Volunteering with Hogar de los Niños is an eye-opening and life-changing experience! Every minute of your stay is filled with something new and exciting! Below is some basic information about volunteering with us, please take a look.

       
Please keep in mind that at this time we are not considering first-time volunteers. We will reopen the application process for new volunteers when we have the capacity to accommodate them.
       
Transportation to the "Hogar"
        Most volunteers fly into the San Diego International Airport where a member of the orphanage staff greets them. Together they cross the border to Mexico by car. If you would like to arrive in Tijuana by other means, let us know and we can arrange another set up. We are located at Calle José María Morelos y Pavón 6201, Delegación San Antonio de los Buenos, Tijuana, Baja California, México.
   
Daily Routines
        While the daily routine of the children is very well structured, the volunteer responsibilities are often open-ended. Here is an example of the weekday activities of our volunteers here at Hogar de los Niños. Whatever you personally choose to do throughout the day is open to your own creativity.
 
7:00am . . . . . . Help with breakfast, make sure the younger children finish their entire meals, clean up breakfast
8:00am . . . . . . Walk elementary children to school
8:30am . . . . . . Walk kindergardeners to school
9:00am . . . . . . Help middle school children with homework, take children to Tae Kwon Do, organize games, do arts and crafts, help with construction, read with the children, help in special needs classes, take Spanish lessons, complete orphanage errands, etc.
12:00pm . . . . . Pick-up elementary and kindergardeners from school
12:30pm . . . . . Walk middle school children to school
1:00pm . . . . . . Help with lunch, make sure everyone finishes the meal, clean up lunch
2:00pm . . . . . . Help children with homework, assist the tutor with his class, teach math, read with the younger children, organize educational games, etc.
4:00pm . . . . . . Free time with the kids, play soccer or other sports, practice Spanish by conversing, etc.
6:00pm . . . . . . Help with dinner, make sure everyone eats, clean up dinner
8:00pm . . . . . . Free time to yourself, plan next day’s activities, exercise with older kids in fitness center, learn Spanish
   
        Saturdays and Sundays tend to be quieter and less structured. More than half the children visit family members. Weekends are free time and you are always welcome to stay and spend time with the children. Some weekends are designated for special activities or excursions with the kids (hiking, beach, festival, etc.)
       
The Children of the Orphanage
        The children here are incredibly gifted and diverse. We have kids of all ages, from younger than kindergarden to older than college. Each child has different interests and a unique background; it seems that the Hogar has every type of child. They will want to play games, ask for homework help, look for a coloring partner, or want to read you a story. They always look for lunch buddies, soccer teammates, or someone to push them in a toy car. In most senses, they are what you would expect the average child to be. However, you must remember that these children have lived through poverty, abandonment, and even abuse (verbal, physical, or sexual). Most have grown up without the support of one or both parents. Because of this, be mindful of what you say and what you joke about.
        Other things you will want to be careful about are your possessions. It’s great to share anything you bring down, but keep in mind that toys, games, and anything out in the open tend to wear down quickly because every child will want to hold it, play with it, and use it. Often times, the children will want to be possessive of objects as they do not have very many personal belongings of their own. Sharing is important, especially in an orphanage of about 60 children. Please be a good example by sharing toys and other belongings. Just remember if something of yours is of particular value; please keep it close at hand.

Chuy
       
Living Quarters
        Volunteers live on the 5th floor of the orphanage, a haven from the high-energy atmosphere of all the children playing on the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th floors. There are nine brand new volunteer rooms that were completed in early 2009. Each room can house up to two or three volunteers, and all include private baths, hot water, a ceiling fan, bedding, and a balcony with a beautiful view of the community. One of the nicest securities is also being in such close proximity to San Diego, CA. Tony and his wife, Pilar, live in San Diego and always welcome to host volunteers at their private home.
       
Things Provided by the Orphanage
- Three meals a day
- Room with a private bathroom and hot water
- Ceiling fan
- Bedding
- Washing machines
- Access to the computer room and internet
       
Spanish Lessions
        Use your time here to begin or improve your Spanish skills. There’s no better way to learn then living with the language. We also have Spanish tutors with whom you can coordinate lessons during your time here. Ahorita es el mejor tiempo para mejorar las vidas de los niños y su español. ¡Esperamos para ti!
       

Studying in the neighborhood on a sunny day
       
Volunteer Financial Contribution
        A fee is charged for room and board at the orphanage plus an additional donation to help subsidize the operational costs of the orphanage. It will include a room (described above) and 3 meals a day. Your donation goes directly to helping fund the orphanage; no third party is involved.
       
  1 - 6 Nights . . . . . . . . $20 per night  
  1 - 3 Weeks . . . . . . . . $100 per week  
  1 - 3 Months . . . . . . . . $300 per month  
  4 - 6 Months . . . . . . . $225 per month  
  6 - 12 Months . . . . . . $225 per month  
       
- If you would like to volunteer for more than 1 year, email volunteercasahogar@gmail.com to discuss costs.
- If your heart is really invested in volunteering but your bank account isn’t, again, please email volunteercasahogar@gmail.com to discuss costs.
       
An additional volunteer packet will be emailed to you upon request to volunteercasahogar@gmail.com.