Volunteer Testimonials

  • Nate Marshall, Monitoring & Evaluation 2015

    Length of Internship: 10 weeks

    College of William and Mary, Class of 2016 Computer Science and Economics Major

    “The people who are here take to heart the problems that they see in development and they also aren’t afraid to criticize Awamaki itself when they see a problem. And that surprised me. It’s not superficial.”

    Favorite free time activity: Hikes to Incan ruins, weekend trips to Cusco

    Favorite part of his job: “Putting the development practices that I’ve learned in my college classes into practice in a real-world setting.”

    What do you think are the traits necessary to being an impactful volunteer with Awamaki? “You’ve got to have initiative. A lot of times, for the specific thing you’re working on, you can make more of an impact if you’re thinking of where to take the project instead of waiting for someone else to tell you.”

  • Kiki Cokorinos, Sustainable Tourism 2015

    On an average day, the Awamaki office bustles with Spanish classes in the education center, product designing in the design studio, sometimes not-so-serious program meetings, informative volunteer workshops about Andean culture, playful dogs, and happy faces. At any given time, you can look up from the office courtyard and gaze in awe at the surrounding Andes mountains. After living here in the Sacred Valley for 3 months, I have completely fallen in love with the culture, landscape, and people! As a tourism volunteer, I had the priviledge of leading many tours in and around Ollantaytambo. The tour I enjoyed the most was getting to bring tourists up to the Awamaki Weaving Center in the neighboring town of Patacancha and sharing the Andean weaving traditions with them. By giving this tour, I learned more than I ever expected about weaving and what it means to the women who live in Patacancha. Overall, my experience with Awamaki was great — filled with sunny days, stunning hikes, and inspiring co-workers who turned into wonderful friends!

  • Noah Brown, Monitoring & Evaluation 2016

    Working with Awamaki was an incredible way to improve upon knowledge that I gained in the classroom. Whether it was improving my Spanish, engaging with other volunteers, or completing tasks within my department, I always knew that I was growing both as an individual and a professional. Being a part of Awamaki was a life changing experience and I would recommend getting involved to everyone!

  • Amy Balam, Design 2016

    I absolutely loved volunteering with Awamaki for a month, I was able to experience the Peruvian culture, exercise my design skills and meet some amazing people from all over the world! Definitely an experience I will never forget

  • Elora Majean, Monitoring & Evaluation 2016

    As a first working experience I enjoyed being a part of Awamaki. It is always kind of difficult to adapt to a new situation, even more when it includes a new culture, language and new people. However I felt supported by the Awamaki staff and my coworkers which facilitated a lot the process and enable me to appreciate the experience.

  • Elizabeth Nicholls, Marketing & Communications 2015

    Interning with Awamaki and living in Ollantaytambo was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I not only gained valuable experience but learned more than I could have hoped about international development and NGOs. Furthermore, Awamaki makes tangible efforts to integrate themselves into the local community, making this internship a truly immersive experience.

  • Niman Mann, Sustainable Tourism 2015

    My summer in Ollantaytambo was absolutely incredible. From learning how to weave in Patacancha to having discussions about development, volunteering with Awamaki introduced me to the world of international development in an extremely hands-on and honest way. To the staff, thank you for everything!

  • Jess Sheehan, Design 2016

    For independent self-starters, this is a great program to grow with.