VolunteeringPeru

About

Volunteering-Peru is a small volunteer organization in Cusco, Peru. The goal of our organization is to support projects in Cusco by sending them volunteers which give the projects a helping hand. The volunteers offer a valuable contribution to the society and bridge the gap between foreign visitors and local people.

The volunteers work in different settings, for example childcare, healthcare, construction, etc. Each volunteer chooses in which project he or she wants to work.

Apart from providing assistance to various projects in Cusco, we want the volunteers to experience and discover the real way of life in Peru. Therefore we offer a complete program for the volunteers, with apart of the volunteer job also Spanish classes and staying with a Peruvian host family.

Founded
2008
Headquarters

Urb. La Florida P-1
Cusco
Peru

Reviews

Default avatar
Lieke
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Me and my sister helped out in an orphanage for disabled children. It wasn't just rewarding because you know you helped the children, but it was also a lot of fun to see them smile :)

Also the staff is open to new idea's, this allowed me and my sister to organize a trip to the swimming pool which became a highlight of the summer for the children!

What would you improve about this program?
It'd be better if there was a little more teamwork between the permanent local staff and the volunteers.
Default avatar
Naiara
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

From the moment I decided to volunteer in Peru, I got all the support from Carlos and Agnes. In the mornings I worked with mentally and physically disabled children in the project Madre Teresa, helped in the physiotherapy, fed them and helped with the cleaning. The institution is very poor and volunteers are really needed there. Although the children in Madre Teresa can't really talk, after some days they started to smile at me when I arrived there, and we found our own way to communicate. In the afternoons I worked in the project Colibri, with children that have to work on the streets to help their parents. We could do lots of activities there and I was impressed by how smart and lovely those children were. By the end of my program it was hard to say goodbye, I learned a lot from them and I hope I left some posivite stuff too. The work that you do with love lasts forever. There were other volunteers in my host family's house, and during the nights we used to go out, watch movies, or have salsa classes, and I met people from all over the world. The host family was amazing and made me feel at home. During the weekend I traveled and met the most beautiful places I've ever been to. It's for sure an amazing city for you to know and leave your mark, and you can count on the staff for whatever you need.

Programs

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Alumni Interviews

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

Lieke van Son

Lieke van Son is a 19 year old girl from Almere, Netherlands and currently studies Astronomy in Leiden. She volunteered together with her sister in Cusco August 2012. She enjoys scuba diving, painting and pudding.
Child hugging a woman in Peru

Why did you decide to volunteer with VolunteeringPeru in Cusco?

Lieke: My sister and I really wanted to go to South America, and after a few tough decisions we knew that Peru would be the best place to go. We searched the web for an independent volunteering organization and found VolunteeringPeru in Cusco pretty fast. So we contacted Agnes (the head of this organization) and were pleasantly surprised that she is Dutch so we could talk in our own language. She's really sweet and we got along quite well. She picked us up from the bus station in Cusco and we stayed with Carlos Rojas and his family.

Describe your day to day activities as a volunteer.

Lieke: We worked in a center for (mentally and physically) disabled children. Our main task was to entertain the children. We bought crayons and stickers and helped them draw, play outside, read stories etc. We even helped organize a trip to the swimming pool once! It was great and I'm positively sure that they all loved it as it was a quite unique experience for them. Beside that we did simple chores such as cleaning, helping with serving dinner and getting them ready for bed.

What made this experience unique and special?

Lieke: It is a wonderful feeling to know that you helped, even if it was just for a little bit. And it wasn't by just working. The home we stayed in was very warm and welcoming. Carlos and his family recommended great tourist attractions. The family members and other residents were all very friendly and involved. I made a lot of friends while staying there. Also the country is just perfectly beautiful to visit. All together it was really a unique life experience!

How has this experience impacted your future?

Lieke: It made me look a little differently at the world. Like I said helping others feels just great and this whole trip made me realize just how badly I want to see the rest of the world. I want to travel again and meet new people, help in more places . I would recommend everyone I know now to do volunteering work at least once in their life. I definitely want to go back to Cusco one day and do more volunteering.

Staff Interviews

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

Agnes Schepens

Job Title
Staff Member

Tell us a little about Volunteering-Peru and your role at the company.

Agnes: Volunteering-Peru is a small volunteer organisation with the goal to help local projects with the extra help volunteers can offer. We receive volunteers from all over the world.

My role in the organisation is answering the emails from people who are interested in volunteering.

I also email the volunteers who have signed up and help them with all the questions they have before travelling to Peru. While in Peru, I am the coordinator for the volunteers and the person who they can go to with questions, problems, etc. We pick up the volunteers from the airport, take them to their accommodations, explain things about the city, and take them to Spanish Classes and their project.

How did you get involved in the volunteer industry?

Agnes: I have volunteered myself for 6 months in Cusco, Peru in 2007. After this I worked as a volunteer coordinator in La Paz, Bolivia. Carlos (also coordinator at Volunteering-Peru) asked me to set up a volunteer organisation with him, and that is when we started this organization about 4 years ago.

What makes Volunteering-Peru unique?

Agnes: Volunteering-Peru is a small organisation and we always have direct contact with the volunteers. We always try to see the volunteers several times a week and visit the projects at least once a week.

Our work is personalized; the volunteers choose where to work. As coordinators we can be reached 24/7 in case of emergency. The projects Volunteering-Peru works with are projects that really need help. Our list of projects is changing all the time, depending on the need of the projects.

In your experience, what characteristics make a good international volunteer?

Agnes: A good volunteer is a person that is interested in the culture he is surrounded with as well as the people he is working with. The volunteer has small goals for the period he is working during. We think it is not necessary to have huge goals, but if you think small, a volunteer can mean a lot for a project and the children.

What does the future hold for Volunteering-Peru?

Agnes: Volunteering-Peru hopes to grow still a bit more. We don't have the ambition to become a very big organisation, but we do hope to receive more people in the coming years. When we receive more volunteers we will be able to offer more consistent assistance to the projects and might be able to open our social projects one day!