Ecuador Amazon Wildlife Rescue Centre

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1. In Brief

Ecuador is a pocket-sized slice of beautiful South America. Despite its diminutive size, it is bursting with vibrant culture, mesmerising landscapes, exotic tropical wildlife and pristine habitats. It encompasses the all-consuming emerald Amazon, rich in natural resources and home to a wealth of fascinating creatures and indigenous communities.

Ecuador has a picture-perfect capital, painted in pastel colours, alive with cafés, clubs, bars, churches and museums. Markets where friendly locals sell their wares are surrounded by the hustle and bustle of traditional street life. In contrast, the peaceful and serene Andes provide a home for indigenous mountain communities and elusive mountain creatures alike.

This captivating country produces a culture that is expressed in an abundance of wholesome and delicious cuisine, diverse musical forms and colourful festivals that will enliven your senses. Whilst it is one of South America's tiniest countries, it has everything you could possibly want, including stretches of white sand beaches, expansive plains, steamy jungles and spectacular soaring mountains. All this and more is waiting to be discovered on your spectacular Ecuadorian adventure!

PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS

  • Discover a a pocket-sized slice of beautiful South America
  • Rehabilitate & conserve Ecuador's precious wildlife
  • Immerse yourself in a new & exciting culture

PROJECT REQUIREMENTS

  • High-basic to intermediate level Spanish required

FAST FACTS

Location Ecuador
Activities Daily care of individual animals
Maintenance & construction within the park
Leading groups of visitors around the centre
Transport Airport pick-up & drop-off
Bus to project site
Accommodation Shared volunteer cabin

WHAT'S INCLUDED

Before you go Pre-departure support
Travel & medical advice & documentation
Equipment and visa advice
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt
In-country Accommodation
Food (on project site)
Airport pick-up & drop-off
Ground transfers
Local orientation and training
In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ backup

QUALIFICATIONS

A variety of qualifications are available on many of our projects. For example, BTEC certificates and diplomas on our Group conservation projects and TEFL certificates and BTECs on most of our teaching projects. You may also be able to gain a CoPE to support your university application. For more information on these qualifications, please see the qualifications section of our website or ask your volunteer advisor.

PADI DIVE TRAINING

On the Frontier Marine Conservation Group Projects, we will train you to PADI Advanced Open Water before you begin undertaking important biological surveys. Depending on how long you spend on the project, you may also have the option to take further courses up to Divemaster!

Please see the "Dates and Costs" tab for dive qualification prices or ask your volunteer advisor for more information.

Find out more about PADI qualifications.

2. The project

WHAT WILL I BE DOING?

Work at the centre ranges from the daily care of individual animals, to maintenance and construction within the park, to leading groups of visitors around the centre and providing them with information on the work that is done. The centre is family run and offers shelter to rescued animals, as well as those confiscated from the illegal pet trade.

Volunteers that run the tours of the park can do so in either their own native language, or in Spanish, depending on their ability. Individuals who have professional experience in subjects such as veterinary science or biology may be able to assist with those aspects of the centre’s work.

Volunteers should be aware that this is a working animal rescue centre, which cares for a wide range of animals for whom it is not possible to be released back into the wild as many of them are either not native to Ecuador or simply do not possess the natural survival instincts that are so important. The work at times can be difficult, particularly when new cases are admitted to the centre so volunteers should be prepared for the reality of this type of work. Resources are limited and yet the influx of confiscated or rescued animals continues. To support the maintenance and improvement of the centres facilities the gates are opened up to visitors to help fund this project and as such your time will be split between these two work areas.

3. What to expect

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I ARRIVE?

You will be met upon arrival at Quito airport and transferred to a hostel for the night. The next day you will travel by bus from Quito to the bustling town of Tena in the Amazonian region, a journey of around 6 hours that will give you the opportunity to view Ecuador from a local's point of view. From Tena you will take a local bus for around 30 minutes to arrive at your project site. A member of staff will accompany you to and from the project site.

WHERE WILL I BE STAYING?

Volunteers live on site at the project, where there are a number of volunteer cabins. Each cabin is fitted with bunk beds, a bathroom and a living area, and whilst the facilities will be basic they will of course be clean. There is a communal kitchen where everybody eats together and a swimming pool next to the project site that volunteers are allowed to use free of charge.

WHAT WILL I BE EATING?

Your food is included while on the project site, but not when you are in Quito. Volunteers and staff eat all of their meals together and vegetarians and special dietary requirements can easily be catered for. Food will be typically Ecuadorian fare, delicious and often characterised by rice, lentils, potatoes and beans.

4. The reviews

Every single morning  | 10 Nov 2012
Waking up in the santuary in Ecuador was an real joy every single morning. The day's act...

Read more


Memorable trip  | 5 Jul 2010
My time spent at the rescue centre was amazing. I only spent 2 weeks there but by the end I felt ...

Read more


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5. Gallery

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6. Extras

ADDITIONAL OPPORTUNITIES

Ecuador offers a wide variety of extra activities, both adventurous and cultural alike, such as rafting, caving, hiking, and trips to thermal pools.  We prefer you to arrange and book these direct with local providers thereby contributing to the local economy.

7. Dates and Costs

COSTS

4 weeks US$2,095

Extra week US$445

DEPARTURE DATES

All year round

Please check for project start dates

This project is not available on the following dates:

February 8th and 9th (CARNAVAL)

March 25th (VIERNES SANTO)

May 1st (DIA DEL TRABAJO) 24th (BATALLA DEL PICHINCHA)

August 10th (PRIMER GRITO DE INDEPENDENCIA)

October 9th (INDEPENDENCIA DE GUAYAQUIL)

November 2nd (DIA DE LOS DIFUNTOS) 3rd  (FIESTAS DE CUENCA)

December 25th-26th (Christmas)

January 1st (New Year)

DURATION

4 weeks and longer, although shorter periods may be arranged

PLEASE CHECK AVAILABILIITY WHEN APPLYING FOR THIS POPULAR PROJECT!

WHAT'S INCLUDED

Before you go

  • Pre-departure support
  • Travel & medical advice & documentation
  • Discounted medical kit
  • Free Frontier t-shirt

In-country

  • Accommodation
  • Food on the project site
  • Airport pick-up & drop-off
  • Ground transfers to project
  • Local orientation
  • Project training
  • In-country emergency support
  • 24-hour international HQ backup

AIRPORT INFORMATION

Nearest airport(s): Quito (UIO)

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

Flights

Flights are not included in our trip costs. However, we have partnered with an experienced and professional team of travel experts to help our volunteers find the best flight deals for their trips with us. This travel specialist operates in the tailor-made, long haul multi-stop travel market, arranging complex airfares and transfers for independent travellers. They provide expertise, security and a vast product range along with a Travel Butler service which is a single point of contact and support whilst you are overseas.

We recommend that you obtain a quote using the following contact details rather than book online, as our partner will offer you the most competitive fares. To receive your quote or to seek any advice for your flights, please contact our dedicated team of travel experts on 0800 082 9994 (or +44 800 082 9994 outside the UK) or email frontier@flightcentre.co.uk .

Visas

For fast, efficient and up-to-date visa advice please contact our recommended visa consultancy partner:

Depending on your destination country and your country of origin, you might require a visa. Please see the appropriate country consular website for details or contact our affiliate visa consultancy service. Please note that your visa will usually start on the date that you enter the destination country regardless of when it was issued. Please check with the relevant embassy or high commission. If you are purchasing your visa or paying entry/exit fees in-country you will probably need to pay in US Dollars. If you have any questions please consult the relevant embassy or high commission. Please check the visa information regularly, as changes often happen without warning.

Insurance

You'll need to buy appropriate travel insurance covering your participation on the project. You won't be able to go without the right travel insurance so double check to avoid disappointment. Please make sure that you're covered for the whole duration of your trip – from the day you leave the UK to the day you return. It's also best to get your travel insurance at the same time as paying the deposit for your project. Depending on your policy, this will cover you for any unexpected cancellations.

Your insurance should include the following:

  • Medical cover, including medical emergencies and medical evacuations (up to USD$3,000,000 / GBP£2,000,000);
  • Personal liability (up to USD$1,500,000 / GBP£1,000,000);
  • Cancellation and curtailment of your trip (up to the value of your project contribution).

If you are going to be scuba diving you should get coverage for scuba diving up to 30m, including hyperbaric therapy treatment (unlimited). You should consider obtaining insurance to cover you for any additional activities which you plan to do during, before, or after your Frontier project. We recommend that you obtain cover for your baggage and personal effects.


LEGAL STATEMENT
Frontier Partner Projects and Frontier group projects are run in partnership with in-country NGOs, small community based organisations, local research institutes, academic organisations and conservation agencies. Project descriptions and information are supplied directly by our partners or field staff and are accurate at time of publishing.

We aim to keep information up to date and accurate, however, the nature of our projects and in particular the fact that they are constantly evolving and developing in response to changing needs means that project activities, travel schedules, tour itineraries and daily timetables can change overnight and without notice.

8. How to apply

To apply for this placement, click on "Apply Now" below. Fill in the short application form and one of our advisers will then call you back to answer any questions and make sure this is the perfect placement for you. Applying doesn't cost a penny and you won't pay anything until you're completely happy and you're ready to reserve your place.


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