The aim of this project is to preserve the environment of Cusco with the goal of planting half a million trees. Its focus is to create a source of clean air for a city that is experiencing increased levels of pollution. Volunteers help with the preservation of wild flora and fauna by creating irrigation systems taking advantage of the rains in the area, creating a nursery of different plants, producing organic fruits and much more.
Some of the volunteer tasks could be:
- Collecting and planting wild plants in the area.
- Research and revaluation of wild plants of the Cusco region.
- Planting and maintenance of tree seeds.
- Taking care of and cleaning the tree nursery.
- Tree planting in the mountains of the San Sebastián district.
Volunteers have to min. 18 years old, speak basic Spanish, be moderately fit and able to join for min. 2 weeks. The project is from Monday to Friday and volunteers take a bus from the centre of Cusco to the project site, which is about a 30-minute drive followed by a 10-minute walk.
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.
Dates and Costs
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.