Volunteer with us...

Here is the latest Trip Advisor review about our volunteering experience. 


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"Thank you so much for a truly memorable and wonderful experience with Ride Andes." Claire 2017

“An amazing opportunity to live and work in a stunning location in the heart of rural Ecuador, exploring incredible scenery on gorgeous horses. Three months have flown by, characterised not only by hard work, but a lot of giggles and fun, and a lot of adventures, big and small, along the way.” Belinda Dec. 2016.

'Anna, a volunteer, has just left having worked with us for 3 months'.

'Anna, a volunteer, has just left having worked with us for 3 months'.


ECUADOR 

A fantastic opportunity to live and work for an established horse riding company, Ride Andes, in Ecuador. Our farm is located about 30 minutes NE of the city of Cayambe and has a breathtaking view. We currently have 15 horses (unstabled) and 3 dogs. For 15 years, Ride Andes has run thanks to the help of amazing volunteers. You will stay on the farm in an idyllic location, helping us to care for our animals and property in exchange for room and board, with the potential to earn a salary for those who stay longer and/or have the right skills sets! 

We currently have two “types” of volunteers that we are searching for: 1. A riding volunteer 2. A house/dog sitting/eco-project volunteer. Please read ALL the information below and contact us if you have any questions or if you’d like to apply!

Accommodation

Accommodation is provided at our farm along with money for food/supplies. The farm is in quite a remote location, the nearest village for amenities is a short drive - or 20 minute walk. You will be expected to buy and cook your own food with the money provided. There is a cleaner who will come every so often to clean the house, but you are of course expected to remain tidy. If applicable, during the client tours (details below) you may stay with the guests in the Haciendas or in nearby local accommodation (all expenses covered). Additionally, travel expenses (bus) associated with Ride Andes will be covered. 

Though remote, communications are good at the farm: we have a steady 3G connection that is easily used for international video calls, booking and paying for tours, to do research etc. We have 2 SIM cards at the farm and we will pay for a certain amount of megabytes per month for you to use, which will include free WhatsApp, and you can always top up your data if you need more. There is also a phone that stays in the house for emergency calls and to be used as a hotspot for computers. 

 

Riding Volunteer:

The work consists of a lot of riding, often riding and leading 1 or 2 horses when exercising (training given) in-between tours. You can spend a full day riding so best if you are riding fit. All of the horses have individual characters and are in different stages of training, and so some schooling may be required – depending on applicants skills. Other tasks include grooming, taking care of the tack, field management, feeding and basic veterinary care if required. You will also oversee/work alongside the local workers (eg. make sure the worker(s) arrive on time, the horses given water, get treated for injuries etc.). The work is varied and days can be long; only people with a “can-do” attitude, flexibility and willingness to get stuck in to any task need apply! 

In addition to farm responsibilities, volunteers will be able to come along on the riding tours as a second guide. During the tours, in addition to riding, you may be required to: help move guest baggage, horse feed and other equipment; make picnic lunches; and deal with any requirements the guests may have. Manuals, checklists and training are provided to support you.

The role is adaptable, depending on the skills and interests of the successful applicant. For the right candidate there may be an opportunity to guide guests on day trips from the base and a wage can be negotiated for this. For longer term candidates a salary is available – depending on skills and experience. As well, there may be opportunities to be involved in charity work, reservations, contact etc. to earn extra money. 

 Requirements

  • Minimum age of 25 years (this is negotiable depending on applicants riding skills, Spanish skills and travel experience)

  • Fluent English; conversational Spanish - able to give and receive directions etc. (no non-speakers please) -> There are good and cheap Spanish schools in Quito so you could do an intensive refresher upon arrival

  • Can stay 1 month or longer, preference given to those who can stay 3 months (90 day visa on arrival, easy to extend a further 90 days)

  • Maximum weight 75kg (due to the size of the horses, terrain and altitude)

  • Competent riding ability

Required Key Skills

  • Riding (English and/or ‘western’)

  • Horsemanship (not just riding)

  • Spanish (basics & willingness to learn)

 

  • Tourism (any previous experience in customer service/tourism industry would be a bonus but not essential)

 

Also a bonus, not essential:

  • Schooling

  • Lunging

  • Exercising

 

Required Expertise (to access salaried position):

 

  • Trekking/guiding

  • Stable/horse management

  • Flatwork

 

Job Benefits

  • Opportunity to live and ride horses in a beautiful part of the world

  • Spend days off exploring Ecuador (Amazon, Cloud Forest, Galapagos Islands – Ride Andes will help seeking discounts for you). You get one and half days off per week which you can accumulate and have a longer break

  • A chance to come along on client tours and experience the Ecuadorian Andes with them, while gaining invaluable guiding experience

  • A percentage of tips from rides will be given to volunteers, as they are involved in a lot of the prep work before rides!

  • A wage may be negotiated for a successful applicant who commits to a longer term stay

“House-sitter” volunteer:

 

We are searching for a “house-sitter” volunteer, who would help care for the house, dogs, garden, and potentially work with projects to help the farm be as eco-friendly and sustainable as possible. No horse knowledge is necessary, but you will be asked to learn a few basic things, such as how to tell if a horse is sick or how to fill the water troughs. 

 

Your job would be to look after the dogs, the house, and do a bit of work such as watering plants, maintenance, painting, and some gardening and more. 

 

We would love to have someone with the passion and ideas to help us make the farm as eco/sustainable as possible. For example, we are hoping to set up a medicinal/native plant garden, organic fruit and vegetable greenhouse, rain collecting system, compost etc. The sky's the limit! The idea is to start these projects here on the farm, and later to roll them out into the community as well!

 

For those who commit to a longer stay, there will also be opportunities to be involved with some of Ride Andes administrative work or charity projects, and the potential to earn some extra money. In terms of charities, we are currently setting up/formalizing an animal charity that focuses on education and improving the lives of animals (mainly horses and dogs) through things such as care, living conditions and sterilization. Additionally, we are building up projects to help with welfare and safety for locals/children. We are focused on working around our area, as well as giving work to local people to make the things we need for our charities. Depending on your level of Spanish you can work directly with the locals to help us grow our current projects. 

 

Requirements  

 

  • Minimum age of 25 years (this is negotiable depending on applicants Spanish skills, travel experience, and potential to help us advance in our projects)

  • Fluent English; conversational Spanish - able to give and receive directions etc. (no non-speakers please)

  • Experience caring for animals - particularly dogs

  • Stay for a few weeks is possible but preference is given to those who commit to a 2 month stay (those who stay longer may have the opportunity to become involved in the charity projects and to earn a salary) (90 day visa on arrival, easy to extend a further 90 days)

Job Benefits

  • Opportunity to live and work on a farm with an unbeatable view, on a beautiful part of the world

  • Spend days off exploring Ecuador (Amazon, Cloud Forest, Galapagos Islands – Ride Andes will help seeking discounts for you). You get one and half days off per week which you can accumulate and have a longer break

  • Potential to be involved in a variety of different charity projects that are underway with Ride Andes

 

Please get in touch at volunteer@rideandes.com