Maximo Nivel

Human Rights Internships in Costa Rica

San José, Costa Rica show on map

Agency | Maximo Nivel

Work with an NGO in Costa Rica.

Human Rights placements are typically with community organizations, NGOs, and government agencies. Interns work with change agents and other social workers who are focused on empowerment and social justice. You help with community outreach, education, research, and fundraising. Immerse yourself into a community and a project and see first-hand the impacts of culture, social values, and the roles of politics, religion, gender, and ethnicity.

Possible tasks for Human Rights Interns include:​

  • Support marketing via website updates, social media, and creation of promotional materials
  • Interview potential recipients and/or beneficiaries
  • Collaborate on projects or events
  • Translate or edit documents
  • Create presentations for potential projects
  • Attend organizational meetings
  • Support staff in daily office tasks

When finding a suitable internship placement, Maximo Nivel always take your goals and interests into account. You gain valuable experience in your desired field, but please also keep in mind that placements are meant to be mutually beneficial. The tasks available and assigned to you may vary depending on the current projects and goals of the organization in which you are placed. 

Interns are required to submit weekly journals and a final deliverable.

Internships lasting less than 8 weeks require either a 10-20 page written paper or a 1-hour PowerPoint presentation. Internships that last 8 weeks or longer require both a 10-20 page written paper and a 1-hour PowerPoint presentation. Final deliverables are expected to cover the following:

  • Overview of the organization worked with and the intern's role
  • Organization review
  • Sector analysis in host or home country
  • Analysis of obstacles incurred
  • Outcomes/results
  • Recommendations for the future

As part of the internship program, participants receive 1 hour of private Spanish lessons every day, Monday to Friday. The classes can be personalized to the level and work schedule, and focuses on vocabulary relevant to the internship placement. 

Our Native Spanish Program is taught by experienced, certified, native Spanish instructors. Maximo Nivel uses the Communicative Method of language teaching, which is focused primarily on immersive, spoken interaction as a means of learning. For this reason, please note that teachers speak only in Spanish 100% of the time during class.

Interns are always supported by Maximo Nivel’s in-country coordinators, but they are not with them at their placement every day. Please be prepared for some independence and leadership.

The majority of internship placements are located in and around San José. Travel time varies widely from place to place and interns should expect to spend 20-90 minutes traveling each way. The city bus system is generally the most effective and cheapest way to get to and from your project, though taxis are widely available and are still an option. For the first visit to the placement, interns are taken by a Maximo Nivel representative using the local transport and given additional information about how to get to and from your work place. Local bus rides are very affordable and a one way trip will rarely cost more than ₡350 (about $0.75). Taxis will be much more expensive and the cost will vary.

Typical day

Work hours at the internship placement vary according to the needs of the project, but interns should expect to work 4-6 hours per day, Monday to Friday, and they may have additional planning to do outside of work. 

Spanish classes are also included in the program (1 hour private class every day) and are scheduled during off hours, Monday to Friday.

Details on Arrival

Every Monday, all year round. 

Free-time activities

Within San José, participants can take a city tour, see shows at the National Theatre, visit the central market, and go zip-lining. Our local staff always posts a monthly events calendar to let them know of the activities going on around Maximo. Outside of San José, they can hike up volcanos, go whitewater rafting, and take a trip to the Pacific or Caribbean coasts. There are a lot of options and our staff is well-acquainted with the area to help advise on the must-see places. Tours and trips can also be easily booked through our on-site travel partner.

Swimming
Concert/Music
Sightseeing
Shopping/Souvenirs
Climbing
Hiking
Museum/Opera
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 English (intermediate level) and Spanish (intermediate level)
Education Requirements
at High School level
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

Suitable for

Singles
Couples
50+

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 Maximo Nivel cancels your trip
Resolution Support
We cover your back no matter what happens
Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by Maximo Nivel.

Before your journey

Profound consulting and ongoing support (free)
Maximo Nivel (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 Maximo Nivel

Our fees include:

- Airport pick-up
- Host family accommodations (private room with breakfast and dinner)
- Spanish classes (5 hours private lessons/week)
- Program and safety orientation
- Walking tour
- Official certificate of internship
- Emergency contact number 24/7
- Program management
- Free Tandem Conversation Program
- Free office-wide WIFI and computer lounge
- Free social activities
- Free coffee and tea and on-site snack bar
- Maximo Nivel Institute open 7 days/week

Airport Pickup at Juan Santamaria International Airport
Airport pick up in San José is included. Interns find our representative outside the airport bringing a yellow flag with a smiley face on it.
Accommodation
Interns stay in a traditional family-stay where you they are placed with a pre-approved middle class Costa Rican family. Breakfast and dinner are included in their home stay.
Guest Family
Food & Beverages
Interns have 2 meals included (breakfast and dinner) 7 days a week.
Internet Access
Good 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 Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in San Jose. We assist you to find cheap flights to Costa Rica.
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 Costa Rica provides security and is a plus to have.
Vaccines
If you are intending to volunteer in Costa Rica you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Costa Rica.
Costs (Prices in USD)
4 weeks (min. stay)
$1,925.00
5 weeks
$2,160.00
6 weeks
$2,395.00
7 weeks
$2,630.00
8 weeks
$2,895.00
11 weeks
$3,600.00
19 weeks
$5,480.00
50 weeks (max. stay)
$12,765.00
Average fees
$368.00/week

You can volunteer at the project site in San José/Costa Rica between 4 weeks and 50 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Maximo Nivel 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 Costa Rica.
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 {project.name} during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.
  Americas Central America Costa Rica  San José, De la Farmacia La Bomba, 75 metros Sur, San Pedro, San José, Costa Rica

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