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Becoming a volunteer in South America is an exciting and rewarding experience that will change your life. Prepare before you travel by researching each of the Latin American countries that you are interested in doing volunteer work in. Some specialize in certain types of volunteer jobs more so than others so it is important to be informed.

Volunteering with indigenous kids at risk in Mexico

Monday October 27, 2014 - Posted by

Always wanted to do something useful in a foreign, sunny country? Why not go to Mexico! In San Cristóbal de Las Casas there is a social service organization that works with indigenous children and young people (aged 0 to 20). They are in situations of risk and exclusion, from a rights – and gender – perspective. Through various programs that support the promotion, protection and exercise of their rights, the project tries to improve the quality of life of indigenous children and young people. Apart from this, the organization educates the local population about the need to respect the rights of children and youngsters. Also the organization is involved in research, network building and lobbying activities.


27 Oct

My story Volunteering at a psychiatric hospital in Cusco Peru

Tuesday October 21, 2014 - Posted by

I worked as a volunteer in a psychiatric hospital in Cusco (Peru) that offers health care for outpatients, temporary inpatients and residents. Most of the time, I worked with a group of temporary inpatients, with schizophrenia, personality disorders and depressive disorders. I had the opportunity to work together with a psychologist; my working hours were Monday to Friday, from 9 am until 1 pm and I spent one month volunteering here.
In my home country (the Netherlands) I just finished my master in medical psychology, so I had experience with patient contact. However, I never worked with psychiatric patients, which made volunteering in this hospital in Peru there a totally new experience and a great opportunity.


21 Oct

Why you should definitely do volunteer work in Colombia

Monday October 13, 2014 - Posted by

Thinking about Colombia to many means thinking about drugs, the FARC and unsafety. A huge Colombia fan myself, I can say none of this is reality. Well, at least not in the world of an average backpacker or volunteer. Unlike other South American countries, Colombia has not been discovered yet by the crowds. Incredible because it has so much to offer to travelers and volunteers.


13 Oct

Volunteer work in the tourism sector in Chile

Thursday September 18, 2014 - Posted by
Volunteer work in the tourism sector in Chile

Volunteer work in Chile in the area of tourism is a great option and former participants have spoken very highly of these volunteer placements. If your work or studies are related to tourism, this experience will be of great value for you. If not, it will still be fun and entertaining experience with the possibility to meet new friends and to learn more about Chile. These working holidays offers you the best chance possible to live in Chile and get to know the country, the people and the culture while improving your Spanish skills.

18 Sep

Volunteering at wildlife rehabilitation center in Nicaragua

Friday September 12, 2014 - Posted by
Volunteering at wildlife rehabilitation center in Nicaragua

Many call it a life changing experience and the biggest adventure of their lives. Coming home after weeks of volunteering in Latin America there are so many stories to tell. The long flight, the incredible nature, the kind local people and so many different indigenous animals. There are plenty of volunteer options to choose from. You can opt for a social project, working with children, working on a health volunteer project or working with animals. So many possibilities that you might get lost picking the one that suits you best. In this blog, more info and details about the wildlife rehabilitation center and zoo in Nicaragua where volunteers are needed.

The rehabilitation center in Nicaragua started about 15 years ago and has now received over 7000 animals. More than half of them, around 4000, have been set free. Most of the animals are former pets that were brought to the center by the owners who could no longer take care of them. Others were captured by the police because of illegal trade. The center nurses all kinds of animals. Among them jaguars, puma’s, wildcats, crocodiles, nose bears, monkeys, parrots, toucans and hawks. Ideally, the animals are returned to the wild after having recuperated at the center.

12 Sep

Volunteer at children’s center in Bolivia (part II)

Friday July 04, 2014 - Posted by
Volunteer at children’s center in Bolivia (part II)

This article is the second part of the interview with Emma, one of the founders of the childcare center in Bolivia ( the first part is here.

Emma tells about her experiences and the impact the project and the volunteers have on the local community in Bolivia and how volunteers are needed here.

Can you describe what your overall experience is with volunteers?

We notice that the first week can often be overwhelming for the new volunteers. The children are all asking for your attention and almost no one of the local people speaks English . After two weeks or so, the volunteers are feeling more at home, they understand how everything works, the routines and activities. What also gives them a positive feeling is that they start to realize that the volunteer work they are doing is very helpful. For us it is important that they stay at least one month or longer, because too many change of faces will not have a good effect on the children. But, many of our volunteers decide to extend their stay. We are very often inspired and moved by our volunteers, and we really appreciate it that they are willing to share their time and talents with us. Their presence really creates true benefits for us and also for them. They do great work in our childcare center and they can improve their Spanish language skills while volunteering here in Bolivia.

04 Jul

Volunteer at a Day Care for Kids in Bolivia (part I)

Monday June 02, 2014 - Posted by
Volunteer at a Day Care for Kids in Bolivia

Many travelers wonder how they can improve their Spanish in Latin America, learn about the Latinamerican culture and do something useful at the same time. Our organization Volunteer Work Latin America – a brand of Dos Manos Travel – has the answer: we offer volunteer placements all over South America, for instance, in this child care center in Bolivia.

The center is situated in a beautiful location at approximately 15 km. from the city of La Paz, surrounded by the Andean mountains, in a semi-rural valley. One of the founders of this project is Emma. We asked hare some questions about her project, that she affectionately calls ‘’the Nursery’’. The project has had a truly meaningful impact on the majority of the indigenous population. The impacts include pulling the people out of the social, economic and political exclusion, and very vulnerable situations. Below you will read Emma’s answers to our questions about the volunteer project and the importance of the volunteers for this project in Bolivia.

02 Jun

Quito: the city of the eternal spring

Wednesday May 28, 2014 - Posted by
Quito: the city of the eteral spring

Because Quito – the capital of Ecuador – is located so close to the equator, there is a perfect climate of around 20°C all year round, and it feels like it is always spring. The city of Quito, located at an altitude of 2,850 meters is surrounded Andean snowcapped mountains, by the volcano Pichincha and, on the other side, by beautiful beaches.

28 May

Volunteer work in Medellin Colombia

Tuesday November 19, 2013 - Posted by
Volunteer Work in Medellin Colombia

Medellin: the most innovative city in the world

Medellin is the second biggest city in Colombia and back in the 90’s it used to have the reputation as the most violent city in the world, due to the activity of the drug cartel of Pablo Escobar. But now things are different and Medellin has been named now ‘the most innovative city in the world’, due to the dramatic transformations in modern history, the political environment and a network of public parks, transportation, schools, libraries and museums. Now Medellin is a lovely place to visit. It is safe, bright, full of amazingly friendly people and cosmopolitan as cities as Santiago, or Buenos Aires.

However, despite the progress and as in any other big Latin American city, there are still many children affected by addiction, poverty, or violence.


19 Nov

Volunteer Experience in Cusco (Peru)

Monday November 04, 2013 - Posted by
Volunteer in Cusco Peru

Within the city of Cusco an orphanage for girls was founded 50 years ago, back in 1963!

This orphanage still provides a safe place for girls from broken families, whose parents have either died, or abandoned them, at least in most of the cases. Some girls have also been sexually abused. At this moment, in november 2013, the building houses 42 girls, between 5-15 years old and is happy with the helping hands of volunteers.

One of them is Molly Stark; she started her volunteer experience here a couple of weeks ago! She’s living in the city center of Cusco, in a student residence for volunteers and Spanish students and she travels daily with the local bus about 30 minutes through the scenic city of Cusco to make it to the orphanage, where she will be playing and helping the girls with their homework for several hours. Some need help with their English home work; others, the smaller ones, are still struggling with the alphabet.


04 Nov
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