Community Engagement Internship Position - Ecuador

Cause Areas


It's flexible! We'll work with your schedule.


915 Calle MontufarBahia de Caraquez, Manabi EC131401EC


2015 Community Engagement Internship Description:

Planet Drum (PD) is looking for a motivated individual to lead the restructuring of our Bioregional Community Education program. The Community Engagement Intern will take a grassroots approach to implement environmentally themed projects focusing on community education, engagement and empowerment. The Community Engagement Intern will work directly with the people of Baha de Carquez to identify their environmental needs and concerns and implement a program that will have a lasting impact on the community.

The goal is to identify ways to develop projects within neighborhoods and communities that arise from local residents interests. The initial phase of the program will be to observe, identify, and map ecological issues that affect the local population. The projects that are implemented as part of this program will be based on locals’ ideas and interests and will progress with PD lending a guiding/motivating hand. One of the main objectives will be to produce results without relying on outside funds or a large budget.

In addition to implementing bioregional projects within the community, the Community Engagement Intern will spend time volunteering in the greenhouse and at revegetation sites with the native tree Revegetation Project, which is currently PD Ecuador’s main initiative.

About Planet Drum Ecuador:

Planet Drum is a San Francisco, California based organization founded on promoting bioregional principles. Founder Peter Berg was invited to work on ecological issues with the city of Baha de Carquez, Ecuador in 1999. Since then PD has developed field projects and collaborated with the local government to create Baha Eco-Ciudad. PD has a long-term 'Revegetation Project’ and has worked extensively with Bioregional Education in schools and communities. For more information about the history of PD projects in Ecuador, please read: 'Planet Drum Info and History, 2012.’ Interns are being recruited to assist with the evolution of PD’s field projects in order to further the scope and impact the projects have on restoring the local ecosystems and raising grass-roots bioregional awareness.

Community Engagement InternshipResponsibilities:

  • Research past PD education and community projects and other Ecological City endeavors that have taken place in Bahia de Caraquez.
  • Investigate present environmental issues and challenges in local communities and neighborhoods.
  • Identify strategic issues that interest locals and that could be used to create a bioregional project.
  • Develop a grassroots educational program that engages the community and works towards increasing understanding of bioregional principles.
  • Work with the local municipality to develop "Eco-ciudad" programs and activities.
  • Work alongside volunteers in the greenhouse and at revegetation sites with the PD native tree Revegetation Project.
  • Engage and supervise PD volunteers in assisting with community education initiatives.

Community Engagement InternshipPreferred Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree, currently working toward degree, or equivalent work experience in related field.
  • Ability and confidence to work with a minimal amount of supervision in challenging situations.
  • Previous experience in community engagement, environmental conservation, and educational initiatives.
  • Extensive organizational and management skills.
  • Must be motivated and tenacious - this is an experimental program that will be implemented from scratch.
  • Previous travel abroad experience, particularly in developing countries.
  • Must be comfortable with living in PD’s communally operated volunteer household.
  • Advanced Spanish ability (3 years at University or equivalent experience) required because you will be working directly with the local people of Bahia de Caraquez to implement programs.

Internship Position Commitment:

At minimum, the internship positions require a 3-month long commitment. Preference will be given to applicants interested in longer stays. A special tourist visa is required for stays longer than 90 days. It is highly recommend that you look into the visa application process before making travel plans.


PD is a very low-budget non-profit organization. Interns are responsible for paying for their own travel expenses, including arrival to Bahia and daily bus rides to and from planting sites and the green house (one-way on city bus costs only 25 cents).

Rent for the communal living house is $40/mo. for drinking water, internet, toilet paper, etc. Interns are responsible for their own food.

About the House and Town:

The apartment is large and can hold up to 6 volunteers at a time. There are 3 bedrooms (2 communal for volunteers and one private for the field projects manager, his wife and two young children), 2 bathrooms, kitchen, and a large communal living space.

It is located in the center of Bahia on the second floor with lots of windows that provide a nice breeze to combat the warm climate. The local market is 2 blocks from the house. The river is 2 blocks away and the ocean about 5 blocks away.

Other Internship Information:

Planet Drum is proud to offer two other internship positions:

  • Volunteer Coordinator Internship
  • Revegetation Field Research Internship

Planet Drum encourages interns to pursue receiving university credit and scholarships for the work they do and is willing to assist with any related paperwork.

Internship Application Process:

E-mail the following information, plus anything else you'd like to add to Clay Plager-Unger, the Field Projects Manager at

  1. A current resume.
  2. A cover letter describing what you hope to bring to and gain from this experience.
  3. A story about a meeting or relationship with a non-human.
  4. What is your level of Spanish comprehension?
  5. Are you comfortable living communally (i.e. living in close quarters, cooking communal dinners and cleaning up responsibly after yourself and others)?
  6. What dates are you available to intern?


  • People Skills
  • Environmental Education
  • Networking
  • Environmental Science
  • Community Outreach
  • Habitat Restoration

Good Match For

Teens People 55+ Group

Requirements & Commitment

  • Must be at least 18
  • Minimum 3 months
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