I had a great time in Rio learning about the culture and building relationships with the people in the Engenho de Rainha community. I worked with talented, passionate and hardworking health professionals who were willing to help and answer questions at all times. I really enjoyed being immersed in the community and learning about all aspects of the healthcare system in Rio de Janeiro in particular including the many challenges. This was an unforgettable experience I would highly recommend. – Jefrin
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Last Sunday Iko Poran’s Founder and Director went with his family to volunteer in a community effort cleaning a riverbed at Rio de Janeiro’s National Park.
The Tijuca Rainforest is one of the natural gems of Rio de Janeiro. IKPVA volunteers have been working at the rainforest for many years now, in order to preserve the ecological so important area. What volunteers say about their experience:
So far I have had a wonderful experience volunteering in Rio de Janeiro with Iko Poran’s Urban Environmentalism program. I am half way through my two-month stay in Rio and I already know that it will be a very valuable experience for me. The project consists of work in Tijuca National Park and at a large community garden in a favela, where they grow almost every sort of common vegetable in Brazil. The people I work with in the communities are all incredibly kind and welcoming, not to mention they are doing work that makes a big difference for themselves and the environment. – Elisa
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! – Destiny
Adriana Puiggros has been volunteering with children in one of Rio de Janeiro’s favelas, and she fell in love with Brazil:
Risking my life, investing my time, working to help the children of this favela in Rio de Janeiro was undoubtedly an indescribable experience that changed my way of seeing things and life forever. It saddens me to think that I will not see these children again, at least in a long time, but I am happy for everything that has taken me. Now it’s time to close a stage in Rio, but it’s not the time to leave. Soon I will open a new stage in Brazil full of new experiences, people and places to know. I’ve fallen madly in love with this country. ❤😍
Original – Portuguese:
Arriscar minha vida, investir meu tempo, trabalhar para ajudar as crianças desta favela do Rio de Janeiro, foi sem dúvida alguma uma experiência indescritível que me mudou a minha forma de ver as coisas e a vida para sempre. Entristece-me pensar que já não vou voltar a ver estas crianças, pelo menos em um tempo longo, mas estou feliz por tudo o que me levou. Agora é hora de fechar uma etapa no Rio, mas não é hora de ir embora. Em breve vou abrir uma nova etapa no Brasil cheia de novas experiências, pessoas e lugares por conhecer. Este país me tem loucamente apaixonada. ❤😍
Find here the programs to volunteer in Brazil.
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…
Learn Capoeira in the Sports Development Project in Brazil
Sports have become vital for Rio de Janeiro’s lower income communities, providing children and adolescents with recreational outlets. At just about every corner of Rio de Janeiro, you will find locals playing the national sport of futebol. With the few entertainment options for youth in lower income communities, sports have become an essential part of favela life, especially among children and adolescents.
Given the lack of entertainment and job opportunities, children are increasingly getting caught up in illegal activities. The Sports project aims to provide children with friendly competition in a safe and fun environment. Volunteers on this project have the opportunity to work with children in popular Brazilian sports, such as futebol, futsal, capoeira, and surfing.
Volunteers do not need to be sports stars to participate on this project, but a passion and enthusiasm for sports goes a long way! Volunteers are encouraged to list their preferences and skills when applying for the Sports project, but will be required to be flexible and participate in a variety of sports where required.
Please note, many of the placements are based outdoors and are dependent on good weather. In the event of bad weather, our local staff will do their best to place volunteers at other projects, such as Childcare or Community Development.
If you feel ready to go, sign up as a Brazil Volunteer .
We will take you carefully step by step through the enrollment, and you will learn what will be provided with the program, costs and requirements. Have fun.