Shaden Elgalaly, volunteer from Egypt (in the center) together with Brazilian volunteer, ready to plant trees and save the forests in Brazil.
You can volunteer with the reforestation project at The Tijuca National Forest, the world’s largest urban forest. While you are volunteering on this project, you will be helping in the tree nursery. But there is more, what you can do:
among other activities.
Saving the Urban Rainforest in Rio de Janeiro is one of the most important ecological volunteer projects in Rio de Janeiro. Volunteers from all over the world joined in Rio de Janerio to help preserving the tropical forest – on the photo from left to right: Sabrina Ho, from China, Luca Klein, from Germany, George Wade, from Britain, Jawad Dabbour, from United States, Radek Machowiec, from Polland, and 3 Brazilian Volunteers saving the forests of Brazil.
The Magnificent City (Cidade Maravilhosa) wouldn’t be the same, if it had not the largest urban rainforest as a green lung to breathe. And of course, there are beautiful hiking trails through the forest and upon the top of the mountains with breathtaking views. So, preserving the Rainforest in Rio is one of the most important ecological volunteer projects to work on!
You can volunteer with the reforestaion project at The Tijuca National Forest in order to preserve the world’s largest urban rainforest. While you are volunteering on this project, you will be helping in the tree nursery. But there is more, what you can do:
among other activities.
Find here all the volunteer projects in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and how to sign up.
Paulina has sent us this beautiful testimony about her volunteer work in Rio de Janeiro. During her time in Salgueiro, a pacified community in Zona Norte of Rio, she has been working in the ecological garden of the community. At the same time she was caring for children at the local school, and enjoyed playing and drawing with them. She even taught some English to them. As she says, things move at a different pace in Brazil, you have to be patient. But after a while things start to work out greatly, and you get the support of the nice and welcoming people in the favela.
I had the opportunity to volunteer in Brazil with Iko Poran for three weeks in August 2013. My project was located in Salgueiro, a pacified community very well known for having one of the most famous samba schools in Rio de Janeiro.
In the mornings I worked in an ecological garden that provided food to the poorest families in the community and to the local school, and in the afternoons I helped in what they call “the library”, which is a space where children from the neighborhood come to hang around playing, drawing, painting or learning English.
My volunteer time in Rio was a very nice experience that I’ll never forget. One of the most important things I learnt is that you have to try to not to give up if at any time you have the feeling that the project is not fulfilling your expectations, or that you are not helping enough. You have to always keep in mind that things in Brazil move at a different pace… The best approach to this situation is to face each day with renewed illusion and to always show a positive and proactive attitude.
The best part of the gardening project was meeting the people who work there: nice, friendly and welcoming people, who quickly opened the door of their home to me and their hearts.
In the project with children I learnt that just with our presence, we prevent these kids from being in the streets exposed to dangers and possible negative influences. I also learnt that what really matters is the love you give and that you receive from them in huge amounts. It’s almost amazing to see how their smiles can light up your day and also motivate you to keep going and value the work you are doing there.
This experience also allowed me to meet amazing people. I’m talking about the other volunteers from different nationalities that lived in the same house as me, and also the Iko Poran team. They’re all lovely people that I hope to see again someday!– Paulina Dañino
Volunteering in Rio with Iko Poran was one of the best decisions I have ever made! I came to Rio to study Sociology abroad but wanted to stay longer in order to further immerse myself in the culture and make a social impact, so I decided to volunteer with Iko Poran for two weeks after my studies were over. I was able to experience the city of Rio more in two weeks with Iko Poran than I was able to in three weeks studying!
Volunteering with the environmental program gave me the opportunity to see first hand the ecological challenges that Rio faces and make a difference myself while also having the chance to witness the incredible beauty of the city and parks as I was doing it! I also loved the independence that Iko Poran gave me! I was able to navigate the city by the time I left, communicate with locals, and had made life long friends in my fellow volunteers! I had plenty of time to explore after volunteering and on the weekends so I was able to see many sights and museums while also indulging in the social scene. The Rio Hostel was also wonderful! The employees became friends and the hostel became home! All in all, I loved my experience with Iko Poran and am so thrilled that I chose to experience Rio with them!
If you enjoy the outdoors you can volunteer with a community garden in Rio de Janeiro. Volunteers help growing vegetables in the garden for the residents of a nearby favela. Mr. Áureo coordinates the project, where also the children of the community participate in the garden work.
Here in the garden we grow everything for the community. When people need something, they can buy it or take it for free. They won’t leave with empty hands. The volunteers are doing a great job, they come and help us out. We exchange ideas. They teach us what they know and we teach them what we know as well – Seu Áureo, Project leader
What volunteers say about their experience:
We feel lucky we can work with Mr. Áureo, coordinator of the garden. He plans our daily tasks. Our work schedule. It’s very interesting. What I will remember from my experience here are the people. The people at Iko Poran and from the garden. And the interaction I’ve had with these people. – Santiago, volunteer from Argentina
Find out everything about volunteering in Rio de Janeiro, volunteer accommodation in Rio, and proceed with your application.
Work as a reforestation volunteer in Ecuador’s cloud forest in order to help achieving long-lasting positive results both for the environment and the local people. Since the local government has asked the community to plant and grow 20,000 trees to use for reforestation work across the region, you work as a reforestation volunteer is vital for the project. Alongside this, the community group have also come together and bought a piece of land, where they would like to plant coffee plants and trees to grow and use for reforestation work in the area.
The cloud forest and the trees within them form a vital part of the life and work of the community and this reforestation project will make a big difference. The community would love volunteer assistance to contribute towards this important ecological project and to the community for years to come.
Find the complete information for volunteer work in Ecuador here. Learn about everything provided with the reforestation volunteer program, required language skills, costs involved and proceed with your application.
Find more volunteer opportunities with reforestation at rainforests:
Environmental Volunteering at the Tijuca National Forest helps preserving the world’s largest urban forest. You can volunteer on a reforestation project helping in the three nursery, counting species, opening and cleaning trails, cutting branches, painting fences/ signals, among other activities.
Tijuca Forest is the worlds largest urban rainforest, this program gives you, as a volunteer, the opportunity to take part in aiding the conservation of this natural beauty. You will be given the once in a lifetime chance to create alternative solutions to some of the increasing environmental issues this area faces, in response to plastics residues, waste and pollution.
If only I was born in Brazil
Iko Poran truly showed me the authentic life of a Brazilian. The warmth, the layback’d-ness, the everyday “Bon Dia’s”…. It was an experience that I will never forget. I am going to return to Brazil as soon as I can!! The people you meet, both local citizens as well as the foreign participants, have become friends I will never forget and hopefully see soon!
All in all, Iko Poran was an opportunity I would do again and again (especially to see Lola, the dorm cat). – Eric Jin, Waterloo University
Rio de Janeiro boasts one of the most magnificent contrasting landscapes in the world: cascading forests on massive mountains adjacent to a world-class city. However, this contrast isn’t always mutually beneficial, as many of Rio’s treasured green spaces are damaged by urban sprawl.
I was in Rio de Janeiro for 4 weeks helping out in the Tijuca rainforest and at the community garden in a favela. I met so many different people from all over the world and as a result, I not only learned about Brazil but many other cultures. It’s a great way to get to know a city and have more of a local feel and the program itself is very reasonably priced. I would definitely consider coming back to Iko Poran for volunteering again. – Emily, University of Waterloo
As a volunteer for an environmental program you can help to support and develop some of the most precious natural spaces, while also helping in a community vegetable garden and experiencing favela life.
Find the complete information about affordable volunteering in Brazil…
You may also like to read about more reforestation projects in other countries:
“This is an experience that will hold forever. I was able to bring water to those in need.” – Zach Luster, volunteering in Uganda
Volunteer in Uganda in our construction and renovation programs. Although Uganda is endowed with abundance of natural resources, it remains a least developed country, with the lowest indicators of socio-economic development, due to extensive political and social corruption, and extreme poverty. The most affected population is the majority Ugandans who live in rural areas with poor infrastructures. Often roads, schools and health centres are extremely poor, with no clean water and poor sanitation.
There’s urgent need of volunteers to boost the basic facilities and infrastructure for the people in poverty stricken communities. Projects vary from constructing and repairing houses, schools, care and health centres, toilets, and clean water sources for deprived local people; to learning traditional building techniques as well as initiating new appropriate and environmental friendly building skills. IKPVA’s construction volunteer programs in Uganda offer participants both a valuable life-changing experience and an opportunity to make a difference.
Volunteers in this field work in manual labour jobs alongside skilled and unskilled local builders to help with the construction work. The buildings are made using traditional methods and locally sourced materials. The construction techniques are also simple to master and are ideal for sites with limited facilities. No electricity is available at the site everything is done manually! Participants’ task can include digging foundations, mixing cement, building walls, constructing a roof either with grass or iron sheets/tiles, plastering, painting and white-washing, landscaping, digging of trenches, refurbishing sports fields, brick laying, and construction of local huts. Please note: volunteers do not need to be qualified or experienced to participate in these projects, however volunteers with special expertise are highly preferred.
Find more projects to Volunteer in Uganda
Find here the full information about volunteering in Uganda.
We will take you step by step through the enrollment, and you will learn about everything provided with the program, requirements and fees.
I was in Rio de Janeiro for 4 weeks helping out in the Tijuca rainforest and at the community garden in a favela. I met so many different people from all over the world and as a result, I not only learned about Brazil but many other cultures. It’s a great way to get to know a city and have more of a local feel and the program itself is very reasonably priced. I would definitely consider coming back to Iko Poran for volunteering again.
If you enjoy the outdoors consider volunteer in Brazil in our environment projects. From conservation projects to urban renewal, Iko Poran has partnerships with a number of NGOs and projects helping to protect Rio’s stunning landscape or growing vegetables and salads in community gardens to alleviate hunger or donate to local crèches.
Find out more about affordable volunteering in Brazil.