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Hatchling turtles | © skeeze/pixabay
Hatchling turtles | © skeeze/pixabay
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The Best Volunteer Experiences in Puerto Rico

Picture of Kris Pethick
Updated: 20 December 2017
Puerto Rico is perfect for sun, fun and relaxation, but it also has many fulfilling volunteer opportunities. Consider enhancing your memories of the island by working with any of these great organizations.
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Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico

Located in San Juan, this museum showcases local artists to both Puerto Ricans and tourists. The museum uses volunteers to provide the most comprehensive and enjoyable tour possible. Volunteers are divided into 3 groups: teachers, facilitators and administrators. These volunteers work with citizens, tourists, students, teachers and other professionals to provide a productive and rewarding trip through the museum.

Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico, 299 Avenida José de Diego, San Juan, PR +1 787-977-6277, ext. 2279.

Girls Scouts of Caribe

The Girl Scouts of Caribe is an organization of approximately 1.8 million girls and some 800,000 volunteers with a mission to “help girls develop the courage, self-confidence, and principles to make the world a better place.” There are many volunteer positions available including camp leaders, troop leaders, cookie volunteers, special unit and friends and family of the troop. Check out the Girl Scouts of Caribe website for more information about volunteer opportunities.

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San Juan Community Library

Founded in 1987, the San Juan Community Library is one of the few lending libraries in Puerto Rico, including a 24/7 digital library from which members can download e-books and audio books from anywhere, at anytime. The library is almost completely operated by volunteers. No library experience is required and Spanish or English as a first language is perfectly acceptable. Stop in at the library for more information and in order to complete a volunteer application.

San Juan Community Library, 2103 Calle Topacio, San Juan, PR +1 787-789-4600.

El Proyecto de Tortugas Marinas del Area Oeste

The Western Area Sea Turtle Project has been conducting the counting and marking of nests along approximately 90 miles of coast for over two decades. These nests are then monitored for hatching. On occasion, the hatchling turtles need help getting out of the nest if they get stuck in roots or can’t get out of their egg shells. These turtles are usually held and then released at a later date. 90 miles is a lot of ground to cover, so many volunteers are needed to help with the identification and monitoring of nests, females and hatchlings. The organization also gives talks to schools and other interested organizations. To find out how to get involved, call the Sea Turtle Project at +1 787-890-2681, ext 2295. For additional information, contact Sheila Bonet, Project Coordinator, at +1 939-358-5141.

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Hawksbill Turtle | © Silke Baron/flickr

Dog Rescue

Stray dogs, or satos, are a big problem in Puerto Rico, particularly in the larger cities. These organizations work to get the dogs off the streets and give them the nutrition and health care they need, find them foster families and eventually fur-ever homes. Volunteers are needed not only on the island, but also to escort these sweet dogs to their new homes in the States.

OBRA Organizacion Pro Bienestar, Rescate y Adopcion de los Animales, PO Box 9949, San Juan, PR obrarescue@gmail.com

Paws4Survival +1 978-882-5847 or 917-841-3625, MerylWright@AOL.com

Second Chance Animal Rescue HC-01, Box 3547, Villalba, PR +1 787-847-5222, satoheart@yahoo.com

P.A.W.S., Puerto Rico Animal Welfare Society 10228 Bo. Bajuras, Isabela, PR +1 787-872-0204

The Sato Project 130 Water St, Brooklyn, NY. USA info@thesatoproject.com

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There are many stray dogs in Puerto Rico | © FotoEmotions/pixabay
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Casa Cuna of San Juan

Administered by the City of San Juan, Casa Cuna is a home for children 1-3 years old who have been abused, mistreated or abandoned. Volunteers are needed to provide recreational activities for the children, care and guidance, or to be a parenting resource. Administrative volunteers are also needed to work at the facility. For more information, call +1 787-480-5330 or email lacasacunadesanjuan@sanjuanciudadpatria.com.

Casa Cuna, 405 Avenida Juan Ponce de León, San Juan, PR

Senior Corps

This organization has many volunteer opportunities available through several programs including Foster Grandparents, Senior Companions, and RSVP (Retired and Senior Volunteer Program). For more information contact the Corporation for National and Community Service, +1 202-606-5000 or TTY 800-833-3722.

Meals on Wheels

Volunteers provide not only nutritious meals, but also a much-needed social interaction and a friendly face to homebound seniors. There are many volunteer opportunities from drivers to kitchen help to administrative work. Most Meals on Wheels programs are administered through a community development program through your local municipality.