Work at a shelter & vet clinic for abandoned animals
Sadly, Guatemala has a large population of abandoned animals living in the street. We work with a shelter which services the Antigua surrounding areas. Our partner has a large plot of land with over 300 abandoned or injured dogs, cats and other animals. The clinic gives them the necessary care and shelter, while trying to place them in a loving home.
This project is important because it provides neutering, spaying and vaccination services to all the animals at the shelter, as well as offering their services to the surrounding communities and their pets, which helps reduce the number of unwanted litters and sick animals.
During your time volunteering with this project, you can live and commute to the shelter from Antigua. Alternatively, you can camp on the project grounds, if you have your own camping equipment, or you can stay in the shelter's volunteer accommodations (space is limited).
Daily volunteer tasks include assisting the clinic with veterinary work, exercising puppies, socializing with the cats, repairing cages, building new structures, cleaning cages and other general maintenance.
Spanish is not necessary for this volunteer placement.
Two weeks minimum commitment.
Construction of houses in impoverished areas
- Work in construction and design
- Liv with host families or in Antigua with a short bus ride to the project site
- Sample tasks include design of new houses, construction of new homes for families in the communities
- This project requires good mobility and comfort with hard labor
- Spanish not necessary
Working in a local school
Access to education is improving in Guatemala; however, there are still a significant number of children who are not enrolled in preschool and primary school. There are several factors that can affect the enrolment of a child in school fees that parents cannot afford to cover, distance from the school, and the lack of teachers in rural communities. For this reason, many children find themselves working on the streets to make a living.
We work with several partner schools in the Antigua and Lake area which work to increase the quality of education and enrolment rate of children in Guatemalan classrooms. Some common characteristics of each school include: English classes, extracurricular activities, healthy snacks, and environmental initiatives.
Volunteer tasks include: being a teacher's assistant, helping with educational activities and organizing workshops in arts or sports. We also welcome volunteers who would like to help with administration work, social media, video and photography projects, as well as building and maintaining structures on school grounds.
These projects are very flexible and open to the unique skills each volunteer has to offer!
Coffee farming & agricultural sustainability in a cooperative
We work with several coffee farming cooperatives in Guatemala. Cooperatives are interesting projects to be a part of because they are extremely multidimensional. Cooperative projects work to connect the producer and the consumer, while also building technical skills, increasing the sustainability of the farm, diversifying income and strengthening the community as a whole.
Many coffee cooperatives have begun diversifying their income by growing fruit trees to produce shade for their coffee plants, harvesting honey from bees and facilitating eco-tourism excursions on their farms.
Tasks will vary depending on the season. The basic tasks include: helping the farmers with coffee cultivation, processing, roasting and packaging process. Volunteers may also choose to do promotional work and construction projects, based on your individual preference.
Our most popular project is located just outside Antigua and can be reached easily by a local bus. This project requires good mobility, and the ability to hike into the coffee fields. Volunteers work for a half day, 5 days a week. The rest of the day is free to explore Antigua and the surrounding areas. This project requests a one week minimum commitment.
health, & community development in indigenous community
- Projects includes health and dental outreach, working in clinics, and nutrition counselling.
- Can live in Panajachel with host families or private accommodations
- Example tasks include providing health care in clinics, working with artisan groups, distributing food to project families
- Some Spanish required
Health & Nutrition
Gender equality and indigenous rights
Gender inequality and indigenous rights is an ongoing battle in Guatemala. The principles of "machismo" and racism have been intrenched in society for decades. Individuals coming from rural and low-income households have a significant lack of opportunity and feel the brunt of this inequality and racism.
We are partnered with a wide range of projects in this category. These projects centre around women's rights, gender equality, emotional education and indigenous rights. If you have a social justice issue that is close to your heart, send us an email and we can arrange for your volunteer opportunity to be in line with this cause.
Tasks for these projects will range depending on the project's particular needs at the time of application. We will be happy to provide you with more details once we make contact with you.
A sample project for a volunteer looking to work directly with young girls for women's empowerment is assisting a workshop leader to lead discussions on topics such as self-esteem, leadership, and body image. Modules are taught through a variety of activities including: arts and crafts, yoga, meditation, dance, self-defence, theatre games, guest speakers, group discussion, and more. The goal and mission is to give every participant the tools and confidence she needs to live up to her full potential and be the author of her own story.
Spanish is always helpful but not absolutely required
We are able to customize a trip to suit your individual needs and interests.
The projects mentioned above are only a sample of the dozens of projects we can match you with.