For this project volunteers can work in one of the three following locations including the Galapagos, on the coast, or in the jungle (Amazon). At all three locations they focus on community development and environmental conservation. Founded in 1985 with its original conservation center in the Ecuadorian Amazon, this premiere biological preservation foundation is committed to research and habitat restoration in natural areas deemed the most at risk by international conservation organizations. Despite its small land mass, Ecuador is renowned for its mega diversity due to its variety of life zones, including: mangrove swamps, dry tropical forest, tropical cloud forest, and tropical lowland rainforest, not to mention the legendary range of plants and wildlife on the Galápagos Islands. See below for more details on each of the locations.
Coast: The project was established in the year 2000, in order to promote sustainable community development in the area of influence and to maintain a productive conservation area. The Station serves as a base to develop and implement a variety of community extension and ecotourism programs in the region. The area covers a succession of ecosystems such as beaches, mangroves, man-made wetlands and tropical humid rainforest.
Galapagos: Great chance to work and learn all about the Galapagos! The island where volunteers will be working is famous for the giant tortoise, conserves one of the last remnants of native vegetation on the higher portion of the island.
Amazon: Volunteers will be working on preserving the jungle, reforestation, and general organic farming practices. In addition, they may work with the local communities on education and teaching English in the schools.
Project available year-round. 2 weeks to 6 months durations available.
2 weeks – $1410
1 month – $1880
2 months – $2820
3 months – $3760
Each extra week – $235
The project location is based in the Amazon, Coast or Galapagos. Accomodation is at the volunteer house. 2 meals are included: breakfast and lunch.
Minimal Spanish, must be 18 and over, with valid passport and health insurance
Mondays to Fridays
8:00 to 12:00 Volunteers can choose to acquire field experience in reforestation, environmental education, community service and development.
12:00 to 14:00 lunch and resting time.
14:00 to 16:00 organic garden, preparing and spreading compost, reforestation efforts, which include preparing and planting different trees, working in the medicinal garden, general trail and Park maintenance, and other daily tasks. ( It will depend on the project you choose.)
Role of the volunteer
Volunteers can choose to acquire field experience in a variety of areas: reforestation, environmental education, community service and development, plant conservation, agroforestry, organic agriculture, sustainable aquaculture, teaching English, public health, field data collection, and scientific research. Depending your skills/interests and ongoing research projects in the various satellite communities, you will be placed in a project and work under the supervision of local staff, environmental educators, and researchers.
Coast: This project focuses on mangrove restoration and bio marine species, with other project options that involve direct interaction with the local community either in schools, hospitals or in the cacao cooperatives.
Galapagos: Volunteers will work on both the habitat restoration and agricultural components while at the reserve. In addition staff will lead volunteers on various hikes to a nearby lagoon, native forests, beaches, and local villages to explain the ecological and human dynamic of Galapagos.
Opportunities to work on group research and monitoring projects are available.
Amazon: This project focuses on the organic garden, preparing and spreading compost, reforestation efforts, which include preparing and planting different trees, working in the medicinal garden, general trail and Park maintenance, and other daily tasks. Teaching in the schools, especially English, is also popular. However, the project is very open to other ideas and whatever the volunteer wants to do.
A high level of Spanish is not necessary, but a volunteer should have at least a basic to intermediate knowledge as the majority of the staff speaks Spanish and Quechua.
Available during the length of the project (Either at the project or local homestay families with 2 meals included)
Transfer from Quito to project
Local cell phone is included with a refundable deposit of $50
Aiport pick-up/ drop-off
Ecua Explora staff ready to transport you
Support 24 hours
On the ground Ecua Explora staff available
First weekend accomodation
In a hostal in Quito with breakfast
(includes city tour and lunch)
Meals not specified
Transportation to/from the homestay to the project each day
Add $70 for day excursion upon arrival.
Add $50 per week for 6h Spanish classes if in Quito.
Flight from Quito to GPS: 550 usd approx.
GPS entrance fee: 100 usd
GPS INGALA transit card: 10 usd
Transfer in/out GPS airport (Puerto Baquerizo Moreno) to the project: 20 usd per way.