What kinds of programs are offered through ELEP?
ELEP organize and administers suitable and
affordable Internship, Volunteer, Workcamp and Spanish Courses programs throughout Ecuador.
Who can participate in ELEP programs?
Our programs are open and available for high school students, college and university students, recent graduates, professionals,
career breakers, gappers, year out, groups, retirees and veterans.
Are the programs only for applicants of a specific religion, race or language?
People from all over the world can participate in our programs regardless of their nationality, religion, race or language.
Can I apply for a program if I do not speak Spanish?
As we have mentioned above, our programs are open for everyone regardless of their language. However, it is important to remind that Spanish is the native language in Ecuador and you will be working in a Spanish speaking environment and therefore Spanish is necessary for the programs. If you are an absolute beginner or you desire to improve and expand your acquired knowledges of the language, ELEP offers you intensives Spanish course.
What level of Spanish do I need?
It is recommendable to have at least an intermediate level of Spanish for our internships and a basic level of Spanish for our volunteer programs.
What are the basic requirements for participants in ELEP's programs?
They differ with each ELEP's program. However, the most basic and important requirements are: to be sociable, open mindedness, flexibility, dynamic, organized, eager to learn and share, any marital status, co-operation, students, professionals, veterans and retires, good knowledge of Spanish, 18 years old up to (children under 18 need the consent of a legal guardian and children under 15 are accompanied by an adult), etc.
What are the deadlines for application?
All applications must be made at least 4 weeks prior to starting the program. Late applications are possible through our “FAST RESEARCH”. For our internship programs, if you want a placement in one of the more competitive spots, it is advisable to apply early. ELEP
Volunteer & Internship Programs accepts applications all year-round.
When can I start?
Our volunteer, internship and Spanish course
programs start every Monday throughout the year. Volunteer,
interns and students should arrive 1 or 2 days early.
How do I apply?
It is very easy. Submit our application form and program agreement that you can download
from our web site or request via e-mail plus a no refundable application fee ($ 100) which must be send via Western Union to Patricio Fernandez, Tele/Fax +593 2 2543231, Quito - Ecuador. Apart of the mentioned before, we require your resume and a letter of intention
specially for those interested in an internship program.
What is the length of the programs?
For our volunteer programs are from 2 weeks up to 6 months and for our internship programs, the minimum are between 4 or 12 weeks (depending on the internship field and placement) up to 6 months.
How many hours should I expect to work?
Typically, the average work hours are no more than 40 hours per week
for our internship programs and no more than 30 hours per week for
our volunteer programs and take place between the hours of 8 am to 6 pm.
Do I get a certificate for the Spanish course, internship or volunteer after their completition?
After you complete you language course, you will receive a certificate either from us or from the language school. A certificate (reference) will also be issued by
the director of the volunteer or internhip placement toward the end of your internship or volunteer
Are the programs paid or unpaid?
ELEP Volunteer & Internship Programs organize and administer unpaid
volunteer and internship opportunities. It is not possible for us to offer paid positions since the government have strict guidelines regarding foreigners working in host companies, etc. Another reason is that the main objective of our programs is the international education and the
service and learning experience.
Why do I have to pay to volunteer or
Volunteers and interns often wonder why they have to pay to volunteer or intern. Well, this is because ELEP is a self-reliant, independent, and private organization, we do not
receive funding from any religious, corporate, or government agencies and contributors. Therefore, we must charge our participants a reasonable fee in order to keep our programs alive and effectively running. The fee help us to cover staff and servicemen's cost, as these people will be directly working with our volunteers and interns in order to make their stay more pleasant and comfortable.
How can I pay for the program?
The total program is paid directly to the program director in Ecuador on your arrival with the exception of the application fee which must be made out at the moment to do your application. All payments must be paid in US dollars in cash.
What is included in the program?
Airport pick up, orientation, full time in-country support, Internship or Volunteer work placement, accommodation and Spanish tuition.
What is the code of conduct?
Volunteers, interns and studenst are expected to
act in a responsible manner. Alcohol, drugs and overtly sexual
behaviour are prohibited.
Will the program provide any sort of insurance for the volunteers or interns involved?
ELEP Volunteer & Internship Programs do not cover insurance of our volunteers or interns. Participants will have to travel with their insurances.
What kind of food and accommodations should the participant expect while I'm studying Spanish, volunteering or interning?
You will be lodged in a host family where the participant will receive a private room, 3 daily meals and a laundry service once a week. Our host families are carefully screened and given comprehensive guidelines in how to treat our volunteers and interns. The meals and accommodations are included in the program contribution.
ELEP manages food and accommodation from the very first day to the last day of the program in collaboration with the local host families involved. Due to monetary constraints, ELEP can not offer extra accommodations or food to participant who wishes to arrive early or who want to stay late.
What forms of communication will be available for the participants to access in Ecuador?
In Ecuador exist facilities of internet, post office, and telephone systems in most of small and big cities
Where are located the programs?
Our programs are located throughout the country, this means in the urban or rural areas of the Highlands, the Coastal lowlands, Amazon Region and the Galapagos Islands.
What would happen if I decided not to stay for the entire duration of the program?
Once you make a decision, pay for the program
and had started the program, ELEP Volunteer & Internship Programs will not refund any program fee under any circumstances.
Will I need extra money?
If you plan on taking part in activities outside of the organization, or if you just want to buy some souvenirs, etc., you will need to bring extra money in order to do so. On a side note, you must also remember airport tax ($
45), which you pay upon your departure from Ecuador and an emergency fund is recommendable.
Can I do sightseeing outside of the program? What is the best time for this?
Yes. You can do sightseeing during (weekends and holidays) or after your program. In your free-time, you can spend time in enjoying the natural beauty of Ecuador through several exciting excursions (whale-watching from the Isla de La Plata, Amazon jungle, trekking to mountains, etc) and Indian markets (Otavalo, Saquisili and Salasaca), tours and visits to important and tourist cities (Baños, Cuenca, Latacunga, etc.) and beaches (Salinas, Atacames, Puerto Lopez, etc) and of course the popular Galapagos Islands (not included in the prices).
What Vaccinations will I need for Ecuador?
This depends on what vaccinations you already have. We suggest that you consult a travel doctor from your country before you arrive. In any case, here are some of them: Diphtheria and tetanus, Polio, Hepatitis A & B, Typhoid, Rabies, Yellow fever and Malaria.
Is there an orientation?
There is a one-day introduction that takes place when you arrive in Ecuador. It will provide you with information on the culture, language, religion, volunteerism or internship and more. You will also do some limited sightseeing, and generally prepare for your experience.
How would I be able to get Visa?
Ecuador welcomes tourists and travelers from
every country. Citizens from the United States, Canada and most European countries,
etc. traveling to Ecuador do not require a Visa unless these visitors expect to stay in Ecuador for more than
90 days; otherwise, travellers will have to get a special visa and
the most recommendable is the Tourist Visa.
Where should I fly in order to get my host-sight?
Volunteers, interns and students will arrive at
Mariscal Sucre International Airport in Quito. Our in-country coordinator will pick them up from the airport. All international flights arrive and depart from here. You are responsible for your ticket, but once you are in the country our representative will meet you at the airport. When you arrive in Ecuador, one of our staff members will be waiting for you at the airport terminal. He/she will be holding a placard with your name on it so there will be no confusion. Please do not forget to send your detailed flight itinerary in Ecuador
(up to 2 weeks prior your flight) so this arrangement can be made.
Why volunteering or interning in Ecuador?
Because the Ecuadorian society is always open and ready to welcome foreigners.
Because Ecuador joins all the requirements to give you the opportunity of learning or improving the Spanish language in an easy, fast and secure way.
Because the working atmosphere is the right one for a fast and precise learning process thanks to the good-fellowship and solidarity of the people.
Because the environment is creative and versatile.
Because the multicultural origin of the population will enrich your experience.
Why engage in ELEP Volunteer &
Because ELEP gives you the opportunity to apply classroom knowledge in a real situation.
Because ELEP makes a meaningful contribution to the society, community and companies.
Because ELEP helps you to broaden your experiences and build your resume.
Becuase an experience with ELEP help you to reaffirm your career choice by building your self-confidence.
Because give you the chance to expand your perception of the world in which you live.
If you have any additional questions, feel free to email us at