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JANUARY 2023 UPDATE: We are excited to have re-opened to volunteers and are currently accepting applications for mid-February/March and beyond. Our calendar is kept up to date on Workaway. To provide consistency to our children and staff we ONLY want volunteers who are willing to commit for a minimum of six weeks. Thanks for your understanding.
We are an eco-sustainable educational community (non-profit organization) for at-risk children in Guatemala.
We are located in the Central Highlands of Guatemala, in a small community, not far from Tecpán, with views that stretch to the volcanoes of both Antigua and Lake Atitlan. Onsite we have a learning campus with: preschool, after school academic programs, playground, cultural dome, and soccer field. We have an organic farm that provides quinoa, beans, chia, fruit and vegetables which contributes to our nutritional program. We provide 1300+hot lunches and healthy snacks to the children every month.
We have a policy of supporting local employment, but are looking for volunteers to help with with Farm-to-Table responsibilities, English classes, one-on-one reading in Spanish, Preschool assistance and other miscellaneous tasks.
Our priority is to accept single female volunteers or couples who can commit to a minimum stay of six weeks. We only accept volunteers who are able to speak Spanish (Intermediate or higher, ideal). We prioritize volunteer applicants who are are willing to stay longer than six weeks, so that we can provide as much consistency to the children as possible.
We rely heavily on volunteers and ask for serious enquiries only. If our calendar shows availability, we have availability. We always respond to enquiries in a timely manner and are VERY grateful for volunteers who come and assist us with this meaningful work!
Due to the nature of the Project we are unable to accept single male volunteers. All volunteers will be required to present a current Criminal Record Check and resume. Accepted applicants will also be required to attend a virtual interview (in Spanish) to ensure they are a match.
Types of help and learning opportunitiesCharity WorkLanguage practiceHelp with Eco ProjectsTeachingGardeningFarmstay helpBabysitting and creative playCreating/ Cooking family mealsHelp around the houseGeneral MaintenanceHelp with Computers/ Internet
UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve
Cultural exchange and learning opportunities
Volunteers will experience life in a remote village in Guatemala, they will improve their Spanish and learn about the Indigenous Mayan culture. We are just 6 kilometres from the ancient Mayan ruin, Iximche!
Additionally, if you have a particular skill to share - tell us about it. Previous volunteers have provided yoga classes, kids activities, business support, building assistance and architectural design.
Projects involving children
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
This is a children's educational and nutritional project working with indigenous children and their families. It is critical that you are passionate about working with children, comfortable in this type of environment and that you understand that all we do is about, and for the children.
Our priority is to accept single female volunteers or couples who can commit to a minimum stay of six weeks. We will prioritize volunteers staying longer. We rely heavily on volunteers and ask for serious enquiries only. If our calendar shows availability, we have availability. We always respond to enquiries in a timely manner.
Due to the nature of the Project we are unable to accept single male volunteers. All volunteers will be required to present a current Criminal Record Check and resume.
It is essential that volunteers have an intermediate level of Spanish.
We are looking for volunteers to help us with the following types of responsibilities. We look for volunteers who can be super flexible and assist where needed. We do our best to provide you with a variety of responsibilities while you are here so you can have a full experience.
The best of type of volunteer is one that arrives asking "how best can I help your your non-profit organization to serve the kids?"
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Our preschool is the only one in the vicinity and we have two energetic groups of 3, 4 and 5 year olds who are eager to play and learn. We are looking for volunteers to assist our amazing preschool teacher in the classroom. Got youthful energy and a love for kids? Drop us a line!
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Willing to do what's needed in the moment? We can always use multi-talented volunteers to step up and help with what's current and urgent. It could be painting, cooking, soccer coaching, chess-playing, simple construction, weeding, helping with a fundraising campaign, online research, donor stewardship... you name it! If you're awesome, flexible and capable, drop us a line! Let's talk!
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We have a beautiful organic farm and are always in need of volunteers who are willing to lend a hand to our local Guatemalan workers. You could be weeding, planting, harvesting or adding mulch to the garden. Anything that is needed at the time. If you aren't afraid of physical labour and being out in the sunshine, let us know!
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Part of our programming includes a hands-on role from the field to the kitchen involving growing, cooking and teaching. This will include working with our local workers in the field and our Guatemalan cook in the kitchen. It could include teaching preservation of food and storage, cooking and nutrition classes with the children, baking, as well as creating recipes that utilize our seasonal crops. It is preferable that volunteers have some experience of gardening or organic farming, and that they see the importance of knowing what you are eating and where it has come from.
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We know English can be a valuable skill to employment for Guatemalans and therefore enhance our programming by providing basic English classes to the kids. Fun and engaging teaching is encouraged, with an emphasis on games, songs and basic conversation for the children. We have a selection of books and many other learning materials available. Qualified ESL teachers are welcome, but we will also accept volunteers who have experience of working with young people and an enthusiasm for teaching English. Drop us a line if you want to join our team!
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Have experience fundraising? Super comfortable with computer and online work? We could use your help! As a non-profit working to reach as many children and families as possible, we could use your expertise in increasing our annual income and outreach. Let us know if you fit this criteria and we'd love to talk!
Onsite we have a beautiful three bedroom, two bathroom home for our long-term volunteers. You will be provided with a comfortable bed, bedding and towel. The rooms fit up to three volunteers but generally we try to stagger our volunteer stays so there is only one or two in a room. Volunteers purchase and prepare their own food. Food shopping and preparation is often done communally amongst the volunteers.
What else ...
We encourage you to travel on your weekends. We are located approximately 1+ hour away from Antigua and Lake Atitlan. Antigua is a UNESCO world heritage site with beautiful colonial buildings and volcanoes that can be hiked. Lake Atitlan is famous for its captivating beauty, it too is surrounded by volcanoes and has several different lakeside villages with a range of accommodations.
Other interesting places to visit on the weekend are the mountainous city of Xela, Chichicastenango for the largest market in Central America and the local Mayan ruins called Iximche.
Further afield, there are the famous Mayan ruins of Tikal, Isla de Flores for more lakeside relaxing, natural turquoise pools and limestone bridges in Semuc Champey and Livingston on the Caribbean side of Guatemala.
It is essential that volunteers have an intermediate level of Spanish before arriving at the Project. Guatemala is one of the cheapest places in the world to study Spanish, with both Antigua and Xela offering a variety of courses. We have had many volunteers spend a few weeks studying Spanish prior to their arrival at the Project, and then do very well while here!
We do not allow volunteers to travel on local 'chicken buses', due to the risk of accidents and robbery. We can provide advice on tourist shuttles for a convenient and safe way of travelling around the country. This is a firm rule of the Project. We will not put our volunteers or this Project at risk by allowing volunteers to travel on the Chicken Buses.
A little more information
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Space for parking camper vans
We have yet to welcome any Workawayers in campervans or motorhomes but we could definitely make it work for anyone travelling this way!
How many Workawayers can stay?
More than two
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Accuracy of profile:
First the place is lovely, surrounded by the volcanos in the mountains, we lived in a cut house for volunteers (sunset and lightning during the night are amazing !!! - you can even see the lava of the fuego when you are lucky!!!) I really felt like home.
I had no experience with kids
> reliability: she was there, in the Maths class with enthusiasm as well as on the football and volleyball field getting the best out of our children.
All the people we got to know around the project were so loving, warm and helpful. With the founders we got along fantastically right from the start, we enjoyed getting such a big trust from them.
We created the daily routine of the
We volunteered for almost 8 weeks. We arrived a week before the school year started and helped the staff prep to welcome over 60 children and then completed various tasks once the school opened and we helped with the children.
The founders are wonderful, trustworthy, loving