September to July
Literacy rate (15+ years old)
Don Juan is a small village with a population of 1,200. After the COVID-19 lockdown, the educational situation in the village worsened. A local NGO called A Mano Manaba (FAMM) aims to build a vocational training center for young people, especially young women. FAMM plans to teach 30 young girls per training. The organization strongly believes that the first cohort of students will encourage more young people to improve their education and gain practical skills, resulting in financial autonomy and improving their families’ income.
All of FAMM’s educational programs are created in response to the needs of the community. Moreover, six out of the eight members on the board are local residents. Currently, FAMM runs a local library which will is located next to the future training center.
The planned building will be seismically resistant and will include a training workshop, accommodation for volunteers, two bedrooms, one bathroom, and a warehouse to store machinery and tools. The training will be led by international volunteers with the necessary professional skills who will stay in Don Juan for three months. FAMM provides food, lodging, and an unique intercultural experience for the volunteers.
We invite anyone interested in empowering girls and promoting gender equity to join us in this project. For more information, please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the country
Republic of Ecuador
17 million people
Spanish, Quechua, Shuar
Ecuador has a diverse climate due to its location on the equator, with coastal areas experiencing a tropical climate, the Andean region having a temperate climate, and the Amazonian region having a humid climate.
June to September along the coast and from June to November in the Andean highlands
December to May along the coast, from October to May in the Andean highlands, and from April to August in the Amazon region
Average annual temperature
Along the coast, the average temperature ranges from 25°C (77°F) to 31°C (88°F) with high humidity, while in the Andean highlands, the temperature is cooler and ranges from 7°C (45°F) to 20°C (68°F) depending on the altitude. In the Amazon region, the average temperature is generally around 26°C (79°F), with high humidity and rainfall throughout the year.
The Galápagos Islands are a volcanic archipelago in the Pacific Ocean, known for their unique wildlife, including giant tortoises, marine iguanas, and a variety of bird species, many of which are found nowhere else in the world. The islands played a crucial role in the development of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection.
Quito is the capital city of Ecuador and is located in the Andes Mountains at an elevation of over 2,800 meters above sea level, making it one of the highest capital cities in the world. The city’s historic center, known as the “Old Town,” is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is home to numerous colonial-era buildings and churches.
Cajas National Park is a protected area located in the Andes Mountains of southern Ecuador, covering an area of over 28,000 hectares. The park is known for its stunning high-altitude landscapes, including more than 200 lakes and lagoons, as well as its unique flora and fauna, which includes endemic bird species and the elusive Andean spectacled bear. The park offers a range of outdoor activities, including hiking, camping, fishing, and birdwatching.
Ingapirca is an archaeological site located in southern Ecuador, near the city of Cuenca. It was once an important religious and administrative center of the Inca Empire and features a complex of well-preserved stone structures, including a sun temple, a castle, and several terraces. The site also offers stunning views of the surrounding Andean mountains and is a popular destination for tourists interested in learning about the region’s rich pre-Columbian history.
Pailon del Diablo is a waterfall located in the Ecuadorian Andes, near the town of Baños. With a height of around 80 meters, the waterfall is a popular tourist attraction and can be reached by hiking or biking along scenic trails. Visitors can get up close to the waterfall via a suspension bridge that offers spectacular views of the rushing water and surrounding jungle.
Cotopaxi is an active stratovolcano located in the Andes Mountains, about 50 km south of Quito. It is one of the world’s highest active volcanoes, with a height of 5,897 meters, and is known for its symmetrical cone shape and snow-capped summit. Despite its status as an active volcano, Cotopaxi is a popular destination for hikers and mountaineers, offering challenging climbs and stunning views of the surrounding Andean landscape.
Quito: Hotel La Cartuja, Hostal Belmont Plaza, Hotel Sierra Madre
Puerto López: Hostal Humpback, Hotel Ancora, Hotel Agua Blanca
Places to eat
Quito: Café Mosaico, Zazu, Mercado Central
Puerto López: Restaurante Don Willy, El Faro, Hosteria Mandála
Best souvenirs from the country
Chocolate, Aguardiente, panela, coffee, rondador (panpipes), panama hats, Balsa wood carvings and products, filagra, Andean music instruments
Uber, Cabify, Easy Taxi, Yellow taxis, Radio taxis
Happy Gringo, Latin Adventures, Metropolitan Touring, Andean Adventures, Wanderbus
Interpreting Ecuador, Andean Language Services, Inlingua, Language Solutions, TransLingua
Proposed one week tour
Day 1: Quito
Day 2: Pailon del Diablo
Day 3: Cotopaxi volcano
Day 4: School visit
Day 5: Cajas National Park
Day 6: Ingapirca
Day 7: Galápagos Islands