South America Inside

Support an Indigenous Community

San Miguel del Bala, Bolivia show on map
Live with natives of the Amazon and experience their way of life. Play with children, teach English, and learn indigenous farming and cooking techniques. This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Singles
Couples
50+

The Project

This project takes place in a village that is located beside the Beni River in the Bolivian Amazon. It is nearby a national park, which is known worldwide for its biodiversity. The village is only accessible by a 40-minute boat ride. You will live with a local community that has around 235 people. A few years ago, the community built an eco-lodge, which has cabins and a restaurant for guests. The money from the lodge goes towards preserving the nature and improving education and health in the local community.

When the nearby Madidi National Park was created, the community was complete against it, however, overtime they changed their opinion after seeing the many benefits that tourism has brought to the area. Instead of protesting against the park, they now protect it as park rangers. The community lives directly in nature, and depends on it for survival. 

This project will show you how to live in harmony with nature, without the need of modern technology. You will be welcomed warmly by the community and learn about their way of life. 

Typical day

Your Tasks

As a volunteer, you will live and work in an indigenous community, which is home to Tacana indians. You will learn how the indigenous people plant rice and collect fruits and vegetables for their food in addition to learning about the way they hunt and make medicine. You will learn to live like them by working and directly interacting with members in the community.


On a daily basis, you will teach the adults and children English/ your native language, guide tourists, help in the kitchen, and assist with household chores. There are many things volunteers can do, so you should be flexible to help wherever the community needs you!


Please keep in mind that you will live a very simple way of life. You should be respectful of the people and their traditions, which span several centuries.

Free-time activities

In your spare time, there are a lot of different activities to choose from, such as playing sports in the local community or hiking around the jungle or just admire the exotic wildlife.

Swimming
Climbing
Hiking
Sports
Yoga/Meditation

Program Requirements

In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s) or if your are accompanied by your parents.
Language Skills
You need to speak Spanish (intermediate level)
Education Requirements
at High School level
Required Documents
CV
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 09:00 - 17:00

Included Services

Extra security layer by Volunteer World
Volunteer World is the world's leading comparison platform for international volunteer opportunities. We guide you through a safe and easy application process - including all necessary payments. Planning your next meaningful trip with Volunteer World gives you free access to our:
Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if South America Inside cancels your trip
Support & Mediation
We cover your back no matter what happens
Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by South America Inside.

Before your journey

Profound consulting and ongoing support (free)
South America Inside (your host organization) provides consulting and is keen to answer all your questions. Once you reserved your spot, you will receive the contact details of your volunteer project.
Online preparation course (optional, from $49)
Prepare yourself and become a confident and well informed traveler. Global Travel Academy takes you on a journey before you leave home, helping you to become one of the world's greatest travelers. Our trusted partner for online learning offers courses in "International Volunteering", "Travel Health & Safety" and "Travel Safety Abroad".

On-site services

Services by South America Inside
  1. Accommodation in volunteer house or with Host Family
  2. Full-board (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
  3. Round-trip flight La Paz-Rurrenabaque-La Paz
  4. Pick-up in Rurrenabaque by boat

  5. Consultation from our experienced staff
  6. Translation of application profile
  7. Volunteer work placement
  8. Advice regarding travel insurance
  9. Advice on local travels
  10. Orientation session upon arrival
  11. Orientation kit
  12. Country handbook
  13. Local support
  14. 24/7 Emergency Number
  15. Certificate of Participation
Airport Pickup at El Alto International Airport

You will be picked-up by boat in Rurrenabaque and brought to the project site in the middle of the jungle.

Accommodation

During your volunteer work in Bolivia, you will either live with a group of tourists at the Eco-Lodge or in the especially built volunteer cottage which is taken care of by an indigenous host family. Your host family will provide you with meals and you may even receive an invitation to stay in one of their typical houses. You will be surprised to see that in the typical household all family members sleep in the same room, which also serves as the kitchen and the living room. In their home, you will have the opportunity to learn and practice indigenous cooking techniques and try the delicious recipes. Take your chance, This is a completely unique experience that is not offered to mere tourists.

The meals provided by the host family typically contain the ingredients that the family grows, hunts, and fishes. Mostly, they eat fruits, vegetables, fresh fish, corn, rice, and occasionally some red meat.

Volunteers can also eat and live with other tourists at the Eco-Lodge. In the lodge, the meals are more international and may also include chicken and beef.

Guest Family
Food & Beverages

Full-board is provided (breakfast, lunch, dinner).

Internet Access
Limited access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is El Alto International Airport (LPB) in La Paz. We assist you to find cheap flights to Bolivia.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Bolivia provides security and is a plus to have.
Vaccines
If you are intending to volunteer in Bolivia you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Bolivia.
Costs: Prices in USD
4 weeks (min. stay)
$ 1,845
5 weeks
$ 2,125
6 weeks
$ 2,405
7 weeks
$ 2,685
8 weeks
$ 2,965
24 weeks (max. stay)
$ 7,445
Average fees
$ 386 /week

You can volunteer at the project site in San Miguel del Bala/Bolivia between 4 weeks and 24 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. South America Inside will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Crowdfunding Service
Generally, volunteering abroad involves certain costs. In case you need financial support, we will assist you to fundraise your volunteer program in Bolivia.
Deposit (15%)
The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.
Final Payment (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with South America Inside during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.
  Americas South America Bolivia  San Miguel del Bala, Bolivia

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