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Peru is one of the most touristic countries in South America due to its natural beauty, its cultural heritage and archaeological sites. Despite all its natural and cultural richness, there are many social inequalities and poverty. Our local partner in Peru offers Spanish lessons and volunteering in different areas in and around Cusco. This volunteer program in Peru will give you the chance to learn a new language, immerse in another culture, develop career and leadership skills and help to create a better world. At the same time you will be offered different cultural activities to experience the Peruvian culture and some tours can be arranged for you if you want to discover the tourist attractions of the area.
Projects & Locations:
The type of projects you can choose from are:
The location of the programme is Cusco, known as the ‘archaeological capital of the Americas’ (Lonely Planet). Nowhere else you have that easy access to old Inca ruins and the impressive culture of the Incas, as well in the city centre as in the wide surroundings of Cusco. The exciting and dynamic city centre was built by the Spaniards on rests of Inca temples and palaces and is nowadays still as crowded and lively as it was in the heydays of the Inca emporium. It has many tourist attractions such as the beautiful squares, the traditional markets, the picturesque San Blas district and the museums about the Inca culture.
Requirements for volunteers:
– Minimum age of 18 years.
– A minimum of 4 weeks availability for the volunteer work.
– Criminal Background Reference check (for volunteering that involves working with children).
– Teaching certificate preferred for working in the schools, especially long-term volunteers. If not, volunteers will only work alongside with other teachers but never on their own.
– Take a Spanish course of at least 20 hours in the school of our local partner, unless you are fluent in Spanish, and use the accommodation facilities that they provide.
– Have an interest in the project area, and some knowledge and/or experience is an advantage.
– A project donation of $ 50 USD (minimum) for the project you are working in. You donate this directly to the project.
On your first day of classes (usually Monday), we will show you around the most important places in town (banks, ATMs, market, local buses, plazas, etc). A brief explanation will be given to you concerning all practical information you need to know such as cultural differences, transportation, communications, safety, etc. Furthermore, every Tuesday evening there is a volunteers’ meeting where you can get more information about the volunteer programme, meet other volunteers, exchange ideas & experiences and get advice from others.
Volunteer tasks at the project:
– Education: Assist teachers in a public kindergarten; Teach English or sports in a primary or secondary school; Provide support to children of underprivileged people at after school projects.
– Orphanage: Assist in midday meal; Teach songs, manual arts and games; Encourage physical activities and healthy habits; Provide emotional and social support.
– Cultural community centres: Organise several activities for the children such as entertaining activities, games and sports, manual arts, etc.
– Handicapped children care: Support them in their daily activities; organise different kind of activities for them; Provide emotional and social support.
– Elderly people: Assist them in their daily life at the shelter (cleaning their rooms, helping with the meals, spending time with them, etc).
– Juvenile detention: To help the guys get back on track organising activities for them, providing emotional and social support, etc.
– Medical & health care: Assist doctors or nurses in medical clinics; Help in a health education project of an NGO for children of poorer areas of Cusco and nearby villages; Work in a physiotherapy clinic for handicapped children (if you have experience in this field).
– Organisation and marketing: Help local NGOs and social projects on a staff level. You can choose among these areas (depending on your background and experience): fundraising, marketing and IT & Website.
Volunteers usually work from Monday to Friday for 4-5 hours each day, and the rest of the day they attend their Spanish lessons at the school. During the week some leisure activities will be offered when volunteers are not working or at the school. At the weekends volunteers have free time to explore the area on their own or the school can help them to arrange tours with agencies.
Spanish and Quechua classes:
The Spanish classes are from Monday to Friday and you can have them in the morning or in the afternoon, depending on your voluntary work shift. Volunteers are required to do a course of at least 20 hours, and they can choose between group classes and individual lessons. All levels, from beginner to advanced, are available, and some specialised classes such as medical or business Spanish. For those who are fluent in Spanish, there is an option of taking Quechua lessons, which are offered in an individual basis. You can take classes by the hour or take a 15 hour programme.
The school offers one free leisure activity per week to volunteers so they can experience Peruvian culture in their spare time: welcome dinner (in a typical Peruvian restaurant), Peruvian cooking class (prepare a traditional dish and enjoy eating together), salsa lesson (with a professional salsa teacher) and Latin American movie night (so you can improve your Spanish).
Accommodation and meals:
– Homestay: With a carefully selected local guest families. It involves experiencing the culture of the people and provides the opportunity of practising Spanish. You will have your own private bedroom and most of the times free internet access. Full board is included (breakfast, lunch and dinner).
– Apartment: Stay in a shared apartment with other international students. All apartments are located within walking distance from the city centre, are fully furnished (including a fully equipped kitchen) and have free internet access. You will have your own bedroom and share the kitchen, living room and bathroom. Private apartments and studios are available on request.
– Hostal: A good option if you want to share with fellow travellers. The hostal is located in the city centre and has a 24 hour reception. You will have cable TV, a private bathroom, heating, Wi-Fi, free use of the kitchen and free hot drinks. An American breakfast is included and you will have to cook the rest of the meals.
Available tours: (For the volunteer + travel programme)
Our local partner cooperates with travel agencies in Cusco to offer you any tour you want to do. You can do trekkings like the Inca trail to Machu Picchu, visits to the archaeological sites of the Incas, rafting, city tour, a weekend to Lake Titicaca or whatever tour you would like from Cusco. Go with your fellow students, volunteers and interns. You can book in advance if you have an idea of what you want to do over there, or you can book once you are in Cusco.
Volunteer program: $50 (you pay this amount directly to the project in Cusco)
|Type of accommodation||Type of room||Price per week (first 4 weeks)||Additional week (approx.)|
|Low season||High season||Low season||High season|
|2 single beds||€260||€330||€240||€312|
* The price of the additional weeks are approximate (this might varies with the exchange rate). If you stay for more than 4 weeks, you have the option to pay the additional weeks in Cusco and you can pay in the local currency.
Standard Spanish course (20 h /week) in group: €105
* For other options (more hours, private lessons, medical Spanish, etc) check with us.
Quechua course (15 h /week) individual: €130
* Additional charges: They are optional.
Lima package (airport transfer + hotel): €70
Flight ticket Lima-Cusco: On request.
* Note: Prices might increase if there are exchange rate fluctuations/increases
This price includes:
– Administration costs and pre-departure information.
– Free airport pick up in Cusco with any accommodation.
– The chosen accommodation.
– Meals: All the meals at the homestay and only breakfast at the hostal.
– Free weekly activity.
– Free city map and free tourist information.
– Luggage storage.
– Spanish or Quechua lessons.
– At the school: Free Wi-Fi, study materials and free coffee & tea.
– Student discount card for different bars, restaurants and services in Cusco.
This price does not include:
– Flights: Everyone has to book their own flight.
– Visa: The application process and cost are responsibility of every participant.
– Insurance: Everyone is responsible for their own travel insurance and a copy of the insurance contract must be sent to us at least two weeks before the start of the trip.
– Meals: The meals are not included if the chosen accommodation is the apartment and only breakfast is included for the hostal option.
– Transportation from Lima to Cusco.
– Tours: If you are interested in doing some tours, please ask us for the price list.
All year round, but volunteers should arrive at the weekend to start working on Monday.
Currency: Nuevo Sol (S/.)(1€ corresponds to about 3.47 PEN).
Climate: The day temperature is year round about 20º C in Cusco. Due to the high altitude, between May and October (winter), temperature can drop to about 3º C or even colder at night. In the summer from December to April, it is a little warmer, but there may be heavy rains.
Health: No vaccination is obligatory, but Typhoid, Hepatitis A, Tetanus and Yellow Fever (for the jungle) are recommended.
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