Local Volunteer Projects in Peru

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About

Maximo Nivel provides great volunteer programs Cusco, Peru. Maximo is a locally-based organization and you work directly with local projects, get involved, and make an impact!

University credit is available for our service learning programs from our official School of Record: California State University, Monterey Bay.

Volunteer placements include:

Questions & Answers

Reviews

96%
based on 124 reviews
  • Impact 9.2
  • Support 9.6
  • Fun 9.4
  • Value 9.2
  • Safety 9.4
  • Program Selection 10
  • Pre-departure Help 10
  • In-program Support 10
  • Impact on Student 10
  • Value 10
Showing 31 - 45 of 124
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Cecille
10/10

Childcare in Peru

My daughter and I just finished a 1 week project where we helped in daycare/pre4-school in oropesa run by a group of Philippine nuns. It was a great experience where we helped with their day to day tasks. The trip there by bus was quite and adventure daily and the kids were fun, full of energy, adorable and way ahead of their expected learning landmarks. Although we were the first people on this particular location I think it will do well.

Yes, I recommend this program
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J.R
8/10

Cusco Construction

Huge shout-out to Maximo Nivel for providing me the opportunity to have such a memorable experience in Cusco. The team was always willing to help...whether it was first-day orientation, on-site visits, or just being there if I had a question...I knew I could count on them for any support I needed. My time in Cusco is drawing to a close, but the memories will last a lifetime. Thank you Maximo Nivel!

How can this program be improved?
More emphasis on different/new skills for most people (rather than mostly painting, sanding, and plastering, in the four weeks I was here)
Yes, I recommend this program
Holly
10/10

Loved My Experience Teaching English in Cusco for 3 Months!

I have been volunteering with Maximo Nivel in Cusco, Peru, for the past three months and have absolutely loved my time here! I just graduated college and wanted to take a gap year before going back to school. I have several friends who took a similar break but spent it backpacking through South America instead of staying in one location for a length of time. Although there are definitely benefits to both, I seriously recommend spending time in one place volunteering through an organization like Maximo! In these past few weeks I have gotten to know the culture and people of Cusco in a way that is not possible if you spend your time quickly traveling through places or staying in hostels.
First, my volunteer projects have been an incredible way to meet locals and make a difference. My project is teaching English and it has been really cool to watch people who initially knew no English improve to speaking full sentences. Maximo Nivel comes by and checks on the projects every week or so to make sure it is going smoothly and is willing to work with you if there is ever a problem with the project.
About a month ago I approached the Maximo staff with an idea to start a new project in the area that is more directly related to my academic interests. Instead of dismissing this because it would be a difficult project to start, they went out of their way to make this new project possible and I am currently working with them to help start it! I have met many other people who are here on a gap year between schools as well and Maximo wants to make sure that your experience with them best prepares you for whatever job or school you are hoping to gain entrance to upon your return home. I had to take the Law School Admission Test while I was here and they were willing to work with my schedule so I had plenty of time to study and volunteer!
Additionally, I have loved living with a host family here in Cusco. My house mother is incredible and cooks great meals. I was a little worried about living with a family after living on my own in college but my house mom is always willing to help me with things while also giving us freedom to come and go. Maximo also offers Spanish classes to volunteers and can pair you up with a local so that you can meet up with them on your own time to practice speaking Spanish and English. My Spanish has improved a lot because of this!
If you are trying to figure out how to spend time abroad or where to spend it, I highly recommend coming to Maximo Nivel in Cusco. Whether you plan to be here for one week or six months, Cusco offers incredible sights to visit in your free time. I became really good friends with my house mates and was able to travel to various places with them on the weekends and during the day when I was not volunteering. The people of Peru are very welcoming and I guarantee you will have an incredible time getting to know both the people and city of Cusco!

Yes, I recommend this program
Karim
10/10

Fantastic Experience With Maximo Nivel Peru Teaching English!

I volunteered with Maximo Peru in Cusco for 3 weeks teaching English in October 2017 and what an amazing experience it was!

From the moment I arrived to the day I left I was given all the help and support I needed from the superb Maximo team on the ground in Cusco. My living accommodation was great and my host family were so hospitable I felt like a member of the family!

I was teaching English in an after school program to children between the ages of 6-12. They had an infectious happiness and willingness to learn that it made my time with them enjoyable and fun everyday whilst I was making a real impact to the quality of their written and spoken English.

I would highly recommend Maximo Peru for any volunteer program you´re thinking of doing!

Karim (London)

Yes, I recommend this program
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Page
9/10

Fantastic Family Volunteer Trip

We had a wonderful time in Peru with Maximo! We traveled with our two boys ages 12 and 14 and volunteered one week at the orphanage and one week at the zoo. All four of us loved playing with the kids and had a hard time leaving them after the week. We also enjoyed our time at the zoo and felt that we made an impact at both locations. We would love to return and work with Maximo in the future either in Peru or another location! Between the four of us we had four different Spanish teachers over the two weeks and all were super great! They have obviously garnered a stellar educational team. There were strikes in the city but we felt Maximo did everything they could do to ensure our safety. We did not miss any classes or volunteering time due to the strikes as we could walk to where we needed to go. Our Spanish parents were the absolute BEST! They could not have done more for us! American Inca Trail was very busy but very accommodating for all of our travel needs which we booked after we arrived. We highly recommend this experience!

How can this program be improved?
A bit more direction with what to do with the orphans upon arrival would be helpful.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Jessica
10/10

Childcare/Medical

I have no words to describe the experience I had in Cusco. The staff at Maximo Nivel are exceptional. I felt well supported and appreciated by them. My host family was amazing and I developed a relationship with them. I met so many volunteers from around the world and still keep in touch with them. The best part of my experience was spending time with the children in the hospital. Seeing their situations was tough but made me want to help in every way possible. It was an extremely rewarding experience and I definitely recommend this program to everyone who is looking to volunteer or give back. This program allows for the perfect balance of volunteer work and travelling.

Yes, I recommend this program
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chelsey
9/10

zoologico

I worked on the animal care project and was placed at the zoo. It was unreal. Maritza, the primary staff at the zoo is so caring and has such a great relationship with each of the animals. All of the animals had been rescued to some degree, and had varying needs, so we learned a lot about how to care for them. Maximo was very supportive throughout the entire experience, stopping in to see how we were doing, and providing other fun activities throughout the week. Our host family was so accommodating, friendly, and even made a cake and sang for my friend on her birthday! No matter where I go moving forward I would love to add a week of volunteering!

How can this program be improved?
n/a
Yes, I recommend this program
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Maria
10/10

Medical Internship in Cusco, Peru

Wow. Sure, it seems like such a small word, and maybe a cliche thing to say, but honestly, wow. The medical internship I did in Peru was absolutely amazing! I could not have asked for a better experience in terms of quality. Not only were the employees of Maximo Nivel incredible professionals, but they are also loving and kind people who you would like to get to know anyways. They do a fantastic job placing you somewhere you truly want to work. For example, one of my fellow volunteers didn't like her first job placement, and after speaking to Maximo, she was quickly transferred to the clinic where I was at. Maximo does very well placing you with a family as well. You always have the option of changing anything if you are not happy; in the end the experience is yours, and Maximo did all it could to make it the best experience for me. I was able to have large amounts of patient contact, and even saw sutures being put into someone's chest! Although my family was concerned about the safety in Peru, I honestly found it to be just as dangerous as any other city. Just be careful and everything will go well. There were so many opportunities to get to learn about the culture, travel, and eat good food. Cuzco is the center of Archaeological cites (aka ruins, but never say that to a native :D) and there is always something to do. Although finding places with wifi can be a little tricky, Maximo provided internet and a landline phone to make calls back home. I stayed a total of 5 weeks in Cuzco, and I wish to go back some day with Maximo again. This experience certainly encouraged me to continue with my pre-med track so I can one day become a doctor too. I hope many people continue participating with this incredible program, that not only provides medical internships but also a wide variety of other programs. I am certainly promoting it to all my friends at the University of Denver. Go Pios! And go Maximo Nivel!

How can this program be improved?
Tell participants that they can change families or job locations if they feel uncomfortable. I was too nervous to do this at first, and I could have had a better experience if I had done so.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Gabriela
10/10

Cusco

When I landed in Cusco, I told myself, embrace ambiguity and go with the flow- so I did!! In the volunteer orientation, our program guide offered the best advise ever...she said this is your experience and you get what you put in! And she was 100% right! I was open to new experiences and new friendships and as a result this adventure changed my life forever. So I recommend to make this your experience!

How can this program be improved?
n/a
Yes, I recommend this program
Cj
9/10

Medical Campaign in Cusco Area

From the moment we arrived, we were greeted by a friendly face. Transportation was arranged and after nearly 24 hours of traveling it was a relief to coast into our host dwelling. The host throughout the week was very kind and hospitable. Breakfast every day and an authentic homecooked dinner in the evenings (along with different desserts). The house was serviced daily by a housekeeper, so we always came back to a clean house. Ellen, our field manager, was very well organized and very fluent in Spanish and along with the other contacts of Maximo Nivel, all of our campaigns were very well put together and fulfilling. I would come back and work with them in a heartbeat.

Yes, I recommend this program
Chris
10/10

Great program and experience!

The program staff was extremely helpful. Never did I feel unsafe or worried. We were given great recommendations on restaurants, places to shop, etc. The staff also booked us an amazing homestay in Cusco with a wonderful woman who cooked us breakfast and dinner every day! The actual program itself was also amazing. They kept our group busy the entire 3 weeks we were there, and always kept the schedule engaging, professional, and fun. My favorite memories include getting to really know the vibrant, big-hearted people of Cusco through medical campaigns and our fun excursions to Machu Picchu and other scenic areas on the weekends! HIGHLY RECOMMEND!!!

Yes, I recommend this program
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Anna
10/10

Cusco, Peru Program

My experience with Maximo Nivel was so amazing and enriching. The staff that they have in the office was helpful and willing to answer any of my touristy questions about the city and needs as a volunteer at their placement. Overall they were so hospitable and ready to welcome new volunteers, and work with them to provide help to the surrounding communities in Cusco. I couldn't have asked for a better team of people to work alongside during my volunteering. They really try their best to engage you in the beautiful culture and immerse you in different programs that they hold each week so that you can leave Peru, not only having helped the people, but learned about their history and traditions as well. Without a doubt, I will hopefully be returning and recommend this program.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Geoff
10/10

Family Volunteering - Construction and Animal Care in Cusco

We had a wonderful family volunteering experience with Maximo Nivel in Cusco - one week of construction and one week of working at the dog shelter. Both were very positive experiences for parents and teenagers alike.
We can´t say enough about the helpfulness and friendliness of the Maximo Nivel staff, they went out of their way to help us find our feet in Cusco and make sure we had everything we needed. The evening activities were also fun, we particularly enjoyed the Salsa lessons and craft sessions.
Our home-stay was also great, we had several interesting conversations with the family and learned a lot of Spanish in the process. We also enjoyed meeting and interacting with other volunteers.
The Holt Family

Yes, I recommend this program
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Joyce
10/10

Volunteering in Cusco was amazing!

We had a great time volunteering to teach English in Cusco! We were pleased with Maximo Nivel’s support and help during our month stay there. It was assuring to know we had a base to go to for help, advice, exchange money, make copies, get some supplies and coffee/tea and yummy sandwiches! Everyone working at Maximo was eager to assist us and always had a positive attitude. We really enjoyed our Spanish classes with Eliana and our program director Brittany. The most rewarding part was working at our school everyday and seeing how happy the kids were to see us as we were to see them. They were so eager to learn. We loved teaching them and doing some fun activities such as making slime! We also met some new friends during our homestay which was an added bonus. We also enjoyed all our adventures with America Inca Trail. Our overall experience was so rewarding and humbling and we thank Maximo Nivel for all their help. If you have a positive attitude, are proactive and flexible...any experience can be better than you ever thought. I hope to continue volunteering in different countries every summer break...

How can this program be improved?
Homestay food can be better!
Yes, I recommend this program
Tabish
9/10

Maximo allowed me to be the Curriculum Knight! 👨🏽‍🏫

I can't even begin to describe how amazing Maximo Nivel Peru has been throughout my volunteer experience!
From the moment I landed in Cusco, to the very last minute I took off, they have had nothing but smiles on their faces, and an eagerness to help and assist me throughout my volunteering experience and outside of it.
If you're looking to volunteer with an organisation, look no further. Adaptable, relatively economical, supportive and not to mention, absolutely incredible! I never expected teaching English to be as fulfilling or exciting as it was, and it was largely in part due to the care I received from Maximo Peru!
As a side note, huge shout-outs to the lovely faces who greeted me at the office every single day, specifically calling out Eveline (Thanks for being an awesome lead!), Brittany, Sylvia, Ninoska, Daniel & Angel (Last two not pictured cause they're too cool)!
In terms of my placement and opportunity, I was able to volunteer with a local school (Andino Bilingual) & Qosko Maki (A volunteer organisation) where I taught students the application of the English Language in addition to teaching them communication, teamwork, leadership and personality grooming! It was such an amazing experience and I had the ability to completely take ownership of and translate my efforts into real time sustainable impact for the people involved!
I'm leaving Cusco with a sustainable framework for implementing the functions I took ownership of to directly impact the community and I couldn't be happier!

Yes, I recommend this program

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About Maximo Nivel

Máximo Nivel (Maximum Level)—The Intercultural Center of Latin America

Máximo Nivel is a family-owned, social enterprise founded in 2003. Our three intercultural centers are locally-based organizations focused on international education and cross...