Summer Volunteer Programs in Peru

Video and Photos

A collage from my trip!
Me on Machu Picchu


Discover Peru and learn all about life and culture from the Sacred Valley to the Spanish language while making a difference in the lives of families. GLA offers multiple Service Learning Adventures in Peru:

* Service in the Sacred Valley: Let the Andes Mountains take your breath away as you work on youth service projects.

* Spanish Service Adventure (Language Immersion): Learn Spanish, embrace Peruvian culture, and volunteer to better kids’ lives.

* Amazon Service Adventure: Piranhas, dolphins, monkeys and a jungle oasis that is primed for positive change? Welcome to the Amazon.

* Foundations of Global Health: Contribute to public health and the global good in the Andean communities of the Sacred Valley, and have an experience you'll never forget.

* Children of the Andes: Gain hands-on experience teaching in a classroom.

* Peru: Service Through the Lens™: Experience Machu Picchu and beyond as you refine your photography skills and storytelling techniques.

Program Highlight!

The ancient Inca Empire is yours to discover while making a difference in the lives of rural families on our Peru: Service in the Sacred Valley™ program.

Questions & Answers

No previous experience is necessary! On my trip there were kids who never spoke or taken Spanish before, along with kids who were already fluent. GLA has several Spanish teachers to quickly figure out what level Spanish class each person should be placed in, and everybody finds their fit. On my trip in particular, we all worked together when practicing talking in Spanish. In groups we always...


based on 19 reviews
  • Growth 9.7
  • Support 9.9
  • Fun 9.6
  • Housing 9.9
  • Safety 9.8
  • Program Selection 10
  • Pre-departure Help 9
  • In-program Support 9
  • Impact on Student 10
  • Value 10
Showing 16 - 19 of 19
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Yes, I recommend this program

Like No Other

I came into the program at Peru believing I would spend time volunteering abroad, meeting locals, and hiking a trail to Machu Picchu. Well, I was correct. But to state that those actions were the bulk of my adventure would be an insult to how much Global Leadership Adventures has impacted my life. We did build a greenhouse for a local school, we did visit an orphanage and help locals sort quinoa, we did hike a 15-mile trail full of wonder, only to see more wonder at the place of the ancient Incan civilization. However, I came back home with so much more than an experience to culture and beauty. Global Leadership Adventures has completely turned my life around- no longer obsessed with success or achievement, but obsessed with passion and wonder for the world. Being able to see the faces of the young schoolchildren when we played soccer with them, or gazing at the Milky Way at our campsite to Machu Picchu, I could not have been more overwhelmed with joy. I still tell my friends every day about Peru, and it has been 4 months since the program ended. I still read the 50 pages of my GLA journal full of scribbles and crude sketches, I still talk to the wonderful people I have met in the journey, I still can't stop thinking of my experience everyday. GLA made sure we were safe; they take a lot of precaution and stick to their 5-Point Safety System. I am a vegetarian, but the food at home base could accommodate my needs perfectly. This really is the program that changed my life, and I will never forget it. I am forever thankful to Global Leadership Adventures, my mentors, and all the people I have met along the way.

What would you improve about this program?
I genuinely cannot think of any way the program can be improved besides what I control for myself. I was generally shy when it started, but I grew as it progressed. That is no way in GLA's control, and I truly believe they did a perfect job.
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Yes, I recommend this program

More than Just a Tourist

Never felt like a tourist once in my three weeks with Global Leadership Adventures. GLA allows us to meet inspiring people like Julio, who walked up and down hill an hour each day to reach our service site, to Americo, an orphan in Cuzco who had a deep passion for soccer ever since he was young. Incredible program that delivers every wish you would want from a volunteer organization that actually goes to places a tourist would not have the connections to. And unlike a tourist, you are protected 24/7 by staff that actually understands you are a high school student!

What would you improve about this program?
Visiting outside of Cusco and spending a much longer time with the group and Peru!!
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Yes, I recommend this program

I think about Peru every day, and i left 5 months ago....

Hello everyone , I am Max Bone I'm a sophomore in High School from Detroit,Michigan. This past summer i had the amazing, life changing experience to travel to, and live in Cuzco,Peru for three weeks with an amazing organization called Global Leadership Adventures. I know it may sound a little " Over Exaggerating" when i say this, but those three weeks changed my life, my views, and the overall person that i am forever. For all of you parents who are reading this, trying to decide weather to send you're child on a program to a foreign country, all that i can say is you wont regret it! I understand that it is a scary thought, waking you're child up to the security gate, saying your goodbyes then sending them off to a foreign country for an extended amount of time. but i can assure you , that you will be glad you did when you're Son/Daughter walks down to baggage claim a few weeks latter and you receive a tired, but smiling kid who is so excited to talk about there amazing experience that they just had and there how much they were changed. GLA does this through three main ways which are : Community Service , Leadership Activity's , and Cultural Exchange Activity's. The community Service obviously changes from country to country, But out of all of the people i have talked to who have been on 10 different Global Leadership Adventures programs in 8 different countries, They have all loved the work that they were doing, felt a strong connection to the work they were doing, and felt like they were making a HUGE difference on there host community. I am going to use my program for an example. My group was building a Green House out of adobe bricks in a small mountain community to help combat the highly increasing malnutrition rate among the youth of the Cusco region of Peru. It was amazing knowing that the work that i was doing will make a huge impact on this community for years to come, and change there way of life , and diet for the better. Seeing all of the hard work that we were putting in pay off and finish 70% more than we were expected to felt so good, And rely helped me realize how important hard work is and how much it pays off. The gratitude that the community expressed for our hard work can not be explained in words. The next way that Global Leadership Adventures will do this is through leadership sessions and mentor groups. This is something unique to Global Leadership Adventures that no other organization that i have seen does. These sessions focus on taking all that you are learning and experiencing and applying it to your life, and what you will do with it when you return home. These sessions also include talking about important quality's of leaders and aspects of life such as empathy, How one must hit rock bottom to make it to the top, Humility, Service, How to communicate with different groups of people, and decision making. As well as discussing current events. These sessions take place in large group settings, as well as small group settings. I truly miss these sessions, and they are one of the things i look forward to most when i return to Global Leadership Adventures next summer. The staff that Global Leadership Adventures has put together is also fantastic. They are all amazing, talented , smart, and inspiring individuals. I was able to get to know all of the staff rely well. From the cooks at home baser, to my personal mentor. There is also a large aspect placed on cultural activity's and fun. These included everything from getting my fortune told by a traditional, practicing, Inca shawman, to hiking and camping the Inca trail, to visiting Macchu Picchu , to learning about traditional Inca medicine, to getting to dress up in Andean attire and perform a traditional dance ! These activity's rely have given me a better understanding, and made me feel connected of the Inca culture, instead of just having knowledge of it. Global Leadership Adventures also does an amazing job with safety. There was not a single time during my program when i did not feel safe. GLA has a 5 point safety system that they fallow during everything that includes: safe and secure lodging ( The home base is ONLY used by GLA students and staff ) , caring supervision, Healthy meals and pure water, Expert local knowledge, and safe and comfortable transportation. Overall my trip to Peru last summer was a fantastic , life changing experience. And all that i can say to you, is GO,GO,GO,GO you will come home changed. if you have any questions about Global Leadership Adventurers, Or there Peru program please let me know via email at . If you would like to see photos from my trip, please email me and i can share with you my Facebook page where you can view them, and if your parents would like to hear from a parent whose child has gone on a GLA trip, and who is trusting them again with the safety of there kid ( This time in Africa ! ) please shoot me an email and i will be more than happy to put you in contact with my parents. Thank You for your interest in Global Leadership Adventures ,and i am so excited for you to embark on a life changing journey !

What would you improve about this program?
I wish i could have stayed longer.......
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Yes, I recommend this program

An Escapade of Peruvian Proportions

In the summer of 2012, I travelled to Peru with Global Leadership Adventures. I thought I'd make some new friends, buy cool souvenirs, give back to the community a little, nothing more than a touristy trip. Never have I been so wrong in my life.

Although we had many cool weekend outings such as white water rafting, biking down a mountain, visiting an alpaca farm, hiking the Incan Trail, visiting Machu Picchu, camping next to snow-capped mountains, and bathing in sulfur springs, what truly made the trip special was the volunteering. Every week day, we visited a school in the small community of Sunco in Cusco, Peru. There, we smashed bricks into mud, built up walls, and slowly developed the structure of a greenhouse. We watched how together, we could make such a huge improvement to the little community. Gradually, kids started watching us, following us around as we worked, chatting and laughing with us in Spanish. That was our day-waking up early to the smiling faces of little Peruvian children. Our trip was about service, about helping these kids, not touring or buying or making new friends.

Some other cool activites we did were: play traditional Peruvian music, dance a traditional Peruvian 'baile', make Peruvian pots/bowls, and learn Quechua, Peru's tribal language.

At night, before we went to bed, we always had Leadership meetings. During these meetings, we would play team-building games to improve group unity, share leadership characteristics/techniques, or meet with a mentor to talk about things going on around the world. Those nighttime meetings were speical as well- I got the chance to truly re-define what I believe a leader should be and should do. I got to explore bigger societal issues, while seeing both sides of an argument. I got a crash-course in Linguistics (something I never expected to enjoy). I truly miss those nighttime meetings.

All together, the morning volunteering, the weekend outings, and the nighttime meetings all presented a really cool, unique experience for Peru. My trip exceeded all expectations I had set forth. The only difficulty I had to overcome was returing to the United States, returning to see the wealth and shallowness of in the "bubble" of my own community. Don't get me wrong, I love where I live and I love all the people around me. It's just, it was difficult after such an enlightening and revealing experience to be forced back into reality. But part of Peru will stay with me wherever I go, part of the summer of 2012.

What would you improve about this program?
If I had to change one thing, I believe I would've wanted to stay longer. Explored more of the country. Met more of the people.