Volunteers are assigned to a particular class in which to aid the teacher in various educational activities during normal school hours.
Teacher’s Aid: Morning Program
Level of Spanish Required: Basic
The Teacher's Assistant Program is the most active program available at NDG and the one that needs the most support from volunteers. The highest priorities go to our youngest students (párvulos and prepa), so depending on the amount of volunteers at the given time, one should expect to be working with children that are very young. Volunteers will be paired with a grade from the school to aid one of our amazing teachers in any way possible; whether it is helping children cut and glue paper into notebooks, handing out soap or toothpaste, helping children with in-class worksheets or homework, volunteers can expect to be very busy!
The Morning Program at our schools is based on the national curriculum (Curiculo Nacionál Base) designed and approved by the Guatemalan Ministry of Education. This includes classes in mathematics, language, history, science, art, and physical education. Following this curriculum ensures that our students will ultimately receive a diploma accepted throughout Guatemala.
Each volunteer is assigned to a particular teacher and grade throughout their stay. As teachers’ aids, volunteers are responsible for:
NDG’s motto has always been that everyone can do something. Dedicated volunteers are key to our mission of breaking the cycle of poverty through education in Guatemala. Through our program, you can get off the beaten track and experience Antigua’s wonderful, culture, people, and landscapes, all while giving back in our schools.
Our volunteers come from all types of backgrounds and range in age from eighteen to sixty. We have an average of five people volunteering with us at any given time. During high season, however, there may be as many as fifteen volunteers in our programs at once.How far in advance of my start date do I need to contact NDG?
Ideally, volunteers should contact us at least six weeks before they hope to begin working with us. However, we understand that this is not always possible and try to be as flexible as we can.How long do I have to commit to volunteering?
NDG generally requires a minimum commitment of four weeks from our volunteers. If you choose to design your own program (e.g. for Expresión Artistica), however, we ask that you stay for at least two months.What level of Spanish is required to volunteer?
The level of Spanish required differs from program to program. However, all of our volunteers must have at least a basic level of Spanish. If you have never learned Spanish before, you may opt to do classes through our social business, Cambio Spanish School, which reinvests 100% of its profits in NDG. (If you would prefer to begin studying before you come to Guatemala, Cambio also offers Skype lessons!) As a volunteer, you will receive up to a 30% discount on the normal hourly price.How much supervision will I have?
In general, our volunteers need to be independent and flexible.
Our Volunteer Coordinator will bring you out to the school on your first day to introduce you to the teachers and class(es) that you will be working with. After that, he or she will be with you at the project two days a week. Of course, you are more than welcome to reach out to our Volunteer Coordinator with questions or concerns at any point!
In the classroom, our volunteers are supervised and guided by experienced Guatemalan teachers.How does NDG decide where to place volunteers?
Volunteers are assigned to either Nuestro Futuro or El Porvenir for the duration of their trip. The decision of where to place volunteers is based on the level of need in our schools at any given time.Does NDG provide a living stipend?
At the moment, NDG is unable to provide any compensation to our volunteers. They are responsible for the cost of their own flights, accommodation, and living expenses throughout their stay in Guatemala. However, we will help in any way that we can when it comes to arranging your trip and making your stay in Antigua as comfortable as possible. This includes booking Spanish classes, planning airport transfers and locating home stays where necessary.
The majority of NDG’s volunteers live in the beautiful colonial town of La Antigua. With a population of roughly 40,000 people, Antigua is set in a spectacular valley, surrounded by 3 volcanos and beautiful foothills. Antigua is a destination for tourists from around the world, as it is home to a unique Guatemalan culture, a plethora of Spanish language schools, and a base for continued travel throughout the country. Incredible ruins and churches dating back to colonial times give the town a unique and interesting feeling, as it was (and still is) a place of large historical significance. Antigua is the perfect place for volunteers to live during their time in Guatemala, as it is a much more developed and comfortable town than the most of the country, yet it is significantly less expensive than the average costs of living in the United States or Europe. During their free time, volunteers can travel to nearby destinations such as Lake Atitlan, the pacific coast, large Guatemalan markets, and beautiful hot springs. Within the city itself, volunteers can expect to enjoy the vast array of cuisine, the diverse traveler scene, the entertaining nightlife, and rich cultural diversity.