Volunteer in Argentina - Buenos Aires
At a glance…
- Available year-round
- 5 meaningful project options
- Projects based in and around Argentina’s buzzing capital, Buenos Aires
- Accommodation in a dormitory-style volunteer house
- Program fees include airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, breakfast and 24/7 in-country support
- Program fees from US$590 for 2 weeks (approximately CA$730)
- Affordable Spanish language crash course available
- Between 5 and 10 volunteers start in Buenos Aires each month
- Most affordable fees - as the world leader in affordable volunteer travel, we’re able to keep our fees low by partnering with a local organization in Argentina to support meaningful community projects and local employment.
- Superior support - your experienced IVHQ Program Manager, teamed with our local team in Argentina will ensure you feel supported every step of the way - from planning to volunteering.
- Responsible projects - we’re dedicated to ensuring that our projects are responsibly run and have sustainable positive impacts that are supporting local needs.
- Online training - as soon as you register on an IVHQ program, you will gain access to our interactive volunteer training to ensure you’re well prepared for your program.
- Safety-first - volunteer safety is a top priority for IVHQ and we have clear standards for risk management on each program. You can feel confident that you are placed with trustworthy institutions, organizations and families that have been screened by our local teams.
- New friendships - as an IVHQer, you’ll always be in the company of friendly locals and like-minded volunteer travelers who will quickly become your life-long friends.
- Epic weekend adventures - you’ll have your weekends free to explore Argentina with your new-found friends.
The Buenos Aires volunteer program is based in and around Argentina’s cosmopolitan capital city, Buenos Aires, with the volunteer accommodation located in the San Cristobal neighborhood. Volunteers are required to fly into Ministro Pistarini International Airport, known as Ezeiza International Airport (EZE), which is a 11 to 13 hour flight from most major airports in Canada.. Volunteer placements are located in the Barracas area, within 20 to 40 minutes travel time from the volunteer accommodation.
The program begins on the first and third Monday of each month and volunteers can choose to volunteer for periods ranging from 2 weeks to 12 weeks.
Volunteers on the Childcare project in Argentina work with after school programs and local soup kitchens to provide children from shanty areas and low-income communities with safe environments where they can engage in activities to develop their skill sets.
As a volunteer on the Childcare project, you will play an important role in supporting the delivery of these programs which aim to keep children off the streets and involved in activities to support their development. In turn, you will be providing the children with camaraderie and valuable exposure to the English language.
The after school program operates in a governmental sports facility, where you will work alongside local staff to facilitate games and sports activities, predominantly hockey and football, for children and teenagers aged from 6 to 18 years-old. Alternatively, volunteers placed in the soup kitchen provide support to local staff in facilitating games, activities and meals for up to 45 children and teenagers. Activities can vary, but typically include arts and crafts, songs and games, as well as fortnightly outreach campaigns in the neighborhood where the soup kitchen delivers free meals to homeless people.
This project is best suited to volunteers with plenty of energy and an enthusiasm for working with children. Previous experience or qualifications in early childhood education is advantageous but not required to join this project, as you will be working under the guidance of the local staff.
The purpose of the Teaching/Education project is to assist in the implementation of an integrative educational project, aimed at addressing issues of poverty and illiteracy in low-income communities. In the shanty town areas of southern Buenos Aires, local schools promote social inclusion through education to families and through combining different social groups within the school. As part of this initiative, volunteers work alongside a local teacher to carry out English lessons to primary school-aged children. Typical activities on this project include assisting with pronunciation and providing additional guidance and support to the children in the class.
This project is well suited to volunteers who are looking for an opportunity to teach English abroad to enthusiastic English learners.
As you will be volunteering with the support of IVHQ’s local team and placement staff, you do not need to be a qualified or experienced teacher to participate on this project. However, we encourage you to come prepared by completing some relevant training. Visit our Online TEFL Course page to learn how to gain an internationally-recognized TEFL certification at a discounted rate.
Please note that due to school holidays, this project is closed from mid December to end of February.
Construction and Renovation
The aim of the Construction and Renovation project in Argentina is to provide hands-on support in renovation and maintenance activities within local schools in Buenos Aires. The schools operate as charities and receive no financial assistance from the government, therefore the assistance from volunteers in renovating existing areas of the school and helping with light construction tasks is greatly appreciated.
This project is perfect for hard-working volunteers who don’t mind getting their hands dirty and are willing to provide support wherever help is most needed. Your tasks can include assisting in painting, repairing furniture and equipment, tiling, gardening, constructing internal walls and bathrooms.
You are not required to have previous experience in construction in order to join this project, as you will be volunteering alongside placement staff and local volunteers from the surrounding communities.
The purpose of the Healthcare project in Buenos Aires is to provide support to charity-run community clinics in the Barracas community of Buenos Aires. These clinics provide a wide range of minor and moderate healthcare services to local community members. Specialty services provided by the clinics include general medicine and nursing, pediatrics, physiology, dentistry, gynecology, x-ray, ultrasound and mental health.
This project is best suited to medical students or nursing students, or healthcare professionals, who are interested in gaining a first-hand understanding of healthcare practices in South America.
While volunteers will be able to work within their current scope of practice, all volunteers should expect to be shadowing local medical staff when they first begin their program and familiarize themselves with the clinic. Your independence will be determined by your level of training, demonstrated expertise, Spanish language level, personality and ability to take initiative. In Argentina, there are an adequate number of local doctors working in these clinics and unlike in some other South American locations, the law does not allow patients to be touched by students without a local professionals’ supervision.
This project is open to pre-medical, medical and nursing students, as well as fully qualified doctors and healthcare professionals. An intermediate level of Spanish is also required to take part in this project. Once you have registered for the program, you will need to provide a copy of your qualifications and certificates to our local team in Argentia. If you are studying, please provide a copy of your academic transcript. These must be received by our local team at least 2 weeks prior to your arrival in Argentina.
It is recommended that volunteers bring their own medical scrubs, latex gloves and stethoscope.
Volunteers on Sports Education project have the opportunity to assist in the implementation of an integrative educational project, aimed at addressing issues of poverty and illiteracy in low-income communities in southern Buenos Aires. As part of this initiative, volunteers assist with running coaching sessions in primary schools and after school programs set within a government-run sports center.
As a volunteer on this project, you will assist a local Physical Education teacher or staff member in running drills and games for children and teenagers. The main focus of these coaching sessions is on football and hockey, however volunteers are encouraged to introduce new games and sports to the children. If you have a particular sport that you would like to teach, please bring the required equipment with you from home, or purchase you can purchase it Argentina, as the placements have limited resources.
This project is perfect for volunteers who are passionate about working with children and supporting their development.
Please note that due to the school holidays, this project is closed from mid December to end of February.
The program orientation begins on the first and thrid Monday of every month and volunteers need to arrive in Buenos Aires on the day before orientation.
After you have registered for the program, please book your flights to arrive at Ministro Pistarini International Airport, known as Ezeiza International Airport (EZE). Canadian travelers do not require a visa to enter Argentina for a duration of 90 days. Your airport pick-up is included in your Program Fee.
When you arrive, you will be greeted at the airport by a member of the local team and transported to the volunteer accommodation. Your accommodation is covered by your Program Fee and includes the night before your program orientation.
If you are traveling in Argentina prior to your volunteer program, we can arrange for you to be picked up in Buenos Aires on the day before your program orientation.
Orientation is hosted by our Argentina team and begins on the morning of your chosen start date. Orientation covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program in Buenos Aires – Introduction to Argentina, Culture and Customs, Rules and Expectations, Safety, Travel Opportunities, Introduction to Project and Placement. The orientation will also give you a chance to meet other volunteers and swap contact details for weekend travel and socializing.
First Day: On your first day of volunteering, you will be escorted to your placement by a local coordinator and introduced to the placement staff you will be working with.
Weekdays: Volunteers may have a morning or afternoon shift, or both, and can expect to work a minimum of 3 hours, Monday through Friday. A typical daily schedule would be as follows:
8.00AM – Breakfast at the volunteer accommodation.
8.30AM - 9.00AM – Volunteers travel to their placements.
9.30AM - 1.00PM – Work at the placement commences, if you have been assigned a morning shift.
1.00PM - 2.00PM – Break for lunch
2.00PM - 4.00PM – Work at the placement commences, if you have been assigned an afternoon shift.
5.00PM - 7.00PM – You are free to travel back to the volunteer house for your Spanish lessons, go sightseeing or do some shopping.
Please note, this is an example schedule as some projects take place in the afternoon. Start time and daily workload depends on the project that the individual volunteer is participating on.
Volunteers are accommodated in a multi-story, dormitory-style volunteer house in the neighborhood of San Cristobal in central Buenos Aires. It has free WiFi and great facilities for volunteers, including a roof-top terrace and barbecue area, communal kitchen and living areas, hammocks and a TV room.
Volunteers can expect to share a bedroom with up to three other volunteers of the same gender. Bedrooms are comprised of single beds and bunk beds with bedding and towels provided. Bathroom facilities are shared between volunteers with hot showers and western toilets.
Accommodation upgrades to private single rooms are available for US$35 (approximately CA$45) per night.
You will be provided with groceries to make a continental style breakfast every day, which is prepared in the kitchen/dining room of the volunteer house and includes toast and spreads, cereal and fruit.
For lunch and dinner, you can cook for yourself in the generous and well established communal kitchen of the volunteer accommodation which has a gas hob, oven, microwave, fridge and pantry space. Alternatively, you can purchase lunch and dinner from restaurants nearby the volunteer placements and accommodation at a cost of between CA$6 to CA$30 per meal.
On the weekends, volunteers have free time to relax or explore the bustling and vibrant city of Buenos Aires. You can also spend your weekends exploring nearby areas, or take a boat over to Uruguay! Many volunteers also take advantage of the short flight or overnight bus to Mendoza (wine region near the Andes), Córdoba, or Rosario. Argentina offers plenty of activities for adventurous volunteers, including trekking, mountain climbing, horseback riding, paragliding, and abseiling - just to name a few! Our local team in Argentina will be happy to advise you on any weekend travel arrangements you might like to make when you arrive in Buenos Aires.
See our Argentina Travel and Tours page for more volunteer travel options in Argentina!
Weather and climate: Like its topography, Argentina’s climate varies greatly. The climate ranges from subtropical in the north, to humid in the central regions, to sub-Antarctic in the south. Winter is the driest period of the year (June to August). The coldest months are June and July and the warmest month is January. Average annual temperatures in Buenos Aires range from 51°F to 83°F (11°C to 28°C).
Volunteers need to be 18 years or over to participate, unless volunteering with a parent or guardian. All volunteers are required to have adequate volunteer travel insurance and upload a criminal background check via MyIVHQ before arriving in Argentina.
For the Medical project, volunteers must be studying or qualified in a relevant field and have an intermediate level of Spanish.
Free Interactive Volunteer Training - All volunteers are encouraged to complete our interactive pre-departure training, which is available exclusively to registered IVHQ volunteers. The training is designed to build an understanding of important aspects that need to be considered before embarking on an IVHQ program. It helps volunteers to prepare in the right way by providing advice on what it takes to be a safe, responsible and valuable volunteer. Try a sample of the training here.
A one week Spanish language crash course is offered for those volunteers who are new to Spanish and want to learn the basics. The course includes a 2 hour group Spanish lesson, Monday to Friday, and costs US$210 (approximately CA$265).
If you have an intermediate or advanced level of Spanish, and would like additional classes while in Buenos Aires, our local team will assist you in arranging classes at a nearby Spanish language school.