideas and continue their support of their host organization.

All of this being said, living with a host family is not for everyone. It is very important for volunteers to honor the house rules in their host family and to be punctual. Also, depending on how remote your placement location, host families can be very rustic. Our staff in country can give you a better idea of what exactly you can expect from a host family in any particular community. However, in general, if these things sound like they might pose a challenge for you, we strongly suggest that you look at a placement within commuting distance from BaseCamp Nepal.

How the Program Works

Our program structure and costing is completely flexible which lets our volunteers ensure that they only pay for exactly the degree of support that they want.

Option 1 - Free Services

Some volunteers prefer to coordinate their own accommodation, meals and other support while overseas.

Anyone is welcome to use our volunteer placement search tool to help in finding a placement that is well suited to their interests. Once someone finds a placement that they wish to work with, they are welcome to make all the rest of their arrangmeents on their own.

As well, our team of staff overseas are often able to offer a few helpful pointers for volunteers 'doing it on their own'. Just send us an email with your questions and we will put you in touch with our team abroad. We only ask that you keep your requests fairly general, as this type of advice is exactly how our team earn their living. :)

Option 2 - Placement Support - 250 USD

Other volunteers would like assistance in selecting and confirming their placement, but they plan to manage their own accommodation and other expenses on their own.

These volunteers have the option of choosing to only have our assistance with selecting and confirming their placement. This option also includes ongoing placement support while abroad, so a volunteer would be able to ask our team for help if things at their placement were not working out.

In providing Placement Support, our team works with each volunteer through email, telephone and either Skype or Google Hangouts, to ensure that each volunteer has a clear understanding of their placement options. Our in-country staff will put together a custom list of placement options for each volunteer that they believe are the most appropriate matches with the volunteer's background, skills and interests. Then each volunteer can work with our team both in Canada and abroad to go through each of the options and narrow-down their selection.

Option 3 - Full Program Support

For most volunteers who are volunteering for less than a year, they are looking for an option that includes their accommodation, meals, airport reception, country and program orientation and placement support. This is what our Program Fees are designed for.

We are proud of how over the years we have ensured that our program fees are amoungst the most reasonable of any program in the world while we continue to provide exceptional volunteer support both at home and abroad.

Our Program Fees and listings of what these do and do not include are listed below:

Program Fees

Program Fees - Nepal

  Registration Fee
  1 Week
  2 Weeks
  3 Weeks
  4 Weeks
  5 Weeks
  6 Weeks
  7 Weeks
  8 Weeks
  Additional Weeks
All program fees are listed in US Dollars.

What is Included
  • Pre-Departure support
  • Placement consulation
  • Airport reception & transfer
  • 2 Day orientation
  • Accommodation (BaseCamp or host family)
  • Breakfast and dinner
  • Emergency & placement support

What is Not Included
    Before Departure
  • International flight
  • Travel medical insurance
  • Visa costs where required
  • Work permits where required
    While Overseas
  • Daily transportation to and from placement
  • Transport to airport on departure
  • Placement fees if requried

Placement Fee Alert

This placement has a placement fee!

In some cases, a placement will have to take on certain expenses in order to host a volunteer. For example, some medical internship placements take time away from paid medical staff to help with educational assistance. This has a cost that is compensated by a placement fee. In other cases, the organization may have to pay for additional equipment, energy consumption or other expense in order to put a volunteer to work.

In such cases, the organizaiton charges a fee. This fee is paid directly to the organization in cash on the ground.

One of the reasons that we keep this fee separate is so that volunteers who do not pay us for accommodation, meals etc (Program Fees), will see that they will still have to make this payment directly to the organizaiton upon their arrival.

The placement fee for this organization is: 50 USD / week

Program Dates


The following is a list of all months during which this placement is not available.

  • June
  • October

Our regularly scheduled program start dates are the first Friday of each month, every month of the year. We strongly recommend beginning your program on one of these dates as this will allow you to go through our orientation alongside other international volunteers.

If you would prefer, our application will also allow you to select a custom start date for your program. Keep in mind that there is an additional fee for a custom start date which ranges from 50 to 75 USD.

Jul 01, 2022 Aug 05, 2022 Sep 02, 2022
Oct 07, 2022 Nov 04, 2022 Dec 02, 2022
Jan 06, 2023 Feb 03, 2023 Mar 03, 2023
Apr 07, 2023 May 05, 2023 Jun 02, 2023
Jul 07, 2023 Aug 04, 2023 Sep 01, 2023
Oct 06, 2023 Nov 03, 2023 Dec 01, 2023
Jan 05, 2024 Feb 02, 2024 Mar 01, 2024
Apr 05, 2024 May 03, 2024 Jun 07, 2024


These dates are the day that volunteers should plan to arrive on the ground in country. We can accommodate arrivals in-country at any time day or night on these dates.

Give us a Call
Canada / USA 866-646-4693 (toll free)
UK 866-646-4693 (toll free)
Australia 866-646-4693 (toll free)
International 613-353-3000
Send us a Message