Many people would wish to volunteer their services for a worthy cause overseas. They wish to at the same time experience a new culture and live that experience as they offer these services. You will have to plan out such a tour if it is to bear fruit.
You will have first to establish what issues you are most concerned with out there. It helps a great deal to work on a project that shall bring the changes in line with a cause you believe in. You need to look for an organization that shall give you a challenge in line with this.
You need to learn more about the proposed destination then. You will come across a lot of rumors and myths about certain places in the world. There is then the experience you get when you are finally there. The best move for you is to read plenty of cultural, socio-economic and political facts about the destination.
You also need to examine what skills you have and what country you shall be applying them in. You need to match your offer with what is needed there. Anything less and both parties shall be disappointed. You should only proceed if what you have to offer is necessary there. You can imagine the waste of time and resources if you were to realize this when you have already been there for a while.
You need to also think of your life and future career prospects. Such work normally goes into your resume. It helps if it something that shall add more value to it apart from the keen sense of volunteering.
You also need to be ready to finish something you started. You should make sure there is a level of balance when it comes to such work for it to be sustainable. You need to live your life there in a manner that shall allow you to develop the energy needed to keep doing it. You need to know if there shall be provisions for you to do sightseeing, visiting the region, free weekends, and other refreshing activities.
You will discover more motivation if you can volunteer with a friend or colleague. You shall be there for each other for support when things get tough. You may be in different projects, but share the same location, and it shall still work.
You should take time to measure and manage your expectations. You should not go there with some preconceived notions of what will happen. You can only be sure once you arrive there. You need to be ready to work as soon as you arrive. You should expect there to be a culture shock when you get there, and be ready to deal with it.