Study and Volunteer
As a developing country, Guatemala faces many challenges that affect people's lives every day. International visitors are most welcome to volunteer their skills and their time to help improve the lives of the country's poor and disadvantaged.
Help is needed in many places and we work with several organizations where you can make a difference – primarily in education, health care, social work and environmental protection.
- Practice your Spanish outside of the classroom
- Gain valuable work experience and add new skills to your resume
- Learn about the economic, political and social situation in Guatemala
- Help people in need and put a smile on their faces!
Participants in the Study & Volunteer program can learn Spanish and volunteer at the same time. You'll spend half a day in class and the other half volunteering.
Besides general Spanish according to your level, your classes will contain a component that teaches you specifically the kind of Spanish you need for your volunteer work.
Volunteer work is a great way to help Guatemala's poor and disadvantaged and put a smile on their faces! Plus, you gain valuable work experience and have plenty of opportunity to practice your Spanish in real-life situations.
Learn Spanish and volunteer at the same time! Sign up today!
Obras Sociales del Hermano Pedro
Obras Sociales del Hermano Pedro is a large charity hospital with orphanage and senior citizens home in the center of Antigua. They provide medical services to the poor who do not have the resources to pay for medical treatment.
Obras Sociales del Hermano Pedro is almost always in need of volunteers, but the positions they have available tend to be rather basic, like visiting with patients or helping out in the kitchen.
Visit the website of Obras Sociales del Hno. Pedro
Asociacion EducArte is an organization in Ciudad Vieja, about 10 to 15 minutes by bus from Antigua. EducArte provides educational and psychological assistance to poor families affected by domestic violence or alcoholism.
Volunteers are needed primarily to help provide homework help to the children and teach them English. More advanced positions are available for volunteers with a background in psychology.
Visit the website of Asociacion EducArte
Cipecadi (Centro de Inclusión para Personas con Capacidades Diferentes) is an organization in Jocotenango, about 10 minutes by bus from Antigua. Cipecadi works with children with physical and mental disabilities, mostly from poor families that could not afford therapy otherwise.
Volunteers are needed year round to assist the regular staff, particularly with special education projects and speech therapy.
Visit the website of Cipecadi
Centro de Salud San Andres Itzapa
Centro de Salud San Andres Itzapa is a government-operated clinic in the town of San Andres Itzapa, about 45 minutes by bus from Antigua. It provides basic medical services and serves mostly low-income families in the area northwest of Antigua where little access to primary health care is available.
Volunteer positions at Centro de Salud San Andres Itzapa require medical training, clinical experience and at least intermediate-level Spanish.
Doctors and nurses are particularly welcome.
Valhalla Experimental Station
Valhalla Experimental Station – better known as "The Macadamia Farm" – is a farm on the road between Ciudad Vieja and San Miguel Dueñas, about 20 minutes by bus from Antigua. Valhalla cultivates macadamia nut trees for reforestation projects and donations to indigenous communities.
Volunteers can help with the operation of the farm, from caring for the seedlings to harvesting and processing the macadamia nuts.
Visit the website of Valhalla Experimental Station
Caoba Organic Farm
Caoba Organic Farms is located just outside of Antigua, about 15 minutes on foot from the Central Park. The farm grows a wide variety of products for the local food market and promotes sustainable agriculture and low-impact farming.
Volunteers are welcome year round to help with the operation of the farm. Most positions involve work on the fields and in the greenhouses as well as harvesting and packaging the produce.
Visit the website of Caoba Organic Farm
What Our Students Say ...
I have been studying at Ixchel Spanish School for five weeks. It is a professional and well managed school. The staff is friendly and you can rely on them. I really appreciate my lessons and I have learned a lot. Activities organized for the afternoon were very interesting too.
The atmosphere in the school is very friendly, I met a lot of other students that were studying at this school like me. My weeks at Ixchel were definitely positive, I'd suggest to study here if you want to learn Spanish, know Antigua and meet new friends.
Alberto Bigoni, Italy
For me, Ixchel was the best way to start my travels. The school was very welcoming and provided me with an amazing teacher. The family that lives at the school is very helpful and provides amazing meals.
I stayed for 5 weeks which was of course too short but my teacher Isabel provided me with an excellent introduction to Spanish and a good foundation of grammar and vocabulary.
Janelle ten Cate Brouwer, USA