Nicaragua is an amazing country to spend some time volunteering. Take a break from your rush travel and stay in Nicaragua doing volunteer, it is a great opportunity to know the country better, save some money and make a better world.
Volunteering can be a tough decision, you don´t know the country and you are not sure about where to start. Believe me when I said that you will get over it and would be the best choice that you will do. Find here 5 website to find volunteer opportunities!
The advantages of volunteering are endless and Nicaragua is an amazing place to try it. Here are some ideas and great places where you can apply.
Teachers can have an easier time finding a teaching job in Nicaragua. The main cities like Granada, Leon or San Juan del Sur have a lot of languages institutes and universities where you can apply since the tourism is growing, their need for learning English is a priority. Also, you can exchange classes, learn some Spanish and teach some English, it is a win-win!
If you want to stay away from the main touristic places, think about applying for a local school, maybe one in a community. It is hard for some schools finding teachers that are willing to live in a remote location.
Most of the time some certificated as TEFL is required, especially for teaching in universities or private schools. But you can also find opportunities without any certifications. Usually having a certification gives you the chance to earn money. If you are already traveling, don´t worry, you can still get your certification in Nicaragua. For example, Leon place one of the international TEFL academies and you will only need 4 weeks.
Nicaragua it is a paradise for surfers, traveling through its coast and surfing all over. San Juan del Sur is a crowded city full of tourist and surfers, but you can also find some more quiet beaches.
There are a lot of hotels and surf stores that offer you good deals as a volunteer. The most often one is having a bed and meals for free while you teach some surf. Other ones offer you free bed while you work at the bar some hours a day. The best part is that you will live close to the ocean, any free time you have you could go inside and fight with the waves.
Some of this places are, for example, the Surfing Turtle Lodge located on an island 20 minutes from Leon. Work at the hostel for a free bed, meanwhile, you will have almost a private beach where you can surf all day long.
Discover the volcanos in Nicaragua and have amazing adventures being a hiking guide. Every year more tourist go to Nicaragua, most of them hike at least one of the volcanos that are in the country.
Being a guide is a demanding job, English is usually required, as well as a good physical condition, but the rewards are amazing. You just need some weeks to learn the paths and the volcano`s history, after that you are ready to lead some hikes and enjoy the stunning views.
Two of the companies that offer that opportunity are in Leon, and they are non-profit tour operators. Basically, you will be hiking volcanos and helping a great cause.
If you know me (or you read my about me page), you already know that I worked for Quetzaltrekkers Leon, an amazing non-profit tour operator that offers volcano hikes and all their profits go to help children. Quetzaltrekkers has an interesting volunteer offer, minimum three months, you will have the chance to become a hiking guide and live with other volunteers from all around the world. Your work will go directly for helping projects working with kids.
Sonati is also another non-profit that offer volunteer positions, they have two offices: one in Leon and another one in Esteli. Becoming a volunteer for Sonati is also a fantastic experience, their focus is the environment and teaching the children how to take care of it.
One of the most recurrent volunteer all over Central America is working in a bar or in a hostel. You usually have a room for free, while you are working serving cocktails. This is a perfect volunteering for travelers who love to party and meet new people.
This opportunity can be adapted to your plans really good, save some money on housing while you are crashing at the hostel, meet some cool people, know the city for more than some days and leave when you are ready.
The two requirements are speaking English and, at least, know how to prepare basic drinks and shots. And the most important being able to party all night!
Do you mind getting your hands dirty? Are you looking for something more authentic? Work hand in hand with Nicaraguan farmers using traditional agricultural techniques, the perfect cultural immersion experience. Farms usually arrange work-exchange home stays.
Coffee is one of the most common farms where you can volunteer, but there are other types of farms too. Whether you would like to learn more about sustainable farming or coffee production, you will have the chance to learn and gain experience.
You will find opportunities in Matagalpa, an area where coffee is one of the main incomes. Finca Esperanza Verde is an Eco lodge and organic coffee farm serving as a financial resource for community projects. They offer to do volunteer work at the farm as well as in the surrounding communities.
Ometepe Island is another great place for farming volunteering. Project Bona Fide promotes food sovereignty locally and regionally. As a volunteer you will be weeding, building mulch piles, pruning trees, harvesting, construction, and much more. A unique environment for your volunteer experience!