Genuine Volunteer Service Programs in Cuba with Global Volunteers

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Volunteer in Cuba
Volunteer in Cuba
Help Cuban people improve their English.
Help Cuban people improve their English.

About

Experience Cuba hand-in-hand in service and partnership with the Cuban people - for one to two weeks. Our affordable, tax-deductible program enables to you make a genuine contribution to the lives of Cuban youth and adults through community projects and exchanges.

Teach English in small groups, help farmers in community gardens, repair and paint buildings with community leaders, landscape public parks, work with elders, clergy, artists, and shop keepers – and support the Cuban people’s long-standing vision of prosperity.

Volunteering in Cuba puts you in the midst of daily events and developments – from community celebrations to national initiatives -- the only way to obtain a genuine, “non-tourist” perspective of the cultural and social changes on this fascinating island. What’s more, by extending your hand in service and friendship, you build a bridge of mutual respect between two cultures. Show the Cuban people that U.S. Americans care about their future.

Highlights
  • Complete immersion in Cuban culture.
  • Work with Cubans on projects they have deemed priorities.
  • All logistics (except for international airfare) arranged by our staff, so you can focus on volunteering.
  • Global Volunteers' policy: safety trumps everything. Volunteers are well taken care of by their Team Leader while on a service program.
  • Discover the fascinating culture of the island by working with and learning about Cuban people.

Impact

A mere 90 miles off the southeastern shore of the United States is the island nation of Cuba, a country of 11 million rightfully proud people and an enormously rich culture. But until recently, it’s been a “forbidden” destination for Americans. Now that’s changed. Americans still aren’t permitted to be tourists, but you can legally support the Cuban people and engage in humanitarian projects. Global Volunteers is committed to improving our relationship with the Cuban people and helping their children thrive. Our Cuban community partners have asked for volunteers to help in several areas. We operate a service program in Cuba that fully complies with U.S. and Cuban government restrictions. We know that ordinary people can build bridges of love and understanding through which governments can walk. Our objective is to share who we are as a symbol of the American people’s authentic spirit and solidarity with the Cuban people. Our goal is to support the Cuban people, and to help them with humanitarian projects and civil society as they deem appropriate.

Questions & Answers

Reviews

9.5 Rating
based on 16 reviews
  • Impact 9.3
  • Support 9.6
  • Fun 9.5
  • Value 9.1
  • Safety 9.8
Showing 1 - 8 of 16
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Carmelina
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My experience with Global Volunteers in Havana

My Global Volunteer experience in Havana, Cuba , was one of the most enriching and fulfilling experiences I have had on a placement. I felt that I made a difference. Living in a democracy, I had imagined many different things about life in Cuba. It was exciting to be there talking to people who are residents there. During my two-week stay, I got to know the people at my placement, the English students, and the volunteering sponsor, the Cuban Council of Churches community. and their staff. It gave me the opportunity to hear their anecdotes. I learned a lot about their culture. It also gave me a new appreciation for things that I take for granted as simple as retail options at a supermarket Their choices are limited.
During our free time I loved sightseeing and learning more about Havana and Cuba. Our meals were so good! Our team leader was great! I felt safe. Our volunteer group became like a family. It was a wonderful experience! I would like to go back one of these days.

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Jennifer
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Cuba 2020

Traveling to Havana, Cuba for a service trip was one of the most amazing experiences of my life. I've wanted to do more abroad travel but have always had some safety concern about organizing it on my own. This trip was so well organized and safety was priority which was definitely always met. Transportation, housing, and meals were all included and an optimal experience. I especially enjoyed the opportunity to stay at a casa within the community. Absorbing the Cuban culture, while engaging within the community was such a learning experience I will never forget.

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Mike
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A unique experience

There's no place quite like Cuba, so close to the U.S. Despite the obvious economic and political differences, it's a country rich in history, bestowed with natural beauty and beaming with cultural pride. For me, the people make the place, and the Cuban people are some of the warmest, kindest, healthiest and happiest people you will ever encounter. They have a sincere fascination with and appreciation for people who visit and donate their time and energy to the betterment of Cuban society. You're not going to find fancy shopping malls or swanky resorts so typical of other travel destinations, but you will find an authenticity that is uniquely Cuban. It is that experience that differentiates Cuba from other locales and one that will stay with you long after you have returned home. As an American, I never thought I would have the opportunity to travel to Cuba, or that I would like it, but now I have been there twice, once as a tourist and once as a volunteer, and I feel so privileged to have been able to experience a place that still holds such a mystique for many Americans. Volunteering is a remarkable and rewarding way to experience Cuba and I wholeheartedly recommend it.

What would you improve about this program?
More time could be spent with the volunteering projects, and there could be more structure to the language teaching component.
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Janine
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Genuine Volunteer Service Programs in Cuba with Global Volunteers

Even though the people of Cuba might not have a lot, they are more than willing to give you anything, even the shirt off their backs to ensure that you are comfortable and feel like a member of the Cuban community. It was so easy to grow attached to the natives that it was twice as hard to leave when the program was over. Given the opportunity, I would go back in a heartbeat and do the program over and over and over again because even though I've only been there once, Cuba has and will always have a special place in my heart.

What would you improve about this program?
I wish we were able to spend more time with the people who lived there because it felt like our time was always cut too short.
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Lauren
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing People With A Beautiful Culture

I had such a welcoming, educational experience on my service trip to Cuba. The people at the Council of Churches we worked with in Havana were very welcoming!! Along with nursing home workers and residents. Everyone was there with open arms and open hearts and they made it very clear how grateful they were to have us around. Although many of us in the group did not speak spanish at all and were a little unsure how the communication would work, after the first day we realized there are so many ways to make communication work! The people were so nice and helped us while we helped them. We also had an amazing informative Team leader from GV named Daniel. He was very relaxed and patient with our group and kept us on schedule! He set up a few guest speakers for us to learn more about Cuba -American relations and another about Cuban Education, we even learned to dance Salsa at the council of churches!!
I personally had such an amazing time with the English leaners from the community. I worked mostly with the children and they were so excited to come in every day to learn new games while learning English. The food was absolutely amazing and even those who did not eat meat were accounted for.
I would highly recommend the program in Cuba! It was an experience I will NEVER forget!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
My advice would be to go in open-minded and flexibility. If you are going in to Education it is an awesome experiences to learn about their education system.
Andrew
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Wonderful program!

Such a wonderful program! The work projects were well organized and genuinely helpful. The team leader was well-informed, fun and a great resource. Such a great way to visit and learn about Cuba. We were in Ciego de Avila for most of the program and then went into Havana for the weekend to learn about the life of the local people, visit some museums and get a better sense of what it is like to be in the Capital of Cuba.

Travel to Cuba can be a little daunting, but not with Global Volunteers. They helped us every step of the way, answered all of our questions, and unlike many other organizations, had someone to meet us at the airport with the rest of the group. The lodging at the casa particular was wonderful and way beyond what any of us expected.

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Roberta
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Global Volunteer Experience in Cuba

I went to Cuba for two weeks with Global Volunteers to tutor English and learn about the Cuban culture, and I was amazed, enlightened, fulfilled, and rewarded beyond words with my experience there. G.V. is very organized, the cultural activities were very good, the local contacts were brilliant, the students I tutored were wonderful and grateful, and the people of Cuba are very welcoming. Thanks Global Volunteers.

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Seija
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Connections of the Heart

Cuba was a beautiful volunteering experience and the connections created with the warm, kind, generous people of Ciego de Avila will remain with me always! Volunteering bridges cultures in amazing ways. We are such an interconnected world! I have been fortunate to travel and explore the world extensively in my life but it is through interacting through volunteerism, be it helping paint a daycare facility, gardening, teaching English, or holding sick little babies in faraway countries that I have come to realize we truly are all the same, no matter the language we speak. Helping out opens the doors to a language of the heart that is universal.

What would you improve about this program?
It was really so well planned but if there is even one tiny thing I would change, it would be a few more social events with the local people.