Environmental/Horticultural Internship in Ecuador
The Tandana Foundation
The Tandana Foundation is seeking an intern to help with school gardens, a tree nursery, and other environmental/horticulture projects in the Otavalo canton of highland Ecuador, a region that is rich in natural beauty and cultural diversity. This internship is available from September through early July, and the minimum time commitment is 6 months.
Your main responsibilities will be to assist local teachers and students with their school gardens and to help at the UCINQUI native tree nursery with weeding, planting, and other tasks. You may also help coordinate garden or environment-related experiences for groups of U.S.volunteers that may visit the community and help with other environmental projects as needs arise. Finally, you will serve as a a cultural ambassador and a positive representative of The Tandana Foundation. In return, you will be placed with a host family, which will allow countless opportunities to explore the indigenous cultures and subsistence lifestyles of highland Ecuador as well as the natural environment around you. You will also be given all the support you need to succeed in your work and be encouraged to accomplish your personal internship goals.
- Conversational Spanish
- Experience living in cross-cultural situations, preferably in Latin America
- Demonstrated interest in gardening, reforestation, or other environmental/horticultural work
- Ability to work cooperatively with a diverse array of people, to solve problems creatively, and to promote a positive experience for all involved
- Self-motivation, responsibility, and an ability to work independently
- Minimum age is 19
- Minimum time commitment is 6 months
Assist in school gardens and with plant related projects
- Engage in other environment-related projects as needed
- Help coordinate the activities of visiting gardening groups and ensure that volunteers and community members alike have positive experiences.
- Represent Tandana in a positive manner to all community members and volunteers and help to build good relationships
- The opportunity to participate in unique cultural activities and be a part of a dynamic, multi-cultural team
- Detailed orientation and ongoing support from Tandana's Ecuador Program Manager as well as a mentor
- Room and board with a local family (homestay)
- Work expenses including local transportation, cell phone, and consular fees. (Interns pay their own airfare to Ecuador)
How to apply:
Interested parties should send a resume and a letter addressing each of the following questions to Aaron DiMartino, Operations Director, at email@example.com
- Please describe any experience you have living in Ecuador or in another cross-cultural situation.
- What are your strengths and weaknesses as a leader?
- Describe an experience that was very challenging for you. How did you deal with the difficulties, and what did you learn from the experience?
- What are you passionate about, and how do you express that passion?
- What do you think will be most exciting about this internship?
- What do you think will be most difficult about this internship?
- What are your personal and professional goals for this internship and how can we help you accomplish them?
About The Tandana Foundation
2933 LOWER BELLBROOK RD, SPRING VALLEY, OH 45370, US
To empower individuals of various cultural backgrounds with an increased awareness of the world, other cultures, and themselves, and with an expanded sense of their possibilities;
To promote positive, caring interactions between people of different backgrounds and encourage consideration and lessening of global inequalities;
To promote respect and responsibility toward one's self, all people, and the Earth.
he Tandana Foundation is a non-profit organization that offers cross-cultural volunteer opportunities, scholarships, and support for small community projects in highland Ecuador and Mali's Dogon Country. Tandana coordinates service projects and volunteer vacations that offer visitors to Ecuador or Mali the unique opportunity to be guests rather than tourists, to form cross-cultural friendships, to experience a rich indigenous culture, and to make a difference in the lives of new friends. Its scholarship program allows rural Ecuadorian students to continue their secondary and higher education. Its community projects help villagers in Mali and Ecuador realize their dreams of improving their communities.
The Tandana Foundation is not about "helping the poor unfortunates" or imposing a developmentalist worldview or any particular religion. Rather, our goal is to create and nurture real and responsible relationships among people of different cultures. Giving and receiving are inherent parts of those relationships, and contributing to community projects is a great way to make friends. Any foreigner who has worked in an Ecuadorian minga (community work day) knows how that works on the ground! We come to learn and to share.
Tandana comes from a Kichwa root meaning "to gather together" or "to unite" and represents the spirit of our work.