Travel to Ecuador and join a Fair Trade internship in the Amazon Rainforest for a unique tea project. This project focusses on sustainable economic development, cultural preservation and conservation by working directly with indigenous farming families. This social enterprise regenerates the cultivation of a native holly plant that is used to make tea. This is important because the tea has formed the basis of traditional ceremonies for thousands of years. The project generates incomes for the local community of farmers by training the farmers in permaculture and integrated land use. The focus is on social empowerment, community development and environmental management in a fair trade context.
The original goal of this project was to further incentivise the production of this ancient, native tea and to ensure that the current Fair Trade price truly surpassed all of the hidden costs of production. This continues to be a primary objective of the project but it has now expanded to encompass a multi-faceted approach to farmer participation, data collection and agricultural economic analysis. In addition, the project aims to sustain natural resources, including a water management initiative. This is an amazing project with many diverse programmes and learning opportunities for international interns.
Why choose this project?
This Fair Trade Internship in the Amazon Rainforest project has a unique combination of environmental, social and business aspects in its work. The focus of the internship program is working on the foundation’s new Conservation, Training, and Research Centre and there is also plenty of work to be done outside. This project calls for interns to help boost the project’s economical gains and really make a positive difference to the lives of the farmers and their families. It is an exceptional opportunity to gain experience in an ethical industry with growing potential. Your application of Spanish will demonstrate to future employers your ability to effectively communicate your ideas and adapt to different settings, as well as your drive to meet your personal goals while helping the project.
You will investigate the costs and benefits of growing the tea in the Napo region as well as assessing the impact of initiatives. Funding dictates the project focus each year and past focus for interns has been on the following:
- Community Development – cooperative workshops, eco-tourism project, social media activities
- Social Entrepreneurship – business planning. eco tourism development
- Forest Conservation – wildlife monitoring, agroforestry management, composting, marketing
- Public health – test water for bacteria, survey households, monitor waste disposal
- Social impact & PR – produce a video, promote online, edit graphics and materials
- Product development and research to support the growth of income generating activities
- Water management management activities
Activities may include field research, manual labour, marketing, or data entry. Your tasks will vary depending on your skills and interests and the needs of the project at the time of your internship. Each intern is required to complete weekly reading and to produce a report for the team.
This internship is geared towards undergraduate and graduate students, and industry professionals. Your focus should be on environmental science, international development, business, agriculture, or a related field. Team working skills and flexibility are required as well as a reasonable level of fitness. Proficiency in Spanish (level B1 Intermediate User of CEFR) is required for this project as you will be working alongside local people. You will receive feedback about your placement. Please bring a laptop to record your progress during your internship placement.
WHY JOIN THE PROJECT
To work with a local team to help generate income for local communites
Gain direct experience working in an ethical industry
To experience life in the biologically fascinating Amazon rainforest
The project is located in the Amazon. The project site is based outside the laid back and attractive city of Tena, the capital of the Napo Province. Tena is around 500 metres above sea level and the temperature tends to average around the mid 20’s. The city can meet your basic needs, including local grocery stores and restaurants where you can get hold of delicious local food as well as western-style food. Tena is well-known because of its rainforest location and venturing out to see the wildlife, visiting the rivers is a must as you will no doubt be impressed.
Details & Costs
- Duration: 4 – 26 weeks
- Cost: £1915/$3351 for 4 weeks
£255/$446 for each week thereafter
(Please note a deposit of £340 / $515 is required to secure your placement)
- Requirements: Age 18+
- Location: Tena, Ecuador
- Project activities: data collection linked to the tea plant, meetings with community members, harvesting crops, PR and marketing tasks, data entry
- Working Hours: Monday-Friday 08.00 – 14.30
- Project Availability: All year round
- Arrival day: Twice monthly on a Friday. Please speak to an advisor.
What is included
- Accommodation: Shared room in a rustic cabin with cold showers and dry composting toilets
- Airport pick up and drop off in Quito
- Escorted travel from Quito to your project location
- Stay in a hostel in Quito, breakfast included
- Training: Pre-departure pack, on-site orientation on a Saturday, project induction
- Support: On-site coordinator providing 24 hour support, feedback at the end of your placement
- Local SIM card and phone: (deposit of $50 required for handset)
- Activities: Staff help organise evening and weekend activities
- Teaching manual
- Learning Reflection Document
- Certificate on completion of Internship
- Supervision from qualified professional
What is not included
- Food: volunteers all put money in together to buy groceries and cook. This costs around $55 per week
- Optional intensive Spanish classes 1-week programme £355 / $621 including accommodation
- Optional excursion on the Sunday on your arrival weekend please speak to an advisor if you want to know more
Easy 3-step application process
APPLY ONLINE Click here to apply online and pay your deposit to secure your space on your chosen project. Our advisors will then contact you to guide you through the next steps.
TELEPHONE INTERVIEW Once we’ve received your application, we’ll be in touch to arrange your informal telephone interview with your Kaya Placement Advisor.
GET PREPARED When you’ve been accepted onto your project we’ll send you your Welcome Pack and lots of other helpful information to assist you with preparing for your placement.
HAVE A QUESTION?
We pride ourselves on providing you high quality placement information throughout your application process and whilst on the ground. Connect with us if you have any questions.
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