Do you have a passion for the English language and want to bring your knowledge into a remote mountain town, high up in the Andes. Are you eager to increase the work and study opportunities of vulnerable communities while experiencing a totally different lifestyle and culture? Then join us in Peru as part of the Otra Cosa Network team!
About Otra Cosa Network
Otra Cosa Network is a well-established UK Registered Charity and Peruvian registered not for profit (NGO),addressing the educational needs of children and vulnerable adults in an extremely impoverished area of Northern Peru. We work in informal settlements where many community members have been displaced by climate change, disaster and political instability. They live in precarious circumstances, few have running water, sewage provision and there is only sporadic electricity. Additionally, many children are forced to work instead of continuing their education, in order to boost family finances and there are no community-based facilities for learning and developing new skills in a safe environment.
Our dynamic range of activities address language skills, environmental awareness, women’s entrepreneurship, youth, employability and gender empowerment. we are seeking volunteers to work in project implementation in our new Recreation and Education Centre as well as our field office. Projects will restart as soon as the community is safely able to come out of isolation, post coronavirus. Our range of activities are implemented by national and international volunteers, allowing them to express solidarity whilst boosting their field experience. We also partner with several institutions like the primary and secondary schools in the mountain town of Yanasara.
About the English Teaching position in a mountain village:
This opportunity is ideal for those who wish to practice their English teaching skills in a remote mountain town, five hours away from Huanchaco. The school doesn’t have enough money to employ well qualified teachers and there is also a problem of finding teachers who are willing to work in the mountains. As a result the primary and secondary schools in the village are understaffed and the children do not receive much English language education.
The role of the volunteer is to give English classes at the school, however you can also teach Arts, Physical Education or any other subject. In the summer 2009 Otra Cosa donated to the secondary school some new musical equipment (a keyboard, guitars, flutes, clarinet, trumpets, horns, bass drum, small drums). If you play an instrument and you would like to teach the children feel free to organize lessons.
English is not only important for the children of Yanasara but also for adults, who hope to be able to welcome tourists visiting the hot springs. It is possible to teach them too.
In the near future we hope to offer teaching opportunities in schools within the informal settlements around Huanchaco. Stay tuned for further info!
Please note that all volunteer positions are also available as Internships. With this add-on you will receive an extra level of mentorship and where necessary all appropriate liaison with your academic institution to ensure compliance with internship placement requirements. Please see our separate internships listing for further in-depth information or check out our website at www.otracosa.org.
This position includes tasks such as:
Planning and implementing lessons in English language skills and a variety of other topics.
Delivering lessons and liaising with school teachers
Setting and marking homework and exams
Teaching other subjects as Arts, Music and Physical Education at the secondary school
Preparing all of your lesson plans based on very minimal resources.
Communicate weekly with the assistant manager via phone to check in and give an update of how things are going
What you can expect from us:
Personal pick-up upon arriving and walking tour through Huanchaco.
Accommodation and food from the community included.
Thorough introduction to the organization
Certified training in First Aid and Child Safeguarding.
24/7 emergency support
The satisfying feeling of committing your work to a good cause whilst gaining insight into a new culture.
Certificate of completion detailing your role, the project(s) you participated in and the dates you volunteered in.
Current background check from your home country.
Native English speaker or advanced English fluency
Time commitment: Minimum 2 months
* We can arrange Spanish classes for you in advance (by Skype) or during your stay, if you have no/minimum Spanish or want to improve your language skills.
Generally, 20-25 per week, Mon-Fri
Please note that there will be no classes during summer vacation here (mid-Dec. to early March.)
Desired Skills and competencies:
Studies and/or experience of teaching English desirable.
Experience of looking after children desirable.
Affinity for working with children (11-22 years old) and sometimes younger
Innovation and creativity.
Independence and flexibility are very important
Empathetic, responsible and open-mind personality.
Related Fields of Study:
Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL)
Education in Development
English language and literature
The village has two schools primary and secondary and they are separated by a river. In the primary School you start at 8:00 a.m. You can have breakfast with the children if you would like to. You teach the alphabet, songs and follow our OCN English curriculum. There are a lot of celebrations along the year. The second part of your timetable is to teach in the Secondary School and finish there until 1:00 p.m.
In the afternoon you will have free time and students tend to gather to play volleyball, walk in the countryside or go to the shop to recharge their mobile phones. If you want to help out at the shop, the owner Señora Luciana is grateful for the support and may pay you in delicious soup and nice company - it’s a lovely way to pass the time.
Once there you will be in a unique position to submerge yourself into the Andean way of life and after school you will have time to explore the beautiful mountain area. Yanasara is surrounded by three rivers, but the main attractions are the thermal baths. You can bathe in the thermal springs which are only fifteen-minute walk from Yanasara village, three pools built into the mountainside, flowing over with magic waters. These fantastic thermal baths are free for volunteers!
The valley where the town is situated is at approximately 4000m altitude. At two and a half hours from the nearest town of Huamachuco, you can also take in the charming main square in Huamachuco full of unique and quirky topiary and the stunning archaeological site of Marcahuamachuco just outside town, which is known as the Machu Picchu of the north, as well as Wiracochapampa. There are also beautiful treks and kaes to explore, so if the outdoors, history and archaeology are your kind of thing, then this will be paradise.
Eating at a local restaurant costs only S/.5 (about 1.20 Euros/ Pounds). There is no internet connection in this village and to purchase any supplies you must travel by car-pool or combi (small bus) to Huamachuco.
Enquiries and Applications
To make an application, please visit our website at www.otracosa.org or contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
Promote education and social development in our local communities.
Otra Cosa Network is a registered Peruvian non-profit NGO (no. 11126841) and a UK Registered Charity (no. 1133680) based in Huanchaco, Trujillo on the coast of Northern Peru.
Otra Cosa Network runs five of our own projects, which are all part of the Huanchaco Education and Learning Programme (HELP). HELP is dedicated to advancing the education possibilities and resources for those living in lower-income communities in Huanchaco and the surrounding shanty towns. Alongside this, we support several partner organisations in the area, as well as in two remote locations in northern Peru.