Why should I do an internship with Fides?
Our partner organization, Fudeconec, is a small, community-based organization which establishes direct relationships with the local communities. Here you have the opportunity to immerse yourself and improve the communities in ways that you see fit - an opportunity that's impossible through large NGOs. Fudeconec uses your know-how and ideas. We offer an individually-molded progam for you, one in which you direct and lead your own programs and see them through to completion. Each project is unique and draws upon your skills and desires.
How well do my Spanish skills need to be?
When you join the internship program you should have a good command of the Spanish language. Not only do the workers of Fudeconec speak Spanish but also the community members do not speak any English. In general, the Spanish language has been relatively easy for members to learn. Should you not speak any Spanish, it is possible to attend a Spanish course in Quito beforehand. What's even more advantageous is that the Spanish they speak in Ecuador is a very pure form of Spanish (High Spanish). Thus, Ecuador is a hot-spot for those looking to learn clean Spanish.
Which documents do I need in order to travel to Ecuador?
In order to travel to Ecuador and stay for 90 days, it is necessary to obtain a 6-month travel pass. It is not required to obtain a Visa beforehand.
For a longer stay, it is necessary to obtain a Visa:
Is it necessary to obtain extra health insurance?
Through your current health insurance it is recommended to obtain additional foreign health insurance coverage.
Do I need any special vaccinations in order to be able to travel to Ecuador?
There are no required vaccinations in order to travel. We recommend however to inform yourself on the foreign affairs website and undertake any recommended vaccinations, especially when your stay in Ecuador is through our internship program.
In relation to the very different climates of the various geographic regions on the country there also exists the risk of different types of viruses, though it is difficult to assess depending on in which part of the country you are located. Additionally, in order to travel to other countries in South American, further vaccinations are required.
Where can I obtain financial support for my internship?
Here are just a few websites where you can apply for financial support.
How safe is it locally?
Ecuador is a tour magnet for the whole world and not more or less dangerious than any other country in South America. Just as in Rome, Berlin or London, there is the possibility than one can be robbed. In the districts where Fudeconec is active, you won't come across outsiders and travel guides will probably not recommend that you travel to these areas. In the 15 years of cultural exchanges with Fudeconec there has not been any situation in which an intern or foreign visitor had to worry about his or her security. The community is used to outside visitors and welcomes them with extreme favorableness and friendliness.
How much does the internship cost?
There are no fees. All Fides members work voluntarily. Due to the tight budget of Fides however, all interns must financially support their stay. This includes food, lodging and transportation, costing roughly 20 dollars per day. The money is received locally by Fudeconec and is prorated to the supporting family.
Is there the possibility of obtaining grants to support the internship?
Yes, for example, interns have been supported in the past through DAAD. We would gladly help with the application process.
Where will I live during the internship?
You can choose to live with a local family during the duration of the internship.
How many interns go abroad annually with Fides?
Normally, there are about 1-2 interns that go abroad on an annual basis, however we anticipate this number to rise in the coming years.
How will I be looked after locally?
From Fudeconec, which means normally from the president of the organization as well as from the school director Lerry Medina. And naturally your guest family.
What are the interactions with the local community like?
It's quite different from intern to intern. In any case, we highly recommend that interns visit the school in order to meet and interact with the teachers and students. Interns are welcomed with open arms and receive warm receptions.
How much free time will I have?
Normally, you will work 5 days out of the week. On the weekends, it's possible to make trips. For instance, an outing to the beach.
Will I have access to internet locally?
There is internet at the school, but it is occasionally not functioning because of the frequent power outages. In some cases, there is no running water. Absent of running water, the locals have made do with tanks.
Will I receive an official document that acknowledges my participation?
Definitely. An internship certificate will be issued through Fudeconec. In case there are supplementary requirements that need to be filled in order to acklowledge participation, we will do everything in our power accomplish this. Experience over the years has proven our ability to fulfill these requirements for students.
How far away are the Fides' projects from larger city centers?
The most important project, the school, is located in a suburb of Guayaquil. The school is in close proximity to a large city. From there, one can easily make it to various parts of Ecuador on long-distance busses. There is also an airport nearby which frequently flies to the Galapagos Islands.
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