Empowered by Nature – Hortobagy – volunteer teams (30 days)

“Empowered by Nature” – a short-term group volunteering project 1-30 May OR 1-30 June 2020

Venue: Hortobágy, Hungary (a village in the middle of the Hortobágy National Park)

Dates: 1-30 May or 1-30 June 2020 (30 days, only 1 term can be chosen)

Topic: Empowered by Nature – nature as a source of self-development, creativity and cooperation

Age of participants: 18-30 years

Number of participants: 12 volunteers

Profile of the volunteers: This project is planed for young people with fewer opportunities, who are facing different difficulties in their lives (social, economic, educational, territorial), NEET unemployed, minorities, low-level or unfinished education, family or economic problems, etc. There is no need for a good or any command of English.

Accommodation: stone house, shared rooms for volunteers of the same gender (2-3 volunteers share a room – depending on the gender balance), fully equipped kitchen, 2 bathrooms + 6 separate toilets, the house uses solar energy, equipped with air-conditioning in each room. The house has a big training room for meetings and gatherings + a big garden. The house is just 5 minutes walk from the Bird Park, the venue of the volunteer activities.

Food: 6 EUR/ day – transferred to the bank account of the volunteer on the first working-day after arrival (180 EUR for 30 days)

Pocket money: it is 5 EUR/day in Hungary (150 EUR for 30 days), transferred to the bank account of the volunteer on the first working-day after arrival

Free days: 2 days/ week + 2 extra days off/ month (for 30 days: 10 days off).

About the location:

The work and the activities will take place in the facilities of the Bird Hospital Foundation (Madárkórház Alapítvány – www.madarpark.hu). The Foundation’s goal is primarily the veterinarian treatment of protected birds and their release to freedom in nature following their recovery.

The Bird Saving Station operated since the summer of 2002 has been one of the interesting tourist attractions of Hortobágy. The bird hospital is open to visitors, however, due to hygienic reasons entry into the operation room and into the lab is not recommended. There are a lot of children groups and professionals coming to visit, who like animals and nature and wish to get to know the activity of the bird hospital. The treated patients can be seen in the flying rooms and outdoor big voliers.

The Bird Hospital is annexed to the Bird Park, where – besides the outdoor voliers – there are other facilities too that help the engagement of the visitors and help the visiting children enjoy nature. These are: natural playground, flying eagle slides, small traditional hill with the flora of the pusta, speaking raven, etc.

Volunteering activities:

The following works will be done on location in smaller groups – following a preparation:

Maintaining the Bird Park resort: cutting grass (huge territory), painting the wooden gates, the fences, the bike stands, re-painting some of the recovery rooms, building the walking-path of the park.

Helping with the recovery of the injured birds: feeding 4-times a day the little birds, helping with the preparation for examination, moving birds from cages to other cages (because of cleaning or examination), releasing birds back to nature

Other trainings and activities:

The coordinating organisation is the Hang-Kép Kulturális Egyesület (Sound-Picture Cultural Association), the hosting organization is the Madárkórház Alapítvány (Bird Hospital Foundation). The organisations will provide the following trainings for the volunteers:

– on-arrival training with professional external trainers, 3 days after arrival (international and intercultural communication and acceptance, team-working and team-roles, rights and responsibilities, cultural input on Hungary, cultural adaption, Youthpass and insurance matters, conflict management, self-awareness, goal setting, mini project planning, basics of English and Hungarian language)

– English-Hungarian language course: non-formal language animations will be available in English every week

– mentoring: at the beginning daily meetings (days: 1-5), later weekly meetings with the mentors

– community activities: workshops on photography, treasure-hunting in the pusta, rowing on Hortobagy river, horse riding, carriage-ride at the nature protected areas, traditional handcrafts in practice, 1 trip to Debrecen (40kms away, the second biggest town in Hungary).


The travel costs will be reimbursed in EUR on the first working day if all the documents are provided in original to the organizers. Hortobagy is 40 kms away from Debrecen (the 2nd biggest town in Hungary). Volunteers have to reach Debrecen, from where transfer will be provided to them.


Please send CVs with a short motivation letter to Andrea Keresztesi to hangkepe@gmail.com till 28th March 2020.

The video prepared at the May 2019 project:

This video was prepared at the August 2019 project: