If you are interested or already working in the field of psychology or social work, this training and experiential learning programme might be just what you are looking for! We run a series of training programmes throughout the year for those interested in improving their skills in working with vulnerable people and, in particular, keen to develop their cultural competency in working with Latino populations. If you would also like to improve your Spanish language skills, you can take classes while you volunteer for just $7-8 per hour, paid direct to the language school for your convenience to study as often as you choose.
What We Do:

SKIP works with 142 families and 250 children.
SKIP aims to increase the number of children in this district completing primary education and either finishing secondary education or finding training/employment. SKIP intends to achieve these aims by:

Fully financing the education (fees, uniforms, materials) for every child in the programme.
Providing a complementary educational programme to reinforce learning at school and help with homework
Implementing educational workshops with parents and carers covering a diverse range of subjects from parenting skills to breast cancer awareness to healthy eating.
Developing projects that involve the parents in service provision (parents currently help in the primary education programme and a parent committee provides feedback on programme satisfaction and requested development).
Granting microfinance loans for small business development and home improvements.
Providing business workshops, such as in basic accounting. As well as providing handicraft workshops for parents, including help with sales and product development.
Making available counseling services.
Providing English classes for 1200 children in local public schools.
Read more about the programmes we are running or find out about our programme impact in our annual reports
Social Work and Psychology Placements at SKIP:

We recommend that all students who do not speak fluent Spanish teach English as this provides the opportunity for non Spanish speakers to take a direct role in the classroom both teaching and managing behaviour, and actively prepare and review lesson plans in line with our written curriculum. Lessons take place at the SKIP Centre as well as in local public schools, providing an opportunity to observe the state education system in Peru.

Due, in part, to a lack of structure in the public education system, many of the children at SKIP display challenging behaviour, and others have learning difficulties, in particular they can struggle to concentrate and are very active in the classroom. As a result, we work in small groups and have a highly structured behaviour management system in place in order to give children clear messages regarding appropriate behaviour and consequences if those expectations are not met. This means that there is a wealth of learning for students regarding techniques in working with children and opportunities to apply theory to practice.

There are a range of other potential activities students can choose from – we will usually be able to incorporate two or three of these (which will be selected on a basis of student choice and preference), along with a session in the library where volunteers help primary school students with their homework or play educational games such as jigsaw puzzles.

Art Teaching
Sports teaching
Dance teaching
Music teaching
Photography group
Psychology programme support (individual support for children with identified learning needs or group work with parents/carers and children depending on project needs at the time and volunteer experience level)
Communications (writing articles and website management)
Grant Applications and fundraising
Youth Work
Handicraft groups with the mothers
Teaching Assistant (providing an opportunity to work with the youngest children aged 5-7 years in a nurturing environment)
Nursery teaching assistant (working with the youngest children in SKIP, babies aged 1-2 years. This programme also involves parents and carers who come for monthly training sessions to talk about stimulative play for their children).
In addition to the above, all participants will engage in a training programme facilitated by the psychology and social work teams for a three hour session per week (two in the intensive programme for June and July) where they will support local social workers. Training includes an introduction to social services in Peru and explores mental health needs in the community in which we work. There will also be shadowing sessions where students are able to observe house visits and talk about the work and role of the team within SKIP's holistic approach. There will also be opportunities to consider and compare approaches to supporting vulnerable people in different countries.

Following the initial training period, students will begin to support the work of the team according to the needs of the project at that time of year. It should be noted that this work will not involve work of a sensitive nature which needs to be conducted by local professionals.

Social Work and Psychology Placements: Who Can Apply?

We are more than happy to consider applications from students throughout the world. For those studying outside the UK, students are responsible for covering their own costs, the same as any other SKIP volunteer and if additional supervision or assessment is required, we may request a small fee in order to cover this. There is more information regarding programme costs here on the website. Once you are ready, you can download an application form to start the application process. You must be able to commit to a minimum of two months for these placements, the training component will run March - May, June - July (which will be a more intensive programme with two training workshops per week) August 17th - October.

We encourage volunteers to learn Spanish and will be able to arrange lessons for you during your placement (cost paid direct to the language school).

Please feel free to email contact@skipperu.org to enquire about anything to do with placements.