Orphanage Project (Arraijan)

  • Uplift the lives of children from impoverished backgrounds
  • Work with a local organization to provide care for the children and participate in community outreach programs
  • Immerse in the local culture through carefully-screened homestays
  • Practice Spanish while connecting with nature’s best in Panama in your downtime

Brighten up the lives of children amidst white sandy beaches and azure blue waters! Volunteer in Panama, and uplift the lives of children in orphanages. For the orphaned children in Panama, orphanages are safe havens for them to lead a normal childhood. Orphanages provide a good homely environment, adequate education, and a family of friends and local staff. New Hope collaborates with a local orphanage, located 30 minutes outside the capital city, which is a home and a school to over 400 students, including disabled, HIV positive and at-risk youth. Despite the country's strong economic growth, many still live in poverty. With the rising cost of food it has become imperative that Panamanians learn to be self-sufficient. To alleviate this issue, the orphanage has also begun a new gardening project to teach both children and adults to grow their own food. Be part of the project to brighten up the lives of the locals in Panama, while practicing your Spanish on the gorgeous expansive beaches of Panama!

Volunteers' Responsibilities

As a volunteer in the Orphanage program, 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
  • Help in the school garden through: teaching gardening classes, caring for livestock, supervising children and adults in gardening activities, helping with training events
  • Providing 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

As a volunteer in Panama, you’ll be helping the orphanage to educate, house, feed and clothe the children adequately. The small sum that the orphanage received for hosting the volunteers will also go a long way towards making them financially viable. Also, the work the volunteers will do, in teaching, caring, loving the children and cleaning the place will also ensure that orphanages runs smoothly. Your presence will also present a shining light of hope for the children, so that they can believe in themselves more. The community outreach program focuses on gardening, and are always in need of volunteers with agriculture knowledge. Your skills will prove most useful in helping the orphanage grow vegetables and fruits in order to be more self-sufficient.

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. Volunteers will be working in a Catholic facility, and must respect the local religious and social customs and the host organizations, along with their rules and projects.

Project Location

Volunteers will be located in Arraijan, a town laying 30 minutes outside of Panama City. Volunteers will fly into Panama City and be escorted by the local country coordinator to the orphanage’s facilities. Arraijan has modern amenities such as ATMs, internet, grocery stores and restaurants. There is also internet at the orphanage. Buses run from Arraijan to Panama City at least once every half hour. Volunteers are encouraged to hop on a bus and take it to the bus terminal, Terminal Albrook. Attached to the terminal is a modern mall for those looking to do some shopping. From the terminal, one may catch a bus to anywhere in the city.

From the most novice traveler to the most adventurous explorer, Panama City offers you a wealth of sights to see. Volunteers are encouraged to spend their free time exploring. One may want to visit Mira Flores Locks to watch ships pass through the canal and visit the canal’s museum. History buffs may want to head to Panama Viejo, a World Heritage Site, to check out the ruins left behind by the Spanish. Those feeling adventurous may opt to hop aboard a Diablo Rojo, old school buses painted with vibrant colors, cartoon characters, and religious figures. Take a Diablo Rojo or taxi to Casco Viejo. Walk a flower-covered boardwalk while admiring the hand-made goods for sale.

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Panama - Volunteer Programs

Orphanage Project (Arraijan)

Volunteer in an orphanage to help unfortunate children by giving your energy and enthusiasm. Your care and help will go a long way in providing a better future for the children.

Start From US $120 More

Teaching English Project (Cambutal)

Provide support at resource-poor schools and give children from underprivileged families hope for the future by helping to improve their English.

Start From US $120 More

Sea Turtle Conservation (Los Santos)

Be part of conservation efforts to save sea turtles from extinction in the Azuero region of Panama.

Start From US $120 More

HIV/AIDS Awareness (Herrera)

Support the cause to stop HIV/AIDS in its tracks and help those inflicted with the disease by fighting to reduce the stigma.

Start From US $120 More

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