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Volunteer in Rio de Janeiro with EduMais

Make a difference

Join EduMais as a volunteer in Rio de Janeiro and change the lives of at-risk children and teenagers in the favelas. By volunteering with us, you’ll teach, guide, and offer love to our underprivileged but talented students. Your support and guidance will have a lasting impact on them.

At EduMais, we are proud to have a committed team of international volunteers. Many join us to volunteer abroad for a few months, others live in Rio de Janeiro permanently. The diversity of our volunteers’ backgrounds gives our kids a window into many worlds.

And the kids give our volunteers a window into theirs. They appreciate what their volunteer teachers do for them: prepare yourself for smiles, hugs, and tears when you leave!

To protect our kids, our volunteers are strictly selected via our application process. They also have their backgrounds screened. If successful, they are trained in our Positive Discipline methodology before joining our free volunteering programs.

Once they arrive in Rio, our volunteers teach and share their knowledge with our children, giving the best of themselves every day.

What’s more, they also get a lot back. Volunteering in the favelas in Brazil is a fantastic opportunity to grow and learn. The experience is life-changing not just for our kids but our volunteers too.

Join us and volunteer in Rio de Janeiro for free!

Our Volunteering Programs

EduMais is a small NGO in Brazil, and volunteering with us is 100% free. Although you are responsible for your flight, accommodation, and living costs, there is no program or participation fee. The time and love you give to our students are payment enough.

However, time is very important. Short-term volunteering (less than 3 months) is of little benefit to our students. Their lives are already unstable. Instead, they need time to build meaningful connections with responsible people.

In addition, our volunteer opportunities may be free, but they are not a breeze. Our students rely on their volunteer teachers. You need to be professional and dedicated, no matter how strongly Ipanema beach calls!

But there’s a lot to be gained if you’re willing to give. Though we have clear targets, we’re very open to new lesson planning ideas and learning activities. In short, as a volunteer for EduMais, you’ll be an essential part of the project.

Your skills and knowledge will benefit at-risk young people. At the same time, you’ll gain confidence and new skills as you challenge yourself. Indeed, our volunteers say they learn as much from the kids as the kids do from them!

Boy giving thumbs up to support the idea of being a volunteer in Rio de Janeiro for free

What our volunteering jobs offer you

Volunteering in Rio de Janeiro with EduMais offers many benefits for you, as well as our kids. For example, you will have the chance to:

  • Volunteer for free in Rio de Janeiro, one of the most exciting and beautiful cities in the world!
  • Make a difference in the lives of at-risk children and teenagers
  • Receive practical knowledge about Positive Discipline
  • Make new friends and become a lifelong member of the EduMais family
  • Receive special conditions from one of our partners, Books Hostel in Lapa. We can also help you find a more long-term place to stay
  • Learn new skills and develop existing knowledge. As well as teaching experience, these include things like teamwork, leadership, problem-solving, and people skills. In turn, this will boost your CV and future career prospects
  • Discover the favela communities beneath the media headlines
  • Gain invaluable real-world experience out of your comfort zone
  • Feel inspired by the resolve and creativity of our students
  • Give back to local communities and reflect on your life back home
  • Improve your Portuguese
  • Get as much love and insight from the kids as you give to them
  • Receive a recommendation letter after completing your volunteer contract
Daan, a volunteer in Rio de Janeiro with EduMais, receives a warm hug from one of his students

What is expected of you as a volunteer

As mentioned, just because volunteering with us is free does not mean it’s easy. To give the best to our students, we expect you to:

  • Be committed and punctual. Both the kids and the rest of the volunteer team will be relying on you. We need you to be a reliable and positive team member
  • Treat our students and other community residents with the respect and dignity they deserve
  • Share our mission and campaigns with your friends and family on social media. Often, the personal connection helps us get more support
  • Speak intermediate Portuguese (desirable). This will improve your interactions with our students. All the same, it’s not essential, except for certain programs like After-School and Football. (If you want to take lessons, we recommend our partner, Caminhos. They offer courses nearby for different levels at reasonable prices)
  • Attend volunteer meetings once a month for team building and feedback
  • Write a blog post about your experience after you volunteer
  • Fulfill your volunteering contract with us. The time we spend on volunteer applications and training is significant. Of course, unforeseen things can happen, but please carefully consider your ability to see your commitment through. It’s very disappointing for us when this doesn’t happen
EduMais after-school students wash up their plates with Ed, a volunteer in Rio de Janeiro with EduMais

What you believe

All our volunteers play a vital role in upholding our values. Therefore, the following statements must speak to you:

  • Education changes lives
  • You want to make a difference to the lives of those less fortunate than you
  • Having a positive impact on the world drives you
  • All children deserve to be treated with dignity and respect
  • Challenging yourself is something you embrace
  • You take individual responsibility while working as an effective team member
  • Giving back to local communities and responsible tourism interest you
  • You are curious to know more about Positive Discipline, even if you have no working knowledge of it
  • You believe in equality, regardless of race, gender, age, or any other factor that might be used to form the basis of prejudice and discrimination
Fundraising for the EduMais team who volunteer in Rio de Janeiro

Learn more about our free volunteering jobs under the links below.

Find out what it’s like to volunteer in Rio de Janeiro. Read the blog posts of our long-term volunteers!