Volunteer in Ecuador
Be the Change. Be a Global Volunteer in Ecuador.
Help provide services to children with limited resources.
Inspire and care for children in Ecuador so they can reach their full potential as healthy students. Working in partnership with resourceful community leaders since 1996, we enable you to contribute your skills towards the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals. Assist hard-working teachers at two early-childhood development centers and a K-12 school in Calderón, a fast-growing, ethnically diverse and under-developed area of Quito. See Covid-19 requirements.
Get Started in Ecuador
Volunteer for good near the Equator!
Exceptional volunteering for families, groups and seniors.
You offer the “extra” attention at-risk kids crave and deserve, while also mentoring them in social skills and hygiene and demonstrating effective hand washing with soap and water. Teach and encourage children one-on-one to stimulate young minds and bodies. The daily needs of the children are simple, and every day you show them you care, you improve their self-esteem and confidence.
Teaching and Tutoring:
Work one-on-one or in classrooms with children from kindergarten through secondary school on conversational English language skills. High school students in particular need help working towards certification in advanced intermediate skills (level B2). Local English teachers will guide you in lessons to encourage their interest and proficiency in English. During school breaks, provide conversational English instruction to the school’s English teachers with high proficiency and other classroom teachers who have varied English ability,
Do you like to work with your hands? Help repair, paint and upgrade the inside and outside of the early childhood development centers, and help build play spaces, work on plumbing, carpentry and electrical projects as needed. If you can use a hammer, paintbrush, or trowel, you can work alongside Ecuadorian workers on projects that are so greatly needed for the children.
Upcoming Volunteer Dates in Quito, Ecuador
Leave the details to us!
Your service program officially begins with the evening meal on the first Saturday. You may arrive at Mariscal Sucre International Airport in Quito, Ecuador (airport code UIO), anytime on the first Saturday. Your team leader or a representative will meet you at the airport. The first airport pick-up is at approximately 7:15pm and a second at approximately 11:30pm. There will be one airport drop-off at approximately 4:30am and a second at approximately 9:30pm on the last Saturday of the program.
You must confirm your flight itinerary with us at least two weeks before the service program arrival date to confirm your team airport transfer to the hotel.
If your flight is delayed or you miss a connection, please notify us as soon as you know your new arrival plans so your team leader can arrange your transportation to the hotel. If you choose to spend time in Ecuador before the program begins, please meet your team for dinner at the hotel by 6PM on the first day.
Rest and comfort for a productive program.
As a volunteer in Ecuador, your health and safety are our highest priorities. Your secure and cheerful tourist-class hotel in Quito offers 24-hour reception. Each double-occupancy room has a private bath with hot and cold running water, a telephone, and television with channels in English.
- Laundry service
- 110V electrical power
- Single rooms available for an extra fee
Ecuadorian food is delicious and varied, with breakfasts of eggs, cereal, rolls, fruit and yogurt. Lunch and dinner at area restaurants feature soup or stew, rice, vegetables, chicken, seafood, pork or beef. Bottled water is provided daily. Vegetarian diets can generally be accommodated.
Safety is our top priority.
Your health, safety and security is our top priority. Your lodging, food and transportation are provided always with a mind to protect you while at the work site and in your hotel. Your team leader is trained in CPR and first aid. Read more about health and safety here.
Quito is at 9,350 feet (2,850 metres). At higher elevations, you’re susceptible to altitude sickness, indicated by headaches, dizzyness and low energy, which can become life-threatening if not treated. We recommend you bring a water bottle with you, and keep it filled with bottled water that will be provided to you by the team leader.
We strongly recommend you consult your own physician, public health clinic and/or travel clinic for detailed travel health information and preventative measures. For general recommendations, consult the following sources:
Global Volunteers includes emergency medical evacuation insurance in your service program fee. We also recommend health insurance that covers you while you are outside your home country, and trip cancellation insurance in the event you must cancel your participation on the service program. Your travel agent can refer you to travel insurance providers. Click here to read risks associated with international travel.
Accurately assess your functional mobility. Our work assignments and partner communities require varying levels of physical stamina and mobility. After you register, you will be asked about your physical capabilities relating to your mobility. Please answer the questions honestly.
Required Mobility for Ecuador: Mobile – Walk 1 mile, climb five flights of stairs, walk on uneven terrain, and get on and off buses and trains independently.
Our staff make you feel at home!
Maggie Bjorklund is our Country Manager and prepares your program in Ecuador. Your U.S. team leader is a member of Global Volunteers’ volunteer staff and will manage the day-to-day program schedule. You’ll receive details on your team leader approximately four weeks before the start of your program.
A native of Minnesota, Maggie has dual citizenship with the U. S. and Ecuador. Maggie earned a double major in Global Studies and Spanish from the University of Minnesota, and studied the history, anthropology, language, and economics of Costa Rica abroad for a semester. In 2003, she participated in an international development program in Ecuador, and upon graduation, worked as an English teacher and translator in Quito. She joined the Global Volunteers staff in 2011.
“Mggie’s totally awesome – a very warm and welcoming person with a big heart. She’s always upbeat, a great listener and very well-prepared and organized. Everyone loves her – the FUNDAC ladies, the tias, the children, and the community people. She always made us feel safe, comfortable and ready for our work every day. She’s the best!”
Bluma Schechter and Doreen Hermelin, Ecuador Volunteers
Oh the sites you’ll see!
Ample time is available on evenings and weekends to enjoy the numerous nearby natural and cultural attractions. Most intriguing is Calderon’s home-grown Masapan sculptures, which you can watch being made, and buy in small shops around town. Families have been making dough art for generations as a holiday tradition. Now, figurines of all types are sold year-round.
On the weekend, you might join teammates on a trip to the equator, where you can stand in to hemispheres simultaneously! Explore the captivating markets, parks, historical museums and architectural sites in and around Quito. As the capital city, Quito has nearly unlimited cultural, educational and natural diversions. Volunteers often venture a couple hours north of the city to visit Otavalo, an Indian village and market or the natural beauty of the cloud forest in Mindo. Llamas, wild horses and beautiful landscapes await you in the southern part of the country. For the strong and adventurous, a rigorous hike up the 16,000-foot Cotopaxi Mountain or a trip to the Galapagos Islands after your service program are options.
Find a new perspective and purpose together.
Our Ecuador Program is a favorite for family volunteering. Caring for preschool children is an assignment that children can perform with their parents. “Ring around the Rosy,” Tales of Mother Goose, “The itsy-bitsy spider” and the memory game are just some of your tools as a daycare volunteer. Help the preschoolers learn English through games, art, stories and “whole body” activities. Help them learn to feed themselves, brush their teeth and wash their hands. Minor volunteers as young as 6 can inspire, guide and entertain pre-schoolers in many special ways. Families of many compositions – parents and children, grandparents and grandchild, and niece, nephew and aunt and uncle – are welcomed by appreciative teachers and caregivers. Working with your son, daughter or grandchild is an experience you’ll remember forever.
Children and volunteers are closely guided by daycare workers, who are known fondly as “tias.” Both centers are clean and secure – and equipped with books, toys, games and musical instruments for teaching and recreation indoors and outside.
Chose program dates during school breaks and summer vacations. Parents and guardians are expected to supervise their child volunteers, and collaborate with our team leader and local partners to maximize the service experience for everyone. Youth are invited to offer their own perspectives in team meetings and fully participate in free-time activities. In this way, your child is exposed to the widest possible perspective of Ecuador – and gains a personal understanding of the culture beyond what they can find online, in school or in personal study.
Imagine your group working together here!
Global Volunteers’ Ecuador service-learning programs provide meaningful and stimulating volunteering opportunities for groups of professionals, educators and students. Directly providing at-risk Ecuadorian children educational, health, and nutritional assistance allows every member of your group to fully invest their unique skills. You learn about each other in a non-traditional way as an intact volunteer team, and know that your personal contributions help Ecuadorian children reach their full potential.
For instance, a corporate “Stretch Expedition” on our Ecuador Service Program enabled executives and their family members to discover their capabilities outside their comfort zones and experience together the limitations, opportunities and realities of life in a developing country. Your investment, along with our partners’ influence and guidance, can significantly improve the future of the children you serve. Students, likewise learn about Ecuadorian history, language, culture and modern life in a decidedly “non-tourist” setting.
Compare notes with your teammates after a day of reading stories, coloring pictures, washing little hands, wiping tears and noses, and improving learning environments! Details on Ecuador group volunteering