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Volunteering in Peru.

Vancouver, Canada
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32 posts
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Volunteering in Peru.

I'd love to volunteer in the Amazon in Peru when I go in a few months and am scouring the internet for places that really need help. I have found a lot of companies that offer voluntourism or volunteer opportunities, but the prices are incredibly high - from $1500 a week!

I have emailed a couple of places where the costs are minimal - $25 to $30/day, but they are not emailing me back after multiple attempts to contact them.

The higher priced volunteer programs get back to me within minutes (literally) of emailing them.

If I am going to work 6 to 8 hours a day (which I am happy to do!) why would I pay 2 to 3 times more than I would if I was just going as a tourist that was going to rest on my laurels for the entire time?

Is volunteering necessary or is it a way to get tourists to pay more and feel better about themselves? Some of the higher priced programs aren't even volunteering - you basically get eco-tours to learn more about the environment with a few days work and the rest is really just being a tourist. I want to volunteer, I am ready to work hard, but I need to feel like I would be making a difference.

Edited: 11:35 am, January 21, 2011
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Peru
Peru
South America
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
32 posts
6 reviews
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1. Re: Volunteering in Peru.

this seems to be the best one i have found so far:

http://www.globalvolunteernetwork.org/peru/

any other "good" suggestions?

Vancouver, Canada
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32 posts
6 reviews
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2. Re: Volunteering in Peru.

hmmmm.... maybe not:

abroadreviews.com/global-volunteer-network

Chiclayo, Peru
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805 posts
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3. Re: Volunteering in Peru.

What exactly do you want to do? I'm not sure what you mean by "Is volunteering necessary?" If you have the time and speak Spanish it's relatively easy to arrange rewarding voluntary experiences at no cost, but if you're just coming for 2 weeks or so and are not familiar with the territory and don't speak the language, you will of course simply create more work for the people who have to look after you, which is why they charge a fee for this type of thing. If this describes you, you'll be of much more help to everybody by just having a nice trip as a tourist and putting some of your money into the economy.

Salt Lake City, Utah
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31 posts
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4. Re: Volunteering in Peru.

My husband and i are signed up to volunteer with one in May. It's very inexpensive and very well organized.

www.volunteerhq.org

Vancouver, Canada
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32 posts
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5. Re: Volunteering in Peru.

afzPeru i speak Spanish and unfortunately you kinda missed the point, but no worries Chalupa gave me a good tip, thx!!!

Cusco, Peru
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326 posts
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6. Re: Volunteering in Peru.

To gothicpink:

Unfortunately voluntary work has become a huge bussines "industry" in countries such as the United States, United Kingdom and other countrie in the "first world" on behalf of helping the needy or nature they charge large amounts of money to place volunteers in projects in several "developing countries" including Peru, so what they basically do is just give a small amount of money to the host voluntary organization and these big companies "save" the rest for themselves, that is why it is so expensive. There are so many organization providing voluntary work and at no cost except, perhaps to pay your food and accommodation, this way you save hundreds if not thousands of US$. Just take a look and keep searching and a tip: avoid large transnational companies offering voluntary opportunities here and there, north and south as they just look to make profit out of it.

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Peru
Peru
South America
Warwick, United...
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77 posts
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7. Re: Volunteering in Peru.

got any medical experience? I am off up the amazon with Vine Trust. www.vinetrust.org , or they have projects fixing the ships- take a look!

Lima, Peru
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36 posts
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8. Re: Volunteering in Peru.

Hello,

The Tambopata Macaw Project

www.macawproject.org/become-a-volunteer

in the southern amazon basin ends up costing around $15 a day and includes food and lodging in the Tambopata Research Center. They charge because they need to cover the cost of the food so that they are not PAYING for the volunteers.

perunature.com/lodges/tambopata-research-cen…

The rewarding work involves working directly with researchers who are studying Macaws in the area.

I have some friends who have done this and really enjoyed the experience. If you are interested and would like me to put you in touch with them, send me a message.

Hope this is helpful!

Danielle

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Tambopata National Reserve
Tambopata National...
Madre de Dios Region, Peru
Tambopata Research Center
Tambopata Research Center
604 Reviews
Tambopata National Reserve, Peru
Berlin, Germany
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12 posts
5 reviews
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9. Re: Volunteering in Peru.

Hey,

If you or anybody else is looking for a place to volunteer, I can highly recommend Intiwawa in Arequipa, Peru!

http://www.intiwawa.org/eng/index.aspx

They offer quite a good range of different projects and volunteering is as it should be: FREE

They have a very strong focus on their projects and the people they are helping, rather then being one of those volunteer-tourism organisations.

Hope this helps

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Arequipa
Arequipa
Arequipa Region, Peru
Oakland, California
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10. Re: Volunteering in Peru.

As one who is experienced in volunteer work (this is how I got my career started), why would one work for free and pay a fee? I remember seeking volunteer opportunities myself in both Perú and Ecuador. When I learned there was a fee involved, I figured that I may as well spend my money on enjoying my vacation and forget about volunteering. So, I'm all ears. Enlighten me. Pretty please :-)

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Ecuador
Ecuador
South America