Search

Idealist logo
Internships
Internship

Galapagos Islands: Sustainable Agriculture, Food Systems, and Conservation

Posted by
Amazon Learning | Puerto Ayora, Islas Galápagos, Ecuador
Apply

The Galapagos Islands are one of the most biodiverse regions on Earth, home to one-of-a-kind species such as Galapagos penguins and giant tortoises. While there are many local and international efforts to protect the Galapagos and its inhabitants (including native peoples), the islands suffer many challenges, such as a lack of food security, a reliance on imports, invasive species consuming local resources, and a lack of seed-saving practices for native species. This internship is an opportunity to collaborate with a farm that has been researching how to achieve autonomous, resilient, chemical-free, regenerative, and profitable agriculture in the Galapagos islands. The farm is also an agro-ecology school and arguably the founder of the first local seed bank (of edible species) in the Galapagos.

Daily Life

At the start of your program, you will have an orientation on the island of Santa Cruz where the farm and your host family are also located. During orientation workshops, you will start learning about the culture, people, and geography of the region as well as other tools to support you in your internship abroad. 

In addition to your collaboration at the farm, you will be able to participate in the daily lives of your host family members, forming meaningful connections with them and exchanging knowledge. You may even have the chance to participate in local customs and traditions during your stay. 

At the farm, interns will be able to learn about the reality of the Galapagos Islands, participate in daily customs and rituals, and experience the culture of the community on the island of Santa Cruz. Interns are expected to work about 4-5 hours per day, 5 days per week, and regularly assist with the daily maintenance of the main house and the gardens. Interns are free to visit the island in the afternoon and go exploring on the weekends. 

Some potential activities include:

  • Maintain the vegetable seedbeds 
  • Assist with seed germination processes and take care of the seed banks 
  • Construct apparatuses and design new permaculture systems 
  • Assist with the maintenance of the garden by weeding, excavating, making compost, pruning, applying natural fertilizers, and more
  • Reforest native or endemic plants 
  • Conduct personal research or study:
  • Water use and conservation; new water captation systems
  • Improvement of soil texture 
  • Improvement of soil nutrients (regeneration of soil)
  • Human or natural innovations to control pests such as rats and wild cats 
  • Support the farm’s marketing and social media 
  • Conduct language tutoring exchanges with staff and community members [English, Spanish]

Interns need to bring extra spending money for their transportation, meals not eaten with the family, and activities and travel outside of the program. The cost of living and transportation costs are explained in more detail in the intern manual provided to incoming participants to help them calculate how much extra money they should bring. 

The Galapagos Islands are one of the most biodiverse regions on Earth, home to one-of-a-kind species such as Galapagos penguins and giant tortoises. While there are many local and international efforts to protect the Galapagos and its…

Details at a glance

  • On-site Location

Benefits

  • Learn methods of sustainable agricultural production and food systems from experts
  • Contribute to the islands’ food security, soil conservation, and regeneration
  • Gain experience in the maintenance, design, and implementation of sustainable agriculture systems and permaculture systems
  • Forge meaningful relations with locals while living with a host family 
  • Research & dissertation support available, if requested

***NOTE: Specific projects change throughout the year depending on the needs of our partner organizations. The projects interns work on during their internships are based on the organization’s immediate needs and workflow.***

  • Learn methods of sustainable agricultural production and food systems from experts
  • Contribute to the islands’ food security, soil conservation, and regeneration
  • Gain…

How to Apply

Applications are accepted on a year-round basis, and placement dates can be flexible except for in the Summer. We require a minimum of 4 weeks and recommend 8 to 12 weeks which is what most interns opt for (flexible for a minimum of 2 weeks depending on intern’s qualifications).

Please send your resume, a short cover letter, and answers to the following questions to info@amazonlearning.org:

  • How did you find the internship?
  • Why do you believe you are an excellent fit for this internship?
  • What date range you can start, and for how many weeks can you intern?

Travel & Accommodations

The best airport to fly into is Mariscal Sucre International Airport (UIO) in Quito, Ecuador’s capital. Interns need to arrive to Quito no later than the night before their orientation begins. Quito is only 4 hours from Tena, the main city in the Napo Province. On the morning of orientation, a staff member schedules a taxi to pick interns up and bring them to Tena for training; they just have to pay the driver upon arrival. 

Interns stay in Tena during orientation, and the cost of the accommodation is provided. The rest of the program is spent living with a local host family. This is an amazing opportunity to immerse in the local community, learn about the culture, and practice Spanish. Host families provide 3 meals per day, bedding, and a place to do laundry. 

Requirements

We recommend that interns commit to 8-week internships and have an intermediate level of Spanish proficiency. Interns are expected to finance their own travel costs (international and while in Ecuador).

Other requirements include:

  • Minimum 4 weeks commitment, recommended 8-12 weeks
  • Academic and/or professional experience in the fields of culinary arts, agriculture, sustainable business, anthropology, sociology, biology, or a related field
  • Full travel & medical insurance
  • Necessary vaccinations
  • Necessary visa costs

Costs

$300 per week 

What’s included: 

  • Accommodation and 3 meals a day with a host family. Includes a private room, bathroom, all bedding, and place to do laundry
  • Guided pre-departure preparation
  • In-country introduction and orientation during your first few days on Santa Cruz
  • 1:1 check-ins every 2 to 3 weeks 
  • 24/7 emergency support
  • Network of doctors, therapists, Spanish tutors in-country
  • Access to network of experts and information databases for research support  
  • Exit evaluation

Not Included: 

  • Costs of flights and visa
  • Costs of vaccinations
  • Entrance fee to the Galapagos National Park ($120 for foreigners)
  • $15 per day for food during orientation training
  • Personal transportation
  • Any other activities outside of scheduled program activities (scuba diving, snorkeling, yoga, workshops, guided hikes, etc.)

Applications are accepted on a year-round basis, and placement dates can be flexible except for in the Summer. We require a minimum of 4 weeks and recommend 8 to 12 weeks which is what…

Location

Avenida Baltra, Puerto Ayora, Islas Galápagos, EC

Join Idealist

Sign up today to save your favorite internships and get email alerts when new ones are posted.
Apply