Volunteer in Peru | Teaching program in Trujillo

Brief Description

  • Volunteers work with children that left or never attended school either for economic reasons, because they were abandoned or simply because they have to work to support their family.
  • The program’s objective is to help the children get into public schools and, by doing so, minimizing illiteracy and social inequality amongst children and adolescents aged 5-12. The main objective is to assure the children go to and finish the entire scholarly cycle.
  • To achieve this goal, the local NGO intends to improve both the nutritional situation, as well as the development of the children. Volunteers help convey the basic knowledge required to gain access to a public school.
  • The major factestors that can help achieve these objectives are: the establishment of an alternative system of education and above all, by controlling and assisting the child’s situation within his or her family.


Trujillo program info


  • The house is located in the city, at approximately 20 minutes from the teaching program and about 30 minutes from the city center. It has the following characteristics:
  • Shared room for up to eight people. The house can accommodate up to 16 people. There are four rooms and each room has its own bathroom.
  • Accommodation from Monday to Sunday.
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner Monday to Friday.
  • Cleaning of the house on weekdays.
  • Hot water.
  • Wifi
  • Volunteers share a room with another person of the same sex.
  • The house has a kitchen where volunteers can also prepare their own food.
  • The house has a bathroom, kitchen, bed sheets and pillows.



  • The basis of the Peruvian cuisine is rice, potatoes, chicken and soup. Volunteers that have special diets or allergies can coordinate with the person in charge to fulfill dietary requirements.
  • Breakfast (06:00/07:00): Breakfast consists of the basics; bread, butter, jam, coffee and tea, as well as generally some fruit. Volunteers usually buy some things on the side, such as cereals.
  • Lunch (13:00): Rice or noodles with vegetables, chicken, meat or fish.
  • Dinner (20:00): Soups, purees, rice, tortillas, chicken, vegetables.


 What to see & do:
(In Trujillo)

  • Trujillo is a city with a charming colonial style, a mild temperature and is considered by many to be the cultural capital of Peru. It has a nice center and is just 12 kilometers from Huanchaco Beach, where surfing is now a very common sport and traditional fishing boats, or “caballitos de totora” are still omnipresent after many centuries. They are used not only for fishing, but also for tourists to give them a go…in exchange for some Peruvian soles of course ;).
  • Chan Chan; the largest adobe city built in the ancient world. Now a World Heritage Site, it was estimated that at one time 100,000 people lived in the city. It was the main settlement of the Chimu culture, which lasted from 850 to approximately 1470 AD.
  • Pizarro Street and Plaza de Armas: Plaza de Armas is the main square and is situated in the historic center of Trujillo. Besides being a relatively relaxing public space for locals and visitors, it is also the main setting for many celebrations and events. Pizarro street is connected Plaza de Armas and is a lovely street with colonial and republican architecture. Pizarro street connects the main square with the historical and traditional Plazuela El Recreo, with its tall trees.
  • Markets: There are a number of markets in Trujillo, but you should definitely check out the “Mercado Central” (Central Market). Eating local specialties at incredible prices is what, to me personally, left me with some of my best memories. A ceviche at a fraction of the price of what you would pay in most European restaurants…and much tastier!
  • Surf some of the waves on the Huanchaco beach. Personally I cannot surf at all…but if I could, I would have liked to have done it there. Huanchaco is a charming seaside town. Surfers will tell you that has consistent gentle waves…but I simply liked the atmosphere of the place…and its ceviche! :)



  • Volunteers teach up to five hours a day, Monday through Friday, except on holidays.
  • Shifts:
    • Mornings from 8:00 to 12:30
    • Afternoons from 16:00 to 18:00 (roughly twice a week: depends on the circumstances, since in this case the volunteer go to the child’s home).
  • The project is divided into two parts over the year:
    • The “winter program” which lasts from March to December.
    • The “summer program” which is during January and February.
  • During the “winter period” there are more school activities and during the summer concentration is on extra- curricular activities.
  • Detailed information on each program is provided in the program information booklets, which you receive once you have applied. You can also contact us via the website chat or at [email protected] hould you have any questions!


  • The house is located in the city, at approximately 20 minutes from the teaching program and about 30 minutes from the city center.


  • Minimum 18 years of age.
  • Engage responsibly in volunteer activities, thus complying with the schedule and assignments.
  • Capable of working in a team.
  • At least a basic knowledge of Spanish.
  • And last but not least, eager to collaborate!


  • Airport pick up
  • Accommodation from Monday to Sunday.
  • Food from Monday to Friday (three meals per day).
  • 1/2 day orientation.
  • Continued support of the teacher(s) on the program.
  • Ongoing support and supervision during the program.


What is NOT Included?

  • Flights
  • Medical / Travel Insurance
  • Vaccines
  • Police check form (your criminal background check)
  • Visas
  • Local transportation from the accommodation to the project (0.8 euro cents for a round trip)

Volunteer period Cost (€)
2 weeks 125
3 weeks 188
4 weeks 250
5 weeks 313
6 weeks 375
7 weeks 438
8 weeks 500
13 weeks (3 months) 813
26 weeks (6 months) 1,625
39 weeks (9 months) 2,438
52 weeks (1 year) 3,250

Please click here to convert the prices to your local currency.


INTVS charges its own fee of 185€, regardless of the time that a volunteer stays abroad. This fee covers;

  • Volunteer support prior to, during and after the volunteer experience (in English, French & Spanish)
  • All necessary preparatory information including;
    • Visas
    • Vaccinations
    • Travel/Medical Insurance
    • Police Check form
    • The program (the site, schedule, role…)
    • Local contacts & important numbers

And also…

  • History, demographics & local norms
  • What to bring
  • Do’s and don’ts
  • And much more.
  • It also covers work and travel costs that INTVS staff incur to check up on and document the programs on a regular basis.
  • The payments to the local organizations and INTVS are completely separate. We do NOT charge them a commission and 100% of the program cost goes to them.

Why did you decide to become a volunteer? Because I like to help poor people in difficult situations

What did you find the most challenging? The most difficult is to realize what type of situations some of the kids have to live in within their homes.

What did you find the most rewarding? Receiving the love of the children.

What have you learnt from the experience? I learnt that by giving, you receive!

What advice would you give to future volunteers? I would tell them they will love it and to thoroughly enjoy this experience.

Carolina Alarcón (France)



Why did you decide to become a volunteer? My fiancé and I had planned to travel to Peru, and we decided that half of the trip should be dedicated to providing help/support within our possibilities. We discovered the INTVS projects and went for the Trujillo program.

What did you find the most challenging? The most difficult was to understand the social and family context of the kids. Their situation goes beyond the notion of poverty. Our children (4 to 7 years old) were faced with violations and abuse by their family. Trying to cheer them up during the day, with games and teaching, whilst knowing their situation, was for me the most trying difficulty.

What did you find the most rewarding? When the organised activities were successful and the kids absorbed their lessons with a smile from ear to ear, that’s when I felt most gratified.

What have you learnt from the experience? I learned that one can be happy sharing the very little one has. That one can still come out, of a complicated situation,  wholesome and content. And, above all, when you are confronted with the world of poverty, you learn more about yourself, than the help you are able to give.

What advice would you give to future volunteers? That they would fully enjoy the experience. Days fly by.

Carlos Mazzucchelli (Spain)

INTVS Volunteer Mathilde Vassal with the children in Trujillo, Peru

Why did you decide to become a volunteer? To do something concrete, useful. Something that makes sense. For me, this is the best way to travel: you discover a new country, a new culture, and in exchange for a little of our time, we are rewarded a hundredfold.

What did you find the most challenging? The most difficult thing is to leave after spending a full month in Trujillo. Leaving the children, the teachers, and accept that things will never change completely, despite all that we could do.

What did you find the most rewarding? There is nothing more rewarding than seeing the children understand a lesson, succeeding to count alone or succeeding in writing a letter that was previously a problem for them … to see that with the reduced means that they have, one can see that our teaching role still has a strong impact on them.

What have you learnt from the experience? I’ve seen clear proof that happiness cannot be bought: the children of La Esperanza have nothing, and yet they distribute their smiles, their love, without keeping score. From a more concrete point of view, I learned to trust myself and adapt to “difficult” situations, I learned to improvise, to let go, and to negotiate the price with taxi drivers;)

What advice would you give to future volunteers? I would tell them to make the most of every day, every hour. And give, a lot, because in the end, they will receive even more. This kind of experience is unique, you have to live it 100%. I would also tell them not to be afraid: in Trujillo, they will be greeted with care and love, laughter and joy.

Mathilde Vassal (France)



Why did you decide to become a volunteer? Because I wanted to get out of my comfort zone and provide my help to people in need.

What did you find the most challenging? To see the precarious situation of those little ones and see that when I leave, I return home and to comfort and they continue living the poor life they live with so many shortcomings.

What did you find the most rewarding? To see that very little contribution for them is always a lot and above all to receive so much love without expecting anything in return.

What have you learnt from the experience? To appreciate the little things and to see beyond the mere tourism of the country.

What advice would you give to future volunteers? Squeeze every second out of it and give yourself 100% because with how young they are, they fill you with life with just a smile!

Estefania Crisman (Spain)


  • Population: 31 million (2015 )
  • Currency: Nuevo Sol (PEN)
  • Capital: Lima
  • Land area: 1,285,216 km2
  • People living below the poverty line: + – 30 % of the population
  • Language: Official: Spanish (84 %), Quechua (13 %), Aymara (2%)



  • Religion: The main religion is Roman Catholicism, but religious events make a lot of reference to the diversity of beliefs of the Hispanic cultures.
  • Languages: There are a variety of native languages that coexist in Peru. Although Spanish is now the dominant language, there are still regions (mostly Andean) where Quechua is spoken (above all by many indigenous people of the Americas), a language with a very nice sound, which makes a lot of reference to Pachamama (Mother Nature). Aymara (another Native American language spoken mainly in the area around Lake Titicaca) is spoken by almost 2% of the population.
  • Gastronomy: Peruvian cuisine has the Guinness world record for the greatest variety and diversity of typical dishes in the world. This is due to the mix of cuisines coming from their heritage and modern influences. This mixture has pre-Colombian, Amazonian, African, Spanish, Japanese, Sino- Cantonese, Italian and French influences. The Peruvian kitchen is considered among the best in the world.
  • Customs: There are almost 3,000 festivals a year in Peru. They are ritual, processional, or festivals that demonstrate respect for nature or the celebration of freedom. Often they display a fusion of Catholic and pre-Hispanic religions.
  • Music: Music and dance have always played an important role in Peruvian society, even from pre-Columbian times. A a result of its many cultures, Peru today has a rich, modern and varied folklore and a diversity of musical forms and dances that combine this variety and indigenous spirit with the Hispanic influence and styles that have been adapted to the pace and taste of today’s major social groups.
  • People: The Peruvian people are cheerful, friendly, loving and humble.


  • 2000 – 1000 BC: The impressive history of Peru goes back more than 20,000 years, but in order not to write a 50 page essay, we will start with the “initial period”, named as such simply due to the fact that this was when production of ceramics began. Production began about 2,000 to 1,000 BC and remains of these ceramics can be found today just south of Trujillo in the Guañape area. Over the years production evolved from simple undecorated ceramic pots, to high quality pots with very good finishes. During the same year, weaving , horticulture and fishing also improved considerably, and by the end of this time, the first agricultural terraces appeared in the highlands.
  • 1000 – 300 BC: Also known as the “early horizon” or “Chavin horizon”, during this period many artistic and religious phenomena appeared, perhaps independently, in various cultures in different places at about the same time, indicating some kind of exchange of ideas and a growing cultural complexity.
  • 300 BC – 100 AD: Over time, the Chavin culture lost its influence and various local cultures gained fame, such as the Paracas Necropolis , who produced some of the finest cotton and wool textiles of the pre-Columbian era.
  • 100 AD – 700 AD During these centuries, ceramics, metallurgy and weaving reached their peak. Especially the Moche of Trujillo became famous for their ceramics works and the Nazca on the southern coast began to introduce polychrome techniques.
  • The Moche left behind some of the most impressive archaeological sites in Peru, like the “Huaca del Sol y de la Luna”, impressive platforms designed like pyramids.
  • 600 AD – 1100 AD: During this time the first expansionist people (the Huari) began to extend their influence in the Andes. They spread both artistically and militarily throughout most of Peru, imposing their own values on those conquered.
  • Late 1000 AD: Around this time, many independent regional groups took power, of which the most popular was the Chimu kingdom near Trujillo. Its capital was Chan Chan, famous for being the largest adobe city in the world. The Chimu Kingdom, as well as many other regional cultures coexisted in the same period. The most popular were the Chachapayos in the highlands, the Chancay just north of Lima, and the Ica and Chincha cultures, as well as some smaller kingdoms from the Andean plateau near Titicaca and some of the Amazon rainforest.
  • 1438 – 1533: The Incan empire: Despite probably being the most famous empire in Peruvian history, the Inca Empire only existed for about a century, though the Incas (which literally means “kings”) already existed about two centuries before the expansion of their empire. They ruled over the valley of Cusco until 1438, the year in which Pachacutec (the ninth Inca king) defeated the Chanka tribe, which marked the beginning of an expansion that, over time, came to cover a territory that stretched from southern Colombia to central Chile and even as far as the Andean regions of Bolivia and Argentina.
  • La “Conquista” (the conquest): When the eleventh Inca king Huayna Capac divided the Inca empire between his two sons Atahualpa and Huascar, a civil war immediately followed, which marked the demise of the Inca empire. This made the conquest much easier for the Spanish “conquistador” Francisco Pizarro, who quickly captured and killed Atahualpa, who had previously defeated his half-brother Huascar. Due to their huge advantage in weaponry, the Spanish cavalry was virtually unstoppable and although there were sporadic rebellions, the Inca empire was forced to retreat to the mountains and the forest and never regained its glorious prestige.
  • 1533 – Beginning of the 19th century: Since the conquerors needed a coastal city as capital in order to have swift communication with Spain, Pizarro founded Lima on January 6, 1535 as the capital of Peru. There were internal struggles between the conquerors in the decades to come, as well as against the Incas, leading to the eventual murder of Pizarro and several decades later, the beheading of the last Inca ruler Tupac Amaru in 1572. The next 200 years were relatively peaceful, but continued repression of the indigenous provoked a rebellion in 1780 by the great-grandson of Tupac Amar. The revolt was quashed and Tupac Amaru II was executed in the same place where his great-grandfather had been beheaded.
  • 1826: In the early 19th century, high taxation from the Spanish colonies, as well as the oppression of indigenous people and the discovery of rich mineral deposits in Peru provoked a revolution, and in 1826 the Spanish surrendered to the military and political leader (and “liberator”) Simon Bolivar.
  • For many decades to come, however, Peru had numerous wars with neighboring countries, due to a number of territorial disputes, where they lost territory to Chile, Ecuador and other countries in South America.
  • 1980-1990: Throughout most of the 60s and 70s, Peru had a series of military dictatorships and coups. With the civilian government of President Fernando Belaunde Terry in the 80s, inflation reached an extreme height and terrorism against the government began. When in 1985, Alan Garcia Perez became president, taxes were reduced and prices were frozen, but the economy and the currency soon suffered the consequences.
  • After Garcia Perez’ fleeing of the country, Alberto Fujimori became president, initially taking austerity measures to stabilize the economy, which at one point had a positive effect. Towards the end of his second term, however, accusations of corruption became more and more alarming, and when starting his third term (which was unconstitutional), he fled the country. Years later Fujimori would be sentenced for the murders he ordered and pleaded guilty to bribery and telephone tapping.
  • 21st Century: The start of the 21st century brought with it the first election of the first president with Quechuan ethnicity (Alejandro Toledo). Throughout his mandate, he created the Commission for Truth and Reconciliation, which examined the acts of mass violence in Peru from the 80’s to the 21st century. The final report of the commission stated that 70,000 people had disappeared or had been killed by military or terrorist groups.
  • After the mandate of Toledo, Alan García returned to power. Things have been relatively stable since his return, thanks to strong mining and agricultural exports and an improvement of port facilities in Lima.
  • However, bribery and corruption, once again came to light, and the allocation of foreign companies that exploit natural resources in the Amazon caused much anger from Amazonian tribes, who reacted with violence to defend their land.
  • There is still a large gap between the rich and poor, indigenous and white communities in Peru, and the terrorist group Shining Path has resurfaced once again. For now, however, the country is enjoying a rare moment of prosperity and hope. One can only hope it will last.