PROGRAMS
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES IN CENTRAL AND SOUTH AMERICA

Learn about the world by living in it! AMIGOS provides volunteers age 13 to 22 the safest, most authentic service and immersion experiences in Latin America. Living and working in a new country gives you the chance to improve your Spanish, make an impact, gain confidence, and build leadership skills. You'll get to see the world in a truly unique way!

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What you’ll do:
  • Go beyond travel and live with a host family in a new country
  • Make real friendships that last a lifetime
  • Volunteer side-by-side with local residents
  • Improve your Spanish by using it in everyday conversation
  • Experience a new culture
  • Earn up to 270 service hours
  • Gain confidence and leadership skills that prepare you for college beyond!

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SUMMER PROGRAM FEATURES

AMIGOS programs provide a unique opportunity to experience a new culture as a local, not a tourist. Volunteers report increased fluency in Spanish after going through our program. Activities go far beyond the classroom — you’ll lead activities in Spanish, learn local slang, and increase your confidence with real-world practice. You will not believe how fast your Spanish improves when you use it in conversation everyday!

AMIGOS works with trusted local partner organizations to identify communities that are passionate and committed to working with our volunteers on community service projects. It has been our experience that a service project is sustainable only when the community owns it and participates in the effort. You will collaborate on a service project with volunteers your own age as well as community members.

You’ll get to do way more than just travel — you’ll live with a host family, sharing in their day-to-day life. Become part of your host community, making friends with and working alongside community members. Share holidays, celebrations, and everyday life in a way you can only experience through authentic cultural immersion. AMIGOS volunteers and their host families build long-lasting relationships and often stay in touch after their project ends. All of our host families are vetted and trained before volunteers arrive.

AMIGOS is the industry leader in health and safety management. Our staff is prepared to help you with any situation that may arise. Each volunteer receives a personalized emergency plan, as well as support from local staff teams and a professional 24-hour On-Call Safety Team of travel specialists, doctors, and mental health specialists. AMIGOS also has an established network of vetted medical clinics and hospitals throughout the region.

Prepare for AMIGOS through guided training in topics like:

  • Multicultural understanding;
  • Health and safety;
  • Community development;
  • Travel safety;
  • Spanish;
  • Leadership; and
  • Team building.

Upon arrival in the field, you’ll start country-specific training with your group of fellow volunteers. During your time abroad, you’ll meet regularly with an AMIGOS staff member who serves as your mentor. Finally, at the end of your service, come together again as a group to participate in debriefing — putting what you learned in context, preparing to go home, and going on fun excursions around the country.

Don’t miss out on must-see spots in your host country! You’ll travel as a group to experience unique destinations your host country has to offer, like volcanoes, ancient ruins, national parks, and historical sites. You’ll get to see these places from the distinct perspective of someone who has lived in that country and learned about the culture firsthand. Plus, you’ll bond with their fellow volunteers and have fun!


2019 PROJECTS
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES FOR HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATES AND COLLEGE STUDENTS

Accredited by the Gap Year Association, our Gap Programs provide unparalleled cultural immersion and leadership experiences for high school graduates. You’ll complete an internship with a local organization, and live with a host family for your entire stay, becoming part of the community and learning what it’s like to live abroad. You’ll work to craft and implement a sustainable service project. With fellow volunteers, you’ll go on excursions to must-see spots! And you’ll have the adventure of a lifetime exploring a new country.

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What to Expect with an AMIGOS Gap Program
  • Live like a local with your host family
  • Complete an internship, earning 30+ service hours each week
  • Improve your Spanish through authentic cultural immersion
  • Enjoy the independence to design projects, travel, and shape your own experience
  • Collaborate with community members on a sustainable service project
  • Engage in professional leadership training
  • Explore the country with other participants on monthly excursions
  • Count on 24/7 on-call support

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Why Choose an AMIGOS Gap Program?

Each day brings new and unique opportunities! Find the best local spot in your new city, learn traditional dances, make new friends with people in your community, practice your Spanish, hike in national parks, and more!

Intern with a local partner agency to gain real work experience and help you hone the skills necessary for the real world. AMIGOS matches you with an internship based on your interests and goals, ensuring you get the most out of your experience.

From art and organic farming to business management and global development, you’ll have the freedom to explore topics that interest you. You’ll also learn about contemporary international development at monthly workshops. Get a glimpse into what life would be like working at the U.S. Embassy or as a Peace Corps Volunteer!

Community organizing, speaking Spanish, managing projects, accounting and budgeting, public speaking…These are just a handful of the practical, resume-ready skills you’ll cultivate on an AMIGOS Gap Program! Get a head start on your future by building these dynamic skills valued by modern employers.

The best way to grow as a person is to journey beyond your comfort zone and experience new things. AMIGOS gap alumni say they are more confident, better prepared for college, more focused, and more resilient.

Connect with people around the world who you would otherwise never have met! Bond with your host family over meals, make friends at your internship, and spend time with your fellow gap volunteers throughout your time abroad.

Do more than travel — live abroad! You’ll become part of a local community, making your time infinitely more rewarding. Immerse yourself in an authentic, one-of-a-kind experience far beyond anything else out there.


2019 PROJECTS

The things you will learn and experience, the relationships you will build, and the joy and love you will feel are irreplaceable and will remain with you through the rest of your life.

Emma, Gap Program Volunteer