Directory of volunteer opportunities in Nicaragua

In an effort to promote volunteerism, community service and good deeds in Nicaragua, The Nicaragua Dispatch has created this space as an open-source directory of volunteer opportunities in the country.

This is an open invitation to all NGOs, charities and other organizations that offer volunteer opportunities in Nicaragua to include a brief, 100-word description of your organization’s mission, volunteer opportunities and contact info (website, email, telephone).

Just type your brief description and contact info into the comments box below. Please note: you must write the full website address and email into the body of the comment– the contact lines for email and web do not appear on your comment, so the only way to have them show up is to type them into the comment box itself.

This article will be a permanent post under the category “news to use.”

Please respect this space as a serious attempt to create a unique list of volunteer opportunities in Nicaragua. Inappropriate or unrelated comments will be deleted, as will any entries that go notably over the 100 word limit (we don’t need to know everything about your organization, just tell us where to look to find more information).

Note to aspiring volunteers: This is a non-vetted, reader-submitted list of organizations and The Nicaragua Dispatch does not endorse or stand by any of them (other than the first one on the list). While there are many individuals and organizations that do excellent work and good deeds throughout Nicaragua, there are also more than a few creeps skulking about. Volunteers are urged to please do your homework and look into any organization before signing up.

  • Tim Rogers

    Want to get a taste of what it’s like to be a foreign correspondent in Latin America? If you are an aspiring journalist who is exceptionally curious and adventuresome, speaks Spanish with proficiency, and doesn’t dangle participles, contact me about internship opportunities at The Nicaragua Dispatch. You’ve already found the webpage, and my email is Tim(at)Nicaraguadispatch.com

  • http://www.mariposaspanishschool.com Paulette Goudge

    La Mariposa is an eco-hotel and Spanish school in the hills of La Concha. We use all of our income to support a wide range of community and environmental projects, all initiated by the local community. Work in one of the Mariposa’s primary school projects, with our daycare centre, on our organic farm, with our community garden scheme, rebuilding a community centre destroyed in a storm or on reafforestation. We also have an animal rescue centre caring for 30 rescued dogs, 14 horses amongst other animals. Improve your Spanish at the same time as helping the community of La Concha. http://www.mariposaspanishschool.com

  • https://www.facebook.com/pages/BASIC-Nicaragua-Brothers-and-Sisters-in-Christ-Nicaragua/167180899984927 Richard Hughes

    BASIC Nicaragua (Brothers and Sisters in Christ – Nicaragua) is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit working together with the Nicaraguan people to help provide them with basic needs: shelter, medical care, food, job skills, education and personal relationships. We work in and around the Chinandega area.https://www.facebook.com/pages/BASIC-Nicaragua-Brothers-and-Sisters-in-Christ-Nicaragua/167180899984927. email basicnicaragua@hotmail.com

  • http://phpgmicrolending.org Alex Tuck (Executive Director of PHPG)

    People Helping People Global is a U.S.-based non-profit providing interest-free microloans throughout Nicaragua. We work with individuals living on less than $2 per day to help them start or expand small businesses.

    We currently operate in Granada and Matagalpa/Estili. We have long-term managerial positions (6+ month commitment), intern positions (75+ day commitment), and short-term volunteer positions.

    Please visit our website to learn more about the organization, http://phpgmicrolending.org. You can contact me at alex@phpgmicrolending if you’d like to learn more about volunteering.

  • http://www.isla.cc Jon Kerr

    Interfaith Service to Latin America has been partnering with the people of northern Nicaragua for 17 years to provide medical (health), construction and education programs. We bring 4-5 teams from the U.S. annually and support year-round efforts as well. For more information please look at the website (http://isla.cc/) or email jon@isla.cc.

  • http://nicafund.org Jonathan Butcher

    NICA’s (Nicaragua Initiative for Community Advancement) mission is to empower Nicaragua through community development, helping the country become more self-sufficient and a greater participant in the global economy. NICA focuses in five areas: Infrastructure, Education, Public Health, Commerce, and Community Pride. We have a volunteer house that is located on the ocean where our volunteers stay and participate in the community. Come join us in our pursuit as we develop new innovative ways to increase the sustainability of rural Nicaragua. Email jonathan@nicafund.org for more details; http://www.nicafund.org.

  • http://www.companeros.ca Gonzalo Duarte, Director

    Compañeros Inc is an established social enterprise legally registered in Canada and Nicaragua. It is dedicated to organizing international volunteer programs and facilitating community development projects in Managua and other areas.

    Custom-designing itineraries with individuals and groups from academic, church, civic, government, and corporate settings, we respectfully and effectively focus North Americans and Nicaraguans around cross-cultural learning and infrastructure, education, health, and artistic services identified by community partners.

    Our participants create local employment, increase the standard of living, and improve the lives of other people while enhancing their studies, careers, or life perspectives. Contact duarte@companeros.ca to see how you can get involved or visit http://www.companeros.ca to reach us easily in Toronto or Managua. Thanks.

  • http://www.buildingnewhope.org donna tabor

    Building New Hope –a 501 (c)3 non-profit charitable organization at work in Nicaragua since 1998. Our first project was constructing a school in Tepalon after the community’s loss of its school during Hurricane Mitch. We have continued in Granada to support the education of young people with two adjunct elementary schools and through high school scholarships. We have also established an animal health care center (Casa Lupita) and a music education program (Rhythm in the Barrios. Volunteers are welcome in all areas. Except for our animal clinic, volunteers are required to speak and comprehend Spanish. For more info, contact donna.tabor@rocketmail.com or website http://www.buildingnewhope.org

  • http://www.newtonsanjuan.org David Gullette

    The Newton (MA)/San Juan del Sur Sister City Project welcomes volunteers year around, and can help arrange homestays with local families. The main activities volunteers work on are in school construction using sustainable materials, water purification, ecostoves for smoke-free cooking, helping teach English or computer skills at the Free High Schol for Adults, etc. Be sure to read the “Volunteer” pages at http://www.newtonsanjuan.org. Note that we have local (Nica) colleagues who speak English and can help you get connected to useful volunteer activities. Write me for more details.

  • Gerd Schnepel

    Sano y Salvo – Safe and Sound, Primera Asociación Campesina e Indigena de Cultura y Producción Ecológicas en la Región Autónoma del Atlántico Sur. The name says it (nearly) all. Wth local small farmers groups in Kukra Hill, Laguna de Perlas, El Rama, Cerro Silva, Punta Gorda, Nueva Guinea, Rama Cay, Santa Isabel del Pajarito. Website crashed, so you get more info (in Spanish), when sending us a mail to my address or sanoysalvo@yahoo.com. Volunteers only thinkable, if it is for more than – let’s say – 2 months, and must speak Spanish.

  • Gerd Schnepel

    Fundación La Esperanzita in Nueva Guinea, Región Autónoma Atlántico Sur. The cradle of organic agriculture in Nicaragua (founded by my wife and me in 1984.) Is our Escuela Campesina de Agricultura Ecológica en el Trópico Húmedo. 120 acres, lots of ecological agroforestry, pelibuey sheep. Website crashed, too. But you find something when looking the archive of El Nuevo Diario, search “La Esperanzita, Nueva Guinea, Schnepel”. No short time volunteers (too much introductory work …).gerd.schnepel.2043@me.com

  • Gerd Schnepel

    emJAC escuela montessori Jan Amos Comenius – Nueva Guinea, RAAS. Founded 2001. Kindergarden till bachillerato (or: all primary and secondary school). We got and get German volunteers each year, but FOR ONE YEAR. (German law about social year for voluntaries.) Interested in doing it for a year? Write us. Starts always in August/September. They work as assistant teacher in English and Natural Sciences (no creationism, though). Shorter special volunteer work thinkable. Write the director, my wife: Elba Rivera Urbina. No website, but you find different stuff in youtube when looking for eejac, emjac, elba rivera nueva guinea. Interesting English video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=weguT3wim9s
    or a Dutch language website http://www.vonkita.be.

    Write to eeJAC2001@yahoo.com (before emjac it was named eejac) or elbarivera40@yahoo.com.

  • http://opwr.org Indio Jones

    :) O Parks, WildLife, and Recreation. Private, We need smart volunteers/voluntourists. Use your smart phones, camera, microscope and/or other neat stuff to identify, sample, and sort our 50 acres of dry tropical forest and a Nicaraguan historic site (ie. Colina 155). We will throw in the bicycle and hiking trails, fruit and nut orchard, geocache, eco-paintball, the Mona house, Mayan pyramid gardens, Mayan forest, camping grounds, and fine baked goods at our onsite Pan De Vida. Come 12/12/2012 if you want to celebrate our grand opening. Have fun saving the world!

    • doug anderson

      this sounds amazing! how do i reach you guys?!!!

  • Puedo Leer Library

    PUEDO LEER is the first lending library in Granada, Nicaragua open to the public, focusing on promoting reading and a love of reading among children so that they can become lifelong learners, succeed academically and economically, and ultimately be instrumental in raising standards of education and literacy in Nicaragua. We endeavor to investigate and develop any and all activities that will bring the discovery of reading to the people of Nicaragua.

    Our efforts are made possible by the support of the community, friends and volunteers. We welcome volunteers and have several programs which you can choose to help with. Spanish proficiency is a plus but not mandatory. Contact us through our website: http://www.puedoleerlibrary.com

  • http://www.GranadaAnimalOutreach.org Jennifer Jurgens

    Granada Animal Outreach is an animal rescue organization located in Granada, Nicaragua. Through the support of dedicated volunteers and donations, we work to put an end to the suffering of homeless, abused and neglected dogs by helping them find permanent, loving homes. We have a variety of volunteer opportunities on a short or long-term basis, such as walking dogs, bathing dogs, fundraising and administrative work. Contact us at GAO.Nicaragua@gmail.com and visit our website and Facebook pages for more information.

  • Pingback: Directory of volunteer opportunities in Nicaragua : One Caribbean Radio | The Global Mix

  • http://www.projectwoo.org Project Wave of Optimism

    Are you interested in doing more during your travels?
    Project WOO believes that we as traveling surfers have the responsibility to give back to the rural coastal communities that we explore. Such exploration often times preps the road for future tourism development. As such, Voluntourism opportunities offer us the chance to lead by example and get involved in the communities that we travel to. By working on community-identified projects, you are able to make a direct and positive impact as well as bridge communities through cultural exchange. Learn more about WOO’s dynamic Voluntourism Program here: http://www.projectwoo.org/voluntourism/ or contact the Program Director, Bo Fox at: bfox@projectwoo.org

  • http://www.mitchmarshministries.com Mitch Marsh Ministries

    A 501(c)(3) ministry working with local pastors and churches to meet needs in their communities providing food shelter, clothing, medicine, medical treatment, vitamins, Bibles, and much more. You may also find us on Facebook. Our page is Mitch Marsh Ministries. http://www.mitchmarshministries.com

  • http://www.ersla.org Rodney McDonald

    Emergency Response Services for Latin America “ERSLA” works to help improve the emergency response services for Nicaragua by offering programs in equipment donations, training to firefighters and communities, and community integration projects which help open communication and improve the image of local firefighters in their communities. ERSLA has many volunteer opportunities in Nicaragua as well as in the United States. For more information email info@ersla.org and ask about our volunteer, intern, study abroad, or familiarization programs.

  • http://www.fabretto.org Fabretto Children’s Foundation

    Inspired by the legacy of Padre Fabretto who worked in Nicaragua from 1953-1989, Fabretto’s mission is to empower underserved children and their families in Nicaragua to reach their full potential, improve their livelihoods, and take advantage of economic opportunity through improved education and nutrition. This mission is achieved through five strategic program areas: early and primary education enrichment, rural secondary education, vocational and life skills education, and community well-being and development. Fabretto is a registered 501(c)3 registered non-profit. Today, Fabretto programs benefit over 10,500 students in sites in Managua, Esteli, Somoto, Matagalpa, Ocotal, Las Sabanas, and San Jose de Cusmapa. Service Group visits can be arranged according to group’s needs, and fundraise to support a specif program area. Individual volunteer opportunities are limited but may include teaching English, support in health & education program, and consulting for micro-business programs. For more information about volunteer requirements visit: http://www.fabretto.org/Volunteering%20in%20Nicaragua or contact brennane@fabretto.org.

    • http://corazoncontentogranada.org William M Ashman

      Corazon Contento is a center for people with special needs. Please go to our website corazoncontentogranada.org and you will be able to see how our goal to integrate special needs people into the Society is working. We do need volunteers that are special needs educators, speech therapists, message therapists, psychologists. It is important that the volunteers speak Spanish and can stay a minimum of a month. We do have a volunteer’s house that allows comfortable living at no cost. (obviously depending on availability.) If interested please contact William Ashman at w.m.ashman@gmail.com

  • http://www.rancho-esperanza.com Shana Falb, Program Manager

    Mission: To work with the community of Jiquilillo and surrounding areas to create and support social and environmental community-based programs, while providing a sustainable and positive eco-hostel destination for travelers and volunteers alike.We have short and long-term availability for volunteers and interns ranging from teachers’ assistance at the local primary school, community-based tourism development and training, tour guide training, Kids’ Club, Surf Club, and English classes.

    Volunteers and interns stay at Rancho Esperanza, a sustainable eco-hostel located on Playa Jiquilillo in the Padre Ramos Estuary Reserve and receive discounts on accommodations and food.http://www.rancho-esperanza.com

    • Olivia Church Vallecillo

      I am an English teacher here in the US and would be interested in helping out in that area. Please contact me with more information!

  • http://www.la-esperanza-granada.org/ La Esperanza Granada

    La Esperanza Granada – Based in Granada, our volunteers go out into the schools and assist the teachers in rural communities, tutor young children, run sports programs, introduce children to computers, teach English and help stimulate an interest in learning. Volunteering is free, and there is a minimum commitment of 1 month but we encourage longer stays. Dorms are available near El Parque Central upon request.
    http://www.la-esperanza-granada.org/
    Please contact Pauline at la_esperanza_granada@yahoo.com

  • http://www.bridgestocommunity.org Mary Jane Fales

    Bridges to Community is a 20 year old nonprofit organization that brings over 800 North American volunteers annually to Nicaragua to live in and work with local rural communities. Participants may build homes, schools, libraries, community centers, medical centers, water projects, latrines, smoke reducing stoves, conduct medical or dental clinics. Volunteer groups come from high schools, universities, medical schools, faith based organizations, and include business leaders, health care practitioners, family and friends. Bridges staff live and organize year-round in the communities where we work. The mission emphasizes cross-cultural learning and sustainable community development. For more information: http://www.bridgestocommunity.org or email: info@bridgestocommunity.org

  • http://www.techo.org/nicaragua/ Sabrina Vega

    TECHO is a youth led non-profit organization present in Latin America & the Caribbean. Through the joint work of families living in extreme poverty with youth volunteers, TECHO seeks to overcome poverty in slums.
    TECHO is convinced that poverty can be permanently eradicated if society as a whole recognizes poverty as a priority and actively works towards overcoming it. In Nicaragua we have more than 4 years of experience and people can join as volunteer in specific activities such as fundraising, construction of emergency houses, surveys in the slums and rural commnunities and more permanent work in our different areas.
    To contact us you can write to voluntariado.nicaragua@techo.org

  • http://www.empowermentinternational.org Empowerment International

    Empowerment International (EI) has been working in Nicaragua since 2004 and has improved the annual school retention rate from 55% to over 94% in the two poor communities we work with. As of 2013, we now have over 340 students participating in our program. Our goal is to remove the barriers that prevent children from getting an education and keep them in school with our unique programs. Our goal is to have these families break out of the cycle of poverty. EI is run and managed by local, Nicaraguan staff.

    For more information, please visit us @
    http://www.empowermentinternational.org

    You can find our contact information on our homepage. We look forward to hearing from you!

  • http://www.eltransitoarts.com El Transito Arts Center

    Are you a creative, artistic person passionate about helping others reach their maximum potential in pursuit of self-sustainability? Please check out our website at: http://www.eltransitoarts to get to know about the various projects at El Transito Arts Center (“ETCA”, founded 2008) in the small fishing village in the central Pacific coast of Nicaragua. We have short-and-long term internship and volunteer positions at the Arts Center.

    Contact Julie Sim Edwards (Founding Director), at joolsmission@yahoo.com for more information.

  • http://barrioplantaproject.org Jaime Hunter

    The Barrio Planta Project is an education initiative created to empower low-income children and adults living in Nicaragua. Through supplementary schooling with an emphasis on English as a Second Language and the creative arts, BPP provides means for international communication and exposure to enriching cultural activities that enhance confidence and facilitate community.

    We are always looking for volunteers, and based on experience and education, you could: teach/assist an English class for children or adults, offer a creative arts workshop, mentor a child, etc. There are many opportunities to volunteer in this beautiful and touristic port town in Nicaragua.

    Please contact me, Jaime Hunter, Director of Operations, for more information.

    • Olivia Church Vallecillo

      Do you offer a place to stay while volunteering? I am very interested.

  • http://barrioplantaproject.org Jaime Hunter

    The Barrio Planta Project is an education initiative created to empower low-income children and adults living in Nicaragua. Through supplementary schooling with an emphasis on English as a Second Language and the creative arts, BPP provides means for international communication and exposure to enriching cultural activities that enhance confidence and facilitate community.

    We are always looking for volunteers, and based on experience and education, you could: teach/assist an English class for children or adults, offer a creative arts workshop, mentor a child, etc. There are many opportunities to volunteer in this beautiful and touristic port town in Nicaragua.

    Please contact me, Jaime Hunter, Director of Operations, for more information: JHunter@barrioplantaproject.org

  • http://www.coachingong.com Diana Ramírez

    If you want to have full impact in your NGO with your volunteers this invitation is for you http://www.coachingong.com/taller/

    Also I am looking to volunteers that want to contribute with local NGO in order to achieve sustainability.

  • http://www.nicaraguainternships.org Carrie McCracken

    Our mission is to provide academic internships for professionals and university students while at the same time supporting social justice and sustainable development projects in Granada, Nicaragua.

    We run public health and medical programs, small businesses for women and young people, scholarship programs, and kids clubs for high risk youth. In addition, we collaborate with many existing organizations and projects including women’s groups, eco-tourism projects, and health clinics. All projects match the interests of the interns and all have a goal of improving the lives of Nicaraguans through education.

    We currently are recruiting medical interns as well as people to run a reproductive health group for young men from a marginalized community in Granada. We do have opportunities in other areas – please contact us for more information.

    • Jerry Walsh

      Hello Carrie,
      I am a nurse from Seattle Wa. I will be in Granada until March of 2014. I do not speak Spanish but am taking lessons. Do you have any volunteer opportunities for me. Thanks Jerry

  • http://www.gaianicaragua.org/volunteer FUNDECI/GAIA

    We place volunteers in environmental activism. Volunteers can be involved in wildlife monitoring – birds, butterflies, fish – or in environmental education, recycling, and care for rescued wildlife in rehabilitation. You can bring a skill such as being a scientist or you can just want to assist, bringing good will and a love for nature. Our website is http://www.gaianicaragua.org/volunteer and blog http://www.lagunadeapoyo.blogspot.com.

  • Zach

    Hello, I’m a student currently living in Managua. Just looking for a program to get involved in that’s in or around my area. “El barrio de luz” if anyone has any suggestions they would be greatly appreciated.

  • Marlon

    I want to introduce you “xHours”. This is a project for Nicaragua created this year (2013) by TedxManagua group consisting of a website where organizations register and create projects and then recruit volunteers. Take a look at http://xhours.org/

  • Marlon

    A un solo sentir. Volunteering for interactions with deaf children https://www.facebook.com/aunsolosentir

  • http://www.amoshealth.org Desiree Sanabria

    Not sure what to do with your summer?

    We have some volunteer and intern opportunities available for public health students and premed/medical students! AMOS Health and Hope is a nonprofit organization based in Managua, Nicaragua who uses community based participatory research in hard to reach communities to promote health and hope to some of Nicaragua’s most vulnerable people. AMOS works along side local leaders in these communities to provide effective and empowering health care.

    We are offering a global health practicum course that provides MPH candidates with over 120 hours of global public health hands-on training and fieldwork guided by experienced MPH/MD preceptors. We have both global health research internships for MPH Students and rotations or electives for medical and nursing students. Below, you will find a brief description and link to each:

    Global Health Institute
    This course provides an introduction to rural community health strategies in a global context through education and practice. The course will focus on current AMOS methodologies and approaches to improving maternal and child health in low-resource, low-access settings. The goal is to understand how building on community strengths and facilitating strategic community empowerment help improve health outcomes. The course will introduce participants to community-based primary health care practices and provide hands-on training in rural communities.

    2014 Dates: June 17 – July 3
    Global Health Internships
    AMOS offers the opportunity for volunteers to engage in the community based participatory approaches to health that AMOS employs. The internships address global health issues in the field and allow participants to carry out important rural health development projects. Guided by an AMOS preceptor, participants will gain valuable public health and development knowledge and experience that fulfill a degree practicum or senior thesis project.

    To participate in a Global Health Internship, participants must first complete the coursework of the Global Health Institute.

    2014 opportunities:

    Women’s Empowerment in Nutrition
    Household Water Treatment Project
    Global Health Research Assistant
    Application Deadline: February 1, 2014

    Global Health Rotations
    Students of medicine and nursing have the opportunity to serve a rotation with AMOS, both in our on-site clinic and in the field Students are able to serve in both urban and rural settings with doctors providing family medicine, nutritionists, and nurses. Apart from serving in a clinical setting, medical and nursing students have the opportunity to gain experience in primary healthcare in rural communities. Participants will join the AMOS supervision team of doctors and nurses to travel to hard to reach areas to support local health promoters.

    Urban Clinic Rotation (duration: 4 1/2 weeks)
    Rural Rotation (duration: 5 weeks)
    Application deadline: ongoing, at least 90 days before desired rotation.

    Please let me know if you have any questions or what information would be useful in connecting your students to these internship opportunities.

    Kind regards,

    Emily McComb
    Communications Team
    Office number: 011-505-2271-2933
    AMOS U.S number: (240) 232-6874

    (7 AM to 4:30 PM Central time)
    Visit our website at: http://www.amoshealth.org
    Follow us at: http://www.facebook.com/amoshealth
    Check our pictures: http://www.flickr.com/photos/amoshealth/
    Skype: amos-nicaragua

  • Isabel Zeug

    we are looking for volunteers supporting the primary school in the Miraflor Cloud forest reserve. http://www.fincaneblinadelbosque.com