JUNE-AUGUST ・ 8 WEEKS ・ HOST FAMILY ・ TEACH ENGLISH
Brazil is a country full of contrasts, known for the fluidity of its culture, the complexity of its society, and the warmth and pride of its people.
As the Ecological Capital of Brazil, Curitiba is one of the most prosperous and organized cities in this hugely diverse, Portuguese-speaking country. It is also a worldwide example in urban solutions, education, and environment. The capital of the state of Paraná was founded in the 17th century as a gold mining camp, and its two million people is a synthesis of several cultures of immigrants that arrived in the city during the 19th century and early 20th century. This built a city of eclectic culture, strongly influenced by these Italian, German, Polish, and Ukrainian immigrants, from which the majority of the population is descended. On the coast, Caiçaras, or traditional inhabitants descended from the indigenous people mixed with Europeans and Africans, live a traditional way of life based on subsistence agriculture, hunting and fishing.
In partnership with Brazilian Experience, the WorldTeach Brazil summer program serves communities in the city of Curitiba and coastal towns of Paraná. The experience aims to provide exposure to foreign languages and cultures to at-risk children and families served by a several nonprofit organizations around the city. Projects involve dynamic environments where both volunteers and students are able to share and learn while living the jeitinho, or the Brazilian way. You will work alongside local coordinators to create meaningful roles based upon your skills and experience in a variety of areas including business, language, health, operations and education.
As a WorldTeach Brazil Summer Volunteer, you will serve in Curitiba teaching English, working on projects, and participating in cross cultural exchange. You will be placed alongside another WorldTeach volunteer at any of a number of nonprofit organizations that, while each have specific missions, all serve at-risk children, adolescents, their families. These organizations have longstanding relationships with Brazilian Experience and a successful history of welcoming international volunteers to contribute to their work.
In addition, a few volunteers in your cohort will be placed in traditional fisherman villages along the coast. The Tourism Network of Caiçara Communities is a project of community-based tourism which started in 2013 as an Environmental Education Program of the Paranaguá Container Terminal TCP. If placed here, you can live in the homes of local network members, having the opportunity to offer classes to community members and empower them to create actionable business plans in response to the new community-based tourism project initiatives.
The purpose of visiting those communities is to empower them, connect with the locals, and share their daily life and activities, while generating a new income source for the families and encouraging them to preserve their rich culture. Given the growing interest of people of other nationalities on the community-based tourism, cultural exchange and the contact with other languages became a desire and need for the communities that embrace this project and an appeal to the ones which have not yet joined the network.
After your volunteer service is complete, you and your cohort will be taken on a journey off the beaten path through Paraná’s rural coast, visiting remote villages and interacting with the communities, learning about age-old practices, while engaging in reflection activities to process the previous seven weeks and gain perspectives from each individual experience that the majority of those who visit Brazil rarely get the opportunity to see.
From modern and multi-cultural Curitiba, you will be swept into the wilderness by train through the Brazilian Atlantic coast rain forest to the coast where you will visit and stay in several historic villages, each with its own unique characteristics, traditions, and ecological diversity.
From paddling on a caiçara canoe carved out of a single tree trunk and hiking through a preserved island forest to learning how to process the cassava flour and about the fishing art and its production chain that sustains the community, you will gain intimate access to the daily lives of these coastal villages and how they welcome a growing effects of the globalizing world while still preserving the storied traditions of their culture.
During your stay in Brazil, you will be accommodated in a host family, being able to experience the Brazilian way of life. All host families are carefully vetted and inspected by Brazilian Experience representatives before any placement is considered. Accommodation may be in single or shared rooms. Host family accommodation is on a half-board basis (breakfast and dinner). You are expected to provide your own lunch.
Host family accommodation includes normal facilities: shower/bath, laundry once per week as part of the family laundry, use of the telephone (as agreed with the host family), access to common living areas, etc.
All host families receive an orientation from Brazilian Experience representatives on their obligations to the volunteer, the volunteer’s obligations to the family and the relationship between representatives, the volunteer and the family.
Accommodation includes one night before the start of the volunteer program date and includes one night after the end of the program. It does not include accommodation for those arriving before the program start date and leaving after the program finish date, unless Brazilian Experience has informed the volunteer to arrive earlier or leave later than these dates.
The volunteer contribution to the Brazil Summer program is $4,990. This amount goes towards:
- Pre-departure preparation and visa assistance if necessary
- Supplemental overseas health and emergency evacuation insurance
- Comprehensive orientation, mid-service, and end of service training conferences
- Excursions throughout program
- 24-hour in-country field staff support
- Access to a remote teacher quality support
- Alumni services and networking
Many volunteers are able to successfully fundraise all or a significant portion of their program expenses. Please refer to our fundraising page for more information about fundraising possibilities.
Volunteers in the Brazil Summer program must:
- Be a native-level English speaker
- Be between the ages of 18 and 74
- Be flexible, open-minded, and patient
- Have a genuine interest in teaching