Volunteer Care Projects in Peru
While Peru has a strong middle class and growing economy, there are still great social inequalities in many areas. Projects Abroad has partnered with a number of care centres in Cusco, where our volunteers help to provide educational and emotional support to children in local communities, and assist in work with the elderly.
- Placement locations: Cusco
- Types of care projects: Day care centres, kindergartens, special needs schools, care centres for the elderly
- Age of children: 0 - 18
- Number of people cared for: 10+
- Role: Volunteers work on achieving the goals set out in the Care Management Plan, including doing educational and creative activities with the children, and promoting interactive learning.
- Accommodation: Host families
- Price: From
- What’s included? Food, accommodation, transfers to and from our specified airport, insurance, personal webpage, induction and orientation, 24/7 support
- What’s not included? Flights, visa costs, spending money
- Length of placement: From 2 weeks
- Start dates: Flexible
Volunteering with children in Peru
There are three different options when it comes to working with children in Peru.
Volunteers can work in a kindergarten with children ranging in age from 3-5. Your role is to support the local teacher, preparing activities and games for the lessons; helping to improve basic hygiene, literacy and numeracy skills; and generally assisting where needed in the daily running of the class.
Day care centres
You can also choose to work in early-education day care centres, focused on looking after children between the ages of 1-4 and developing their cognitive, social and physical skills. Your role here is to assist the supervisors with the daily tasks as part of the running of the centre, and organise practical activities and games for the children to encourage creativity and learning.
Projects Abroad have partnered with special-needs schools in Cusco, where volunteers will work with children with a wide range of different disabilities. Here you will support local staff where needed, providing basic assistance with daily tasks and getting the children ready for the day, organising structured leisure time and developing educational activities.
Volunteering with the elderly in Peru
As an alternative to working with children, there is also the option to volunteer fulltime at a Care centre for the elderly. This centre, run by the Catholic Church and staffed by nuns, is the biggest care home for the elderly in Cusco – around 250 elderly people live here. Volunteers provide them with companionship and care, as well as lending an extra pair of helping hands to the local staff.
You will work at the center for 4-5 hours each day, either in the morning or in the afternoon. For the rest of the day, you will help to prepare social activities and workshops, or take part in basic renovation work at the centre or a local library.
Volunteers can get involved with the following tasks:
- Help prepare and serve meals
- Accompany elderly persons during walks and physiotherapy sessions
- Assist with laundry (washing and hanging clothes)
- Help maintain personal hygiene (this includes brushing hair and cutting nails)
- Organising and running fun activities, such as board games
The local staff here do not speak English. Spanish is not a requirement, but this is a great opportunity to improve your skills by choosing to do an extra Language Course while you’re abroad.
Volunteering on a Care project in Peru
The Projects Abroad team in Peru organise regular workshops and network meetings for our Care volunteers. The network meetings will provide you with a valuable insight into the Care system in Peru and the background of the placement where you’re working. During the workshops you will also receive practical advice and suggestions regarding activities to carry out at your Care placement.
Our office in Cusco also has educational materials such as worksheets, tools and lesson plans which you can make use of at your project.
During the holidays - between mid-December and March - Care volunteers will usually either work at summer day care centres for pre-school children or on a Community Project in the mountains.
You can read more detailed information about the aims of the project in our Peru Care Management Plan.