En El Camino - Multiple Locations, DR

June 22nd – July 6th, 2019

The En El Camino program is aimed at those who want to combine diabetes outreach with a love of travel and exploration. Come "on the road" with AYUDA and our local partner Aprendiendo a Vivir (AAV) and get to know the Dominican Republic while making a difference in the local diabetes communities. Since our hallmark program Campo Amigo is based in Santo Domingo, it cannot serve everybody around the country. During the En El Camino program, AYUDA volunteers work closely with the AAV team to take the educational and empowerment experience of camp on the road to other provinces in the Dominican Republic. Volunteers will take day trips with local Dominican youth leaders, representatives of AAV, and AYUDA staff members to the various provinces/cities in the Dominican Republic to run half-day educational outreach and local capacity-building programs. En El Camino volunteers will have the opportunity to work with and learn from people living with type 1 and type 2 diabetes and help provide them with tools that motivate them to live happier, healthier lives.

Local Program Objectives

  1. Empower youth to be role models and leaders of social change and share their knowledge with others.

  2. Motivate parents and young people to understand that type 1 diabetes is a manageable condition.

  3. Improve diabetes knowledge, beginning with the themes of leadership and self-esteem.

  4. Strengthen local capacity-building initiatives of AAV outside of Santo Domingo and throughout the Dominican Republic.

2019 Program Timeline

  • August 2018 - New Volunteer Application Process Opens Online

  • October 31st, 2018 - Early Application Deadline (Notification by November 7th)

  • February 10th, 2019 - Final Application Deadline

    • Note: Applications are reviewed and interviews granted on a rolling basis. It is highly recommended that applications be submitted as soon as is possible.

  • February 22nd, 2019 - First Notification for 2019 Program Acceptance

  • March 3rd, 2019 - E-course begins

  • March 15-17th, 2019 - Volunteer Training Summit in Washington, D.C.

  • June 15th, 2019 - Pre-Program Fundraising Deadline ($5,900)

  • June 22- July 6th, 2019 - In-country Program

  • September 1st, 2019 - Post-program Fundraising Deadline ($100)


Fundraising Total for Program

$6,000, plus flight costs (for Washington, D.C. and the DR). $5,900 of the fundraising commitment is due on June 15th, 2019 and $100 is due September 1st, 2019. Please note, once volunteers have reached their $6,000 fundraising commitment, they may use their fundraising page to raise funds for their flights. AYUDA will reimburse up to $1,000 for travel expenses, with proper documentation. Volunteer accommodations, some group meals, and group activities are provided/sponsored by AYUDA & AAV.

For a more detailed explanation of this, please see our Volunteer Requirements and Expectations.

Please note! Interested volunteers are encouraged to apply to both 2019 programs (dual-program). Qualified volunteers selected to participate in both programs (Campo Amigo & En El Camino) will have a reduced fundraising commitment of $1,000 less than the combined total.


Local Partner Organization

Aprendiendo a Vivir (AAV) is a Dominican non-profit organization based in Santo Domingo. The organization provides children and adolescents living with diabetes the opportunity to improve their quality of life through educational programs. The goal of these programs is to provide tools and knowledge to help young people living with diabetes better manage their condition, improve their nutrition, and prevent future complications. For more information about AAV see: www.ganemosle.com.

Learn more about the AYUDA Volunteer Training Program here.


Sample En El Camino Volunteer Program Itinerary (subject to change)

Saturday, June 22 - Sunday, June 23: Welcome, cultural orientation, & training

Monday, June 24 - Tuesday, June 25: Visit to Santo Domingo childrenʼs hospital & planning for outreach workshops

Wednesday, June 26: San Pedro de Macorís outreach trip

Thursday, June 27: Kilometro 19 outreach trip

Friday, June 28: Outreach debriefing & revisions to lesson plans

Saturday, June 29: Free day

Sunday, June 30: Visit to AAV Foundation & cultural excursion

Monday, July 1: Villegas outreach trip

Tuesday, July 2: Los Buitres outreach trip

Wednesday, July 3: Hato Damas outreach trip

Thursday, July 4: Free day

Friday, July 5: Post-program wrap-up & evaluation

Saturday, July 6: Volunteers depart 

In-Country Program Description

AYUDA supports local projects that focus on youth empowerment as defined by AYUDA’s empowerment model. Once abroad, AYUDA volunteers undergo a Cultural Training Program that is run in conjunction with our Local Partner organization AAV. The AYUDA volunteer team works with AAV leaders, local medical students, and rising AAV youth leaders to foster leadership, team building, and prepare for the subsequent outreach and diabetes education workshops. Emphasis is placed on sustainability and empowering local youth to replicate the activities throughout the year.

During this program, volunteers will engage in half-day outreach in various provinces/cities, then return to the hotel in the capital of Santo Domingo to debrief on that day’s outreach and prepare for the next workshop. The communities in which volunteers do their outreach work include the following provinces/cities: San Cristóbal (3 communities) and San Pedro de Macorís.

There are three main components to the In-Country Program:

1. Cultural Training - Santo Domingo          

  • Volunteers stay together in a local hotel

  • Volunteers receive supplemental Health & Wellness training and Safety & Security training upon arrival

  • Volunteers gain understanding of local customs, traditions, etc.

  • Volunteers learn about and understand reality of diabetes in Dominican Republic

  • Volunteers participate in AYUDA/AAV group and leadership activities

  • Volunteers begin outreach training to prepare for outreach workshops in underprivileged provinces/cities around Santo Domingo where many of AAV-supported children with diabetes and their families live

  • Volunteers prepare for implementation of AAV outreach & education strategy according to volunteer skillsets

  • Volunteers work with AAV staff, medical students, local youth leaders, and their families

2. Community Outreach Projects - San Cristóbal (3 communities) and San Pedro de Macorís

  • Volunteers are divided up into groups with other youth leaders and staff to run multiple workshops and/or other activities in local communities. These workshops are focused on three areas: nutrition/health, medication/treatment, and movement/exercise.

  • Volunteers take part in selected home visits to increase the integration of families into the local diabetes community and AAV

  • Volunteers visit local children’s hospital, as well as smaller clinics, to host workshops

  • A goal of outreach is to motivate AAV youth with diabetes to be leaders for other youth

  • Another goal of outreach is to motivate parents to be leaders/educators for their communities

3. Program Wrap-Up Session - Santo Domingo

  • Wrap-up sessions with all volunteers and AAV youth leaders

  • Next steps: Becoming AYUDA Alumni and reviewing future leadership roles with AYUDA



  • AYUDA volunteers return to their respective communities and continue to serve as agents of social change

  • E-course wrap-up session and feedback

  • Volunteers become part of a broader network of AYUDA volunteers and may choose to participate in additional U.S.-based AYUDA activities

  • Volunteers may apply and be selected to become Volunteer Mentors for 2020 programs