At this project, volunteers assist families in different communities located outside of the city of Cusco. The focus is environmental conservation through tree planting in different districts of the Cusco region: Marcapata – Quispicanchis, Pitumarca – Canchis, Ccapi – Paruro, Omacha – Paruro, Pichihua – Espinar. Volunteers work in the field in coordination with the leaders of each community. They provide support to the farmers, who develop their own planting and reforestation projects. In the field, the team of coordinators and peasant experts will support and guide the volunteer.
These areas are located between 2-5 hours outside of the city of Cusco, and volunteers will be allocated the project to join upon arrival. On those projects that are located further away, it is possible to stay overnight in the community for free. Volunteers will be staying at the accommodation in Cusco during the weekends, and some days during the week when assessing data collected from the communities. It is therefore only when volunteers are collecting data in the communities that they will be staying overnight. Volunteers need to let us know beforehand if they would prefer to stay closer to the city of Cusco, if not interested in staying in the communities overnight.
Volunteers have to be min. 18 years old and join for min. 4 weeks. Volunteers need to speak intermediate Spanish and English fluently.
Cusco, or Qosqo, used to be the capital of the Inca empire and now represents the centre of Quechua indigenous culture. It is a World Heritage site where visitors can sense the layers of history with Incan and Colonial monuments and ruins side by side both in the city, as well as in the Andes mountains of the Cusco region.
Popular places such as Machu Picchu, Cusco and the Sacred Valley trails are all well-known sights and visited by most visitors coming to Peru. However, the country is full of places to discover from the wilderness of the Amazon rainforest and the thousands year old cave paintings in the Sumbay caves near Arequipa, to the ancient fortress Kuélap in the green mountains, and the mysterious Nazca lines in the desert.
Volunteers have two accommodation options when volunteering in Cusco. One is home-stay with a local family with a private bedroom, internet and full board. The other is a private bedroom in a shared apartment that includes only the internet and no meals. No smoking or pets are allowed inside any of the accommodation options.
Home-stay with a local family in Cusco:
A local guest family is the best option if you want to practice your Spanish and get a better understanding of Peruvian culture. The host families are middle-class families. They can give you a good idea of everyday life in Peru in a nice and safe environment. You will have your own bedroom and you will share the rest of the house with the family. Mostly, the family do not speak English or only at a very basic level. So that way you will be ‘forced’ to practice your Spanish in this way. Normally you will eat three times a day with the family. However, you have the liberty to go wherever you want and are not obliged to share every meal with the family. Please let us know if you have a preference (e.g. non-smoker, no pets, dietary requirements etc.), and we will try to arrange accordingly. Staying with a host family is the most popular accommodation option for short and medium-term (2 weeks to about 2 months) stays in Cusco.
Shared Apartment in Cusco:
It is also possible to stay in a shared apartment while volunteering. The apartments are located in Lucrepata and Limacpama, which are both safe neighbourhoods close to the centre, where the Spanish School is also located. The apartments are completely furnished. The living room has cable-TV, DVD and a dining area and a fully equipped kitchen (refrigerator, stove with oven, microwave, etc.). You will share the apartment with some fellow students/volunteers, but you will have your own private bedroom. The volunteers would be responsible for their own meals. Staying in an apartment is the most popular accommodation option for mid and long-term stays.
Volunteers can join any of the projects in Peru for 2 weeks up to 6 months throughout the year.
It is mandatory for you to take out travel and medical insurance for the duration of the project. If you decide to take part in activities considered more extreme/adventurous, please add this to your insurance policy, as you will be required to demonstrate your insurance coverage before participation.