SKIP - Supporting Kids In Peru

SKIP - Supporting Kids in Peru

This provider has been expired and its programs are no longer offered.

About

SKIP is a community development organisation in an impoverished district of Trujillo, Peru. We take a holistic approach to the support of our families by focusing on the education of their children, whilst also offering psychological services, as well as social work and economic development programmes. We work in partnership with families and empower them to be able to make positive decisions in their lives, in order to improve their current situation and provide the best possible opportunities for their children.

Website
skipperu.org
Founded
2003
Headquarters

Mayta Capac 1325
Rio Seco
Trujillo
La Libertad
Peru

Reviews

Carlinho
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My name is Carlinho. I'm a local volunteer who had a super wonderful experience at SKIP. Working at SKIP changed my life and children's live who worked with. It taught me how to interact with them and develop my hidden skills. But noy only that, it also let me to meet new awesome people as local and international volunteers. People from diferent parts of the world and Peru with a nice heart who taught me many things. For example, english language, working in group, learning about their cultures, problem solves and so on. I really loved all the people I worked with. To sum up, Thanks to SKIP I have gained more confidence on myself, met different kinds of people and developed my hidden talent. For that reason I am very thankful with SKIP. SKIP <3

What would you improve about this program?
Maybe 2 volunteers in every classroom would be great
Default avatar
Tom
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I volunteered for SKIP for 2 months in the summer of 2018. I had been looking for an opportunity that allowed me to use my Economics degree within a real life situation and because of this I spent the majority of my time working within the Economic Development programme. I also worked within the English teaching department, where I felt my work was appreciated and made a difference to the children. In both departments, the work I completed was interesting, fulfilling and challenging. Within the EcoDev department I was able to complete day-to-day tasks in the running of the micro-finance schemes and Talleres workshops, as well as use my skills to make an impact in the long run sustainability of the scheme - through attempting to improve family saving and links to formal banking.

SKIP provided the perfect opportunity to learn and live in a culture that was completely different to what I had previously experienced and this was enhanced by the diverse profiles of the volunteers. The people who volunteered at SKIP were some of the smartest and kindest people I have had the pleasure of meeting, and this social experience really added an unexpected bonus to my time at SKIP.

I developed economic, communication and personal skills whilst working within SKIP because of the huge array of opportunities the organisation provides you with to make a difference. Working at SKIP provides you with amazing memories and the ability to make positive change in the lives of the local community - an experience I would truly recommend.

Tomás
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I’m Tom from Ireland and I volunteered with SKIP for the first six months of 2017. It was my first time in South America and my first time to teach a class of children, but I was better able to face these new experiences with the support of SKIP’s volunteer leaders and staff.

I was struck by the camaraderie of the volunteers – encouraged in no small part by the volunteer leaders – which made it a pleasure to be part of the volunteering team. There were volunteers from all over the world, and everyone had a valuable contribution to make; regular family dinners served as a reminder of this.

My time at SKIP also offered possibilities to learn Spanish. Between lessons taken with a local language school, time spent with a local host family, a conversation club organised by a volunteer leader, and of course day-to-day activities at the SKIP centre, there was no shortage of opportunities for me to improve my Spanish skills.

At the end of the day, SKIP is about ensuring that children get access to a good quality education, and the knowledge that you have contributed to this worthwhile goal is something that will stay with you long after you have returned home.

All of these things together helped me get the most I could from my volunteering experience, while also giving the best I could of myself. If you're looking for a way to develop your skills, make friends and experience Peruvian language and culture, all while helping to provide much-needed and much-deserved educational opportunities, you'd be hard-pressed to find an organisation that balances these things as well as SKIP.

Cheyne
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Want an experience that takes working with local communities seriously? Want to learn and contribute and have fun? This is the organisation for you! Skip Peru has been running for over 10 years, has a core local and international staff and provides training and support to all volunteers to ensure that the children and adults who access Skip services are provided with a high quality service. The area is safe and there is a lovely beach and vibrant city nearby.

Default avatar
Carmen
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

At SKIP I held 50% of a role as Volunteer Leader and the other 50% as a psychologist assistant for 9 months during 2017-18. My experience in both roles was outstanding and exceeded my expectations. Standing out for me was supervision, which in both roles was of great quality and regular, easing the learning curve and leading to continuous personal and professional growth.

Overall, the program is:
a) holistic due to work in areas of social work, psychology and economic development as well as education, meaning support of the children's environment for better educational outcome.
b) sustainable thanks to the involvement of both local and international staff, some of which have been involved in the NGO for almost a decade.
c) impacting the community positively, by listening to their needs (e.g. parental association) and respecting their culture, for instance by providing lessons in line with national teaching curriculums.
d) stable and growing; they are a grassroots International NGO running for 15 years that are continuing to expand their programs and plans to help the community.
e) NOT a volunturist organisation; their policies and practises are built around the organisation's service users for the sake of their protection and benefit, putting them first. This ensures ethical and best practice at the level of volunteers, and consequently at an organisational level too.

For these reasons I am delighted I chose this NGO to dedicate a long time to and have gained skills and knowledge that I feel privileged to carry on with me in the future.

What would you improve about this program?
As a psychology assistant, more details on the work that will be carried on by the volunteer previous to arrival, given that this varies by length of time, Spanish speaking proficiency and clinical experience.

Programs

This provider no longer has any active programs. Visit our homepage to continue your search.

Alumni Interviews

Alumni interviews are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Krishan Shah

Krishan currently lives in Perth, Australia, he was born in London, Indian by heritage and lived in Kenya for 11 years before moving to Australia where he has lived for the past 14 years. He studied a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Finance at the University of Melbourne but at this stage, has little intention of becoming a banker or making exuberant amounts of money as a financial big-shot. He loves travelling, his next trip is to Burma and a few other countries in South East Asia.
Group of people in Peru

Why did you decide to volunteer with Skip in Peru?

Krishan: Having previously worked for a number of different NGO's in Peru and Nepal, I had had various experiences working with international grass-root NGO's and had found that in many occasions, whilst done with good intentions, the programs lacked a focus on being managed in a professional way and employing methodologies which emphasized sustainable change and empowerment of local communities. My search consistently solely of trying to find the right organisation regardless of which country it might be in.

After doing some in-depth research about SKIP, I decided to apply for a volunteer position with SKIP as it seemed like an organisation which had not only good intentions but also good work practices and was founded on the right methodologies and principles. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it met, if not exceeded my expectations. This is not to say that it is perfect but SKIP certainly uses a very well thought-out methodology and strives to implement sustainable and empowering change.

Describe your day to day activities as a volunteer.

Krishan: My day would begin at 9am, I would work mainly for the volunteer house, my diary would almost always be full with things that needed to be done. As a volunteer coordinator, a Monday morning would start with a breakfast meeting with the rest of the volunteer coordination team where we would discuss on-going issues, short term goals as well as ongoing projects we were working on. This would set out the main projects we would be working on during the rest of the week and other subsequent meetings would be organised accordingly. Arrival of new volunteers would be organised, volunteer review meetings and other feedback would be discussed as would the requirements of each of the departments within the organisation and ideas for potential improvement would be shared. The volunteer coordinator role consisted of a very wide range of roles and responsibilities and the above simply demonstrates a few of the things that were involved in the role. After the meeting, the team would branch of and begin their daily allocated tasks.

Peru

People would break for lunch as their schedule would allow them to and depending on the roster of the day, we would sometimes be required to go to the SKIP centre in the afternoon to help out with sports, homework help, economic development or whichever other department you were helping out with (all SKIP staff members were required to have some contact with the actual users of the SKIP service to have a first hand understanding of how the program was providing support for the users - this was especially important for people such as volunteer coordinators or finance/administrative staff where direct contact with the users would otherwise only very seldom occur). The SKIP group would go to the SKIP centre at around 2pm, cramming as many people into the taxi for the 15-20 minute ride up to the district El Porvenir where the centre was located and where the SKIP users typically lived. We would return to the house at about 6pm. Often we would have work to complete before taking some time to cook dinner and have a few beers with the rest of the 20 to 24 residents in the volunteer house!

A day in the life of a SKIP volunteer was unlike any other... It was exhausting and rewarding, challenging and frustrating, but definitely worthwhile. Apart from Saturday and Friday nights, people would hang out in the volunteer house but there were never any big parties as people were either too tired, or would head out to a bar or club to allow those who wanted to rest to do so in peace and quiet. We often used to go and play football in the evenings and at one stage were going to thai kick-boxing classes, some people had Spanish lessons and others would mingle with local friends they had made in Trujillo. SKIP was an incredibly intense experience so taking some time off in the evenings was an important part of maintaining one's sanity!

What made this experience unique and special?

Krishan: Without doubt, the people were what made the experience both unique and special. This is not only limited to the international volunteers, but also includes the local Peruvian volunteers and the SKIP users with whom we worked. For me, the ability to practice what was very broken Spanish when I first arrived was also a big plus.

How has this experience impacted your future?

Krishan: To be honest, at this stage, I really don't know because it has only been 6 months since I returned. I think it has made it clear to me that I would like to pursue a career in the social sector although exactly where amongst this incredibly large and diverse sector is still something I am working on. Without a doubt, it allowed me to develop skills and abilities which I would have not been able to develop in another place in such a quick period of time. I learn to work with people from a very large demographic background (age, culture, language), learnt to manage a project, manage people and speak a new language. These are just a few of a vast array of skills I learnt and developed at SKIP which I believe will help me in whichever profession I end up in in the future.

Staff Interviews

Staff interviews are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Heather Crouch

Job Title
Volunteer Coordinator
Heather Crouch

She started at SKIP as an Economic Development volunteer and later stayed as a Volunteer Leader and Assistant Teacher. After a brief period of travel, she returned to SKIP as the Volunteer Coordinator, overseeing the recruitment, training and support of volunteers.

What is your favorite travel memory?

My favorite travel memory comes from my month spent in Brazil. I had been traveling around South America in low season, so I hadn't met many other travelers and was just doing my own thing, but I connected with a girl who was staying at my same hostel in Buenos Aires, Argentina. We only overlapped there for one night and had planned to go different directions.

After a week apart, it turned out her travel plans changed and she decided to go to Brazil, which was my next stop as well. We connected via Facebook and decided to meet up and travel for a month together in Brazil. We instantly became great travel companions and had all kinds of adventures together. I loved the sites and rhythms of Brazil, but what made it so special was the company and having someone to enjoy all of those things with.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

It's been such an amazing journey for me here at SKIP. I originally planned to come as a short term volunteer, but fell in love with the organization and the work that it is doing here in Peru. I slowly have taken on more leadership in the organization and have learned a lot along the way!

One of the biggest things I have been learning here is cross cultural communication and how to work with people from a variety of different backgrounds. We have a really international team and it has been a great learning opportunity for me to work with such a diverse group of people.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

I absolutely love hearing stories of volunteers returning home and then continuing to promote SKIP because they had such a great experience here. Some of our volunteers return home and have fundraisers or represent SKIP and volunteer fairs at their universities. It is fun to see it come full circle and receive a volunteer application that says they heard about it from a previous volunteer.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

Our programs are all located in Trujillo, Peru in one location. However, we have a lot of different programs such as art, sport, psychology, economic development, library, english teaching and skatepark. I have had the pleasure of working in all of those areas during my time here (except for skatepark, I have some work to do on my skate boarding skills!). That is one of the great things about our program is that you can get involved in multiple areas at the same time.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

The unique thing about our program is that we work with a small community of 200 families, but we work very intensely with those families, working to help them improve in all areas of their lives. It is great to really get to know the kids, their siblings, their cousins and their parents, who all come in and are part of the program on a daily basis.

I was especially proud of my team on Childrens Day this year. We planned a big celebration for the kids and their parents - decorating the community center and doing all sorts of games and competitions. Everyone had a great time and it was great to see the whole team there working together.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

The biggest factors for me are communication and organization. These aren't two things that Peru is necessarily known for, but I am so proud of my team for the well run programs that we have. We have a lot of systems in place to make sure that we always start on time and don't have to cancel classes, including people on sick cover shifts and coordinators able to fill in as needed.