Jungles, snow-capped volcanoes, beautiful beaches and colonial cities make Ecuador a South American gem. A country with astounding cultural and natural diversity - the beautiful Amazon Rainforest, the Galapagos Islands (made famous by Charles Darwin) - Ecuador has much to offer volunteers, world travelers and nature-lovers. In IFRE's volunteer in Ecuador program, you not only have the memorable opportunity the serve Ecuador's local children, citizens and quaint communities, you are also able to explore the beauty and mystique of the numerous indigenous cultures, traditions, customs, unique cuisine and colorful dress.
IFRE's volunteer projects in Ecuador are located all over Ecuador - Quito, Machachi, Latacunga, Puerto Lopez, Mindo, the Amazon Rainforests and the prismatic Galapagos Islands.
- Phase One: Free Spanish Language and Cultural Immersion. Expect for volunteers participating in the projects located on the Galapagos Islands, IFRE offers free Basic and Intermediate-level Spanish lessons for volunteers in Ecuador - two (2) hours of Spanish lessons each day (totaling 10 hours/week). IFRE does not offer Advanced-level Spanish lessons.
Prior to beginning the Spanish language lessons, volunteers will be administered a brief orientation as well as a diagnostic test to be best determine which class best suits your level of Spanish. Throughout the duration of the language course, volunteers will be continuously assessed regarding the four designated language acquisition skills - Speaking, Listening, Reading and Writing - as well as the four language systems - Grammar Vocabulary, Phonology and Function.
Volunteers continue to study Spanish while simultaneously working in their respective volunteer projects for the entire duration of the program (maximum 12 weeks). However, volunteers can choose to take the Spanish classes or work only in a volunteer project. Spanish Language classes usually begin at 9:00 a.m. and run until 11:00 a.m. each day. Volunteer's project times depend on the schedules set by the programs' directors. Some projects begin around 8:00-9:00am in the morning; with some projects having additional hours in the afternoon.
- Phase Two: Work in Volunteer Service Projects. Ecuador Volunteer Work Projects and Locations. IFRE’s volunteer programs in Ecuador provide numerous options for volunteers to choose from in various locations throughout this special country – Quito, Quito, Machachi, Latacunga, Puerto Lopez, Mindo. the Amazon Rainforests and the prismatic Galapagos Islands.
Volunteer programs in Ecuador include:
- Volunteer Ecuador – Orphanage Project
- Volunteer Ecuador – Street Children/Children at Risk
- Volunteer Ecuador – Teach English in Rural and Urban Schools
- Volunteer Ecuador – Medical/Healthcare
- Volunteer in Ecuador – HIV/AIDS
- Volunteer in Ecuador – Nature Conservation/National Parks
- Volunteer in Ecuador – Wildlife Conservation/Animal Care
- Volunteer in Ecuador – Veterinary/Animal Healthcare.
- Volunteer Ecuador Program: Arrangement of Room/Food/Supervision. IFRE manages living accommodations and meals within host families throughout Ecuador for the entire duration of the volunteer program. Host families are all carefully screened, well-educated and have experience with host international volunteers. IFRE arranges clean, simply-furnished, private (occasionally shared with fellow volunteers) rooms in nearby host families. Volunteers are suggested to bring a sleeping bag and their own bed sheets.
Volunteers will receive three (3) local meals each day (occasionally, if volunteers are away from their host families during lunch, they may required to pack their own 'to go' lunches). Host families provide meals which are typical of the Ecuadorian diet. While host families do their best to provide vegetarian options, IFRE requests that all volunteers requiring a specific or special diet inform our offices prior to arrival in-country.
For extra-ordinary requests, you are welcome to buy your own food and prepare it yourself. Please do not just use the food in the kitchen for your own use. Your host family is responsible for preparing three meals for you each day. If you have other needs for food outside of these meals, you are able to purchase snacks and meals at local restaurants and grocery stores. You will be sharing the house, kitchen, and bathrooms with the family members. Many houses in Ecuador do not have hot water. You will have the ability to do your laundry in the house or the host family may offer to do it for you.
Once the volunteer program begins, our local staff members maintain contact volunteers. We visit our volunteers every 2 weeks (if possible) and you are always welcome at the local office. We recommend volunteers stop by the office once a week if they are in the local area just to let us know how they are doing with their home stay and project. If your project is very far, then our local staff members maintain communication by either email and/or phone.
- Start Dates: Volunteers program starts on the following (first and third Monday of each month). IFRE Volunteers is proud to offer all of the services that our competitors offer at a very special economical price (nearly 50-175% less). We here at IFRE Volunteers do not make 6-figured salaries; and we work very hard and smart to keep costs down especially for you the volunteer where it counts the most. We remain devoted to maintaining both the quality of the program and the safety of all volunteers involved.
Here is a brief summary of the program fee and services that IFRE Volunteers offers:
- IFRE is a 501 (C) 3 organization so your program fee will be tax deductible as provided by law.
- IFRE application fee: US $349. The application fee covers advertising, program promotion, and office expenses (rent, utilities, and staff salaries).
- Volunteer program fee:
* 4 days: US $ 299
* 1 week: US $ 471
* 2 weeks: US $591
* 3 weeks: US $711
* 4 weeks: US $831
* 5 weeks: US $951
* 6 weeks: US $1071
* 7 weeks: US $1191
* 8 weeks: US $1311
* 9 weeks: US $1431
* 10 weeks: US $1551
* 11 weeks: US $1671
* 12 weeks: US $1791.
- What's Included in Program Fee:
* Food (3 Meals a day)
* Comprehensive Travel Insurance
* Emergency Hot Line - 24/7/365 from any part of the world
* Airport Welcome
* In country Transportation
* Country Coordinator Support
* Thoroughly researched and personalized projects
* Safe Volunteer Placement
* Volunteer Care and Other Services
* Emergency support
* Certificate of Appreciation/Completion
* Fund Raising Ideas.
Program fee covers free Spanish lesson (2 hours a day for up to 3 months), comprehensive insurance, room and food (3 local meals a day) for the entire project period with a host family, donation to project, Ecuador office expenses (rent, utilities, salaries, vehicle), communications, and project coordination. No fees are charged for Spanish language classes. Ecuador 's program fee covers 2 hours free Spanish lesson (for up to 12 weeks for Beginner and/or Intermediate-level students)
- Ecuador Volunteer Program Free Time. For the duration of the project, volunteers have their weekends to themselves. There are a number of things to see and things to do during this free time. While IFRE does not arrange activities during this time off, our local staff members/coordinators can provide invaluable assistance in making appropriate arrangements for travel throughout Ecuador.
Most volunteers use this time for self-exploration and country-wide travel. Ecuador is one of the most beautiful countries in the world offering numerous opportunities for a truly amazing experience. Please feel free to put the resources offered by our Ecuadorian staff members to use - travel tips, advice and publications about Ecuador.
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