2 Clinton Place New Rochelle, NY 10801 United States
Guatemala: Guatemala City
Fall, Spring, Summer, Winter, Trimester, Academic Year, Throughout the year
1-2 weeks, 2-4 weeks, 5-8 weeks, 9-12 weeks
Typical Duration of Program
Start dates year-round
Volunteering abroad is the opportunity of a lifetime, and our flexible short-term programs let you design your ideal experience in Guatemala. Volunteer from 1 week to 3 months, in meaningful projects that will let you work side-by-side with local people and experience Guatemalan culture like never before.
As a volunteer in Guatemala, you will experience first-hand one of the world's most diverse and historically rich nations. The population includes Ladinos, or people of Spanish heritage, Mayans, and Mestizos, people who are a mix of both Ladino and Mayan. The Mayan population is made up of 22 different ethnicities all with their own unique dress and language that distinguishes them. Although present day Guatemala is known primarily for its Mayan roots and vibrant culture, the country has many layers to its rich political history.
Cross-Cultural Solutions first began accepting volunteers in Guatemala in the summer of 2003 in the capital, Guatemala City. With hundreds of enthusiastic returned volunteers from all around the world spreading the word, the need to expand in Guatemala became apparent. In the Spring of 2007, CCS opened in Quetzaltenango, the nation's second largest city. In Quetzaltenango, originally known as "Xe laju' noj" or "under ten mountains," volunteers have the opportunity to explore the city's intriguing Mayan heritage and experience the excitement of Guatemala's second most populous city.
Volunteers in Guatemala City are involved with caring for infants and children, teaching children, caring for the elderly, assisting local health professionals, caring for people with disabilities, sharing their professional skills/experience, and working towards women's empowerment. Volunteer work in Quetzaltenango are involved with caring for infants and children, teaching children, caring for the elderly, teaching English, and assisting teachers.
Cross-Cultural Solutions is a recognized leader in the field of international volunteering, with more than 4,000 volunteers each year. Founded in 1995, we are an international not-for-profit organization with no political or religious affiliations. CCS has a worldwide staff of more than 300 people, and operates in 12 countries, with administrative offices also located in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia. We are in Special Consultative Status with the United Nations, and have been profiled in more than 500 news outlets.
Special one-week programs are offered during the holidays with start dates during Thanksgiving, Christmas and Spring Break.
The Central American country of Guatemala is a neighbor to Mexico, Belize, Honduras and El Salvador, with coastlines on the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea. A majority of Guatemala is mountainous, with more than 30 volcanoes. From lush, tropical rainforests to rich and fertile plains, the country's rich geography contributes to its variety of climates.
Guatemala is also known for its cultural diversity. The population is a mix between Ladinos, or people of Spanish heritage, Mayans and Mestizos, people that are a mix of both Ladino and Mayan. The Mayan population is made up of 22 different ethnicities all with their own unique dress and language that distinguishes them.
Although present-day Guatemala is known primarily for its Mayan roots and vibrant culture, the country has many layers to its rich political history, from Spanish and Mexican rule to many other forms of government, to a 36-year civil war that ended with the 1996 Peace Accords. Since then, Guatemala has seen an emphasis on legal, linguistic, and educational rights for the indigenous communities and has enjoyed greater stability and tranquility for the country as a whole.
Cross-Cultural Solutions offers a wide variety of programs and experiences, but all of our volunteers come away with the same benefits:
* Personal Growth
* Having a Purpose
* Gaining Independence and Confidence
* Connecting with Others
* Seeing a Country from the Inside-Out
The CCS Home-Base
CCS offers volunteers unprecedented support, and our entire infrastructure is designed around volunteer safety. Each of our programs is located close to a CCS Home-Base, your "home away from home" while volunteering abroad. Each Home-Base is exclusively for CCS volunteers, and designed for your safety and comfort. Here, you can connect with other volunteers and CCS staff, reflect on your experiences, enjoy meals together, read, and relax.
The CCS experience also includes cultural and learning activities so that you can learn about the local culture. These include an in-depth orientation, language training, guest speakers and more. Volunteers also have plenty of free time to relax, reflect, or explore the community and country.
No special skills required.
Please visit our website for program fees.
What you get for the fee
* Personalized Volunteer Placement with our Partner Programs, based on your skills and interests, including all the coordination, in-person visits and communication necessary with each local organization.
* In-country Perspectives Programming that includes excursions to nearby points of interest, special events and discussions with a variety of local cultural, professional, governmental and community agencies and people.
* Cross-Cultural Solutions' Home-Base structure, providing you with a comfortable, safe place to live, the basic amenities, all of your meals, and transportation to and from all Cross-Cultural Solutions' placements and programs.
* An experienced U.S. based Cross-Cultural Solutions Program Manager (and former volunteer with Cross-Cultural Solutions) who will serve as your coordinator, guide, and liaison with our in-country staff.
* In-country basic language assistance (optional).
* Professional, locally-based staff to provide orientation, supervision and guidance throughout your stay.
* Travel medical insurance and emergency evacuation insurance, applicable to participants worldwide.
* Important documents, including in-depth pre-departure packs, orientation information, and all in-country informational materials.
* Country-based airport transportation.
* Local phone calls.
* In-coming international phone service.
* A toll-free 24-hour emergency hotline in the U.S.
While other volunteer programs may require certain skills or degrees, Cross-Cultural Solutions' programs are open to everyone. No matter what you believe your skill level to be, you have something meaningful and helpful to offer. We are dedicated to providing a meaningful placement for anyone willing to volunteer, and believe that the only skills required for international volunteering are a willingness to learn and an open mind.
18 and older, younger applicants accepted with application
Worldwide Participants. This Program is also open to Families, Couples and Individuals.
Our mission is to operate volunteer programs around the world in partnership with sustainable community initiatives, bringing people together to work side-by-side while sharing perspectives and fostering cultural understanding. We are an international not-for-profit organization with no political or religious affiliations.