GVI: Volunteer in Peru

Video and Photos

Volunteering with local youth
Volunteering with local youth
Colorful sands
Colorful sands
Machu Pichu in the clouds on a sunny day.
Machu Pichu in the clouds on a sunny day.
Traditional cuisine in Peru
Traditional cuisine in Peru
Traditional clothing in Peru
Traditional clothing in Peru
A beautiful town in Peru.
A beautiful town in Peru.
GVI volunteers and local community members
GVI volunteers and local community members
Volunteers contributing to sustainable agriculture
Volunteers contributing to sustainable agriculture

About

Peru is home to widely celebrated Incan archaeological sites and Amazon jungles, and is a country with a diverse cultural history. Travel to Cusco, surrounded by the Andes mountain ranges where you can participate in a variety of sustainable development projects.

Get involved in Education initiatives, environmental conservation, and sustainable business management projects. You will gain hands-on experience and can develop your intercultural communication skills. You will also have the opportunity to gain a better understanding of Peruvian culture and practice your conversational Spanish.

GVI has short, mid, and long-term objectives for each project that align with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), and maintains a strict Child and Vulnerable Adult Protection Policy for ethical best practices.

Highlights
  • Improve your intercultural communication and gain hands-on experience in a variety of sustainable development projects.
  • Visit the Sacred Valley, exploring Machu Picchu.
  • Learn about Peruvian culture, try ethnic cuisines, and practice your conversational Spanish.
  • Contribute directly to the UN SDGs.
  • Meet like-minded people from around the world.

GVI has a Community Development Internship in Thailand!


This is an opportunity to learn more about Chiang Mai's local Karen hill tribe culture, gaining intercultural communication skills and valuable teaching experience.

Popular Programs

Practice your conversational Spanish while contributing to the UN Sustainable Development Goal 4: Quality Education. Join other international participants to assist local teachers to conduct English classes for youth. This is also a great way to better understand different cultural practices in the community, while also having the opportunity to visit Incan archaeological sites.

Join other international teen participants to support environmental conservation and economic development in Cusco. As Machu Picchu is a highly visited destination, with only one main source of water supply available, your contributions to preserve the natural resources of the area assists with the UN SDG Goal 6: Clean Water And Sanitation. This is also a way to visit the Sacred Valley of the Incas and be a part of locally-run festivals.

By supporting projects that focus on the economic growth of Cusco, you are actively contributing to the UN Sustainable Development Goal 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth. Get involved with GVI staff and partners to assist local businesses and community members through sales and marketing, brand development, English classes, and identifying any current challenges for the business. Enhance your skills in business management and teaching, and improve your CV for future job opportunities.

Questions & Answers

Reviews

93%
based on 3 reviews
  • Impact 8.7
  • Support 9
  • Fun 9.7
  • Value 9.7
  • Safety 10
Showing 1 - 3 of 3
Default avatar
Alicia
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Meet Like-Minded People

GVI are a really engaging and proactive organisation. They will help you from the moment you consider joining a programme, all the way through to your arrival back home. This was my first experience volunteering abroad and even travelling alone, so I was worried but they helped me at every stage and I felt comfortable whilst pushing myself out of my comfort zone. I cannot recommend them enough, especially for first-time/young travellers.
I went to Cusco, Peru for a month on a Women's Empowerment programme and truly had the time of my life with like-minded people making a difference in the local community. I personally worked on 4 different projects - the projects vary (length/type/volunteers) depending on the needs of the community. This was really interesting because every project was so different but also needed by the community - every day was something different. I have made friends around the world for life and feel that I have grown as a person in my confidence, maturity and cultural awareness. I would highly recommend GVI and particularly Cusco as there are lots of projects to help with (not necessarily explicitly related to one topic - i.e. women's empowerment, community development, nature conservation, education) meaning your work goes a long way!

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
Guinea Pig!!!! It's a traditional Peruvian dish eaten on special occasions and festivity month.
Default avatar
Nicole
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Peru Conservation Work

Day to day life volunteering in Peru.

I volunteered for 2 weeks in Peru. I stayed in a hotel in Cusco. The community that I volunteered in was an hour's drive away in a district called Chinchero. Whilst I was there the school at the community was on their Winter break so my experience differed from the volunteers staying longer. Instead of working in the school I helped, along with a group of 15 others, to construct a tree nursery. This involved physical work e.g. digging holes, taking down and putting up fences, bagging soil and tidying up the nursery. We did this for roughly 3-4 hours a day up until lunch time. It doesn't seem like that long but it was exhausting and we cherished the afternoons.

A typical afternoon would either be spent having a Spanish lesson back in Cusco or going out and exploring the city perhaps grabbing a coffee, yoga or hiking up to the Cristo Blanco statue that towers over the city. Dinner would then be ready for 6pm where we could all come back together and discuss the day. After food and the long day, we would all want to wind down and go to bed as the day started at 6am.

The weekends provided more time to explore or go out in the evening. For example, one weekend all of the volunteers went to the Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu which was unforgettable. Another day, we went on a day trip to see some local Incan ruins, salt mines and a weaving class.

The highlight of my program was the people you get to meet though. You all have at least one thing in common; you all want to volunteer where you are! Personally, I think it's a guarantee that you'll make friends. My program was the shortest one on offer due to time restraints but by the end I wanted to stay at least another two weeks!

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
My most nerve-wracking moment was when I arrived in Cusco, alone, after 30 hours of travelling. I was exhausted, hungry, scared and I remember calling my mum and crying saying I think I might have made a mistake, I can't do this. Afterwards, instead of coup myself up in my room, I went downstairs to breakfast and met two other volunteers who had arrived a couple of days earlier and knew exactly how I felt. Instantly they became my friends. They reassured me and I made plans to see them later in the day after I'd caught up on some sleep. It gave me the motivation I needed that I could travel halfway across the world, by myself and volunteer with GVI.
Default avatar
Clarice
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Trip of Unforgettable Lessons

This experience with GVI was amazing, but that doesn't cut it. I developed in so many meaningful ways, yet in so many small ways as well. I learned the importance of flexibility, of hard work, of deep relationships. We got to see how the members of local communities live, how they work, and how they have fun. It was incredible to see. While the work was at times tiring and grueling, at the end of the day, it felt great to see that we had helped the communities grow and continue to see improvements. The GVI staff were fantastic. Every single staff member was helpful, hard working, organized, caring, and just plain bad-ass. They supported us on project and off, and I hope to stay in touch with them for a long time. The base is located in the center of Cusco, and everything is in walking distance. The rooms are nice, and the hotel staff is great.

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
Cuy! A big part of local cuisine is guinea pig. We saw them running around in an enclosure and it was weird to see what usually is familiar in a pet store was part of someone's every day life.

Location

Location:
Cusco
Currency:
Peruvian Sol
Weather:
Jan-Mar
66 F / 43 F
Apr-Jun
66 F / 34 F
Jul-Sep
68 F / 34 F
Oct-Dec
70 F / 43 F
Airports:
Alejandro Velasco Astete Airport
( CUZ )

Cusco, a city in the Peruvian Andes, was once capital of the Inca Empire, and is now known for its archaeological remains and Spanish colonial architecture.

About GVI

Founded in 1998, GVI runs programs in various countries around the world, each manned by our own staff and aligned to the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), as well as the objectives of local partners. We welcome participants...