Explore the intersection of environmental protection and community health in the heart of Panama! Promote healthy living, climate-friendly environmental practices, and mosquito-borne illness prevention by learning and working alongside locals and the Ministry of Health. Explore the tropical scenery and the diverse geography of the Coclé region in Panama.

Apply now!
Length Training
Dates
In-Country
Dates
Ages Application
Deadline
Price
Session A 4 Weeks

Online training on health and safety, mental health, travel, and AMIGOS history before departure. Leadership and orientation training take place in-country.

June 6–July 3, 2023

15–19 Final Deadline: April 18, 2023

$4,675 – Local Chapter (Find out more about joining AMIGOS through a local chapter here)

$6,175 – National Chapter

Fees include all in-country expenses.

Session B 4 Weeks

Online training on health and safety, mental health, travel, and AMIGOS history before departure. Leadership and orientation training take place in-country.

July 11–August 7, 2023

15–19 Final Deadline: May 9, 2023

$4,675 – Local Chapter (Find out more about joining AMIGOS through a local chapter here)

$6,175 – National Chapter

Fees include all in-country expenses.

  • Session A
  • Length
    4 Weeks
  • Training Dates

    Online training on health and safety, mental health, travel, and AMIGOS history before departure. Leadership and orientation training take place in-country.

  • In-Country Dates

    June 6–July 3, 2023

  • Ages
    15–19
  • Application Deadline
    Final Deadline: April 18, 2023
  • Price

    $4,675 – Local Chapter (Find out more about joining AMIGOS through a local chapter here)

    $6,175 – National Chapter

    Fees include all in-country expenses.

  • Session B
  • Length
    4 Weeks
  • Training Dates

    Online training on health and safety, mental health, travel, and AMIGOS history before departure. Leadership and orientation training take place in-country.

  • In-Country Dates

    July 11–August 7, 2023

  • Ages
    15–19
  • Application Deadline
    Final Deadline: May 9, 2023
  • Price

    $4,675 – Local Chapter (Find out more about joining AMIGOS through a local chapter here)

    $6,175 – National Chapter

    Fees include all in-country expenses.

About the Project

CLIMATE

Tropical, hot in the day time, but nights can be cooler.

SERVICE HOURS

Earn 48 service hours

College Credit

Get two college credits for this project! Find out more here.

SLANG

buenas = hi
aguacero = rainstorm
refrigerio = snack
que pretti = how cool

FOOD

Sancocho de gallina – chicken soup with vegetables and yucca 
Hojaldres – fried dough 
Tamales – spiced meat filling in corn dough, wrapped in banana leaves, and cooked 

CITIZENS

Panameños

WHAT MAKES THIS PROJECT UNIQUE?

You will live with a Panamanian host family in a small community in the Coclé region. Live like a local by participating in their day-to-day activities. This immersive experience will give you a chance to use your Spanish skills in Panama! 

Most of the host families on this project are small subsistence farmers, and many people in the region feel a strong commitment to the environment. This area is a hydrological reserve, which means that it’s an important water source for the country, and the nearby rivers are popular for swimming.  

LIVE WITH A HOST FAMILY 

Dive deep into Panamanian culture by living with a host family! You’ll get to practice your Spanish, spend time with your host family and members of the community, and learn about a new culture by living in it. 

STRUCTURED INDEPENDENCE 

One or two AMIGOS volunteers will also live in your host community and a staff member will visit you at least once a week to check in with you and provide support as needed. Your summer experience will be largely what you make of it! 

Cocle, Panama
A group of students sitting in a circle outside playing games
Find out more about our programs

Join an online info session!

RSVP HERE

What You'll Do

Coclé 

The Coclé Province has great Pacific beaches, large expanses of highlands, national parks, and clouded mountain peaks. It is also an agricultural hub. The production of sugarcane, rice, cattle, and citrus fruit is an important economic source for the communities. You will get to participate in community-based development projects, environmental practices for healthy living, and projects that support community health initiatives.  

Partner Agency 

Collaborate with the Panamanian Ministry of Health and local community members on your service project.  

Example Activities 

  • Plan and lead fun activities for kids to teach them about taking care of the environment.  
  • Excursions to the Panama Canal and Panama City’s colonial center, Casco Viejo.  
  • Earn 48 service hours volunteering on community projects. 
  • Learn to cook traditional Panamanian dishes, such as sancocho.  

A Day in the Life

Typical Day

  • Enjoy hojaldres and coffee with your host family 
  • Lead activities for kids about community health and mosquito-borne illnesses
  • Support with English classes at the local school
  • Have lunch with your host family
  • Meet up with your AMIGOS partner(s) to work on your community service project
  • Lead a community meeting
  • Play games with your host siblings
  • Practice your Spanish over dinner with your host family

Excursions and Activities

  • Spend a day at Santa Clara beach
  • Visit Omar Torrijos Park for volunteer service led by the Ministry of the Environment and Parks Department
  • Attend FiestAmistad, a fun event with artisans, environmental leaders, music, and dancing
  • Meet local Peace Corps volunteers
  • Plant trees and maintain trails around local protected areas
  • Route Picnic, spend a day with AMIGOS volunteers and staff halfway through your time in your host community
  • Hike through rainforest and cloud forest to reach the top of Cerro Gaital

Program Pillars

Ethical Service

Learn how to create ethical service initiatives by working with–not for–a community, engaging local organizations and partners, and evaluating the impact of your work. AMIGOS works with trusted local partners that are passionate and committed to working with our volunteers on community service projects.

Cultural Humility

Cultural humility is a process of both self-reflection about your own culture as well as learning about other cultures. You will examine your own beliefs and cultural identity and gain an understanding of how structural racism has impacted societies and the roles that communities can take to lead systemic change.

Leadership

Learn, grow, and discover your leadership potential! Explore your sense of purpose and start to establish your personal goals and values through introspection and inquiry.

five students walking on a hillside in Panama
Apply Now

Click here

Why Choose AMIGOS?

Have an Adventure

Travel off the beaten path and to must-see spots in Ecuador! Live like a local, not a tourist, with a host family in your host community. You’ll get to see these places from the distinct perspective of someone who has spent time in that country and learned about the culture firsthand. Plus, you’ll bond with volunteers and community members and have fun!

Travel with Trust

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. A Health and Wellness Coordinator is on staff with the group throughout the duration of their stay. AMIGOS also has an established network of vetted medical clinics and hospitals throughout the region.

Practice Spanish

AMIGOS programs provide a unique opportunity to experience a new culture. Volunteers report increased fluency in Spanish after completing 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 every day!

Throughout the whole experience I made life-long friends, learned about a new culture, and I got to make a real impact in some amazing peoples’ lives. Although it was nothing compared to the impact they made on mine. I was in my community for about 6 weeks, but at the end of it I wanted to stay there for another 2 months because it had become like a second home, a second family.

—Claire, Volunteer in Panama

Program Requirements
  • Have taken 2+ years of Spanish or the equivalent
  • Meet the health criteria for AMIGOS participation and follow the mental health procedures if necessary.
  • Receive required immunizations and medications
  • Be age 15–19 on the project start date
Apply Now

Field Notes

A Weekend at Fiesta Amistad

Archive, Cocle, Panama


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Adventures in Coclé

Archive, Cocle, Panama


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Oropendolas y hojaldres

Archive, Cocle, Panama


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Not us missing them 🤐💖



We guess it’s a tbt now 🤧💕
#explore #panama #amigospanama
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