Anyone interested in the Peruvian culture can have a unique travel experience and at the same time contribute to our soup kitchens, by helping out during the daily activities if you also donate some cash or products. The kids love it and it's a lot of fun!
The local team in Peru welcomes travellers who would love to help out for a few days in our two soup kitchens in Huaraz, Peru. Usually the volunteers help with cooking, handing out food, teaching English and/or do fun and educational activities with the children. Some volunteers organise activities that relate to their own professional or artistic specialisation, such as poetry workshops or music lessons.
If you are interested in visiting our projects, you can either email us directly, or contact one of the organisations that are listed on the bottom of this page, such as RESPONSible Travel Peru and Globetrotting for Good.
All we ask of any visiting volunteers is that they contribute with a cash or material donation on the spot. The money raised, or goods received, serves as a reimbursement for the time our team invests in you to guide you through the day or week and also helps guarantee the continuation of these vital projects. This way, you can also see with your own eyes how the money is being spend, or that the children truly receive your donation.
The history of our volunteer project
Our first three Dutch volunteers came to Huaraz in 2003. They stayed in our comfortably fitted out volunteers' house and followed an intensive Spanish course of a month before volunteering for a minimim of two months in Children's Shelter Los Pinos and later also in our various soup kitchens. After the first year, the new volunteers were guided by local coordinators, many of them former volunteers who had fallen in with with Peru.
Apart from the important role these volunteers played in the lives of the children, by giving them extra love and attention, extra lessonas, and being their role models, their financial contribution also guaranteed the yearly income that was needed to fund the shelter in Los Pinos. In return, they received an in-depth travel experience like no other and learned a new language. It was a win-win situation for everyone!
An average of 20 volunteers per year participated in this program, which counts up to about 120 Dutch volunteers in total and hundreds of children who had an unforgettable youth because of it.
Because of the economic crises in the Netherlands, which started in 2008 and is still being felt today, we were faced with a lack of candidates. We soon realised it was better to invest our time and efforts in training up local Peruvian women to assist at these projects and stopped recruiting actively for volunteers in 2011. To fund this, we have had to merge 2 soup kichens and close another, but there was no other way.
Our Volunteer House was transformed into an "in-between house" for the children who had left the shelter to go and study but could not yet live on their own. Now, all of our students are reunited with family or capable of living on their own.
This didn't completely mark the end of our program though. Instead, we now work closely with sustainable tourism organisations and other volunteering intitiatives in the region to bring new volunteers to our soup kitchens.