The Chijnaya Foundation’s Volunteer Program began in 2006 with eight volunteers living and working in the community of Chijnaya, Peru. In the following years, from two to eighteen students have participated, and we placed volunteers in the rural communities of Ccotos, Tuni Grande, Tuni Requena, Coarita and Pucará. Although begun as a program for students at the Claremont Colleges, we now accept student volunteers from other colleges and universities. To date we have had students from the following colleges: Pomona, Pitzer, Claremont McKenna, Scripps, Cerritos, Whitman, and Bates, and from the University of Pennsylvania, UC Berkeley, San Jose State, University of Iowa, Case Western University, and the University of Michigan. We welcome applications from students at colleges and universities throughout the United States and other countries and also from non-students, e.g. retirees, interested in assisting communities in the Andes.
Most volunteers do some teaching of English to adults and school children, approximately one or two hours per day. This is valuable for residents in areas receiving or planning to receive tourists to boost family incomes and for village youth planning to continue their education at the university level. It is also helpful to individuals who are beginning to use computers and the internet. Some volunteers may also teach classes in basic computer skills.
The Foundation is actively involved in eight communities supporting projects in agriculture, artisan development, community history, conservation, potable water systems, and health promotion. We work with volunteers to assign them to projects where their skills can be utilized. Volunteer initiative and ingenuity are encouraged, and our volunteers have been highly successful and creative in working with villagers to develop useful programs.
In 2012, we anticipate putting volunteers in charge of projects involving smoke-free stoves, dental health campaigns, and animal sheds construction and monitoring in the villages to which they are assigned.
Some volunteers may wish to combine volunteer work and research. We encourage research that contributes to the success of the Foundation’s projects. In the past volunteers have done research on tourism, milk production, and local history, and others have carried out documentary video projects.
May 25 through July 1, 2012 (individually tailored options may be available)
This year’s volunteers will arrive and assemble in Juliaca, Peru on Friday, May 25. This means they must depart from the US to Lima on May 24 and take a morning flight from Lima to Juliaca on May 25. We will spend one night in Puno for orientation and adaptation to the altitude. Then on Saturday, May 26 volunteers will be taken by bus to Chijnaya for a reception and to meet their host families.
Applying for this program is simple. Although there is no fixed deadline, we will accept applicants on a first-come basis. Early applications are important to help us line up work opportunities in our communities in Peru. We cannot guarantee placement for applications received after March 20. Three forms need to be submitted as soon as possible. These are:
1) a two-age application form providing us with basic information;
2) a personal health information form;
3) a form that releases The Chijnaya Foundation and our collaborators from liability in the event of health or other problems a volunteer could experience.
Transportation: Volunteers pay for their own round-trip air transportation to Juliaca, Peru where the group will assemble. Fares from the US to Lima, Peru vary tremendously (from approximately $650 to $1100 depending on the airline and the departure city in the US). In general, most volunteers can expect their plane tickets to cost a total of $1,000 to $1,200 (including the flights within Peru). Airlines flying into Lima include Taca, Copa, American, Delta, Continental, United and LAN. Taca and Copa tend to be the least expensive, but they are not nonstop. LAN flies to Lima and on to Juliaca with a few hours of layover in Lima.
Program Fee: The cost to participate in this program is $1,250.
This fee includes the volunteer’s room and board with a village family, lodging in Puno during orientation and high-altitude adaptation, and transportation from there to the volunteer’s community. The fee is due by April 1 and should be paid by check to The Chijnaya Foundation.
Other Expenses: Volunteers pay their own incidental expenses (snacks, bottled water, local transportation) and any travel they do before, during or after the program.
These may add up to approximately $250 during the program.
One aspect of volunteering for many nonprofits is fundraising. We ask each volunteer to contact at least 10 family members, friends, teachers or neighbors to request donations to the Foundation to support this work in Peru. We set a goal of $1,000 per volunteer. Some past volunteers have raised as much as $3,000. For applicants who do not have financial support from a grant or scholarship to participate, we will reduce the program fee one dollar for each dollar received in donations generated by that volunteer through email, twitter, Facebook, or face-to-face solicitations (up to a maximum reduction of $1,000).
For more information, contact Ralph Bolton:
On Pomona College campus: Hahn 211 (office hours W 11:00-11:45, 4:00-4:45)