Volunteer in Thailand with Friends for Asia

About Us – Friends for Asia

The Friends for Asia Foundation

Friends for Asia began operations in 2007, founded by Todd Cikraji, an experienced teacher and Peace Corps Volunteer (Kyrgyzstan and Thailand). The Friends for Asia Foundation develops international volunteer projects that assist local communities overcome challenges, and provides volunteers with the experience of contributing to those communities as a valued participant. As of 2022 over 3,000 volunteers and interns have participated in projects in Bali, Nepal, Thailand and Vietnam. We also work with different international groups that send us groups of volunteers and students to participate in projects in Chiang Mai and Bangkok.

Friends for Asia Mission Statement

The mission of Friends for Asia is twofold. First, we offer an opportunity for people to meaningfully contribute to the improvement of standards of living by building capacity in our host countries. Secondly, we provide committed volunteers to work on projects that benefit the local communities.

Independent Organization

We have always been an independent organization with no connection to (or support from) any government or religious organization. Although a non-profit foundation, we also do not operate as a charity, but rather as a professional self-sustaining organization. As such, we require a project fee from our volunteers and interns to help cover the costs involved with providing proper support and arranging quality international volunteer projects and internships. We work hard to keep our fees as low as possible and have some of the lowest volunteer and internship project fees offered throughout Asia.

Partnerships have included those with the National Peace Corps Association, Fulbright Association, and other private organizations.

Bali, Nepal, Thailand and Vietnam Locations

Friends for Asia operates projects in five locations:


Friends for Asia Volunteer Coordinators and Staff

It is important to us that our coordinating staff is made up of highly qualified, well-educated individuals devoted to our volunteer’s needs and the development of our projects. You’ll see our staff regularly, if not every day. We give our volunteers and interns freedom and the opportunity to have an authentic volunteer and internship experience, but we are also here to support them in all areas.

Thailand Volunteer and Internship Staff

Todd Cikraji is the founder and international director of Friends for Asia. He corresponds with all our volunteers and interns throughout the application and booking process. He also keeps in touch with volunteers and interns during their projects in Chiang Mai.

Todd is originally from Cleveland, Ohio and has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Dayton. Before founding Friends for Asia, he was a US Peace Corps Volunteer in Kyrgyzstan and Thailand. Todd also worked at several large schools here in Thailand teaching English as a second language and overseeing the work of other foreign teachers. Todd believes strongly in international volunteerism and has been overwhelmingly impressed with the contribution and work of the volunteers and interns at Friends for Asia.

Chiang Mai-based Volunteer and Intern Coordinating Staff

Our Chiang Mai based coordinating staff primarily oversee the operations and projects in our first project site of Chiang Mai, Thailand. However, some of our staff do assist with training and visits to our Bangkok office.

Imm – Senior Volunteer and Intern Coordinator – Wanwisa, nicknamed Imm, was born in Phrae, a small and quiet province in the north of Thailand. Before working for Friends for Asia, she was an English teacher at a private school in Chiang Mai. Imm has a bachelor’s degree in English Education from Chiang Mai Rajapahat University. Imm has worked with Friends for Asia since 2010. Imm coordinates our Chiang Mai Womens Empowerment, Medical Intern, Magazine Intern and Single Mother’s Home Projects.

Ploy – Volunteer Coordinator – Pimjanda, nicknamed Ploy was born in, and has always lived here in Chiang Mai, Thailand. She has a bachelor’s degree in Business English from Rajamangala University of Technology Lanna. Ploy takes care of her programs and volunteers, to make sure things run smoothly. Ploy assists in also teaching Thai culture and language to new volunteers during orientation. She enjoys meeting and interacting with volunteers and interns from all over the world. Elephant Camp and Children’s Home Volunteer Projects.

Korn – Safety and General Volunteer Coordinator – Korn was born in Chiang Mai, Thailand. He has worked with Friends for Asia since 2017. Before joining our team, he had experience in working with multiple large companies here in Chiang Mai and now has found his place as our safety and security coordinator. He addresses and attends to any security related needs. Driving volunteers and interns, along with upkeep of our vehicles and accommodation also falls within his responsibility.

Meen – Intern – Pichsinee, nicknamed Meen was born in Chiang Mai, Thailand. She is currently studying at a local university. She helps take care of volunteer and intern related issues. Meen is studying international relations and enjoys interacting and learning from our international volunteers and interns. Aside from learning, she also teaches FFA participants about Thai culture and history.

Posh – Intern – Tanagon, nicknamed Posh was born and raised in Phrae, Thailand. He is studying at a local university and is interning with FFA to meet people from different countries and cultures. Posh hopes to improve his English during his internship. Additionally, he helps take care of volunteer and interns.

US Based Partner

Michael Cikraji, co-director

Mike Cikraji – US Based Partner – Mike Cikraji is a limited partner of Friends for Asia, based in our Ohio office. He coordinates aspects of the company’s domestic financial, administrative and legal needs, when necessary. Mike has a bachelor’s and master’s degree in history, and previously worked as a high school teacher. He currently works in industrial quality control, and as a college history instructor.