Cambodia Clean Water Project

Volunteer and save lives with the Cambodia Clean Water Project

Water-borne illness can be deadly, preventing children from attending school and their parents from working. The Cambodia Clean Water Project prevents illness, saves lives and helps protect livelihoods by giving rural communities access to clean drinking water. If you are looking for volunteer work in Cambodia, this project has a high impact on many communities and villages.

Talk to Chris who lives in Siem Reap and will be happy to help! E-mail me directly at or use the contact form below:

Project Overview

Immerse yourself in Khmer culture and volunteer to provide clean water to villages and communities in need. Volunteers build water filters and distribute them to villages surrounding Siem Reap.

Assist the local staff in making the amazing Bio Sand filters which provide years of clean water for villages and saves lives. Volunteer and live in the wonderful town of Siem Reap for a life changing experience!

Volunteer at the Clean Water Project and make a real difference

This volunteer opportunity allows you to make a real, long lasting difference to lives in Cambodia. Gain new skills whilst changing lives by providing those living in poverty clean drinking water.

You will have the opportunity to learn about a different culture and visit the incredible temples of Angkor Wat. Join us at our most popular community volunteer programme in Siem Reap!


The Project: The innovative project tackles some of the deadliest symptoms of extreme poverty by addressing one of the root causes - lack of clean drinking water. By giving communities access to clean, disease-free drinking water the risks of illness, which prevent income earners from working and children from going to school, are significantly reduced.

Project Location: The charming town of Siem Reap in Northern Cambodia, home to the incomparable UNESCO world heritage-listed Angkor Wat temple complex. There is an international airport with good connections to the capital Phnom Penh and further afield throughout Asia. Siem Reap has good range of facilities for visitors including a variety of shops, excellent restaurants, lively and traditional bars and plenty of unique sightseeing opportunities. There are also good medical facilities in the town should you need them.

Main Volunteer Activities: Volunteers work with local Khmer staff on building and installing water filters, assisting with well digging in rural villages, and there is also the option to help out in the project's kitchen garden.

Hours: Volunteers work from Mon to Fri for 6 hours a day, with weekends free for sightseeing, relaxing or travelling through this beautiful and diverse country.

Duration: Volunteer placements are year-round and for 1 to 12 weeks.

Accommodation: Choose from a private ensuite room in a locally owned hotel with outdoor pool or upgrade to a more upmarket three star hotel, also with outdoor pool. Both options are centrally located and within walking distance of Globalteer's office.

Volunteer Requirements: Volunteers at this project must be aged 18+ and have a reasonable level of fitness as some of the work can be tiring in the hot and humid climate.

Volunteer Placement Fee: From UK£349 / US$459

Project History
The Clean Water Project is a well established programme whose key aim is to tackle developmental issues in rural villages around Siem Reap by focusing on one core solution: the reliable supply of clean water. In Cambodia, 1 in 7 children die before the age of five from preventable diseases such as typhoid, malnutrition, malaria, dengue fever and diarrhea. Dirty water is the common denominator for all of these conditions, and the direct cause of many. Without water, irrigation of crops and farming of fish are not viable and without clean drinking water, water-borne disease can not only be fatal but can also prevent people from earning a living wage and supporting their families.
How the project is helping

The project supplies water filters to villagers in need and also digs wells to find reliable supplies of water that can then be treated in the filters. The bio-sand water filters used by our partner are a low cost way to provide potable water to impoverished areas from any source (i.e.: pump wells, pit wells, rivers, ponds). Sand filters are a relatively new technology to Cambodia, but are highly effective as they are easy to construct with locally available materials, and simple to install and maintain.

Operation and maintenance is simple and within the capabilities of any user and a single filter provides sufficient water fast enough to keep up with a family’s demand. Each filter can filter 50 - 80 litres of water a day. With sufficient manpower and funding there is no limit to the impact of this amazing project.

Why the project need volunteers

The Cambodia Clean Water Project relies entirely on private donations, grants and volunteer support to bring clean water and a healthy future to rural village communities across the Siem Reap area. Quite simply, the more hands there are to do the work the more water filters can be built and installed where they are needed most. 

As a volunteer you are very much part of a dedicated team, and by sharing the various tasks that go into creating the life-saving filters, you will see the impact of your work almost immediately. This project provides volunteer work in Cambodia for those wishing to make a real impact on the daily lives of thousands living in poverty in Siem Reap.

Typical Volunteer Duties

Volunteers spend a minimum of 3 days a week building the filters under the expert supervision of experienced staff at the project HQ. One day a week is spent travelling to local villages to install the filters and instruct villagers on their use. On this day volunteers are required to work a full day.

The fifth day is usually spent in team planning meetings and on general maintenance and upkeep at the project. Longer term volunteers may also be asked to help with well drilling. The clean water project provides volunteer work in Cambodia for those seeking to make a difference by building and distributing water filters.

Volunteers who are prepared to help with the project's market garden are particularly welcome. A range of produce is grown here and sold to local hotels and restaurants to help provide valuable funding to the project. The work can be physically demanding so a good level of fitness is required for this programme.


Volunteers on the Cambodia Clean Water Project can choose from standard or upgrade accommodation. Both accommodations are located centrally in Siem Reap and are within close walking distance of the Globalteer office where you can catch up with our friendly team, make use of our teaching resources or stock up on your free supply of drinking water!

Standard Accommodation

Our standard volunteer accommodation is in a popular 2* Cambodian-owned guest house located approximately 100 metres from Globalteer’s offices in Siem Reap. Rooms are single occupancy or can be shared if volunteers are travelling together. There is 24 hour security and reception giving volunteers both peace of mind and easy access at all times.

Volunteer rooms are clean and comfortable, each with hot water, ensuite toilet and shower. The rooms have fans but can be upgraded to air conditioning for a daily fee. Cable TV is available in all rooms with channels in English, and each room has a small fridge for storing cold drinks and snacks.The guest house also has a number of larger air-con rooms which are assigned on a first-come first-served basis to guests who pay the additional fee for air conditioning. Make sure you specify if you would like an aircon room when you apply.

The guest house has a bar area and restaurant, all set in lovely leafy grounds, and Globalteer volunteers also have use of our very own social area - just right for a drink and snack after a long day working at your project. There is also a small pool for that refreshing end of day dip!
There are also plenty of Khmer restaurants near the guest house if you fancy "going local" in the evenings. Free WiFi internet is available in rooms and in communal areas. We also have a team of friendly and reliable tuk-tuk drivers on hand with specially negotiated rates should you need transport at any time
Upgrade Accommodation

We know that some of our best volunteers prefer to have a few more creature comforts when they get to the end of a long, hard day working at their project, and to be honest, if you are generous enough to donate your time and money to volunteer with us, then you deserve to be as comfortable as possible during your placement!

Upgrade volunteer rooms are located in a modern hotel about a quarter of a mile from Globalteer’s Siem Reap offices. They offer a higher standard of comfort and more facilities for volunteers who don’t mind paying a little extra.

Rooms are spacious with large beds, cable TV, free wi-fi, in-room safe, tea and coffee making facilities and a mini bar, and the ensuite shower rooms are modern and spotlessly clean. Air-conditioning comes as standard – there are no surcharges to pay here. Rooms also have a desk which is great for planning your volunteer sessions, or writing postcards or journals…if anyone does that any more!

The hotel has a good-sized swimming pool with sun terracing and sun loungers – perfect for cooling off after a hot day at your project, something that any past volunteer will tell you is a real bonus, especially in the hot season.

There is a comfortable poolside bar – with happy hour – and a smart little restaurant which serves breakfast (included in your volunteer donation), lunch and dinner, with a good variety of reasonably priced Cambodian and international dishes. There is also an on-site spa if your muscles really need some therapy after a day “in the field”!

Free Time in Siem Reap and Cambodia

Our team in Siem Reap are all very well travelled throughout the country and further afield in Southeast Asia and can offer plenty of travel tips. There are lots of options for weekends in Siem Reap as well as for travel before or after your placement. Here are just a few of Cambodia’s treasures to whet your appetite.

Siem Reap
Thanks to the magnificent temples of Angkor, the major economy in Siem Reap town is tourism. Although Siem Reap province remains one of the poorer provinces of Cambodia and very little tourist wealth "trickles down" to rural communites. In addition to the ancient temple complexes the town has has many bars, restaurants, ATMs, internet cafes and hotels catering to foreigners' needs. There are also dozens of working Buddhist temples all over town, known locally as pagodas. Saffron-clad monks are a common sight on the streets of Siem Reap.
Siem Reap has colonial and Chinese-style architecture in the Old French Quarter and around the Old Market. In the town, there are Apsara dance performances, craft shops, silk farms, rice-paddy countryside, fishing villages and a bird sanctuary near the Tonle Sap Lake, the largest fresh water lake in South East Asia. There is a lovely riverside garden and shady walks along the Siem Reap river.
The area around the old market provides a lively night life, especially along the aptly named "Pub Street". Siem Reap provides for all tastes, with worldwide cuisine from Thai, Mexican, Indian, Japanese, Italian as well as menus catering to western tastes. There are quiet cafes, lively bars and nightclubs.
Angkor Wat and the temple complexes

Visitors come to Siem Reap to visit the temples of Angkor. There are over 100 temples scattered in the area in various states of decay. Some in overgrown jungle, some on lakes. Rest assured everyone leaves with their own personal favourite temple!

Some people visit for one day to see the main attractions but we would recommend 3 days exploring the temples to get a much better overview of this incredible period in Cambodian history. On arrival in Siem Reap our friendly staff can advise the best ways and times to visit the temples.

Tonle Sap Lake

Tonle Sap is the largest fresh water lake in Southeast Asia and an attraction in its own right. About 10km form Siem Reap, the lake stretches almost as far as the country's capital Phnom Penh. Its size varies enormously between the wet and dry seasons and half the year the waters flow into the lake from the river Mekong and for the rest of the year the waters flow in the other direction, giving the lake a unique ecosystem.

Boat trips on the lake are very popular and you can visit lake the famous floating villages and stilt villages, orginally home to refugees which have grown into entire communities with schools, shops and houses sitting directly on or over the water. Also venture further to see the wildlife sanctuary which is home to several species of endangered birds and take a kayak through the famous sunken forests.

Further Afield

For a small country Cambodia has a lot to offer those who have time to travel further afield.

Phonm Penh is a short flight away or 6-8 hours by road and is home to many popular attractions. The magnificent Royal Palace and the restaurants and bars along Sisowath Quay are on every vistor's list along with the more sombre sites of S-21 prison and the Killing fields - reminders of Cambodia's tragic past and the genocide under the Khmer Rouge Regime.

In the south of the country you will find the laid back coastal towns of Kampot and Kep as well as the lively beach resort of Sihanoukville. There are some lovely unspolit islands where you can kick back and recharge your batteries as well as jungles, forests and the wildlife havens of The Cardamom Mountains. Buses and internal flights from Siem Reap airport make getting around easy and relatively cheap.

For those who have time there are also regular direct flights from Siem Reap to other must-see Southeast Asian destinations such as Vietnam, Laos, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore as well as long distance buses.

Base Donation per week
This is our base donation for volunteering where all money received goes to the charity, our charitable activities, charity partners and supporting volunteers in country. Your daily transport to and from the project is also included.
Extra weeks£115$149
Full Package
The full package price includes the base donation,
accommodation & private collection from the airport. This is the price you will pay for volunteering on the full package.
Extra weeks£173$224
Other Accommodation Options

Volunteers can also choose to upgrade their accommodation to a hotel which includes more facilities, larger rooms and air-conditioning. Accommodations are carefully selected by our team in Cambodia for their great locations, suitability for volunteers and value for money.
Upgrade hotel
Single Room - For an additional GBP£146 / USD$190 per week on top of the full package price, you can stay in an upgrade hotel.
Double/Twin room - For two volunteers sharing a room then you would pay an additional GBP£73 / USD$95 per week, per person, on top of the full package price.

The standard hotel does not include air-conditioning but this can be added on for GBP£32 / US$42 per week. We recommend that you book this early if required as their are limited number of air-con rooms.

Additional Nights Accommodation

Volunteering prices are for full weeks but we can also book you into your hotel for additional nights before or after your volunteering.
Standard Hotel cost GBP£11 / US$14 per additional night.
Upgrade Hotel per additional night costs GBP£30 / US$38 for a single or double room.

Family Pricing 

16 years and older are charged at the same price as volunteers as they are able to volunteer at this project. 15 year olds and under only pay 50% of the base fee but must pay for accommodation if the full package option is selected (GBP£58 / USD$75 per week).

Financial Transparency

As a UK registered Charity, Globalteer is completely financially transparent to you, our donors. You can therefore see a full breakdown of where your money goes and our independently audited accounts by clicking below:

Where Your Money Goes

To discover why you should consider choosing Globalteer, please visit the following page:

About Globalteer

Why do we charge a fee for volunteering?

Globalteer requests a donation from volunteers to allow us to achieve our charitable objectives and support our partner programmes. In return, Globalteer provides volunteers with an amazing, responsible and ethical volunteer experience and in-country support from the Globalteer team in Cambodia. Ensuring that your placement is responsible as well as rewarding, safe and enjoyable takes a good deal of work.

A summary of Globalteer’s total expenditure for the last financial year is shown below:

Donations and Grants 60% – This includes a share of volunteer placement fees, grants we have secured for our projects and donations managed by Globalteer that are made by individuals and groups to our projects and partner projects.

Support Costs 29% – This includes volunteer accommodation, volunteer transport, support staff costs, travel costs and some volunteer meals.

Operational Costs 11% – Costs of running Globalteer.

What’s Included

        √  In-country support from Globalteer staff.
        √  Daily transport to and from the project location.
        √  Cambodia orientation guide and arrival induction.
        √  Free town tour.
        √  All necessary project equipment and materials.
        √  All necessary project training by Globalteer staff.
        √  Free Globalteer water bottle and welcome pack.
        √  Project donation.

With the Full Package
        √  Free airport pick up from Siem Reap airport.
        √  Accommodation at a comfortable hotel with pool.

What’s not included
  • Flights
  • Medical and travel insurance
  • Vaccinations and inoculations
  • Onward transport at the end of your placement
  • Police or background check (where necessary)
What do everyday items cost?

The official currency of Cambodia is the Riel, however, all shops and market stalls accept US$ and you may be given small change in local currency ($1 = 4000 Riels). Be aware that dollar bills with any tears or markings are generally not accepted. ATMs dispense cash in US$. The cost of living in Cambodia is very low compared to most countries in the developed world. The costs of some typical items are:

  • Short journey by tuk-tuk - $1 to $2
  • Meal in a market - $1
  • Bottle of soft drink - $0.50 to $1
  • Draft beer - $0.50 to $2
  • Meal in a restaurant - $4 to $25
“The progress you make in only 2 weeks can benefit numerous communities for generations ”

Yasmeen, Student, Australia

Volunteer rated at
(4.4 / 5)

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