VACANT: 8 - Orphanage for girls
Organisatie: Orphanage for girls Regio: Granada, Nicaragua
Type of volunteer work:
Type of organization:
Orphanage for girls
Granada, Nicaragua
Min. of 8 weeks
Anyone who likes taking care of girls
Level of Spanish:
Intermediate or very good basic Spanish
Working hours:
Monday-Friday 8am - 12pm and 2pm - 5pm
Description of organization
This small orphanage for girls in Granada houses approximately 24 girls with ages between 4 - 17 years old. When turning 18 they need to leave the orphanage. As with many orphanages in Nicaragua, the children are not real orphans, but they are abandoned by their parents and have nowhere else to go. Often the parents are addicted to drugs and/or alcohol, in jail, or sometimes they have left their children for a new partner who does not want the children, or they live and work in Costa Rica or the United States, etc. The orphanage is founded, managed and funded by a church. Religion has an important role in the management and education of the girls, but as a volunteer you do not have to be religious to volunteer here. There work 3 nuns and 5 employees at the orphanage. The house rules are strict but loving. The girls get up at 5am, wash their clothes and have breakfast at 6:30am. After breakfast they go to a short mass, clean the house and then go to school.
5.00am - 7.00am               Wake up, breakfast, washing/cleaning, preparing for school
7.00am - 12:00pm             School time for the young girls who attend primary school, the girls go to a public school nearby. 12:30pm - 5:45pm             School time for the older girls who attend secondary education, these girls also go to a public school nearby. 6:00pm                                Dinner, after dinner time off 7.00pm - 8:00pm               Mass 8.00pm                                Time off and/or bedtime
What can you do?
Half of the girls attends school in the mornings and the other half in the afternoons. The girls who are not at school, but at the orphanage spend their time with the following activities: making homework, counseling (visiting the psychologist or social worker), free time (games and sports) or participate in creative classes, such as music and painting. The activities for the students can take place outside school time.
Each year certain values are highlighted thematically in their activities, for example: respect, brotherhood, loyalty, etc. As an intern you can relate your activities to these themes and provide information or give a training about this in cooperation with the social worker or psychologist. Themes that are always relevant and that you can work on during workshops are: self esteem, self defense, drugs & addiction prevention, respect, discipline, etc.
Besides these workshops you are expected to help with homework assistance and to be available for a social talk. During the free time of the girls you can organize all kind of activities, it is also possible to organize activities outside the orphanage. If you have special (creative) skills, you are welcome to give classes or courses to the girls. Teaching English classes is also possible.
You can also work on further professionalizing the orphanage by e.g. (improving) personal files/plans per child, creating relevant rules and workshops, identifying problems and work on durable solutions. Of course this can only happen with the approval of the head nun.
No one in this orphanage speaks English, it is required that you speak intermediate level of Spanish or very good basic Spanish when starting your volunteering. If you do not speak Spanish yet you can get the requiered Spanish level while studying hard during a 4 or 3 week Spanish course in Granada. Although the required minimum time is 8 weeks, the orphanage prefers volunteers who stay a minimum of 3 months. While working at the orphanage, it is obligatory to wear an ‘uniform’ during work, which consists of: jeans/trousers or skirts from knee length or longer, polo shirt of the girls home and closed shoes or sandals (no flip flops). The girls home will provide you 5 polo shirts for which you need to pay.