TRIP #GMA1017:


Get a taste of village life and help make families healthier

Oct 7, 2017
Oct 21, 2017
Approx. $2,300
San Miguel Dueñas, Sacatepequez, Guatemala


You’ll work with Open Windows Foundation in San Miguel Duenas, an agricultural community of about 12,000 people who live 15 kilometres from the tourist city of Antigua. Despite being located so close to the tourism industry, many San Miguel families barely get by. Open Windows is a dynamic, non-profit children’s learning centre that provides 2,600 kids with services and programs so they have more options and independence in their lives.

About The Trip:

You might be building homes, installing clean-burning stoves and/or possibly teaching children computer skills and literacy with the guidance of Open Windows Foundation (OW). Most of the people who live in and around San Miguel Duenas are subsistence farm workers living in tin and cindercrete block houses.

You’ll definitely be doing construction that builds a future for people who live off of hope. You’ll work alongside like-minded volunteers who are also passionate about travel and giving others a hand up, not a hand out.

Read day-to-day experiences from our volunteers on the Guatemala Blog »

It’s Not All Work:

October is a great time to see Guatemala; although it’s at the end of the rainy season and you can expect there will still be some showers, there will also be sunshine without too much heat. Temperatures are usually moderate at this time of year, in the 17C to 28C range.

There’s lots to see and do. Antigua, where our volunteers stay in a hotel, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its Spanish Baroque style of architecture and church ruins. The region was hit by several earthquakes in the 1700s (hence the historic ruins). Not to worry, though, there haven’t been any quakes of note in the past couple of hundred years or so.

Past teams have visited a chocolate maker, open markets, monuments, fountains, plant nurseries and even volcanoes. Some have gone for wilderness hikes or ziplining. There are lots of options for your free time.

Learn more about the Guatemala »

The Project:

Volunteers will be doing some type of construction, possibly homes for families in need or some kind of community facility. You will be assisted by local masons and builders. There may also be a chance to install clean-burning stoves. You will have a chance to visit Open Windows and work with small groups of children to help their computer skills, literacy and crafts.

GMA0314-HS_ Volunteers building
GMA0314-HS_chocolate making group shot and local

When / Itinerary:

  • Saturday, October 7 and Sunday, October 8 – Team arrives Guatemala City airport; transport to Antigua and check in to hotel
  • Monday, October 9 to Friday, October 13 – PROJECT WORK in San Miguel Dueñas
  • Saturday, October 14 to Sunday, October 15 – Free days for some R and R
  • Monday, October 16 to Friday, October 20 – PROJECT WORK in San Miguel Dueñas
  • Saturday, October 21: Return to Guatemala City

View All Trips Schedule »


Do I need construction experience and how much will we work?
You don’t need any special skills or training. We hire local skilled labourers who will give training onsite for construction and team leaders. You will work at your own pace five days a week from about 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Your evenings and weekends are free for cultural activities and relaxing..
What are meals and accommodations like?
The team will stay at a hotel in Antigua that is comfortable and clean. The food is prepared hygienically and dishes range from local to standard Western fare.
How much does it cost?
The program cost is about $2,300 and will be finalized closer to the departure date. This includes accommodations, meals, in-country transport, program costs and a donation to Open Windows Foundation. It does not include airfare.

The entire program and flight costs are 100% tax deductible when paid through DWC. You can also fundraise and we will issue charitable receipts for donations $20 CDN or greater.

Why should I volunteer?

Volunteer trips take you to places you otherwise might never go, to do things you otherwise might never do and to meet people you might never otherwise meet.

You’ll make a difference in others’ lives and they will make a difference in yours. Simply put, there is joy and self-discovery that comes with giving to others. And you’ll have fun doing it, too.

DWC Team Leader:


Richard Srepel

Richard isn’t just a team leader, he’s also a long-time board member and a well-travelled DWC volunteer. That’s him with the blue cap in the photo in Peru.

In addition to being involved with DWC, Richard participated in a Rotary International project that involved setting up a clean water system for a new school and village in Guatemala.

He has been in business for the last 25 years specializing in satellite communications, computers and custom installation work. His previous experience was with the Canadian and Quebec governments working in the Canadian Arctic. Richard enjoys skiing, hiking, camping, canoeing and volleyball. He claims to be responsible for introducing Frisbee to the children of Guatemala.

Are You Ready To Go?

Got questions? Email us at

Ready to apply? Fill out our online application. You can secure your place on this trip with a $500, non-refundable deposit that goes toward your total trip cost. After you’ve submitted your forms and deposit, our office will contact you and send you a welcome package.

We’re glad to have you join us.

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