Volunteer programs in Ecuador

About Ecuador

About Ecuador 

Ecuador’s west coast is caressed by the Pacific Ocean. In the north, Ecuador is bordered by Colombia. The rest of the country, meanwhile, shares a border with Peru. The country’s capital city is Quito, and the official language is Spanish.

The country has 14,306,876 inhabitants, and has a poverty index of 38.3%.
Ecuador is a sustainable paradise. The country’s main objective is to protect its huge natural, cultural and human diversity.

Climate in Ecuador

The country’s name derives from the fact that it straddles the equator, meaning the top part of the country lies in the northern hemisphere and the bottom part of the country lies in the southern hemisphere. Given the country’s position, the volunteer can expect an equatorial climate that is characterised by heat and humidity, with a wet season running from December to May. Rain is less common in the southern part of the country.

In coastal areas, the annual temperatures range from 23 to 26 degrees Celsius. In the Amazon area, meanwhile, the average annual temperature is around 27 degrees Celsius. Due to the higher altitude, Ecuador’s mountain areas are cooler. In these parts, the temperature ranges from 10 to 15 degrees Celsius.


Time zone

Ecuador has two time zones: the mainland follows UTC-5:00 (similar to EST), while the Galapagos Islands follow UTC-6:00.


Regarding currency, participants will need to make purchases and transactions using US dollars, which is the country's official currency. 1 US dollar is equivalent to approximately 0.79 euros.


Programs are carried out in three different locations: the Andes, the Amazonia, and the Pacific Ocean.


The stay begins as soon as the volunteer is picked up at the destination.


The meals included in the project/destination will be provided at the accommodation. Meals will not be included for the journeys to the destination, the excursions undertaken by volunteers, etc.

Pick up times

The stipulated pick-up times for each destination/project must be respected. Participants arriving outside of these times will incur an additional cost, which varies depending on the destination.


VOLUNTEER programs

Where are the volunteer programs located?

Enjoy your volunteer program amidst the stunning backdrop of the Andes, the Amazon rainforest and the Pacific Ocean. Through social, educational, community, and conservation volunteer programs, Cooperating Volunteers supports these communities in their endeavors to enhance their well-being.

Volunteers will discover that Ecuador provides convenient access to the Amazon rainforest, as you can traverse the Andean peaks and reach the Amazon rainforest in just a few hours. The Ecuadorian Amazon boasts one of the planet’s highest concentrations of animal and plant species. Additionally, numerous indigenous communities have diligently preserved their ancient beliefs, traditions, and way of life, adding to the region’s rich cultural diversity.


  • Childcare Volunteer Program
  • English Teaching Volunteer Program
  • Special Needs Support Volunteer Program
  • Agriculture and Community Tourism Volunteer Program
  • Animal Rescue and Rehabilitation Volunteer Program

Requirements and costs

  • Participants are required to be at least 18 years old by the program start date.
  • The volunteer programs costs start at 219 USD (approx. €200) for 1 week. You can consult all of the costs in Program Costs

What is included?


Volunteers should arrange their transportation to Quito’s Mariscal Sucre International Airport (airport code UIO), where local staff will meet them and provide transportation to their accommodations. Pre-arranged pick-up service is available but not included in the program cost, incurring an additional fee of 30 USD.
Please note that the pickup for the Amazonia programs has an approximate cost of 120 dollars.


When someone talks to you about “comida criolla” (“creole food”), you shouldn’t be surprised. This term, which is used to refer to typical Ecuadorian cuisine, was first used during the Spanish conquest of the Americas. Ecuador’s gastronomy has been greatly influenced by the different peoples that have inhabited the country. As such, it encompasses an intriguing mix of different cuisines. Spanish volunteers, for example, may notice certain similarities between Ecuadorian dishes and traditional Spanish meals.

A traditional dish is ‘encebollado’: a fish and yucca stew that is regularly consumed by the country’s inhabitants. Ceviche is another typical Ecuadorian dish, for which the ingredients may vary from region to region.

Ecuadorians are also known for regularly using banana in their dishes. Ecuador enjoys the perfect climatic conditions for banana growing, making it one of the world’s largest banana producers.


  • Volunteers must arrive in Ecuador on or around the date they have indicated or will indicate in the Online Application, in order to be picked up at the airport. The start date may vary depending on the flights chosen by the volunteer (the flight number and arrival date must be indicated to our staff to arrange the airport pick-up).
  • Volunteers can participate in the volunteer program for a minimum of 1 week and a maximum of 6 months.

Tourist attractions in Ecuador

Volunteers typically have some free time during their volunteer program, often in the evenings. In many cases, after completing the volunteer program, participants choose to extend their stay and take advantage of the opportunity to explore various parts of the country. It’s important to note that the Galapagos Islands are also part of Ecuadorian territory and are a well-known tourist destination.
Regarding mainland Ecuador, the Amazon and the Andes serve as additional tourist attractions, providing visitors with a diverse range of landscapes to explore, from the jungle to the mountain peaks.

Transport in Ecuador

Air travel is considered a safe and efficient way to get around Ecuador, with various airlines connecting major destinations. Ecuador boasts an extensive network of roads, although some areas might be affected by past earthquakes or floods.

For longer distances, renting a car can be a good option. However, for shorter distances within cities or program locations, consider mini-vans, buses, or taxis. These options are generally inexpensive but might not be the most luxurious.  Taxis are readily available in cities, but it’s recommended to agree on the fare before starting your journey.

The volunteer programs typically run from Monday to Friday. Most project sites are conveniently accessible by foot. However, if you prefer the use of buses or taxis, a return journey will cost you approximately €2.

Program goals

The project aims to train young individuals to become social leaders. Volunteers will live in a multicultural setting, collaborate as a team on tasks or institutional projects, support beneficiaries in their daily activities or through workshops, and assist with the needs of the centers and homes.

To achieve these goals, we use three key approaches:

Social inclusion

Social Inclusion of children, young people and grandparents in situations of social risk.

Attention to Centers and Homes

Attention to centers and homes for the protection and restitution of rights of socially vulnerable children, adolescents and older adults.

Social action

Project participants will work alongside community members, engaging with various social actors to ensure that the project benefits everyone and respects the rights of all individuals.


Our programs

Animal Rescue and Rehabilitation - Amazonia

Ecuadorian Amazonia is characterized by having the highest diversity of animals and plants per square kilometer in the world. Within this natural treasure, several indigenous communities are also grouped, still fighting to preserve their beliefs, traditions, and ancestral way of life.

Animal Rescue and Rehabilitation:

The Animal Rescue and Rehabilitation Center began as a commitment to rescue and rehabilitate animals that have been seized by the Environmental Police from individuals who have bought endangered animals as pets. Currently, the Center aims to give these animals the opportunity to live a dignified life and reintegrate into their natural habitat. In some cases, immediate reintroduction into the wild is not applicable to animals that have been severely mistreated. These animals require a specialized assistance program that re-teaches them how to behave and survive in their natural environment.

*Minimum stay of two weeks


  • Feeding the animals
  • Cleaning the animal enclosures
  • Administering special medications
  • Creating trails within the center
  • Collecting fruits for the animals’ feeding

English Teaching - The Andes

The Andes region, better known as the “Avenue of the Volcanoes,” is a fascinating blend of colonial architecture and indigenous culture, making it an ideal setting for community volunteer programs.

English Teaching – The Andes

Our English teaching program takes place in rural communities in the Andean valleys.

Through volunteering, we aim to support children at risk of dropping out of school, who attend schools with limited resources. We motivate them to enjoy learning a second language, which will enable them to access new opportunities for intellectual, cultural, and economic development in the future. This creates a real long-term impact on the development of the local community, helping to prevent educational dropout, which can lead to unemployment, the acquisition of vices such as alcoholism and drug addiction, and ultimately, poverty.

Improving the English level has become a priority in Ecuador, and it is now a pillar within the national curriculum that different educational institutions must follow. However, this is not enough, as the need for English teachers is significant, especially in isolated areas striving to meet the standards set by the Ministry of Education.


  • Assisting English teachers
  • Class planning
  • Preparing educational materials
  • Supporting students with their tasks
  • Conducting workshops for pronunciation improvement
  • Assisting with grammar structure
  • Reading books in English
  • Organizing games and recreational activities

Childcare - Quito

Quito, the capital of Ecuador, has been recognized as a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site. It represents the largest historic and cultural center in the Americas. Its traditions, landscapes, and people are more than enough incentives to get to know this beautiful city.

This project is located in the Pichincha province in northern Ecuador, where volunteers have the opportunity to participate in a network of community daycare centers located in the city of Quito.

This volunteer program benefits children aged 1 to 3 years and aims to provide assistance to mothers with limited financial resources who, due to various reasons or daily work, cannot take care of their children, thus preventing them from being left alone at home during the day.


  • Support in early stimulation
  • Assisting with feeding
  • Cleaning and hygiene care for the children
  • Strengthening hygiene habits
  • Organizing recreational activities
  • Developing didactic materials
  • Supporting social interaction dynamics
  • Teaching English
  • Conducting educational games

*Minimum stay of two weeks.

Childcare volunteer program - Coast

From north to south, beautiful beaches are showcased along the Ecuadorian Pacific. In this region, pristine beaches can be found along the coastline. During the summer, it is the ideal place for humpback whale watching, as they arrive each year from Antarctica to mate between June and October. The sea breeze caresses the “Ruta del Sol,” which crosses lonely beaches, picturesque fishing villages, and serves as the gateway to beautiful and modern resorts, as well as fishing and tourist ports.

Childcare volunteer program – Coast

Our project takes place in the city of Manta, considered one of the main cities on the Ecuadorian coast. Despite being an important city, the community-based Child Development Centers (CDIs) mostly lack basic services due to a lack of government support.

In this place, children between the ages of one and three are cared for by community mothers and social coordinators while their parents are engaged in selling seafood, trading, or informal selling.

Many of the children attending these childcare centers live in quite basic conditions, making the assistance of volunteers a fundamental tool for strengthening the educational aspects of these nurseries.

Volunteers have the opportunity to work by assisting social coordinators in managing groups of children aged 1 to 3 years. Activities are planned every week and are focused on the psychomotor development of the children through games, songs, and recreational activities.

*Minimum stay of two weeks.

Agriculture and Community Tourism in the Andes

The sustainable agriculture program is carried out in a rural community located an hour away from the capital city.

Its inhabitants are mainly engaged in agriculture and community tourism. Many families dedicate their land plots to implement permaculture programs that benefit the local members. Volunteer support is essential for the development of the field, as well as for community tourism, which has become another major source of income for the population. The community offers an incredible habitat amidst the cloud forest. Today, the community has become a reference in habitat conservation and enterprise management.


  • Supporting the maintenance of family orchards
  • Soil preparation
  • Organic farming techniques
  • Compost preparation
  • Supporting rural women in productive ventures
  • Assisting in jam and dairy factories
  • Improving trails and nurseries

English Teaching Program - Quito

Our teaching program takes place in public and private schools in the marginalized urban sectors of the city of Quito.

The objective is to provide assistance in different subjects taught in educational centers. The tasks include:

  • Assisting English teachers
  • Class planning
  • Preparing educational materials
  • Supporting students with their tasks
  • Conducting workshops for pronunciation improvement
  • Assisting with grammar structure
  • Reading books in English
  • Organizing games and recreational activities

Special needs volunteer program - Quito

Our program for people with different abilities is carried out in Rehabilitation Centers located in the city of Quito.

These centers receive little funding for their operation. Volunteers become a source of sustainability and support for people who come to the center seeking help, containment, and assistance.

Volunteer tasks include:

  • Assisting where needed in the center
  • Volunteers work approximately four to six hours per day.
  • Most centers welcome volunteers to play with the children, create activities, assist with tasks such as feeding, movement, and cleaning.
  • Volunteers can also assist with rehabilitation exercises and therapy. 

accommodation and meals

In general, volunteers living with host families or in volunteer houses will automatically discover a new culinary culture. Meals are included throughout your program participation, and every day volunteers gather with family members and fellow volunteers to share enjoyable moments during breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

We often receive applications from vegetarian individuals, and this is not a problem at all. All accommodations are prepared to cater to vegetarian diets, as the area is rich in a variety of legumes, vegetables, and greens. If any volunteer requires more specific items such as beverages and snacks, we recommend purchasing these separately.

Please note that accommodation arrangements vary depending on the program location. The type of housing you will be in will depend on whether your program takes place in Quito, the Costa region, the Amazon, or the Andes. We will provide more details about your specific accommodation closer to your program start date.

Accommodation in Amazon

In the Amazon rainforest, specifically on the Animal Rescue and Rehabilitation Volunteer Program, volunteers will reside in a house connected to the animal center. They will receive three meals a day, which will be prepared by the local staff. Additionally, the house offers free Wi-Fi internet access for volunteers.

Accommodation in The Andes

In the Andes region, specifically for the English teaching and agriculture and tourism programs, our volunteers stay with host families within the community who provide accommodations during their participation. Some of the houses offer shared rooms, while others provide private rooms. Volunteers can expect to receive three meals a day, and they have access to Wi-Fi, hot water, and electricity.

Accommodation in Coast

In the Coast program, accommodation will be arranged in a family house, where a family member will be responsible for preparing three daily meals and assisting volunteers with their needs. The house offers three bedrooms and one bathroom for the volunteers. It is equipped with electricity, Wi-Fi, and hot water for their convenience.

Accommodation in Quito

Quito is a cosmopolitan city, providing volunteers with excellent options for accommodations with local families. Typically, the accommodation consists of apartments situated in residential areas, offering comfortable private rooms. Volunteers can count on receiving three daily meals, and most rooms include private bathrooms with Wi-Fi access.

program costs

The total cost of volunteering is divided into 2 parts. The registration fee, which is paid to book your placement, is 210 € (approximately US$ 210), and the program cost, which is paid later.

Programs in the Andes

1st week 344 USD | 344 €

Additional week 294 USD | 294 €

Programs in Quito

1st week 295 USD | 295 €

Additional week 245 USD | 245 €

Programs in the Amazon (Minimum 2 weeks)

2 weeks 540 USD | 540 €

Additional week 245 USD | 245 €

Programs on the Coast

1st week 295 USD | 295 €

Additional week 245 USD | 245 €

If your currency is not specified in the table, you can convert your costs  here.

What is included in the fee that I am paying?

What additional costs will be incurred by the volunteers?

Visa, flights, Travel insurance (mandatory), vaccinations, airport transportation to the program, return transfer from the program to the airport, other personal expenses

(* Volunteers in Ecuador generally find that around 30 € (approximately US$ 35) is sufficient for basic weekly expenses.)


Leave us your information and we will contact you within the next 24 hours


Our volunteers will be able to validate university credits with the aim of traveling in a more responsible and economical way.

What does volunteering focused on university practices involve?

At Cooperating Volunteers, we make agreements with different universities to validate university credits with the aim of traveling in a more responsible and economical way.

The specialties we work with are extensive: medical volunteering, nursing, education, social work, psychology, physiotherapy, engineering, architecture…

The practices can be carried out in our designated destinations for this purpose, as well as in Spain.

If you choose an international destination, it’s a unique way to live an unforgettable and enriching experience, as you will have the opportunity to continue your education in another country, with a completely different culture.

Stepping out of our comfort zone and being part of the various projects at the destination will allow us to grow both personally and professionally, creating a more extensive curriculum.

And we are fully convinced that this experience will accompany you throughout your life.

You will be able to visit hospitals, schools, centers, orphanages, and participate directly and actively in the daily lives of all those people at the destination, always accompanied by other professionals willing to collaborate hand in hand with you and guide you in daily tasks.

If your university is not part of the agreement with Cooperating Volunteers, you can contact cristina@cooperatingvolunteers.com so that we can get in touch and make this experience a reality. 


Corporate volunteering consists of tailored programs for your company, designed to develop teamwork skills.

It is proven that teamwork directly impacts productivity. 

Collective effort surpasses individual capabilities, promotes diversity of skills, stimulates creativity, and facilitates problem-solving in the face of various challenges.

Therefore, it not only maximizes efficiency but also enriches the work environment.

We conduct corporate volunteering programs that consist of customized programs for your company, designed to develop teamwork skills, improve performance, and foster unity among employees.

We tailor projects to the corporate identity and size of the company, and we can adjust them to any destination and time of the year.

The advantages of corporate volunteering include:

  • Improving communication.
  • Group unity.
  • Cultural integration in different situations.
  • Employee training.
  • Increased Corporate Social Responsibility.

The future is aligned with a more responsible society, and participating in social projects positions our company among the list of revolutionary businesses that want to be part of the change.

If you resonate with this message, corporate volunteering is a unique experience both individually and collectively, and at Cooperating Volunteers, we accompany you throughout the process to make it a unique journey.


Quality time spent with family strengthens emotional bonds, promotes communication, and contributes to the emotional well-being of its members. 

Spending quality time with family and being able to disconnect from our hectic routines is not only enriching but also necessary.

Sometimes we forget to communicate, connect, and dedicate time to each other. Each one of us lives focused on our jobs, schools… And it’s necessary to find the opportunity to pause and take care of ourselves.

Quality time spent with family strengthens emotional bonds, promotes communication, and contributes to the emotional well-being of its members. And of course, it creates lifelong positive memories.

At Cooperating Volunteers, we suggest moving away from those ‘more superficial’ trips (which can also be fantastic), but we invite you to live this experience to bring out our most empathetic and humanitarian side.

Family volunteering gives us the opportunity to be part of a positive impact, promoting values of solidarity and social responsibility.

There are many families who choose to experience these trips focused on cooperation and direct involvement with different communities around the world, where living conditions are very different and sometimes entirely precarious.

Projects are tailored to different ages, allowing us to work together.

An incredible way to fill our suitcase with memories, learning, and knowledge.

And although stepping out of our comfort zone often feels daunting, we assure you firsthand that it’s worth it.

At Cooperating Volunteers, we accompany you throughout the entire experience, from start to finish, to make it unforgettable.


At Cooperating Volunteers, we believe it’s never too late for anything, especially for volunteering and living a unique and unforgettable experience.

There are many people, increasingly so, who opt for responsible travel that involves social work.

Accustomed to organized and mostly touristic trips, at Cooperating Volunteers, we want to advocate for a more enriching experience, one that transforms us from within and allows us to be part of the change the world needs to see.

We can adapt both the destination and the duration of our projects to fit your needs.

It’s an opportunity full of emotions that allows us to significantly contribute to different communities and their evolution. And you can participate in different areas such as education, social support, or assistance in different centers.

Some of the benefits include:

  • Sense of purpose: Provides a sense of purpose by contributing your skills and experiences to meaningful causes.
  • Emotional well-being: Reduces feelings of isolation and establishes social connections.
  • Personal development: It’s continuous learning, skill development, and discovering new activities while keeping the mind-body active.
  • Physical health: Keeping active.
  • Stress reduction: The act of helping others reduces stress and contributes to mental health.

Living this experience will undoubtedly be a before and after. 


A volunteering initiative with leadership and impact through the educational action program.

When we talk about social volunteering, we refer to all those actions and activities carried out altruistically, selflessly, and with the aim of addressing multiple problems and needs of different communities, always focused on education and self-sufficiency.

Education is essential because it provides the tools and knowledge necessary for personal, social, and economic development.

Our goal is to create self-sufficient communities and provide opportunities for the future personal development of each member. The message is not to ‘give’, but to accompany in the process of training for self-managed provision.

At Cooperating Volunteers, many of our destinations and projects embrace this type of volunteering. Some of our projects include: community programs, education, women’s empowerment…

And although they are completely different from each other, they share a single objective: progress towards a society that can embrace us all in the same way.

If you are someone who is restless, who needs to see a change in the future, volunteering is an experience tailor-made for you.