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Welcome to Mompiche.
NOTE: Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, we will begin accepting volunteers once again from 15 January 2021. We will accept couples (only one couple at a time unless you're two couples traveling together and know each other well) or friends/family who are traveling together. We will not be able to accept more than 4 people at any time during 2021. It's important to note that we expect you to bring your own PPE and hand sanitizers. We care about your health and safety and we hope that you care about ours too.
We live in a small fishing village on the northwest coast of Ecuador that is internationally famous to surfers for its amazing point break, but also offers other great activities such as jungle hiking, kayaking in the mangroves, horse riding, fishing, whale-watching, body-boarding, scuba diving, cave tours, tree-to-bar chocolate tours, and just chillin' on the beaches. Some must-sees include Black Beach, the colony of Blue Footed Boobies on The Point, the cemetery with its spectacular views, and the beautiful Mompiche river.
Mompiche's tourism industry has grown a lot over the last few years, and now offers guests a vast array of local and international foods. Aside from all the incredible traditional coastal seafood dishes and mouth-watering street foods, you can also find places serving vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free foods, as well as cooks who are willing to cater for all kinds of food allergies and preferences. There are a few small businesses making locally grown products such as chocolate bars, chili sauces, and herbal remedies. In a quickly changing world, there is also a large team of people working towards making Mompiche a more eco-friendly tourist destination for future generations. We hope you will also participate in helping to promote more eco-friendly practices in the village.
So, what about our house?
Our wonderful three-story bamboo and wood house is the only eco-house in Mompiche village. We are all about sustainable living and creating a negative carbon footprint. We reuse, recycle, and upcycle as much as possible. We harvest and recycle precious rainwater and we avoid buying plastics (bags, bottles, packets, etc) as much as possible. We also produce our own wonderfully rich soil for the garden from our kitchen and toilet waste. When we aren't hosting volunteers, we're operating as a small bed and breakfast. We also serve vegan/gluten-free meals every weekend in our restaurant.
What can you do here?
In 2021, our preferences for volunteers include qualified tradespeople and craftspeople: we prioritize our limited volunteer spaces for carpenters, woodworkers, builders, house-painters, plumbers, electricians, engineers, designers, permaculture gardeners, eco-friendly landscapers, etc.
One project we would like to complete in 2021 is the reading net on the third floor. Climbers and mountaineers who know how to build the "spiderweb" style nets that we often see hanging between canyons are also welcome to apply.
Other projects we have open to volunteers are wall and floor murals in several parts of the house and a couple of art projects in the garden. If you're a traveling artist and would like to leave your mark in Mompiche, send us a link to your work when you apply.
A good work ethic, a big smile, and a willingness to do your best are essentials to bring with you. Our motto is: Work a little, play a lot...
Some important things to note:
1. Mompiche has mosquitoes. It is important to bring a good (eco-friendly) insect repellent with you.
2. We live in a cigarette-free environment (this includes lingering odors from cigarettes) and smoking is not permitted anywhere inside the house, outside the house, or even in the street in front of the house.
3. There are five affectionate cats on the premises. If you are allergic to cats, our house will not be a suitable place for you to stay.
4. The nearest ATMs are 2hrs away in either direction (Atacames and Pedernales).
ONE (small) REQUEST:
If any volunteers are arriving directly from the USA or EUROPE, we would LOVE it if you could bring any of these hard-to-get items: bicarbonate of soda (baking soda - the biggest box you can find), organic/heirloom seeds (currently seeking: loofah, catnip, nettle, & parsley), and various food items we crave from time to time but can't find in Ecuador (ask what we're craving). We'd really appreciate it if you could bring us any of these things and will happily reimburse. Thanks!
We look forward to meeting you in Mompiche in 2021.
Help with Eco Projects
DIY and building projects
Help around the house
Help with Computers/ Internet
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
In an eco-house, there is much to learn about sustainable living practices: how composting toilets work, organic waste composting practices, greywater management and rainwater collection, water conservation, and how to live in a manner that benefits the environment rather than adds to its problems. We're open to an exchange of ideas and how to do things better if you have any good ideas. We also cook gluten/dairy-free vegan banana cakes on a regular basis and are happy to share those recipes. If you're not sure about something, please ask.
Electricals: Our wiring needs a professional electrician to put in a few more lights and plugs, and repair a couple of broken ones. We also have a new motion sensor light to install downstairs.
Plumbing: We've just finished building our outdoor shower stall from recycled bottles and it's gonna need some simple plumbing fixtures to finish setting it up.
Carpentry and woodwork: There is no shortage of projects: windows, cabinet doors, lampshades, chairs, tables, shelving, a sofa for the volunteer quarters... Pick something and go for it. We have loads of recycled wood and bamboo to work with, and all the tools (electric and manual) that you'll need for the job.
Builders, Designers, Construction workers: We have a couple of cement and bottle walls to build, a recycled glass wood-fired hot tub to design and build, and a whole lot of paving stones to make with cement and broken tiles. The BBQ desperately needs to be reconstructed too. We also need to fix a few fences in the orchard...
House Painters: We've never painted the exterior of the house before. Our external split bamboo walls need to be cleaned, sealed, and covered with several coats of tinted varnish. We have "Mompiche-style" bamboo scaffolding and ladders to do this job, and we can hire a compressor if necessary. We also provide goggles, masks, and gloves for these jobs. Not being afraid of heights is a definite advantage!
Artists: We have several projects in mind, including wall and floor murals (paintings) in the house and some recycled art projects in the garden (mosaics, recycled glass, recycled wood & bamboo). Tell us about your preferred mediums, show us some examples if you have any, and give us an idea of what you're capable of.
Reading Net: The idea is to add an extra layer of chill-zone to the loft where guests and volunteers can relax on a large net in the middle of the house. Anyone who knows anything about constructing a mountaineering net that will be comfortable enough to take a nap on is welcome.
House Garden and Orchard: This year, we'd like to focus on redesigning our permaculture garden for maximum productivity and to minimize further damage from various problems we've recently faced due to climate change. We also plan to create pathways through the garden to maximize planting space.
Accommodation is in the open-air loft. There are two double beds (four people maximum) and a hammock to chillax in, as well as a small chill-zone with a table, cushions, and power for recharging your electronics. There are also lockers with padlocks to keep your stuff safe and secure. It is a closed space with its own lockable door. It is your own space (for which you are responsible) while you are here.
Mompiche is 3hrs from Esmeraldas in the province of Esmeraldas, Ecuador, and 2hrs from Pedernales in the south. After you contact us, we will send you links to maps and directions, and to some vital information you will need to know before coming to Mompiche (please read this to save yourself some hassles). We look forward to seeing you here.
NOTE: THERE ARE NO ATMs IN MOMPICHE - the nearest ATMs are in Atacames (2hrs north) and Pedernales (2hrs south)
Please indicate that you have read and understood this message so that you don't arrive in Mompiche without cash. Thanks.
We can't wait to meet you!
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
More than two
4 hours maximum, 5 days a week
In developing countries (Where most hosts are involved in charity work or community development) some of our hosts may ask for a small donation to help the host family or charity (often less then 5 dollars per day) Workaway will allow this listing when the donation goes directly to the family or charity and is just to cover the cost of the volunteer‘s stay. (This will be clearly marked on the host listing).
We will strictly not allow listings posted by agents, “middle men” or projects who we feel are looking to profit from a volunteers stay.