Volunteers in Peru

From time to time, we welcome volunteers at the refuge in Peru. We will nearly always try to discuss this face to face before selection, and would encourage volunteers to be actively engaged with us before going. Though there is no formal charge we require volunteers to raise or donate money to support the ongoing costs of our work. They will also need to cover the costs of their own stay with us, and their international travel and insurance costs. We can give advice on this. Many volunteers raise sponsorship money for us by doing the Inca Trail. There is a whole range of activities that volunteers may be engaged in at our refuge, and the more varied the skills that a volunteer can offer (plus a working knowledge of Spanish), the better. Some volunteers in Peru are already long-term supporters, some become so after being there. Some come in groups, some as individuals, some as part of a university elective placement or study period abroad, or through short visits arranged through travel companies, some come as part of staff development programmes, some are recently retired and some may have specific building projects that they have raised funds for. We are always interested to hear from potential volunteers who share our philosophy.

We also can arrange for shorter visits and have also accommodated family groups from time to time.

We may frequently have volunteer opportunities for qualified professionals particularly in the fields of English language teaching, art teaching, play therapy, and librarianship.

We are very experienced in hosting groups of volunteers or visitors who come with funding for specific projects we have set up for and with them. Over the years, such groups have included people from Edinburgh University, West Yorkshire Scouts, Leeds University, Leeds Metropolitan University (now known as Leeds Beckett University), Soltun High School (Norway), both UK and London Universities Air Squadrons, The Army Intelligence Corps, a group of optometrists mostly based at Moorfields Eye Hospital, Ormskirk School, Amoria Bond (a Manchester-based recruitment company), optometrists from the Amigos Eye Project of Pacific University Oregon, and a short visit by some of the Tartan Army of Scotland supporters who were in Lima for a friendly international match prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

Some recent, edited comments by volunteers and visitors to our refuge.

2023

“Just writing to say a big thank you for arranging our visit to the refuge. It was great to see all the amazing work and how passionate the team are, to meet the children and hear how much the project has developed over the years. It really makes you aware of the stark levels of wealth inequality in Peru. Great work you all do and definitely a project we would all continue supporting and promoting”

“I had a really great experience and felt very at home with everyone – the children were very patient with my lack of Spanish but we all managed to communicate together and play games. I wasn’t sure what to expect to be honest, but was blown away by the work there, by the children and how wonderful the refuge is. J. and K. are superstars!”

A group of volunteers said: “Four of us from our company visited this year, some for a second time. We had an amazing experience and trip with Project Peru. It was incredibly rewarding, humbling and fantastic to see how much the charity impacts the lives of the children in the refuge as well as the people in the local community. The staff at the refuge made us feel completely at home and we can’t thank them enough for their support and hospitality throughout our visit.

We also spent the week helping to rebuild a soup kitchen in a nearby shanty-town for the local community to use, and we were welcomed with open arms by the community there too.

We’re already looking at when we will be able to next go to Peru to help out again, it was truly a life-changing experience. Honestly the amount of brilliant work that Project Peru have done over the years is outstanding, especially given the challenging environment that they work in. Summarising, everybody we met. interacted with or supported in Peru treated us so well and it really helped to gain perspective on what’s important. What an amazing set of people and what an incredibly important cause”.

2022:

Amoria Bond Peru Volunteer Trip 2022

In 2020 and 2021 we were not able to receive any volunteers in Peru as a result of the Covid-19 crisis. We were able to restart this process in 2022, and are happy to handle any provisional enquiries or expressions of interest at any time. Please contact us on information@projectperu.org.uk

2019

“Thank you for everything. I had such an amazing time at the refuge again; I am so grateful.”

Our recent visit to Proyecto Perú was truly the experience of a lifetime! When I set out to volunteer with my children, my goal was to open their eyes to the world outside their comfortable bubble, to see how others less fortunate lived, and hopefully to gain compassion through experience. Volunteering with PP far exceeded any expectation I had envisioned! Upon arrival, the entire staff and children embraced us with open arms. Despite our language barrier, we immediately felt welcomed, comfortable and part of the family. We loved getting to know the children and seeing them flourish [… ] so much laughter and care for one another. Proyecto Perú is the greatest living example of kindness and respect I have ever seen. I will be forever grateful for our experience and can’t wait to go back!

I honestly had no idea what to expect before arriving at Proyecto Perú [… ] and was amazed when we walked through the front gate. Truly a green oasis in the middle of a desert shanty town. What a wonderful place for these children to live and thrive. To be given a sense of hope, responsibility, independence and love. The children and the ‘House Moms’ are an inspiration and we look forward to seeing them again soon!

[aged 11]: “I loved playing with the kids‘ and [aged 14]: ‘ I learned what it means to be grateful and to focus on others rather than myself. I especially loved helping the smaller children […] walking them to school and reassuring them when that was needed“.

2018

” … It’s an amazing place – a refuge for around 50 kids, all needing a safe haven, which amounts to a massive lovely family – one that I’ve been grateful to join …

“I will miss waking up to the kids laughing and shouting to each other, and not being able to step a foot anywhere without coming across them [… ] but I am also sure that I will see everyone again and will always be a part of Proyecto Perú.

“Project Peru has done so much for these young people, so we’re glad to help in some way. We all enjoy being part of something positive and working with people full of enthusiasm.

“The children and staff at Project Peru never fail to leave a lasting impression on anyone who meets them. Our team has always been welcomed in so warmly, so we were thrilled to do our bit to help provide an environment to allow these children to experience the joy and friendship that sport can bring.

See our News item The art of volunteering:

“... It was one of the most rewarding things I have done in my life […] I received a really warm welcome…and was immediately made to feel part of the family, so much so that there were tears shed when it came to leaving. What really struck me while I was there was just how happy and polite the children were, despite the troubles they must have been facing in their home lives – I could see what an amazing difference Proyecto Perú was making to their lives [… ]. Spending time learning about life at Proyecto Perú was an invaluable experience.

The Tartan Army visit

“Performance put on for us by the kids in the refuge was another humbling experience…delighted we could donate to Project Peru, a fantastic charity.

“Morning of the game, visited Project Peru with the Tartan Army Sunshine Appeal [ … ] thanks so much for allowing us to come along [ … ] had an ace time.”

“What a fantastic job being done by everyone at Project Peru. Proud that we can help in a small way.

“Peru you have been incredible. Lima is an amazing place.