Voluntary Work in Peru
In Peru the amount of voluntary projects you can choose is more or less unlimited.
Here a few examples we know of in Cusco and Arequipa. The schools will be very happy to help you find the project which suits you best!
- Projects for street children who come to reception centers after their 'work' in the streets. Here they are given food and shelter and often new skills and English are taught to help them earning money on the streets.
- Organizations for mental or physical handicapped children. If you're not a professional you can help with feeding, clothing, playing with the children; if you're a doctor, nurse, physical therapist or dentist or studying for these kinds of professions you can cooperate in the treatment of the children.
- Primary schools where you can help out the teachers.
- Day shelter for poor children who come after school to do their home work or attend workshops with creative activities or music classes.
- Old people homes where the people need help with eating, clothing and walking.
- A small zoo in Cusco where you can assist in construction, repairing, cleaning, informing visitors, collecting information for the presentation of the various species.
- A museum in Cusco where you can help translate and develop educational programs.
Minimum duration is 1 month.
Required Spanish Level is intermediate.
Work hours: part time; morning or afternoon
Lodging not provided, in some projects you will eat with the children or staff. For around $100 a week you can stay in your host family after your spanish classes receiving 3 meals a day.
There are different possibilities for volunteering in Arequipa and in the vicinity of the Colca Canyon, in the country side, four hours away from Arequipa, in the village Chivay. Civay at the border of the Colca canyon is situated at an elevation over 10.000 ft. (3633meter). It is a quiet village with a market to buy your groceries, vegetables and bread. You can have a decent meal in a restaurant for $1 and bath in one of the hot springs around Chivay.
The minimum time spending voluntary work is 1 month and in case you work in the Colca area you will live under local, very basic circumstances. If you don’t speak any Spanish you will have to study one month to reach an acceptable level of Spanish; if you do speak a little Spanish two weeks of classes in Arequipa will be enough to adapt a little to the Peruvian culture and focus your Spanish on speaking. The minimum age for volunteers here is 22. You will work from Monday to Friday and will be free the weekends.
Description: In Arequipa or Chivay. Wawa means in Quechua child
and ‘Wasi’ means ‘home’. Wawawasi’s are childcare organizations for
children who grow up in extreme poverty. Mothers initiated these projects
to enable them to work. The government controls and supports these
projects marginal. Stimulating the children through game and personal
attention is the focus. The children are between 4 months and 6 years.
Type of work: all possible tasks: playing with the children, helping in feeding them, putting them to sleep after the lunch, change diapers etc.
Minimal level is intermediate; you have to be able to have a simple conversation.
Eateries or Comedores populares
Eateries are the places
where the poorest people and the lower middle-class can eat their lunch.
Lunch is the most important meal of the day served for a low price. The
initiative comes from woman who cook by turns, every day another meal
consisting of soup, main dish and desert. The cooks fee is a free meal.
They work from 07.00 till 14.00; the clients are street children, pregnant woman, elderly people and the poor.
Type of work: not only help in preparing the meals but also help in improvement of the structure or repairing tables and chairs is needed.
Description: Primary and secondary schools in Chivay.
Type of work: Give English, gymnastics, sports or art classes. You will
work together with the local teachers and give in average 4 hours a day
classes. It is expected that you are an extrovert person!