Volunteer in Guatemala with Maximo Nivel - Best Rated Projects

Video and Photos

New friends
New friends
My turn
My turn
Laundry
Laundry
Jf3
Jf3
Jf2
Jf2
Holiday project
Holiday project
 Exploring the city with friends
Exploring the city with friends
 Elderly care
Elderly care

About

Maximo Nivel offers volunteer abroad programs in and around the quaint, colonial city of Antigua, Guatemala, as well as on the Pacific coast. Maximo Nivel is a locally-based organization that partners with local projects to ensure maximum impact for residents of the community. You can choose to volunteer for as little as one week and as long as one year, with a new start every Monday. Commit to just one passionate project or try several during your time in Antigua. All program fees include airport pick-up, a welcome orientation at the institute, 24/7 in-country support, and much more. Be confident in knowing you’re supported from the minute you email or call in for information until you complete your program. We’re happy to answer any of your questions or concerns and can even connect you with past volunteers to get an insider’s perspective.

Highlights
  • New volunteer programs start every Monday year-round
  • All-inclusive—shared accommodations, meals, and many extras
  • Academic credit available
  • No Registration or processing fees
  • 24/7 in-country support

Travel Grants Available for a Limited Time!

Ready to work as an English teacher abroad? Register today for our award winning TEFL Certification in Costa Rica, Guatemala and Peru and apply for a special travel grant.

Popular Programs

Working with Kids  in Guatemala

Homelessness and poverty have left many children in Latin America without access to proper education and a loving environment. Maximo Nivel’s childcare projects aspire to change children’s lives by providing caring and nurturing volunteers to work, study, and play with them.

Teach English in Guatemala

Maximo Nivel’s teaching English projects serve underprivileged schools and communities—people who want to learn English, but who do not have the financial means to do so.

Sea Turtle Conservation in Guatemala

Sea turtle conservation programs begin with 2 days in San Jose, Costa Rica or Antigua, Guatemala. This is an important step to be sure you go through orientation and prepare for your project.

Construction projects in Guatemala

Maximo Nivel’s construction programs focus on community development. Construction projects may include building or repairing homes, adding classrooms to schools, or making structural improvements to clinics.

Questions & Answers

Reviews

96%
based on 153 reviews
  • Impact 9.2
  • Support 9.8
  • Fun 9.4
  • Value 9.3
  • Safety 9.4
Showing 106 - 120 of 153
Keli Kuwahara
Keli
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Antigua, Guatemela- Do it, you'll be super stoked you did!

Volunteering in Antigua, Guatemala with Maximo Nivel was an amazing experience that I would wish for everyone who has the opportunity to experience. The entire Maximo staff was always super friendly, ready to help with anything and everything, super supportive, always responded quickly and was just overall AWESOME. I couldn't have wished for a better team to help me through my volunteering journey.

I chose to volunteer in the coffee farms because it was completely out of my comfort zone, and I wanted to learn and experience something new. Each farmer I had the pleasure of meeting and working with was super sweet, and it was a great time practicing Spanish. It was definitely the most hard labor type work I've ever done, but each day was rewarding and I learned so much about each step in coffee from doing compost in the fields, hauling firewood, to picking coffee, sorting, roasting, packaging, labeling and promoting. The hikes up into the fields were challenging for me, but beautiful and worth it every time. I truly enjoyed all 4 weeks of my placement.

Beyond placement, I also loved that I had the opportunity to meet and connect with people from all over the world. Made lifetime friends, went on weekend trips to visit all the beauty in Guatemala, and there was always something fun to do each night. The people, culture, food, landscapes and everything about Guatemala is absolutely beautiful and I would encourage anyone and everyone to take a chance and experience it through volunteering with Maximo Nivel.

This experience has opened my eyes to a new world, I learned so much more about life and myself, and because the Maximo team was so supportive and caring, I never felt alone and always knew I could go to them for anything. Volunteer in Antigua! You'll be super stoked you did :)

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Silas
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Antigua review

In the summer I went to Guatemala to volunteer in the healthcare program and had the time of my life. I volunteered at Obras Sociales and felt myself becoming attached to the patience and staff there. One of my most memorable experiences was going to Semuc Champey where we went hiking, explored a cave and jumped off a bridge all in one day. I met some really great people from around the world and I plan on returning in the future.

Cinthy
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Vet Pro Veterinarian

I had a great time volunteering with Dr. JP. He cares a great deal for the animals and this techs.
I spent my time working with the dogs he is fostering. I took them for walks, brushed them and sat with them. There was a kitten there with a hurt back, and I tried to help it with walking. I'm hoping it has improved. Dr. JP gets his fosters up to date with vaccinations, etc. He has such a good heart and I think he is a wonderful veterinarian.

Wally
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

4 weeks teaching English

I had an incredible experience teaching English in Guatemala for 4 weeks. Maximo Nivel was the organization responsible for arranging my teaching placement. I arrived on a Friday night to my volunteer house and the following morning I was greeted by an employee from Maximo Nivel who gave me a safety orientation about Antigua, Guatemala. It was a detailed power point presentation on safety tips and advice. He even went above and beyond by printing out a map of Antigua and showing me where the best places are to eat, where to exchange money and even took me by foot to show me where the bus depot was located. The next day a different staff memeber Andrea - - gave me and another handful of volunteers an orientation of the building and a walk about around the city. Maximo Nivel did an absolutely phenomenal job assisting me with anything I needed. They are extremely focused on client service and made my volunteer trip a smooth, safe and positive experience. Whether your a first time traveller or veteran backpacker and you wish to volunteer, please take the opportunity to do it with Maximo Nivel. The staff are extremely friendly and very approachable and I would highly recommend this organization to anyone who is eager to make a difference in this world.

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Kim
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Guatemala Volunteer Program

I spent two weeks in Antigua this summer, volunteering at a medical placement at Casa Maria, an elderly care facility just outside Antigua, and taking spanish classes through Maximo Nivel. I had no idea what to expect when I got off the plane, but the whole experience was beyond amazing!

The Maximo Nivel staff was wonderful and very supportive. They had great suggestions on places to visit over the weekend or in the afternoons (there's so much to do and see!). The volunteer house I was placed in was a great way to meet and connect with other volunteers in Antigua. My host mom was very sweet and made delicious dinners every night.

At my placement, I was with one other volunteer, and we got to help with wound care and taking vitals, as well as interacting with the residents. I knew little spanish going into this, but the placement staff and maximo nivel were all very supportive and open to teaching me things.

Travelling around guatemala on the weekends was an unexpected joy as well- there's so much to do! Visiting Semuc Champey, hiking Acatenango volcano, and seeing Lake Atitlan and Tikal were all highlights for me on this trip. Overall I had an amazing experience- it was a great blend of volunteering, learning spanish, getting to know interesting people, and seeing Guatemala!

What would you improve about this program?
Maybe it might be possible to provide a bit more information about placements prior to arrival, just so volunteers have a bit more of an idea of what to expect.
Ginger
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Volunteering at Casa Aleluya Orphanage

My two teens and I left Antigua in the early morning, every day for five straight days. We would hop on the "chicken bus," our newest form of transportation, and head toward "Guate, Guate." We would hop off the bus and ring the bell at Casa Aleluya, a home for precious children who needed love, hands to hold and faces to smile back at theirs. We hope we offered something to these beautiful children because they sure offered something to us. Thank you, Maximo Nivel, for a life-changing experience.

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Glenn
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

2 Weeks at an Orphanage!

My daughter & I spent 2 weeks volunteering our time and energy, 5 days/week, about 4 hours per day for an amazing orphanage called Casa Aleluya, near Antigua, Guatemala. Casa Aleluya is an AMAZING organization, housing around 430 kids of all ages. Over the years they've taken in about 5300 kids who were in very unsafe or abusive situations and now have a safe place in which to grow up. They are provided with love, care and respect. They are taught, rather SHOWN how important love and respect are to the health and well-being of both individuals and organizations of which they are a part. Many of the kids go on to attend college or university programs, all supported by Casa. Maximo Nivel was a crucial part of this experience too. The folks here truly care and execute their role with professionalism and alacrity. They are also known to be one of the most inexpensive ways to gain an experience of this kind. Kudos to Phomolo, Nancy, Maritza, Colin and the entire crew at Maximo!

What would you improve about this program?
The only improvement I recommend is for volunteers to ask for or be provided with a thorough tour of Casa Aleluya. We didn't get the full tour until our last couple of days there. We were blown away by the magnitude, breadth and depth of the entire program. We were placed with the youngest kids, "Los Angelitos", aged 0 to 4 years, I think, but they have an entire school of older kids. Several of the kids met their spouse, got married and continue to serve the organization. It's really an entire community in there! I just wished I'd known about it from the very start. Also, ask to hear the testimony of the founder, Mike, who started this over 20 years ago.
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Kelty
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

The joy of Nuevo Amanecer

We went to Guatemala with an open mind about where we would be placed and what we would be doing. Our main goal was to give our teenagers a different outlook on the world and their impact and experience in it.
Nuevo Amanecer was the opportunity of a lifetime. We were absolutely changed for the better having worked with the children and the adults in this after school program. The family that started it saw a need and decided to fill it.
The children were a joy to interact with. They were all from families who had very little but to see their joyful faces each day, you would not know it. They were all eager to learn, eager to experience all that was offered. The fact that our spanish was limited was not much of an obstacle because the children were excited to learn some english words and we all managed to communicate.
I would absolutely recommend this to anyone looking to give back. You will get so much more than you give.

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Noel
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Casa Aleluya Orphanage

My family and I volunteered at an orphanage called Casa Aleluya; we had a great time working with the children, and experienced what an amazing place Casa Aleluya is for the orphans. We worked with the younger children, from babies to 7 years old. The children enjoyed our company, and we enjoyed spending time with them. There are about 450 orphans living at Casa Aleluya, from babies to young people attending college and working with the younger children.

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Laura
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Cultural Wow!!

I had no idea that all of the women in Guatenala actually wear all of the colorful clothing every day. I thought it was for celebration days only. In Guatemala we were able to explore different cultural groups, hear new languages and learn how these women weave their own clothes using natural dyes. Many cooperatives have gotten started with help from the huge amount of tourism to help those women begin their own companies. They use the money to send their children to s school. It was a very educational experience.

What would you improve about this program?
The home stay had too many students for one house. There were people and noise all over the place.
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Molly
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Our Amazing Time in Guatemala

We traveled out to a remote area, where the citizens were very isolated, without access to healthcare. It had been a year since most of the people had seen a doctor. It was touching to see how much they really needed the care of the doctor, and the anti-parasite medication that was administered. There were many kids there who loved to play soccer. During a quieter time, I went and played soccer with the kids. I loved playing with them, and doing as much as I could to try and help them be healthier. Maximo Nivel surpassed all my expecations. Jorge is an absolute joy to work with, and works endlessly. I would recommend this program to anyone, and I cannot wait to go again.

What would you improve about this program?
Leave a water filter in the communities to use.
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Elizabeth
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Great program support for volunteers and great coordination with local community organizers

While we were only in Antigua for a week, Jorge from Maximo Nivel was able to coordinate with community organizers in several neighborhoods so that we could participate in make-shift, on-site clinics requested by the communities. In the morning we attended Spanish classes and in the afternoons we went to a clinic site with the program director, an amazing organizer from Guatemala who works with the volunteers, community organizers and a local doctor. Each clinic was in a different location- one in a three-room school, one in a neighbor's one room house, one was in a 15 x 15 corrugated tin church with a dirt floor, one at an orphanage, and another in a house. The doctor provided primary care while the program director provided the needed medications selected from several suitcases full of donated medications. The members of our group were not medical professionals (the students were pre-med) but we were able provide anti-parasitics, vitamins, toothbrushes and toothpaste and hygiene education. The strength of the program to me was in the relationship between the program director and the communities he serves. He was able to create a very meaningful experience for the members of our group while, I hope, also providing some needed resources in the community.

What would you improve about this program?
It would be good if we could leave something that might create a longer-lasting improvement in health such as enviro-filters or macademia nut trees (they produce high-calorie, high-protein nuts year round) or financial resources for the community organizers.
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Caleb
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Wonderful experience!

I decided to volunteer with Maximo for my first international trip abroad and it was one of the best choices I've made. I volunteered as a nurse in a local non profit nursing home and worked alongside nurses feeding, changing, cleaning, and interacting with the patients. I also helped clean the nursing home and help the nurses with miscellaneous tasks.
Maximo offered many activities that allowed for volunteers to meet one another such as salsa night and guacamole. There were also many day and weekend trips that were relatively inexpensive for the weekends.
All in all, this trip was the best I've ever taken and a great way to spend one month of my summer.

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Janelle
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Medical Campaign In Guatemala

I had such a great time volunteering for the medical Campaign in Guatemala. We were a group of nursing students that spent a week travelling to areas that didn't have access to healthcare. Everything That Maximo Nivel had to offer was great (transportation, accommodation, Spanish classes, support, daily activities, friendly staff). The doctors and other staff that worked with us during the medical trips were amazing. The whole experience was very rewarding and was such a great learning experience! I would definitely do this again in the future and would recommended spending extra time exploring Guatemala because this country has a lot to offer (Climbing volcanos, swimming at Semuc Champey, visiting local markets, relaxing at Earth Lodge, Walking around Antigua, Surf lessons at El Paredon Beach).

Zaineb
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

What an experience

last year was my first year going abroad and volunteering, this was also my first time in Latin America. I'd say this to all my friends and family and say it again and again, it is by far my favourite, most rewarding and best experience I ever had. The staff are phenomenal, the locals are the most welcoming, and you receive more than you give, because that's how the Guatemalans do. I can't wait to go back again and again. Thank you thank you thank you for everything.

What would you improve about this program?
More hands on experience for medical campaign. Better Spanish prep before the campaign begins