High in the Andes mountains, immerse yourself in the life of rural Ecuador. During your time in community, you might learn to harvest potatoes alongside your host dad or help your host sister herd your family’s llamas.
Throughout the summer, work with local teens to grow their micro-enterprise. This project gives you the opportunity to travel with your community counterparts to entrepreneurship workshops, build your business savvy, and design a sustainable micro-enterprise. Together with teens from your community, work on your business pitch and plan a project budget, then defend your business in a competition to win extra funding for your project.

About the Region


Mountainous. Daytime temperatures range from 45°F to 65°F and often drop below freezing at night.


Achachai = how cold!


Potatoes, cuy (guinea pig)


High altitude in the Andes mountains


Potatoes, Andean tubers, quinoa, Andean corn, barley, and onions.


Ecuatorianos, Riobambeños

Project Features

AMIGOS participants increase their language ability through immersion that goes beyond what can be achieved in a classroom. They improve their fluency, learn local slang, and increase their confidence with real-world practice.
Living with a host family is central to the AMIGOS experience. All host families volunteer to open their homes to young people from another culture. Participants and host families build long-lasting relationships and often stay in touch after the project has closed.
While in country, AMIGOS participants work on a community-led service project. Every service project is unique, but each channels young people's ideas to create postive change.
The opportunity for independence and self direction makes AMIGOS unique. Participants shape their time in country according to their passions. the possibilities are endless - what each participants takes out of their experience is up to them!
Every Amigo is mentored by a member of our project leadership team through regular check-ins and personalized feedback. This allows participants to experience the independence hat sets out programs apart, with the support of a passionate facilitator.
Participants build their leadership and community development skills through hands-on training. Not only is AMIGOS training fun and engaging, it gives participants the necessary tools for success in the field and beyond.
  • National Participants
  • Length
    7 weeks
  • Training Dates
    Houston Gateway Training
    June 22 - June 26
  • In-Country Dates
    June 26 – August 15d
  • Ages
    15 - 22
  • Price
    $6,275 (includes international airfare)
Ready to start your application?

This is one of the most popular projects, so apply and reserve your spot!

AMIGOS absolutely changed my life. Through the challenging experiences I faced as a volunteer and project staff member I proved to myself what I am capable of accomplishing and now when I face an obstacle I have concrete examples to look back on and prove to myself that I am capable of accomplishing whatever I set my mind to.
2013 Summer Program Participant
Program Requirements