Santa Tecla is an excellent place to volunteer and an ideal base to explore the rest of El Salvador. The friendliness of the Tecleño (Santa Tecla people) and its customs mean that volunteers will quickly feel at home in this wonderful little city. Located 900 meters above sea level, it is known as "the city of hills", its elevation making it one of the freshest places in El Salvador. Santa Tecla was built in 1854 after a huge earthquake destroyed most of the capital city of San Salvador, as it is only 10 miles away.
Santa Tecla has all the facilities that you would expect from a modern city including supermarkets, bank offices and an efficient public transport system. The city is also only 30 minutes away from the coast, making it ideal for beach and surf lovers. The center of Santa Tecla has a wide variety of popular restaurants, and although it still pays to follow common sense rules, it is one of the safest areas in El Salvador.
Travel to Teach work with various public schools located in Santa Tecla town. Many of the students are socioeconomically disadvantaged coming from families that work in markets, street sales, or coffee farms in the rural area of Santa Tecla. Funding for English teaching is unavailable at most of these schools as they have no capacity to pay teachers.
You will be teaching students beginner's English. This project has a lot of flexibility, you can create workshops and incorperate various other subjects such as, art, dance, sport, etc. Please feel free to be creative and use your initiative. In the afternoons you will be helping to teach the community class which consists of students of all ages.
Casa de Mujeres
The Casa de la Mujer Tecleña was founded to give women the chance for social economic development. It is creating work opportunities by respecting gender equality and prepares the women for facing the competitive job market by offering adequate training and qualification for different professions.
Travel to Teach cooperates with the Casa de la Mujer Santa Tecleña, offering English and IT classes for women and their children, covering all age groups.
Developing Compuer Skills
Volunteers will work with the Santa Tecla local government on this project. The goal is to bring technological education to as many people in the rural area of the Municipality, providing access to better job opportunities. This is a unique venture as typically computer courses are not available to the neediest populations due to the high costs.
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Read how your fees are spent or compare our
prices with other volunteer organisations.
View our prices in other volunteer locations's or combine your stay in with stays in other locations as part of a combination stay.
Our application process typically takes two or three weeks, but can
be speeded up if there is a need for that. When we receive the initial application from you, we will send you our
full application form.
(1) Complete the Initial Application Form:
The first stage of the application process is to fill out the brief initial application form. Upon receiving this we will send you the full application form.
(2) Complete the Full Application Form:
Fill out the application form. After receiving this we will assess your suitability and place you on one of our programs.
(3) Placement info:
We will return detailed placement information and an invoice. If you accept the placement you should clikc the link to say so. The fee can be paid with credit card through PayPal or by bank transfer.
Once you have made your traveling arrangements you should mail your time of arrival and the means of transportation and we will confirm pickup.
For the majority of our El Salvador programs, you can join us for any amount of time from 4 weeks to 6 months. However, some projects have minimum time restrictions. We recommend a trip of 3-6 months since it offers the best value. Regardless of the length of your stay, you will have time to get to know a new culture, come to know its people, and form relationships that will outlast the duration of your stay.
May: Sat 7, Sat 21
June: Sat 4, Sat 18
July: Sat 2, Sat 16, Sat 30
August: Sat 13, Sat 27
September: Sat 10, Sat 24
October: Sat 8, Sat 22
November: Sat 5, Sat 19
December: Sat 3, Sat 17, Sat 31
|January: Sat 14, Sat 28
February: Sat 11, Sat 25
March: Sat 11, Sat 25
April: Sat 8, Sat 22
|May: Sat 6, Sat 20
June: Sat 3, Sat 17
July: Sat 1, Sat 15, Sat 29
August: Sat 12, Sat 26
|September: Sat 9, Sat 23
October: Sat 7, Sat 21
November: Sat 4, Sat 18
December: Sat 2, Sat 16, Sat 30
Travel to Teach volunteers can live at our apartment "the house of volunteers" or home stay with El Salvadoran families. All our accomodation is located in a pleasant area of Santa Tecla close to banks, shopping centers, markets/supermarkets and cultural and historical sites. Volunteers will have a private room and will share facilities such as the kitchen, refrigerator and bathroom.
Santa Tecla’s main attraction is the old town's dazzling array of churches and cultural buildings some dating from the early days of colonization. Being only 30 minutes form the beach volunteers can also take part in bungee jumping, swimming, surfing, snorkeling.
On weekends there are a number of day or weekend trips that volunteers can take from Santa Tecla. These include the cloud forests of the Montectisto National Park. Located around 4 hours west of Santa Tecla on the borders with Honduras and El Salvador, the areas damp cloudy climate has created a number of unique micro climates and huge and diverse range of vegetation and wildlife. Wildlife includes flora, orchids, ferns, spider monkeys, anteaters and over 100 species of bird, many of which are endangered and unique to the park.
Other possible destinations include the arty colonial city of Suchitoto with its surrounding lake wildlife and volcanoes and the biggest lake in El Salvador, Lake Suchitlan. Volunteer can also take trips to El Pital - the highest mountain in El Salvador at 2730 meters - where activities there include hiking, climbing, biking, and bird watching and Alotepeque mountain chain.
The food most identified with El Salvador are Pupusas, an El Salvadoran speciality of stuffed tortilla which are filled with cheese, beans and sauces. Other popular foods in Santa Tecla include chilate, nuegados, yuca plant, atole de elote, tamales and shuco.
As well as excellent range of El Salvadoran restaurants, Santa Tecla also has Italian, French and Japanese restaurants in places like multi plaza and La Gran Via (commercial center). For those needing a fast food fix there are also a growing number of Taco Bell's, KFC's etc.
El Salvador has a tropical climate with distinct wet and dry seasons. The rainy season extends from May to October with virtually the whole annual rainfall occurring during this time mostly in heave afternoon thunderstorms. In the lowlands temperatures are hot throughout the year with an average temperature of 23°C and temperatures reaching as high as 38°C in March and April. Santa Tecla's elevation makes it cooler than the lowlands although temperatures are still consistently warm throughout the year.Santa Tecla Weather Chart
There are many airlines serving El Salvador. Check American Airlines, COPA, Delta Airlines and Iberia.
You can also travel overland by bus from Guatemala, Honduras, Costa Rica, Mexico, Panama and Nicaragua, check with local companies for times and costs, we at Travel to Teach recommend Tica Bus.
You will be picked up from Comalapa Airport or San Salvador Bus Station by a representative with a placard that says Travel To Teach.
Joaquin a native of Santa Tecla, is a lawyer and the co-ordinator of our El Salvador programs. He has been working with volunteers since 2003 and has ample experience in educational, tourist and social activities with orphanages and schools. Before working vwith volunteers Joaquin was a coordinator in human rights projects with the Universidad SalvadoreÃ±a Alberto Masferrer University.
Immigration requires that visitors entering El Salvador have a visa or tourist card. You can obtain a visa from your local consulate or on arrival. The tourist card is generally issued for 90 days and can be purchased for US$10 at your port of entry. Check with your local consulate to see if you need to arrange a visa in advance. Visas for US citizens are free. Citizens of some countries may have to pay a fee for their visas. More information is available at http://www.rree.gob.sv/sitio/sitiowebrree.nsf/pages/svisas_requisitospais origin
If you are planning to work in Cambodia then you will need to obtain a police records background check before starting your placement. For details on the application procedure in your home country please take a look at: www.travel-to-teach.org/CRB-information.php
At all other locations you will be required to abide by the Travel to Teach Child Protection Policy.
Hepatitis A: Recommended for all travelers.
Typhoid: For travelers who may eat or drink outside major restaurants and hotels.
Yellow fever: Recommended for all areas in the north and its mountains.
Hepatitis B: For travelers who may have intimate contact with local residents, especially if visiting for more than 6 months.
Rabies: For travelers who may have direct contact with animals and may not have access to medical care.
Routine immunizations: All travelers should be up-to-date on tetanus-diphtheria, measles-mumps-rubella, polio, and varicella immunizations.
One of the conditions of entry onto our programs is that volunteers have travel insurance. Most importantly the insurance needs to include medical treatment and repatriation in case of unforeseen accidents or illnesses. Volunteers should purchase insurance independently and bring a copy of their insurance certificate with them for their local co-ordinator to check before starting their program. Read our terms and conditions.