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Aldeas De Paz - Peace Villages Foundation

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Aldeas De Paz - Peace Villages Foundation

Aldeas De Paz - Peace Villages Foundation Programs

Dominican Republic

Youth Care, Community, and Nature - Enhance the Lives of Kids

Enhance and improve the lives of children in the Dominican Republic by signing up for a Fundacion Aldeas De Paz - Peace Villages Foundation volunteering program. The foundation...

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Dominican Republic

Medicine and Healthcare - Hospital or Dental Clinic

Fundacion Aldeas De Paz - Peace Villages Foundation offers volunteering opportunities in the field of Medicine and Healthcare in the Dominican Republic. This medical observation...

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Dominican Republic

NGO Management - The Day-to-Day running of a small NGO

Fundacion Aldeas De Paz - Peace Villages Foundation NGO Management program in the Dominican Republic is a perfect for those wanting to learn more about how a small grassroots...

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Dominican Republic

Social Multi Media Journalism - Perfect for creative people

Help promote children's rights or ecological tourism in the Dominican Republic through a volunteering program offered by Fundacion Aldeas De Paz - Peace Villages Foundation....

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Dominican Republic

Dental Healthcare – Dentistry observation and experience

Gain practical experience at a dental clinic, and kick-start your career as a dentist. Program participants may be assigned to a dental clinic at a local hospital. They will...

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Dominican Republic

Animal Care & Farm Maintenance in the Dominican Republic

In the Dominican Republic, there are plenty of animals in need of care and of a home. Many dogs are homeless and sick, and you can often find neglected and malnourished horses....

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Dominican Republic

Environmental Conservation & Restoration in the Caribbean

Fast-growing tourism is a serious threat to the environment in the Dominican Republic. Samaná Bay is not only a significant breeding ground and nursery area for humpback...

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Dominican Republic

Hospitality and Tourism – Work at exotic destinations

Aldeas de Paz is offering Hospitality and Tourism internship opportunities in the Dominican Republic. The placements are ideal for individuals who are interested in exotic...

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Aldeas De Paz - Peace Villages Foundation Reviews

Overall Rating

10 / 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

An absolute amazing experience

My volunteer work here in the Dominican Republic has been an absolute amazing experience. It was everything I imagined it would be, if not more. This trip was ultimately supposed to be the answer to my career choice. It became something so much more than that. Not only did I decide that working in a hospital, helping and caring for people is what I want to do for the rest of my life, the people have been nothing but good to me. I was able to exercise my Spanish speaking skills and in return was appreciated for the help I was giving and my capability to communicate with patients and the locals. I've made special bonds with these local people here. Such amazing bonds that I will continue to keep in contact with them and eventually return to visit.
Working in the hospital is rewarding. I believe the most important part of volunteering was knowing the things I was experiencing or witnessing were things I wouldn't have had the opportunity to see in the United States. The conditions the staff works in is absolutely mind blowing. As I mentioned before, this trip has satisfied all of my desires. I am so grateful I had this opportunity and got to meet so many incredible people. Thank you Aldeas de Paz!

Katie

Program: Medicine and Healthcare - Hospital or Dental Clinic

Overall Rating

10 / 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    9

Whilst my time in Samana was short, it was incredibly unforgettable

I was on the NGO programme and I enjoyed it very much. I particularly enjoyed having direct exposure to the overall running of the organisation. It was interesting to see how the coordinators overcame challenges that are often presented in a grass roots charity. I enjoyed these meetings, especially been part of the team that would help come up with different solutions. I also helped at the school and the English lessons for the doctors, both which I enjoyed immensely. The children were always happy to be there and it’s clear the school is an important part of the community. When I first arrived, I definitely experienced a bit of a culture shock! Not speaking the language made it more difficult and probably added my initial anxiety. But after a couple of days, I began to really immerse myself in it. I enjoyed going to the market with the other volunteers to buy food for lunch - the fruit and vegetables were amazing!! After a couple of Spanish lessons I slowly started to get a bit of a feel for the language and if I was struggling, one of the other volunteers would always be there to help. I stayed in the volunteer house which was really lovely, the kitchen was more than substantial and there was plenty space to relax. There is a lot of support amongst the volunteers and always somebody to talk to. Finally, the country itself is incredibly beautiful, there is so much to see and the scenery is truly idyllic. I would really recommend the organisation!

Victoria

Program: NGO Management - The Day-to-Day running of a small NGO

Overall Rating

10 / 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    9

Eye-Opening Experience

Going to a new country as a volunteer is an eye-opening experience, both personally and culturally. Furthermore, it allowed me to reinforce my desire to apply my skills and knowledge to help others. The accommodation and guidance from Julia and Manfred made the trip really comfortable. I have learned a lot from Manfred, he has great ambitions for the organisation. Aldeas de Paz is having a real positive impact in the local community and it is rewarding to know that you have contributed somehow. I met so many amazing people and had so many intense experiences along the way, working with the children from Mama Elba school remains the most wonderful experience of all. I have truly enjoyed my time with Aldeas de Paz and would definitely recommend the NGO to anyone. Thanks again for everything and I will be back again some day!

Program: Youth Care, Community, and Nature - Enhance the Lives of Kids

Overall Rating

10 / 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

A month in a Dominican hospital

Organisation:
The organisation is very welcoming and does its best to make you feel a part of the group, even
before entering the Dominican Republic. For example, I was invited to the organisations WhatsApp
group a week before arriving, so that I could get to know the other volunteers and understand the
latest information occurring in the Dominican Republic. During my stay, staff members, were very
helpful and attentive to my needs and any concerns that I had, which I greatly appreciate. I also
believe that the weekly group meeting was good in making me feel involved and I felt that I could
easily talk to someone if I was not happy about a particular event that occurred during the week.
Hospital:
Working in the hospital as part of the Healthcare Placement, was interesting for my first week as I
had the opportunity to shadow a US doctor, who played a role in consulting patients and prescribing
drugs. It was interesting to see certain diseases which are less common in a developed country, in
addition to this, it was very busy during this period, so there was a lot to observe. My second week
in the medical sonography department was much less interesting, as it is not a busy department to
work in. One advice I could suggest is perhaps, the organisation could inform the directing manager
of the hospital to monitor the departments which are the busiest, and only place volunteers in the
busiest areas. This is so that time is not wasted. My last weeks involved me working in the Dental
Department, in which I was more satisfied with, as staff tried their best to give me tasks to do,
despite the language barrier. Also, I would say to benefit from working in the hospital the most, a
conversational level of Spanish would be much more useful, as there is no hospital staff who can
speak English.
Volunteers:
The other volunteers are very friendly and welcoming, I believe that it is great that all the
apartments are very close to one another, which makes it easy to meet up and socialise. The
weekend often involves visiting other towns in Samana, sometimes overnight, which is great if you
also enjoy exploring and seeing new places.
Living in Samana/ Culture in the Dominican Republic:
Samana is beautiful province with a great tropical weather. However, I would advise new volunteers
to bring an umbrella or raincoat, as when it rains, it is extreme! Additionally, due to being in the
Caribbean, these objects are not as readily available. Locals are extremely friendly and the particular
place where we live has everything you need in a short distance to one another. It is a great place to
reside in, I will definitely miss the place when I am back in the UK.

Program: Medicine and Healthcare - Hospital or Dental Clinic

Overall Rating

10 / 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

Six weeks in Samaná

During my six weeks in Samana I worked at the school “Mama Elba“ and in the hospital as an english teacher for the doctors and nurses.

I remember my first day at school. I was really nervous because of my missing Spanish skills. But when the first kids walked through the door, asked me about my name and were just happy to meet someone new, I started to feel comfortable and really enjoyed class. I got used to the course of a school day and started to tackle with teaching methods and the Montessori concept the school is working with. My aim was to learn more about how to teach children with special needs and what could be interesting for them. With the help of a kindergarten teacher from my hometown, I compiled a list with different ideas and activities, especially for the two kids with a mental disability. She also explained the concept of basal stimulation, the concept the ideas based on, to me and I began to investigate the topic. I got more and more interested in this subject.
For the beginning I decided to start with something small. I bought pegs and used a jump rope we already had at school. The exercise was to fix the pegs on the jump rope and I thought this could be interesting for maybe 15 minutes - but I was wrong! It was not something small and it was not something interesting for 15 minutes. The girl I worked with did it for an hour and it war great to see her progress! At the beginning she didn't know how to do it but after a while she managed! She was so proud and had a lot of fun, she even found other things to put the pegs on and worked really concentrated. During the following weeks I introduced some of the other ideas at school and it was amazing to see how the children changed and improved!

The other part of my work was teaching in the hospital. This was easier than school because I already had experiences with teaching english. It also helped that their english was on a good level so that communication wasn't a problem. This and their enthusiasm for learning made it pretty easy to enjoy the lessons. We talked about different topics and I learned more about their hobbies, their work in the hospital and life in the Dominican Republic in general what was very interesting for me. As a counter we prepared a lesson about Germany, typical food, favourite sports and the culture. Teaching in the hospital was not only teaching english, it also was an intercultural exchange!

A big part of my life in Samana was spending time with my host family. From the first day on I felt really welcome and like a real family member. I joined them to family parties, trips or to visit friends and was always welcome to go to church with them.
Because of their help I improved my Spanish very fast and was able to communicate with them. They were patient teachers and always proud when I learned something new or understood what they said. I also learned more about their culture and typical food what was very interesting for me because I love cooking. On the one hand they showed me how to prepare a typical Dominican meal or my favourite foods and on the other I made some cakes and explained them how to do it.
During my stay my host brother and sisters had university vacation so that they stayed at home for three weeks and I got to knew them and we did a lot of family activities. I really enjoyed this. Because of my family I really felt home in Samana and I am going to miss them a lot!

Program: Youth Care, Community, and Nature - Enhance the Lives of Kids

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