Volunteer in Guatemala for Free: Contribute to Guatemalan education

In Santiago Atitlán, Guatemala we have an agreement with the Ministry of Education to provide children in primary school with a basic level of English. We currently teach English in three public schools, one high school, one community school and in our very own learning centre to around 300 children, 90 teenagers and various adult groups across the town. 

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Tourism is growing rapidly in Central America and Santiago Atitlan is surrounded by several increasingly-popular villages. Across the community, there is an ever-growing desire to learn English as a way to benefit from tourism and enrich future opportunities by broadening studies and creating access to a wider range of jobs

Volunteers receive instructions and academic materials upon their arrival. These materials are standard throughout our organisation and they follow the ESL international levels.  All this work is organised and managed on the ground by Carmela, our Volunteer Coordinator. Carmela organises the arrival, accommodation, and teaching schedule of our volunteers in Guatemala.

The average workload is 16 hours per week (with some additional time to prepare for each lesson). Volunteers are expected to pay for their accommodation however, the price is affordable. We suggest staying with host families. There are no additional costs asked by One, Two… Tree! and all your costs are paid directly to the host family.

Accommodation

Volunteers usually stay with local host families from Santiago Atitlán. With the host family, you will get a room, shower, and internet whilst with some families, it is possible to ask for cooked meals to be provided too. We will share the information about each host family during the interview process as well as our tips on living in Santiago.

Your host family will give you a warm welcome and you will have a wonderful stay during your time with them. Staying with a family allows you to get a truly local experience of the culture and traditions of the country and local community.

The usual accommodation costs range from 100$ (USD) to 300$ (USD) a month based on your preferences for privacy, meals, etc... We can arrange for someone to pick you up at Guatemala City airport for an additional cost or we can share the other options to reach Santiago Atitlán with you.

Requirements:

  • Being +18 years old
  • The ideal length of stay is between 3 to 6 months, as it provides much-needed continuity for the students. We will also consider applicants who can only stay for a month to 3 months; however, please note that 4 weeks is an absolute minimum, and we will give priority to volunteers who plan to stay longer.
  • Good level of English: speaking and writing 
  • Basic level of Spanish (speaking) and a positive attitude to keep learning and practicing while being here
  • Some previous teaching or volunteering experience is a plus
  • Proactive, creative, flexible, and self-motivated minds
  • Passion for education, openness to new cultures, and a drive to learn new skills
  • An understanding that you will learn more than you teach during your time here
  • Full of energy and enthusiasm to make a difference
  • When choosing the period to come, please take into account that holidays in Central America go from mid-December to early February.
  • Volunteers must get their own travel insurance.
  • A Criminal Background Check Report (since you’ll be working with children)

 

Volunteers should be open-minded, enthusiastic, flexible, and prepared to face challenges. It’s important to remember that in most cases you’ll be engaged with children from the age of 4 to 17 years old (approx.), so you’ll have to be patient while dealing with them, handle them with utmost love & care, and try to make a difference in their lives in the most beautiful manner. We are also teaching adults up to 68 being our current eldest student! This requires flexibility to adapt to different ways of learning and styles, skills that are more than ever on the rise for any job in this fast-changing world.

What do we offer?

This will be an opportunity for you to immerse yourself into the Guatemalan culture, make new friends and learn more than you give in the end. Get a chance to directly engage with locals and meet passionate volunteers from across the globe!

You will have a support network while being here, feeling part of a family, with access to a wide range of activities to explore the area, experience the local culture, and meet new people and community projects. This will be a great experience too to master your Spanish and English as you will be working bilingually all day long.

You will improve your teamwork, collaboration, and creative problem-solving skills as well as any other professional skill you would like to hone while staying here. We love proactivity and self-development and will make sure to offer you opportunities to help you in your self and professional development journey.

We offer recommendation letters, volunteer certificates, and LinkedIn recommendations for all who volunteer with us. If you are staying for a long period of time (i.e. three months or more), we will be happy to convert this volunteering opportunity into an internship so that you can play a more active role in the running of the project, and get hands-on experience in the admin, fundraising or recruitment areas of a non-profit. We are also open to working with universities regarding college credits.

Check our project memorandum to know more about our project, including info about the locations, English methods, accommodation costs, and other useful information!

Memorandum Guatemala

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