Spend part of your summer doing volunteer work with other teenagers in Ecuador. You’ll work with children at a summer camp and do conservation work in the Galapagos National Park.
Your two week trip is divided into two parts. During your first week you’ll work with conservationists at the Galapagos National Park and help protect endangered animals and plants.This is a unique opportunity as we’re the only organisation to have an official agreement to work in the park.
Your second week is spent working at a community summer camp. You’ll help children have fun and learn through play.
The project is open to teenagers from all over the globe, so you are sure to meet interesting new people and make friends for life.
When you apply you only pay AUD$495, which comes off the total price.
Looking to do more than one project? Call us on 1300 132 831 to see if we can offer a discount.
Fixed dates during school holidays
This project is only for 15-18 year olds
What's included in the price?
Food (three meals a day)
Travel and medical insurance
Airport pick-up and drop-off
Full induction and orientation by an experienced staff member on arrival
Transport to and from your work placement
In-country support and 24-hour back-up from our team of full-time local staff
Emergency assistance from our international emergency response team
Project equipment and materials, including access to our database with thousands of resources
Training and workshops from our experienced local staff
Access to our local office with internet connection
Regular social events and community activities with other volunteers and interns
Certification of project completion
Access to our alumni services and discounts
Visa support and advice
Fundraising support, including your own personalised fundraising website
Pre-departure preparation by your own specialist Volunteer Advisor
Personalised MyProjectsAbroad website, with all the information you need about your project, accommodation and destination
A free cultural awareness course
Membership to our volunteer social media groups, to share information and to get in touch
Organised weekend tourism trips
Dedicated full-time staff members with you 24 hours a day
What's not included?
Visa costs (where applicable)
What will I be doing on this project?
This two week project is divided into two parts. You spend one week doing conservation volunteer work in the Galapagos National Park. The second week is spent with children at a summer camp. You’ll help with these activities:
- Work with conservationists at the Galapagos National Park
- Help children learn through play at a summer camp
- Expand your own horizons through unique experiences on the island
Your work during this High School Special will be divided into two main categories:
Help protect local wildlife and plant
Galapagos is home to a unique population of bird and animal life. It’s also considered a research hotspot for scientists from around the world. During your first week, you’ll work with conservationists on various research projects in the Galapagos National Park.
The park is understaffed because of a lack of funding. Because of this, it’s difficult for staff to do a lot of the research needed by themselves. As an extra pair of helping hands, you’ll help them with collecting data during surveys. This is important work, as the results are used to advise the Ministry of Environment for policy-making.
You’ll also get involved in the removal of alien plants. These plants are a threat to local species that are only found in the Galapagos. You’ll also help plant mangroves to restore the habitats of marine life around the island.
By leading workshops to the local community, you also play a role in raising awareness about the importance of protecting Galapagos’ unique environment.
Help children learn through play
During your second week, you’ll help run a summer camp for children in Puerto Baquerizo Moreno. Bring all your energy and creativity to:
- Teach basic English
- Play educational games
- Lead art and crafts and sports activities
As a volunteer, you make a huge difference in keeping local children engaged and active during their holidays. This is also a huge help to parents who are unable to take time off work and might be worried about keeping their children safe during the day.
Expand your horizons
While helping the local community and environment, you will also get a chance to expand your own horizons. Since you will be living with a host family, you will get to interact with locals on a daily basis and learn more about the unique culture of Galapagos.
It’s also an excellent way to improve your Spanish or learn a new language.
As part of the itinerary, we will take you on a weekend trip to one of San Cristobal’s neighbouring islands. This will give you a chance to see more of the Galapagos Islands and gain a greater understanding of local life.
Where you will work in the Galapagos
The Galapagos Islands are hugely popular for anyone with an interest in biology, science, and wildlife. These volcanic islands are home to a vast number of species that occur nowhere else in the world. A few examples include the Giant tortoise, marine iguanas, Galapagos fur seals, and Galapagos penguins.
We set out the aims and objectives of our projects in documents called Management Plans. We use them to properly plan the work you’ll do. They also help us measure and evaluate our achievements and impact each year.
Ultimately, our Management Plans help us make our projects better. This in turn means you get to be part of something that makes a real impact where it’s needed. Read more about our Management Plans.
Measuring Our Impact
Every year, thousands of High School Special volunteers and interns actively make a difference around the world. During their time abroad, they contribute towards achieving long-term goals and make a long-lasting positive impact on the communities where they work.
We produce an annual High School Specials Impact Report, which documents some of these achievements. Find out more about the impact of these projects, and read the latest report.
I decided to do the Care and Conservation High School Special volunteer trip during my gap year, as it was somewhere I had always wanted to visit. Did it live up to what I had seen on David Attenborough’s Galapagos documentaries? Well, it was certainly above and beyond what I could have imagined!
Volunteer with Children and Do Conservation Work in Ecuador
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