... a non-profit, non-governmental organization founded in 1991 by the people living in the Bay Islands in order to initiate and coordinate efforts in protecting the Islands’ fragile natural resources.
BICA’s operation and projects are funded through the support of local individuals, businesses and national and international agencies. BICA has two chapters – one in Roatan and one in Utila.
Why volunteer with BICA
Utila is wonderful place for an enthusiastic young (or young at heart) person to spend a working vacation, help, learn, enjoy and meet some interesting people. The environment is fragile, very diverse, people are warm and intriguing, the work is rewarding and varied. The range of activities BICA is engaged in offers opportunity for people of different interests and skills. You would be working with BICA’s regular staff, but your independence, ideas and enthusiasm would be greatly appreciated.
What kind of skills do you need to be a volunteer
You need to have an interest in nature, enjoy working with people and be very flexible. Of course, if you are studying, or have a degree, in environment, biology or ecotourism, we would very much welcome your help.
BICA volunteers’ programs last between one month and three months (it is difficult to extend visitors’ visa in Honduras). There is no schedule of volunteer’s intake as each volunteer will have individual responsibilities.
The type of work volunteers could chose to help with varies greatly, but generally the jobs can be divided into Research Assistants and Environmental Educators.
Research Assistant volunteers must be undergraduate or graduate level, at least 21 years old. These volunteers will be able to select work on BICA’s office management, manage the database of dive sites, take part in patrolling and monitoring of reefs, organize eco-tours on foot or by boat, develop communication materials, work in our Information Center providing information to tourists on Utila environment and tourist attractions, etc. Knowledge of Spanish is useful but not crucial.
Environmental Education volunteers must be undergraduate or graduate level, at least 21 years old. These volunteers will be working on environmental education programs with local schools, organize field trips, community workshops, beach and underwater clean-ups, reforestation, fish house construction and many other activities. Good knowledge of Spanish is very important.
BICA Building, as the Visitors’ Center is known in Utila and where BICA offices are located, has dormitory on its second floor and can accommodate up to 8 volunteers. Two rooms have their own bathroom and others share one among themselves. There is fully equipped kitchen and a living space with TV and video as well as the wireless internet connection.
The total cost for one month is $350. It includes accommodation, electricity, internet and water. Diving courses are optional, but can be arranged and cost around $260. There is Spanish Language school in town and 20-hours’ intensive course costs $150.Volunteers should plan to spend around $300 a month for food and entertainment (more is much more likely, but depends largely on a volunteer).
Health insurance should be arranged before leaving the country.
Life in Utila
The most detailed source of information on Utila is available from the http://www.aboututila.com. For any additional details, contact BICA office
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