Rostro de Cristo Volunteer Program
Affiliation:St. James Society; Archdiocese of Boston; Roman Catholic
Goal of Program:Rostro de Cristo is a Catholic program whose mission is to provide spiritual and educational opportunities for people of faith to live out the Gospel of Jesus Christ together with the people of Ecuador. The program invites participants to: be in relationship with the Ecuadorian people and reflect on the face of Christ in their joys and struggles; support Ecuadorian people in their work to achieve a justice rooted in Gospel values in their developing communities; and lead a simple lifestyle and build an intentional Christian community. In this way, Rostro de Cristo participants are witnesses to the Gospel and a source of hope and light in the community. These experiences inspire and reinforce the commitment of these participants to service, social justice, and solidarity with the people of Ecuador and the world.
Type of Placement:Opportunities for ministry vary. Volunteers typically serve in one or two work placements with partner organizations, typically in the fields of education, health care, and social services. Some examples include: schools, daycare centers, hospitals, a clinic for patients with Hansen's disease, a women and children's shelter, pastoral ministry, and a community organizing project. In the afternoon, some volunteers run after-school programs for the children in the communities in which they live. Other volunteers work on community outreach in the neighborhoods, and are also involved at the local parish. The emphasis of the RdC program is always on being with the people; the focus is on forming relationships, which serve as the most powerful and profound means of expressing God's love to each other. Rostro de Cristo volunteers also serve as hosts for about 20-25 high school, college and parish retreat/immersion groups that visit throughout the year. Each volunteer is responsible for leading two or more of the week-long immersion-experience retreats.
Service Area:Guayaquil and Duran, Ecuador
Service Length:13 months (July-August): 2 weeks of U.S. orientation in mid-July followed by 2 weeks of in-country orientation in Ecuador. One full year of service, beginning and ending at the beginning of August.
Requirements:Single young men and women, no dependents, ages 21 - 30 years. Competence (proficiency preferred) in the Spanish language. Good health. College degree or significant life/work experience. Faith-based motivation. Application process includes a personal interview.
Financial Arrangement:Room, board, in country health insurance and monthly stipend. Round trip airfare from USA to Ecuador.
Living Arrangements:Volunteers live together in an intentional community setting. There are two separate volunteer houses located in the Guayaquil area, and volunteers are both a part of their house community (of five to seven people) as well as the larger community (of 12 - 14 total volunteers).
Program Size:Average of 12-14 year-long volunteers.
Training:Orientation program early-July through early August. Spiritual, community and supervisory support. Community retreats. Re-orientation program.
Application Deadline:February 15th