Viva Nicaragua! Center for Social Justice and Cultural Understanding

Granada, GR, Nicaragua |
Joined in November 2007

About Us

OUR MISSION: We promote the efforts of both public institutions and non-governmental organizations working to promote social justice and sustainable development in Nicaragua and facilitate cross-cultural learning by recruiting motivated individuals to participate in volunteer, educational, and internship programs.


√ INTERNSHIP PROGRAM Guided academic/professional internships for students and professionals who want to contribute to development efforts while gaining practical field experience in Central America.

√ SHORT-TERM VOLUNTEER PROGRAM Volunteer projects that last from one to three weeks. This program allows individuals with limited time to support development projects while immersing themselves in the culture and language

√ COMPARATIVE HEALTH CARE PROGRAM Health care internships in both Costa Rica and Nicaragua A nine week internship program for pre-med, medical, nursing, as well as public health students.

√ GROUP STUDY PROGRAMS We work with group leaders to coordinate academic, community service and Spanish language study programs. Perfect for faculty led college study abroad courses, high school community service projects, and special interest groups.

√ INTENSIVE SPANISH COURSE A short term, one-on-one full immersion course. Students study 2 – 4 hours per day and may participate in our on-going community service projects.

√ FULL IMMERSION SPANISH COURSE An eight-week academic program designed for university students and professionals who want full immersion in the language and more intensive training in one-on-one classes.

WHY NICARAGUA? Nicaragua is the poorest Central American country, with 43.8% of the population living below the poverty line. Government resources are not enough to improve the country’s crumbling infrastructure and improve people’s access to formal employment, potable water, education, and adequate health care. The country has some of the highest rates of infant and maternal mortality, infectious diseases, and illiteracy in all of Latin America. The conditions of poverty feed social problems such as teenage pregnancy, sexual and physical violence, emigration, and alcohol and drug abuse. With limited resources, the government recognizes and depends upon the efforts of non-governmental and international aid organizations to confront the multi-faceted problems of poverty and underdevelopment.

Community Focus: Granada Viva Nicaragua’s! offices are located in the city of Granada. Granada is a colonial town on the edge of Lake Nicaragua and has been restored, preserved, and promoted as one of Nicaragua’s primary tourist destinations. It is a beautiful city, with hotels and restaurants that cater to the desires of the many tourists that visit Granada every year. While the tourist facade serves to keep many visitors oblivious to the extreme poverty that exists in the city, it does not erase the stark reality of the poor socio-economic conditions in which many of Granada’s residents live.

In many ways tourism has only exacerbated Granada’s social and economic problems. Property values have more than tripled, forcing people to live in overcrowded conditions with several families in one house. Marginalized communities and squatter settlements are abundant in the areas surrounding Granada’s tourist center. The work generated by tourism is only available to those with higher education and skills such as English and computation, and low wages of $70 per month do not even cover rent, which in Granada now averages $150 per month. While the tourist center almost always has running water, surrounding communities go days without water, posing a severe threat to public health. Children, instead of studying, work informally selling crafts to or begging from tourists in order to help provide for their families. Sex-tourism, often involving minors, has unfortunately become one of the reasons why some tourists visit Granada.

We collaborate with efforts throughout Granada – from the semi-urban tourist center, to the marginalized barrios, to the more rural municipalities of Naindaime, Diria, and Diriomo.

We also work with organizations in urban and rural areas in the departments of Rivas and Masaya.

OUR MISSION: We promote the efforts of both public institutions and non-governmental organizations working to promote social justice and sustainable development in Nicaragua and facilitate cross-cultural learning by recruiting…

Issue Areas Include

  • Children & Youth
  • Community Development
  • Education
  • Health & Medicine
  • Volunteering


  • Calle 14 de Septiembre
    In Computadoras de Granada
    Granada, GR

Join Idealist

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