Orphanage/Childcare Project

volunteer in orphanage project in guatemala
  • Brighten up the lives of children from impoverished background
  • Work with local organizations to provide adequate care and support to children
  • Immerse in the local culture through carefully-screened homestays
  • Practice Spanish while connecting with the rich history and vivid culture in Guatemala in your downtime

Do you enjoy having fun working with children? The orphanages in Guatemala need your support and compassion. The dire living conditions in Guatemala have left many children without families, deprived of the parental love and guidance that they need. This project aims to change the lives of these children by providing them with the care and support so they can grow up in a nurturing environment. The orphanages in Guatemala provide housing, education, clothing and food for orphaned children. While the orphanages are doing a fantastic job at providing basic necessities adequately to the children, they are often not well-funded and understaffed. You presence will not only help these organizations, you’ll be the source of motivation for the children to work towards a better future. Volunteer in Guatemala and brighten up the lives of the children of Guatemalan. At the same time, you’ll be able to take in the splendid Mayan ruins of ancient times and bask in nature’s best in Guatemala.

Volunteers' Responsibilities

As a volunteer in Guatemala, you will be working with children from impoverished backgrounds at an orphanage. You may also work with volunteers or assistants at the center. Depending on your individual interests and skills, and on the needs of the local staff, your daily activities involve, but are not limited to:

  • Teaching basic English, Math, Science, Physical Education, or other subjects of interest
  • Provide care, love and attention to children
  • Providing daily care to the children such as preparing meals and watching over them
  • Help them with their homework
  • Participate in playtime activities
  • Educating on personal hygiene, and safety rules and precautions
  • Developing stimulating new ideas to interest the children to learn
  • Organizing and leading extracurricular activities such as games, sports, art, music, dancing, story-telling, drama lessons, etc.
  • Assisting the local staff with administrative duties, promoting fundraising activities, and helping to plan events and excursions for the children
How You Can Make a Difference

Many children in Guatemala are left without families due to poverty, abuse and alcoholism. As a result, these children are devoid of the parental love, guidance and care that are so vital for a proper childhood. Orphanages are striving hard to give the children the childhood they deserve, but manpower and resources are very scarce. With your help, the orphanages will be able to provide support to the children better. You will also bring about a positive energy at the orphanage, and as you play with them, you will be putting a smile on their faces and love in their hearts. There is no bigger joy than seeing a happy child!

Skills and Qualifications

There are no specific qualifications needed to join the Orphanage project beyond a fluency in English and a preferred basic/intermediate fluency in Spanish. If you cannot speak Spanish, we recommend enrolling in our Spanish language program. Volunteers should also be enthusiastic, reliable, flexible, patient and strive to be good role models for the children. Experience working with street children is considered a plus. Volunteers must also respect the locals and the host organizations, along with their rules and projects.

Project Location

The project is located in Quetzaltenango, also known as Xela (pronounced SHAY-la) or Xelaju, is the second largest city in Guatemala. Situated at the southwest of the country, the surrounding department has a variety of landscapes extending from the cold highlands to the warm Pacific coast. There are numerous volcanoes, hot springs, valleys, mountains, rivers. The region provides a harvest of numerous products such as coffee, wheat, fruits and vegetables, as well as sheep and cattle breeding. The classical, neoclassical and Italian renaissance styles are apparent in the buildings and the houses which have been built during the past century and the beginning of the 20th, with volcanic stones by artistic "Quetzalteco" masons. Xela is also well-known for its abundance of volcanoes, mountains, and hot springs as well as other natural beauty and experiences.

Guatemala’s eco-diversity positions the country as a global “biodiversity hot spot”. Natural adventures abound in Guatemala and many activities are available for day trips or longer excursions. The terrain is diverse including mountains, rain forests, jungles and the highlands. Popular activities include eco-tours, mountaineering and water based sports. There are many adventurous options as well as calmer activities for the non-thrill seekers. Many hours can be spent in the streets of Antigua or biking through the surrounding areas. Cultural diversity can be explored in restaurants, markets and museums.

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