ECUADOR

ANIMAL WELFARE & CONSERVATION: WILDLIFE RESCUE, REHABILITATION AND RELEASE IN THE RAINFOREST IN PUYO, ECUADOR

Help at an animal rescue centre to care for abused, neglected or abandoned animals and to rehabilitate and, where possible, release them back into the wild. This projects works to fight against animal trafficking, abuse and hunting of wild species.

Some of the animals at the Rescue Centre are orphans because their parents were killed by hunters, others were rescued from animal dealers, and others were rescued from people who kept them in small cages! You'll be working with an organisation dedicated to caring for those animals that have nowhere else to go.

SUMMARY: THE BASICS

Hi, I'm Karen, Project Coordinator for Ecuador, and I'll be working with you to arrange your ultimate experience here, so if you've any questions, please contact me:
+44 (0)1903 502595,
or email: info@travellers
worldwide.com
Price: £1,395 (approx. US$1,775) for 2 weeks
£300 (US$382) for each additional week.
Excludes flights. Please see Full Price List & prices in other currencies
Duration: From 2 weeks to 12 weeks, or longer, subject to visa requirements.
Start Dates: All year round – you choose your start and finish dates. You should arrive on a Saturday so that you have Sunday to relax and adjust to the high altitude.
Requirements: Minimum age 18. No qualifications needed, just a big heart and a love of animals and their conservation. If you are studying an animal-related subject or you are qualified, you'll be especially welcomed!! You should be reasonably fit as the area is big and a lot of walking is involved in a climate that is hot and humid.
What's included: Arranging your Programme
Full pre-departure support and assistance
Payment Protection insurance
Meeting you at the nearest Airport
Accommodation
Food (Mondays to Fridays only)
Transfer from Quito to the Project Site and back to Quito
Local in-country team support and backup
24-hr emergency support
Certificate of Completion
What's not included: Flights, Insurance, Cost of Visas (if a visa is required), Food on the weekends, Return transfer to the airport.
Who is this
Programme suitable for?
SOLO travellers or travelling with friends.
GAP YEAR BREAKS from School or University.
GROWN-UP GAPPERS, career breakers and retired.
ANYONE interested in conservation and animal welfare.
Also suitable as a summer placement or short break.
Open to all nationalities.

WHAT YOU'LL GAIN FROM DOING THIS PROJECT

  • An exciting, never-to-be-forgotten overseas volunteering holiday into Central and South America and the fascinating Ecuadorian culture.
  • The enormous satisfaction of helping conserving animals in their natural environment and knowing that you made a difference to them.
  • New skills, more confidence, a greater understanding of a different culture, invaluable personal and professional development.
  • An entry on your CV or résumé that will put you head and shoulders above most others in the job market.
  • And best of all ... an unforgettable experience!
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Monkeys on the Wildlife Rescue Project in Ecuador
Rescued monkeys now safe in an enclosure at the Project.
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WORK CONTENT AND DESCRIPTION

This Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre was founded in 2006 with the aim of protecting the wildlife of the Amazon region through the rescue and rehabilitation of local animals and plants.

The rescued animals at the centre have all been abused, neglected or abandoned. Some of the animals were orphaned when their parents were killed by hunters, others were rescued from animal dealers who were trying to traffic the animals out of the country. Some of them have even been removed from families who had kept these animals in captivity.

Unfortunately, the majority have suffered some sort of physical or psychological abuse. Some of the animals have been handed over to the care of the centre by Government authorities who have rescued or taken custody of the animals; others were voluntarily handed into the Centre by those families who realised that wild animals are not to be kept as domestic pets.

There are currently at least 40 different species of animals at the centre which include: Ocelot, tayra, capibara, parrots, monkeys, tortoises, and caimans amongst others.

YOUR WORK AND VOLUNTEERING ACTIVITIES:

Your help will be gratefully appreciated in some or all of the following activities:

  • The day-to-day care of the animals
  • Preparing food for the animals, including cutting up fruit, etc.
  • Helping to feed the animals
  • Helping new arrivals adjust to the Centre
  • General maintenance and cleaning of the Centre and its surrounds
  • Construction work; repairing and building new enclosures which will help to raise4 the quality of life of the animals
  • Cage and enclosure enrichment, again a vital part of raising the quality of life for the animals.
  • Assisting the vet when necessary
  • Other activities such as gardening, improving trails, making signs that will guide and educate the visitors.

SAMPLE WORK SCHEDULE:

You'll work from 8am to 1pm and 2.30pm to 5pm, Monday to Friday. On Saturdays or Sundays, volunteers work for a few hours in the morning because the animals still need feeding and looking after, but once all the tasks are completed, you are free for the weekend.

TOURISM AT THE CENTRE:

The Rescue Centre is also open for tourists to visit. They are charged a small fee for entry and these charges are the Centre’s main source of income. As animal welfare is not a high priority for many Ecuadorians, the background and mistreatment of each animal is explained to tourists, with the idea being to educate local and foreign visitors about animal protection issues. In general the visits are not guided, but tourists can read about each animal at the information sign at the cages.

Our Social Responsibility to this Project
Both we and our excellent partner of many years on this and some of our other projects in Ecuador take social responsibility very seriously, especially because in Ecuador there is still much to be done and we believe we can make a big difference.

"On a yearly basis we reduce our carbon footprint by planting trees. We sponsor several of our volunteer projects with monthly necessities, such as the payment for all the morning lunches every day at the children’s hospital. We support the educational center of the Inti Sisa Foundation with the Inti Sisa Art Guesthouse. We work together with a women´ s cooperation in the small highland community of Calpi that provides us with quinoa cookies that we include in some of our welcome packages. We distribute used clothing that our travellers leave us to needy projects."

"Our customer relation products are bought by local foundations. We work as much as possible with community tourism initiatives. On San Cristobal Island, we have our own Lab-of-Life project, in cooperation with the Galapagos National Park to restore the habitat of 3 hectareas and collaborate on ongoing projects with the national park."

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SEE ALL PROJECTS IN ECUADOR info@travellersworldwide.com
Cubs in their enclosure on the Wildlife Rescue Project in Ecuador
Rescued cubs in teir enclosure. Enclosure enrichment is an important part of raising the quality of life of the animals while they're there before, hopefully, they can be released.
Preparing food for the rescued animals on the Wildlife Rescue Project in Ecuador
Volunteers in the kitchen preparing food for all the animals.
Volunteers doing maintenance and gardening on the Wildlife Rescue Project in Ecuador
Volunteers helping with general maintenance and gardening to improve the facilities at the Centre.
Volunteers on the Wildlife Rescue Project in Ecuador
Time for a group photo at the end of a hard day!
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ACCOMMODATION

There is a volunteer house with dorm rooms offering space for up to 14 people in total. There is a shared kitchen, bathroom and social area with TV and DVD player, hammocks and books. You will be provided with bedding and will also have access to a swimming pool. Facilies are basic but do include the following:

  • Electricity
  • Running water
  • Hot water
  • Internet
  • Laundry Service (you can wash your clothes by hand or pay to get your clothes washed).

FOOD:

You'll be provided with three meals per day on Mondays to Fridays only – they will consist of local ingredients and cooking. At the weekends you will need to cater for yourself. You can buy ingredients at the supermarkets in Puyo and use the kitchen facilities to prepare your own meals, or you can eat out.

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Fill in the form by clicking the button above. We'll contact you no later than the next working day to confirm. Then we'll do the rest for you.

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Exterior of the accommodation on the Wildlife Rescue Volunteering project in Ecuador
The entrance to the accommodation showing the charm of the wooden cabin.
The ablution block of the accommodation on the Wildlife Rescue Volunteering project in Ecuador
The ablution block at the accommodation.
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ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

YOUR SAFETY, SUPPORT AND BACKUP:
Read important information about the Support & Backup you receive before you leave and during your programme.

Read about the Safety and Security measures we take to ensure your safety and wellbeing while on our programme.

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU BOOK YOUR PLACEMENT?

Once you have applied for a placement, we'll contact you and send you our Welcome Pack. You'll also receive Log-on details and password for our Volunteer Extranet where you'll have access to all the documentation and information which we've put together to facilitate preparations for your adventure! Your Project Co-ordinator for your country will liaise with you throughout the arrangements process, as well as while you're on your placement and on your return home.

The documents you'll receive also include a Country Factfile, Safety Guide and any manuals that may assist you on your particular programme (e.g. Teaching Guide, Sports Manuals, Enrichment Suggestions for Animal Care, etc.). We do all we can to make your stay one that you'll never forget. This is a truly awesome, elegant and beautiful country.

LOCATION | SIGHTSEEING:

This project is located 10 minutes from the jungle town of Puyo and is approximately 5 hours by bus from Quito.

PUYO:
Puyo is the provincial capital of Pastaza housing some 25,000 residents. It also provides a crossroads for visitors arranging various tours to the jungle and forest reserves. If you're an early riser, the views of the incoming rolling mists are spectacular dissipating into cloud form as the day rolls on. This attractive jungle town is also the crossover point for further onward routes into the northern and southern oriente as well as travelers journeying back to Baños and Ambato.

In recent years, Puyo has become noted by tourists for its incredible natural beauty. Surrounded by mountains, forest, rivers and natural valleys, the abundance of surrounding wildlife and scenery is absolutely breathtaking. The city also has a good infrastructure, providing visitors with good accommodation and a variety of activities. The annual festivals that are celebrated by the locals are also a special treat.

QUITO:
Ecuador's capital, Quito, lies in the north of the country, some 15 miles from the equator and with the Andean Mountains and valleys as a backdrop. It's 10,000ft altitude keeps it cool, with spring like temperatures year round. It was declared a UNESCO world heritage site in the 1970's for its preserved historic Latin quarter. The city also contains a thriving 'new town' popular with younger generations for its restaurants, shopping and nightlife. There are lots of restaurants and "Patio de Comidas" where you can pick up an excellent value lunch or dinner.

There is always something to do in Quito, whether you'd like to experience some culture or join in with the cosmopolitan, modern way of life. Cultural highlights include the old town, the cable car and the equator, along with a multitude of museums and monuments. Modern highlights include a range of shopping malls, a zoo, an ice skating rink, and plenty of restaurants and bars serving wonderful cocktails and tasty food - you'll find anything from traditional Ecuadorian cuisine to Thai and Italian!

GALÁPAGOS ISLANDS:
The Galápagos islands lie some 600 miles from the coastline of Ecuador. Formed by volcanic eruptions into the sea, they contain species found nowhere else on the planet and are one of the most significant sites in the world; most notably because this is where Charles Darwin's theories of evolution were inspired and shaped. This rocky and at first glance inhospitable terrain is home to giant tortoise, swimming iguanas and fearless blue footed boobies.

The marine reserve here is equally impressive, boasting encounters for divers and snorkellers with penguins, marine turtles, manta rays and sea lions, amongst others. Around 90% of the islands are protected areas, with visitor numbers restricted and some sites off limits altogether to ensure conservation.

THE AMAZON:
The Amazon is the worlds largest remaining tropical rainforest, occupying about one third of Ecuador. To get some idea of its scale, first you need to know that Ecuador's share of the Amazon represents just 2% of the whole rainforest; most of it belonging to Brazil (60%) followed by Peru (13%). Important nevertheless as the Amazon in Ecuador remains relatively untouched, has good infrastructure to make for easy visitation and is home to numerous indigenous settlements which welcome outsiders.

THE ANDES:
One of the greatest mountain ranges in the world, they split Ecuador in two running from the north of the country down. Indigenous communities have cultivated the land in the Andean Highlands for thousands of years, selling their produce in bustling market towns. Catch a glimpse of the abundantly colourful markets, showcasing traditions of ancient civilizations and Inca descendants.

Mountaineers will love the peaks of the 'Avenue of Volcanoes' an area in the central highlands with a number of active volcanoes. Whilst each climb is different and most are incredibly challenging, the rewards along the way are numerous. Dense forest, waterfalls and spectacular views across the valleys below await the intrepid few. Other hot pursuits in this region include walking, rafting, biking or camping.

PACIFIC COASTLINE:
This 2000km coast is fringed with pristine sand beaches, sweeping bays, mangrove forests, crashing waves and tranquil fishing villages. The ports and fishing villages are an important part of Ecuador's economy, delivering fresh sea food and imported goods. At certain times of the year you can see Humpback whales arriving from Antarctic waters to mate; splashing their fins and exhaling gushes of water. Marine birds are also in abundance along the pacific coastline, with sightings of the albatross, one of natures largest birds, being common.

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SEE ALL PROJECTS IN ECUADOR info@travellersworldwide.com DOWNLOAD THIS INFORMATION in .pdf How to Fundraise for your Program

ANY QUESTIONS?

Please with any questions and include your phone number, if possible, to help us give you the best possible response.

We'll get back to you very shortly, but if you haven't heard from us within one working day, please check your Junk Mail / Spam folder. Thank you.

The amazing Amazon
The awesome Amazon looking rather ghostly!
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OPTIONAL ADD-ON ACTIVITIES:

Make the most of your time there! To help you do that, we've put together some exciting activities, courses and tours that you can add to your itinerary. These are designed to be fun, but also to enable you to learn, and expand your personal and professional development enjoyment ... but mostly for your enjoyment! :-)

Spanish Lessons Optional Add-On in Ecuador

1-WEEK SPANISH COURSE PRIOR TO STARTING YOUR MAIN PROJECT:
¿Cómo se dice en Español??? There is no better way to learn a language than to live it, eat it, breathe it and speak it in a Spanish-speaking community!! You can learn Spanish as an Optional Add-On to your main Project.
Prices:

  • OPTION 1: One-Week Intensive Spanish GROUP Course:
    20 Hours per Week: £445, includes accommodation for the week
  • OPTION 2: One-Week Intensive Spanish PRIVATE Course:
    20 Hours per Week: £495, includes accommodation for the week
  • OPTION 3: One-Week Super-Intensive Spanish Course: (If you have no Spanish at all and are doing a project in the Galapagos or one of the Conservation projects near Puyo, you'll be required to take this course.):
    20 Hours per Week Group Lessons PLUS 10 Hours per Week Private Lessons, 30 Hours in total:
    £525, includes accommodation for the week

All the teachers at the school have taught Spanish for 8 or more years and between them they have developed a great many resources to make the lessons lively and fun. The classes are highly focused on the development of communication skills (speaking, listening, reading and writing.) The school also periodically organise interesting and enjoyable activities in order to introduce the Ecuadorian and Latin culture to their students - most recently they've been cooking Ecuadorian dishes in classes! It's a great, fun way to learn!

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Learn Spanish in Ecuador, having fun!

SPANISH LESSONS CONCURRENT WITH YOUR MAIN PROJECT:
Price:
10 Hours Private Lessons per Week: £120 per week
20 Hours Group Lessons per Week: £195 per week.

GROUP LESSONS: There are usually a maximum of 6 students per group.
PRIVATE LESSONS: One-to-one tuition. If you prefer to tailor your lessons, you could choose how many hours of lessons you'd like a week - from 2 to 40!

LOCATION:
Quito is a wonderful city, with a population of 2.4 million inhabitants. It is full of exciting history to explore. There is always something to do in Quito, whether you'd like to experience some culture or join in with the cosmopolitan, modern way of life. Cultural highlights include the old town, the cable car and the Equator, museums and monuments. There is also a range of shopping malls, a zoo, an ice skating rink, and plenty of restaurants and bars serving wonderful cocktails and tasty food.

Book Now

Spanish class
Spanish class.
An outdoors Spanish class
An outdoors Spanish class.
The entrance to the Spanish School
The entrance to the Spanish School.
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Terms and Conditions apply for Add-Ons, please see here.

SEE ALL PROJECTS IN ECUADOR info@travellersworldwide.com

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REVIEWS AND FEEDBACK:

Coming soon!

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AIMS AND ACHIEVEMENTS:

The Challenges
This project works to protect Ecuador’s dry tropical forest located on the coast of Ecuador. The reserve is located in Bahia de Caráquez, a coastal town in the Manabí province of Ecuador. Today only 2% of Ecuador’s dry forest remains intact resulting in a loss of habitat for the native flora and fauna of the area. Many of the coastal forests have been deforested for agriculture and fragile habitats such as dry forests, mangroves and other wetlands have been lost or severely degraded.

The western forests of the Ecuadorian coast are considered to be the most fragile in the world due to the high number of species found in such a small area and this reserve aims to preserve the forest whilst educating others about conservation practices.

In the reserve to date more than 100 species of birds have been recorded, some 23 species of mammals, 7 species of reptiles, 4 species of amphibians and a variety of plant life. It has even been declared an Important Bird Area by Birdlife International and DarwinNet.

Our Goals
The reserve stretches across 110 hectares crossing many different ecological regions from sea level to mountains. It's aim is to continue with, and increase, the valuable conservation, research, environmental education, sustainable development, and promotion of natural resources in the region. Another objective is to continue and hopefully increase its support of the municipal authorities and civil society in Bahía de Caráquez, which has been declared an “eco-city”.

Our Achievements:
We have created the plant nursery, with clear sites ready to plant new trees. In the last years we made observation and researching, collecting, identifying, classifying and photographing native flora and fauna. The reason is because we need to know if the flora and fauna have increased.

With the help of volunteers, we have started teaching the locals English and assisting in environmental education.

Through volunteers and their help, we’ve managed to start ‘Ecoclub’ which works with the children from the local area and encourages them to participate in a conservation club where they learn more about the reserve, the local area and they also carry out fun educational activities. This helps educate and make them aware of how their lives can affect the environment.

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Volunteer with a child from the local community
A Volunteer giving a shoulder ride to one of the children from the local community.
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RESPONSIBLE & ETHICAL TRAVEL:

Sustainable and ongoing development of local communities is always the primary aim of our volunteer projects and this project is no different. You'll take up where others before you left off and thus helping to continue making this project sustainable.

We are passionate about mutually beneficial interaction with the local community. The team members are locals and very community-minded. We work closely with the local community to achieve maximum benefits and emphasis is always placed on doing what is best for the local environment.

To this end, information on how to leave minimal negative impact on the environment is given to you prior to your departure as part of your documentation from Travellers Worldwide. This is also highlighted in your induction on arrival.

SUPPORTING THE COMMUNITY:

We have local staff in each destination where we have Programmes and where we work with local partners, again the staff employed are locals. We have long-standing relationships with local people, making this a sustainable, on-going project. Your work here contributes to, and helps to continue, the long chain of worthwhile achievements in this community. You'll also be directly influencing the local economy and supporting international tourism, an important part of the country's general economy. So, by living in the local area, you're bringing in income through tourism and education through cultural exchange!

The accommodation on this project is locally owned and all the staff are from the neighbourhood. Where food is provided, produce is purchased in nearby shops, helping provide authentic local cuisine. Where you've chosen host family accommodation (where available), families are selected based on their desire to provide real cultural exchange and at the same time a warm family environment.

Social Responsibility: The information we provide prepares you for your placement and how to deal with the local people. It also briefs you on the Do’s and Don’ts and makes you aware of the possible impact of your behaviour. However, you are also expected to do research on the country you're going to and their customs and culture. The research you do will help you to gt the most out of this exciting travel and experience opportunity.

Cultural sensitivity: Volunteers receive an induction and orientation on arrival which covers things like being sensitive to the culture you’re in, everyday processes which will be different to what you’re accustomed to, how to have the maximum beneficial imprint and the minimum negative impact.

We stress the importance of responsible tourism, cultural differences and acceptable/unacceptable conduct. Where appropriate, volunteers are briefed on local customs, particularly those that are different to the volunteer’s accepted norm.

Economic Responsibility: By living in the volunteer house provided by the project you’ll, again, be providing much needed income and employment to the local population. The house is simple and built from natural materials and you are actively encouraged to recycle, be efficient with energy and water usage and preserve the natural surroundings. All food is provided and sourced locally. Your transport to and from the project will usually be either on a bicycle or walking again contributing to green efforts.

For 25 years our volunteers have lived in local communities around the world, spent their money with local traders and brought funding to the projects they work with. Travellers employs local staff and works with local support staff. This helps to fund the project directly and through bringing money into the local community.

In general, the organisations we work with around the world often struggle to financially support and maintain the work they do, so every penny raised makes a real difference.

Our aim is to create always a Win-Win-Win situation in terms of the benefits for, (a) the local communities and institutions you work in, (b) our Volunteers, i.e. you, and (c) for Travellers. We do not embark on any project that is not beneficial to all three of these stakeholders.

The impact of pollution: Where transport to and from the project is required, it is left up to you to choose. Public transport is always recommended by us and all nearby public transport routes are shown to all new arrivals. If taxis are required, you'll be encouraged to share with other volunteers in order to lessen the impact of pollution wherever possible.

Having regard for the local community by being consciously aware of your impact is encouraged in all our documentation for all our projects in all our destination countries. This is because we feel very strongly that many countries are subject to, for example, water shortages, high cost of energy and high impact of energy usage, the negative impact of litter and general pollution. Thus we encourage you to be aware of these possible impacts so that they contribute positively and not negatively to the community in this respect

POSITIVE EFFECTS THAT TRAVELLERS HAS ON THE LOCAL ENVIRONMENT:

We provide you with many tips on how to be a responsible traveller regarding the environmental impact you have.

We want you to be immersed in the culture, by living and working with local people. We work with local communities, local charities, local government bodies and local schools. We also often partner with local organisations whom we have vetted to ensure that they are committed to the projects they run, that they have the same responsible attitude to the local community that we do, that they are eco-friendly and have ethical policies.

In our projects and in our headquarters offices, we take an environmentally responsible attitude towards recycling and reusing of waste products. We encourage all participants to offset their flight emissions via a carbon offset scheme. Our volunteers are given pre-departure Information that encourages them to minimise waste and reduce their use of water and electricity, in other words, to live sensitively in the environment that they’re working in.

Travellers also give donations as and when required by projects. This is often done through our charitable arm, The Bridge The Gap Foundation. Our projects enable vital conservation, research, care and education work to take place directly where it is most needed. Our volunteers contribute, all over the world, to projects that would not exist without them.

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A pack of seals chilling on the Galapagos Islands.
Volunteer climbing Cotopaxi, an active volcano in the Andes Mountain about 31 miles south of Quito.
A group of volunteers boating down the river - a fun thing to do while you're there!
One of Ecuador's very colourful markets. In fact, the whole country seems to be colourful!
Cotopaxi, with Quito lying beneath it.
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