Womens' owned weaving co-operative in Xela, Guatemala

  • Favourited 1517 times
  • Last activity: 17 May 2024



 Min stay requested: at least 3 weeks



  • Description


    Welcome to our vibrant community! Nestled in the heart of Guatemala, our place is a 100% worker-owned association that has been thriving for over three decades. Born amidst the challenges of civil unrest, our mission has remained steadfast: empowering local women through fair wages in textile production.

    At the core of our operations lie the remarkable artisans who, using the ancient art of back-strap loom weaving, craft exquisite textiles. Our headquarters, in Quetzaltenango (Xela), serves as a hub of creativity.

    But our vision extends far beyond our storefront. In addition to showcasing our artisanal products, we offer private back-strap loom weaving classes. Moreover, through 'Almaya,' a dedicated nonprofit fund, we offer scholarships for the children of our arisan weavers so that their communites can grow and prosper.

    Join us in our journey toward a more inclusive future. Our cooperative has a perfect mixure of traditional Guatemalan values and progressive foriegn values from all the past volunteers and tourists who come by.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Charity Work
    Art Projects
    Language practice
    Help with Eco Projects
    DIY and building projects
    General Maintenance
    Help with Computers/ Internet
  • UN sustainability goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN sustainability goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN goals
    No poverty
    Zero hunger
    Good health and well-being
    Quality education
    Gender equality
    Clean water and sanitation
    Affordable and clean energy
    Decent work and economic growth
    Industries, innovation and infrastructure
    Reduce inequality
    Sustainable cities and communities
    Responsible consumption and production
    Climate action
    Life below water
    Life on land
    Peace, justice and strong institutions
    Partnerships for the goals
  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Our program offers a unique chance to delve into the world of women's cooperatives, explore the art of backstrap weaving, uncover the vibrant tapestry of Mayan culture, and connect with some of the skilled weavers of Guatemala.

    Volunteers can recieve a free class of backstrap weaving.

  • Help


    We are looking for motivated people ready to volunteer onsite in Quetzaltenango for at least a 3 week commitment.


    We also offer internships with the opportunity to gain course credit for your college or university. For interns, we ask for a minimum 8-week time commitment.

    The team handles the cooperative's business and international aspects.

    We are currently looking for volunteers with the following skills/experience:

    - Retail Management
    - Sales/E-commerce
    - Marketing/Communications

    - International Development
    - Fundraising

    - Website Development
    - Social Media
    - Photography, Videography, Graphic Design

    -Wall murals

    Projects include:
    We are reonnvating a compound to have 4 bedrooms and a kitchen, seperate from the office.
    Product Catalog
    New product photos
    Grants and NGO legalization
    Social media presence
    Shop rennovation

    Your creative projects and ideas are also welcome!

    We recommend our volunteers to have their own laptop.

    A basic handle of Spanish is recommended in order to communicate and share with our President and Vice president, otherwise you will miss out on a lot of opportunities and stories.

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent
    Spanish: Fluent

  • Accommodation



    However we can offer dicounted rates in our rooms at 40 Q a night if there is availability, costs go towards paying rent for the cooperative's office. Quetzaltenango is a mid-sized city with plenty of affordable hostels and apartments nearby.


    Due to the small team, work schedule, and past expereinces we can not guarantee meals. Some days a team member might cook lunch for everyone and we try to take turns but sometimes no one is here.

    We also offer meals for Q25 ($3.25) each. We can't cater to specific dietary needs. You'll be served traditional Guatemalan/Mayan dishes. Feel free to use the kitchen if you prefer. There are also plenty of eateries nearby.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    As the second-largest city in Guatemala, Quetzaltenango is full of shops and restaurants, bars, dance studios, and cafes, and it is a short bus ride away from many of the beautiful tourist sites in Los Altos—Lake Atitlán, Chichicastenango, Antigua, and Huehuetenango. In Xela, there are volunteers with various NGOs, Spanish students and tourists, so you will have plenty of opportunities to meet new people!

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • Can host digital nomads

    Can host digital nomads

    We have Wi-Fi

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected


  • ...

    This host charges a fee

    read more
    Please see more details in the profile
Host ref number: 000000000090

Feedback (14)



These are extra optional ratings when members leave feedback. The average rating left for each option is displayed.

Accuracy of profile: (4.6)

Cultural exchange: (5.0)

Communication: (5.0)

Teach Spanish in a Guatemalan indigenous primary school in the Polochic Valley, near Panzós in Alta Verapaz
Help with gardening and receiving guests, 30 mins away from Antigua, Guatemala