By volunteering in Belize you will get involved in a home building project that uses traditional and sustainable building methods, such as sandbag walls and reed composting, you will be helping orphans who, without the help of this project, would be desperately trying to find somewhere to live. The young people are referred to the project by the police and social services, and are supporting the establishment of this self-sustainable community farm dedicated to the promotion of self reliance, harmonious living and above all, providing a safe, stable and healthy home for abused and abandoned girls.
This development project is bringing a sense of community to the children abandoned by the legal system, while immersing them in inspiring sustainability initiatives helping to preserve local resources enabling the community to be financially independent. Importantly, this farm aims to become a transition model to inspire other community building and sustainable farming initiatives throughout Belize. Additional initiatives currently being undertaken on this project including food security sustainable agricultural practices, and preserving biodiversity through land management. 1 small dome, 4 caregiver structures, the kitchen and shower blocks have been completed and work has started on a 2 storey dwelling for 4 children. Volunteer in Belize and help to develop the community to provide better futures for these vulnerable young adults.
Why choose this project?
This project benefits from receiving the practical support and man-power to help develop the much need centre for children up to the age of 18, who under Belizean Law have to leave the foster system at age 16. The project is making slower progress than hoped so an injection of additional hands on deck will help it to meet its goals. You will benefit by gaining a sense of perspective about your own life and possessions, and as well you will acquire an understanding of more traditional and eco-friendly approaches to building and farming.
Role of the volunteer
Volunteers will participate in construction initiatives to help finish the 2 storey structures as well as a further single dome. You will have the opportunity to assist in many aspects of construction such as tiling and building during which you will learn ecological architecture such as sandbag construction and feeder roads built with old tires. In addition, in order for the community to be sustainable, you will work on the gardens and animal activities which are being developed alongside the building, so that when the girls move into the home, they do not have to start these from scratch. We are constantly working to develop the farm which will in the future, raise animals so you will also be involved in developing the areas to house the animals. This is a fantastic opportunity to learn about the world of sustainability.
As a volunteer on this project, you should be prepared to get your hands dirty and have a real enthusiasm to get stuck in wherever you are needed. Volunteers with skills and experience in construction, carpentry, gardening, masonry, electrics or plumbing or farming will be very welcome but these skills are by no means essential. Once the building phase is further along you may be asked to run job training workshops for local community members or skills training with the orphans to help them to look after the gardens and animals.
You will also need a fair level of fitness to complete the manual work involved in this project.REQUEST MORE INFO RESERVE YOUR PLACE
WHY JOIN THE PROJECT
Kaya’s programmes are based in San Ignacio and the surrounding communities. This project is in Georgeville – a 15 minute bus ride outside the town centre, where the volunteer house is located. San Ignacio, also referred to locally as Cayo, is located 2 hours from Belize City along the Western Highway and is a tourist centre (relative, in Belize terms). The town and the surrounding communities contain a diverse population of Creole, Maya and Mestizo. San Ignacio is also an attractive market town set among pleasant tropical hills with a wide, shallow river running through the centre, where local families and volunteers love to swim. You can visit nearby Maya ruins and take part in caving adventures in your free time.
- Duration: 2-26 weeks
- Cost: £1115 / $1951 for 2 weeks, £295 / $516 per each extra week
- Requirements: Age 17+
- Location: San Ignacio and Cayo District, Belize
- Project activities: Building, maintenance, construction, tree planting, environmental assessments.
- Working Hours: Monday-Friday 6-8h per day
- Project availability: Project starts 1st and 3rd Saturday of every month.
- Arrival day: Saturday
What is included
- Accommodation: shared room in volunteer accommodation with access to a pool table and a bar
- Food: 3 meals per day; light breakfast, sandwiches for lunch and a cooked evening meal. Volunteers take it in turns once a week preparing something from their own country
- Airport pickup and drop off at Belize City International Airport
- Training: Orientation and project induction provided
- Support: 24 hour support
- Excursion Planning: Staff can help to plan weekend activities (price will be extra). e.g. canoeing through jungle, caves, tubing, visit Mayan ruins, hiking and horse-riding.
What is not included
- Police/Government Background Check; US and UK citizens will be processed through Kaya (admin fee applies) all other nationalities must provide local police check.