PERMACULTURE & AQUAPONICS INTERNSHIP
Aldeas de Paz
A group opportunity. Invite your friends.
Aldeas de Paz is completely operational and all our programs are active! We are happy to invite volunteers and interns to join us in the Dominican Republic (DR). The Corona health situation in the DR is managed successfully and precautionary measures very similar to European and international standards are in place. Travelling to and from the Dominican Republic is possible without difficulty!
This is an unique opportunity to live and study at an permaculture inspired, agro-tourism Demonstration & Education Center near famous Cabarete Beach. This pilot project is located near a tropical river outside the famous surf town of Cabarete, on the north coast of the Dominican Republic. The Farm is cutting edge for the region, with modern aquaponics and water management systems, vermiculture, apiculture, and aquaculture. The systems are so advanced for the Dominican Republic that some of the country’s best universities take field trips out to visit the farm to learn more about its systems.
Participants gain an intensive insight experience on how to run an eco-friendly farm and live sustainably and CO2 friendly. Topics include aquaponics system function and maintenance, worm-composting, product packaging/ marketing and cooking creative meals based on the daily harvest. Join and be part of an exciting community of inspired and dedicated people creating solutions to make the world a more sustainable place.
The region is famous for its exciting action and adventure sports and its ecotourism industry. During days off visit the nearby ocean and learn to sail, surf or kitesurf. Enjoy the beautiful palm-fringed beaches, unwind, recharge and enjoy social life. This internship allows you to enjoy life in a tropical, rural Dominican community while at the same time gain or increase your knowledge and skills of ecological aquaculture, agriculture, vermiculture, small-business management and eco-tourism. For anyone who envisions starting their own farm or aquaponics project, or is just looking for an outdoor tropical get away this is a unique and invaluable opportunity!
What to expect:
Get involved with a wide variety of projects from composting food scraps, planting seedlings, and harvesting fish to sustainable construction, giving tours, and designing new products. Our internship truly encompasses all aspects of running a small organic farm. Typically, our interns rotate through our 3 main areas of the farm: aquaponics, permaculture, and packaging and distribution before moving on to develop a project based on their own interests. However, we are flexible to building an internship around each individual's needs and passions. We do our best to accommodate any length of internship and specific learning objectives you may have.
Activities can include but are not limited to:
- Planning stocking density and selection of fish
- Food selection and feeding frequency
- Breeding and purging Fish
- Transporting fish for sale
- Tank filtration, aeration, and water flow
- Deep water culture bed upkeep and system maintenance
- Nutrient dynamics and maintaining water quality
- Floating beds vs. media beds
- Plant structures and needs
- Choosing the right crops for your aquaponics bed
- Large-scale harvesting and packaging of crops
- Mint, basil, spinach, and other crop propagation
- Propagation from seed, stem cutting, and aero layering
- Bed preparation and seedling transplantation
- Planting and harvesting a variety of organic crops
- Preparing plants for gardeners
- Composting and vermiculture
- Organic pest control
Packaging and Distribution:
- Start-up costs and financial planning
- Customer identification
- Value added product development
- Designing labels and marketing products
- Packaging selection and product storage
- Setting and negotiating prices
- Delivery logistics and new market formation
- Sustainable construction and energies
- Writing blog posts to inform the community about our projects
- Prepping for and giving tours as part of our eco-tourism and sustainable education initiative Recipe development using seasonal harvest
- Intercultural communication
Candidates for our hands-on intensive submersion internship program are creative, self-driven with passion for ecological agriculture and sustainable lifestyle. No previous skills are required, but basic Spanish is helpful. Any experience in agriculture, construction, marketing, or tourism is beneficial but not mandatory. Our interns typically work and learn from Monday to Saturday (half day) for about 30 hours per week. Hours are flexible with advanced notice to allow for personal trips to other parts of the island.
Volunteer placement or internship
You can join this program as a volunteer or as an intern. That's up to you! Please inform us of your school or university internship requirements in advance so that we can work out your personalized work plan together. Also tell us about your personal expectations and goals. We are happy to give students academic credit or provide a report outlining the learning outcomes and deliverables achieved during the internship.
This program is ongoing throughout the whole year
Near Los Brazos, a small traditional Dominican rural village about 40 minutes away from Cabarete beach, a thriving tourist hotspot for water sports.
Financial Contribution & Benefits
Aldeas de Paz works hard to keep the required financial contribution to an absolute minimum and offers financial transparency by practicing an open book policy. We encourage longer stays with significantly decreasing donation requirements, recognizing that longer stays lead to more productive volunteer work, whereby more energy and time is donated in place of money! The minimum contribution starts at €240 per week. If you wish a single room upgrade add €50 per week and an all in Host Family homestay upgrade is €150 per week, including a private bedroom and two meals per day. For more information about costs and benefits check out our webpage .
Please note: while we believe the required donation to be a fair representation of the costs that are invested in this quality trainee/internship, we want this program to be accessible and understand that some candidates may experience financial restrictions. If you have a strong interest in the program and believe you qualify for a discounted rate we encourage you to apply and inquire about scholarship application support.
What is included
- Personal airport welcome, pick-up & transfer to your placement location
- Accommodation in rustic cabins, free WiFi & use of washing machine
- Free regular Spanish lessons throughout your placement
- Placement introduction & training, educational supplies, certificate, student credit
- Basic food staples and produce grown on site
- Full support and 24/7 backup from local staff
- Interns enjoy 1 free surf lesson per month at the surf school on El Encuentro beach
- Information about adventure packages & in-country travel
Volunteers and interns receive free language lessons throughout their placement duration. Classes focus on developing four basic communication skills: listening, comprehension, speaking, reading and writing. Students are encouraged to speak Spanish right from the very first day, using it in typical real-life situations as soon as they step outside the classroom where learning continues as they are immersed in the Spanish language and the Dominican culture.
About Aldeas de Paz
Calle Adriano Horton, Santa Barbara de Samaná, Samaná 32000, DO
Aldeas de Paz is a sustainable and transparent grass-roots NGO based in Santa Barbara de Samaná and Las Terrenas, Dominican Republic. We are independent from political, religious or business interests and maintain independence by completely funding and operating our programs with the practical and monetary contributions of volunteers and interns. OUR MISSION We promote a Culture of Peace through enriching cross-cultural exchange for people of all cultural backgrounds and nationalities and we practice voluntary community service where we provide additional opportunities in education, sports, health care and skill training. We assist our beneficiaries in developing their potential and improving their own lives.
We are a youth oriented organization with the purpose of educating, mentoring, inspiring and empowering young people. We aim to develop their potentials and help them to create opportunities for them and their community through our educational programs and recreational activities. We promote children rights and equal opportunities for all.
Volunteer placement or internship
Most of our participants join as volunteers and are free to commit from between 20 to 40 hours per week. That's up to you! As an intern however you most probably have to fulfill requirements set by your school or university. Please inform us of your school or university internship requirements in advance so that we can work out your personalized work plan together. Also tell us about your personal expectations and goals and we will see how we can help you achieve them.