Traveling to South America is in itself is a wondrous experience. Undoubtedly, Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Peru, and the rest have exhilarating surprises in store. Yet, taking volunteering jobs whilst on the road takes it to another level.
Suddenly, your daily efforts are not just about you. What you see and feel is shared with other members of the community. You reach out to the locals and begin to experience the place and its culture from a very deeply rooted standpoint. There is nothing quite like it!
Are you ready to embark on this new adventure? Discover the unique joys and challenges that only come from travel volunteering. For your next tour of South America, reach out to the following organizations and make a difference while having the utmost fun.
The truth is that volunteering abroad in South America can take you from the Incan trail, helping preserve otters on the Amazon river, to monitoring whales, or working in a nursery with native plants. Whether you’re a vet assistant, a nursing student, or interested in environmental causes there’s something for everyone in South America. You can also volunteer to teach English abroad!
More TEFL country guides coming soon!
1. Be a Projects Abroad Sports Coach in Cordoba, Argentina
Work with enthusiastic young athletes in the After School Sports Project in Argentina. Through fitness, games, and various sports, you help these children from disadvantaged backgrounds improve their basic skills and techniques.
Your responsibilities include providing classes on soccer and field hockey for four hours a week, organizing small team games, and planning practice and training sessions. The ages of students vary from young children to teenagers. Local teachers will assist you and accommodation are provided by a host family.
2. Have an Organic Farmstay in Sorata, Bolivia
Clean living enthusiasts will find a home on this farm that champions a symbiotic relationship with the environment. Located in Sorata, volunteers have the chance to work the land in an organic way, to raise animals naturally, and apply healthy technology. There is much respect for ecology here and individuals who share the same vision are more than welcome.
Volunteers with knowledge of organic agriculture, permaculture, bio-construction, carpentry, and cooking are encouraged to visit. Rooms are provided. There is access to a kitchen, hot water, a small library, and a lovely camping area by the river. The host family speaks Spanish and is keen on teaching volunteers seeking to learn the language. You can contact them at 67064565 or 67408095.
3. Join Projects of Sanctuary for Harmonious Living in Sao Paulo, Brazil
Radiating an incredibly positive light, Sanctuary for Harmonious Living encourages volunteers to take on various projects including gardening, building, cooking, general maintenance, house and charity work, teaching, and IT services.
The volunteering hours are short, usually only four hours, but most of the time very physical so bring your fitness and cardio. But it is not all work. Extra activities bring fun including day hikes, seeing waterfalls, practising yoga and meditation, music sessions, and kung fu. The food is great! The group tends to its own vegetable garden and orchard. Volunteers stay in a guest house in Sao Paulo with laundry facilities and Internet access.
Previous volunteers laud the vibe of the Sanctuary. It is an excellent place to meet new people and find light and peace within you.
4. Practice stonework at Patio Baron in Valparaiso, Chile
Lend a hand at Patio Baron in Valparaiso, Chile and receive an even better hand in return! This place is a wood and stone workshop that honors native Chilean techniques. If you are interested in the craft, there is no better place to visit and learn. You can even become an apprentice!
Your job as a volunteer is to do gardening, maintenance work, and cleaning. In exchange for your work, you get access to a little house shared with other volunteers where you can cook and rest. There are Wi-Fi access and hot water. A basic course is taught and you have free reign in the workshop area.
A minimum stay of one month is required and it can be extended to three months. Common work is done in the morning while stonework follows after lunch. It is a great learning experience for individuals who adore sculpting, carving, and creating a friendly atmosphere.
5. Protect the Rainforests in Nuqui, Colombia with El Amargal
With a lot of talk about climate change, help in preserving and protecting the rainforests and its biodiversity prove critical. At El Amargal, you are tasked to help with conservation activities, construction of nature trails, helping venerable communities, and assisting in investigations and maintenance of biological stations for five hours a day.
As a volunteer, you are constantly surrounded by flora and fauna and mingling with people also invested in nature and a self-sustainable way of life. This biological reserve does not receive any funding from other organizations. Volunteers are asked to contribute $20,000 COP or approximately $6 per night. All fees go to the maintenance of the biological stations.
6. Work with Horses for Ride Andes in Ecuador near Quito
Farm work and riding tours come together in this volunteering opportunity from Ride Andes near Quito. If you love horses and thrive in a farm environment, grab this chance and experience beautiful Ecuador. The main job is to provide assistance in a variety of ways, mainly riding out horses and taking care of them. This may involve feeding, grooming, saddling, basic vet skills, and looking after the tack. Being a tourist guide is also possible and a wage is given for this work.
Other activities falling on you include assisting the owner with driving between haciendas or campsites, moving guest baggage, setting up camp, and cooking dinner. Shared room accommodation is provided, plus the use of a flat in Quito on your days off.
7. 13-Day Volunteer Adventure by Maximo Nivel in Peru
Work, studies, and traveling come together in the many programs offered by Maximo Nivel but its true virtue is its Volunteer Abroad program. This experience features a two-week itinerary in Peru consists of five days of community service and six days of exploration and tours. Housing and food with a family-stay are provided, plus tours and accommodation while traveling.
The volunteer activity varies from teaching English, helping with construction, working with children, conservation efforts, animal care, and healthcare. After five days of work, your days are filled with adventure and cultural immersion. This includes tours of the Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, and Lake Titicaca & Puno.
Of all things, this list is but a primer on the many volunteering opportunities available to you whilst you travel around South America. Pick one that suits your interests best. As long as you approach it with an open mind and dedicated spirit, there is no way you will not come out with incredible and life-changing experiences. Good luck!
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