Rostro de Cristo Volunteer Program
Affiliation:St. James Society; Archdiocese of Boston; Roman Catholic Church
Goal of Program:Rostro de Cristo is a Catholic program who provides 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, and pastoral ministry. In the afternoon, some volunteers run after-school programs for the children in the local communities. 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 to be with the people; volunteer foster relationships with their neighbors, which serve as the most powerful and profound means of expressing and seeing God's love. 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 1-2 of the week-long immersion-experience retreats.
Service Area:Guayaquil and Duran, Ecuador
Service Length:13 months (summer - summer): 2 weeks of U.S. orientation in July followed by 2 weeks of in-country orientation in Ecuador. Volunteers serve for one full year, beginning in late July and ending at the beginning of August the following year.
Requirements:Single young men and women, no dependents, ages 21 - 30 years. Knowledge of the Spanish language preferred. Good health. College degree or significant life/work experience. Faith-based motivation to serve others and live in community with other volunteers. Application process includes a personal interviews.
Financial Arrangement:Room, board, in country health insurance and monthly personal stipend. Round trip airfare from USA to Ecuador. Orientation in the US, 4 retreats in Ecuador, and a re-entry retreat in the US. Volunteers are asked to support RdC with community fundraising efforts.
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 volunteer community (of 12 - 15 total volunteers).
Program Size:12-15 year-long volunteers.
Training:Orientation program early July through early August. RdC offers spiritual, community and supervisory support from our staff in Ecuador and alumni mentors in the US. RdC organizes 4 community retreats throughout the year, and a re-orientation retreat in the US.
Application Deadline:Priority deadline: February 15th. After February 15th we will continue to accept applications on a first come, first serve basis.