Volunteer Work, Social Work, Health Care
year round, start and end dates are flexible
Even in the health care systems of modern nations, there always seems to be a lack of helping hands. With that in mind, it’s no surprise that the health care situation in a country where the poverty rate reaches about 60% is even more challenging, as is the case in Guatemala. Behind the idyllic holiday façade of the tropical rainforest, ancient ruins, and enchanting landscapes, there is the reality of Guatemala: poverty and individuals in serious need of medical treatment. Here, your help is needed most.
Through this volunteer work project in Guatemala, you can actively support a medical facility in Guatemala and give sick locals your time and affection. Depending on the projects’ needs, you will work either in a bigger medical home or in a small community health care center. Although you can discuss your preferences with us, the placement is ultimately dependent upon availability. The health care centers care for people from the communities surrounding Antigua.
Usually, they have two doctors – one in the morning and another in the afternoon. Since the centers are a shelter for people from the surrounding areas, doctors treat all kinds of diseases and ailments. Usually, they also offer a selection of medications at low prices. A different placement is within the medical home. This is not a hospital, but rather a home for poor people with diseases. Many of the 500 patients are abandoned children, people without family and financial resources, or sick individuals that are recovering from or preparing for surgery.
The areas for volunteering are broad. You can volunteer, for example, in the ward for malnutrition, children with disabilities, the elderly, and/or the ward for babies and children.
This project is especially suitable for medical students and nurses.
Depending on the location, you can support a larger hospital with several hundred patients or a small health center with only a few doctors. There are plenty of ways to help in both cases. On the one hand, your tasks can be social involving caring of and supporting the patient, but you can also get involved in the medical area.
The focus when working with people is primarily on care and attention. This means that you take time for the patients, talk to them and listen to them, play with the children and do activities with them that make them forget their illness or disability for a certain time.
If your knowledge is sufficient, you can also help with medical treatments. This includes administering medication, weighing and measuring babies and toddlers, measuring temperature and other tasks. You can also educate patients about issues such as hygiene, health, nutrition, etc.
Your working day usually starts at 8 a.m. and you work around five hours a day. If you want, you can also help in the afternoons in the hospital and be there for the patients.
Note: The tasks may vary. They depend on factors such as number of volunteers, season, current needs of the project, as well as self-motivation. Not every volunteer may be fully involved in all these tasks.
For our volunteers, two different living options are available in the beautiful city of Antigua:
An important part of our volunteer work projects in Guatemala has always been to provide an intense glimpse into the everyday life and culture of the host country. Therefore, our volunteers in Antigua live in homestays so that they immerse into local customs, taste authentic meals, and experience the daily life of a family in Guatemala. You will quickly realize how much your Spanish skills improve each day. Our homestays are carefully screened and selected, and many hosts have years of experience with foreign guests. In addition to a hospitable accommodation, you will receive three meals a day. You will be provided with a single room, while the bathroom can be private or shared. The homestays are located in Antigua.
Alternatively, if volunteers wish to live amongst other foreigners visiting Guatemala, we can provide accommodation in a nice guest house. This accommodation features a single bedroom and access to a kitchen for self-catering. There is internet in the guest house.
Antigua is a beautiful colonial town in the south of Guatemala about an hour from the capital, Guatemala City, and surrounded by perfectly shaped volcanoes. Antigua is one of the most visited places in Central America. The city is famous for its Spanish colonial buildings, picturesque courtyards, interesting markets, beautiful churches and a colorful labyrinth of streets. The city is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage since 1979. Antigua is located in the highlands of Guatemala at about 1,600 meters above sea level.
Antigua has an abundance of tour operators and agencies that offer exciting tours to all parts of the country. Whether you want to get to know the jungle, the Mayan culture, the Pacific coast or you are looking for cultural activities, in Antigua you are guaranteed to find someone who organizes exactly what you are looking for.
Antigua has an average daily temperature of 20 °C all year round, while the nights are quite cool. The rainy season is from June to October, the dry season from November to May.
Spanish at communication level. For optimal preparation for your volunteer work in Guatemala, we advise you to take a Spanish course before the program starts. This gives you the opportunity to slowly get used to the language, culture and mentality.
Pre-departure and in-country support
Before arrival, our experienced team will be at your disposal to assist you throughout the booking process and travel planning. With the booking confirmation you will receive our 24-hour emergency number, so that you can reach us 24/7 in case of emergency.
In addition to the assistance given by our office staff you will be supported by our partner organization in Guatemala located in Antigua.
Costs & Services
Our volunteer work in a Health Care Center in Guatemala includes:
- Single room in Homestay (full board) or single room in guest house (no meals)
- Professional English-speaking advice
- Translation of your application documents
- Elaboration of your internal application profile
- Volunteer Work Placement in Guatemala
- English-speaking in-country support
- Welcome meeting in Antigua
- Escort to the volunteer project on the first day
- Handbook Guatemala
- Intercultural guideline
- 24/7 emergency number
- Information regarding suitable travel insurance
- Certificate of participation
Costs when living in Homestay
(single room, full board except on Sunday)
Application fee: US$ 150
Program fee: US$ 590 (minimum stay 2 weeks)
Each additional week: US$ 135
Costs when living in Guest House
(single room, self-catering)
Application fee: US$ 150
Program fee: US$ 680 (minimum stay 2 weeks)
Each additional week: US$ 180
Additionally, you can book:
Our tips (experience more + see more = save $$)
Is it difficult for you to decide between the many great projects? You want to see and experience as much as possible during your stay in Latin America? Then build your own itinerary - experience more & see more! Our program combination makes it possible!
All our stay abroad programs can be combined with each other: So, you can combine different volunteer projects in the same country or in different countries, or you mix Working Holiday with volunteer work or Farm Stay with Working Holiday ...and so on …
Your creativity knows no limits. The longer your stay abroad in Latin America, the greater the discount you get from South America Inside. Below you can see how much you can save:
Note: Language courses are excluded from this promotion. These discounts can not be combined with other promotions.
If you need assistance in putting together your personal experience abroad, then please contact us. Our experienced staff will help you to set up your tailor-made stay abroad.