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Projects in Panama


The Sustainable Agriculture Systems (SAS) program’s goal is that small-holder, rural Panamanian farmers—men, woman, youth, and children—are food secure and have resilient, sustainable livelihoods. After a period of integration, SAS Volunteers work side-by-side with skilled community members promoting best and/or new techniques for farming, agriculture-based income generation, organizational development, and nutrition. Together, they assess community needs and create action plans to promote behavior change and achieve local goals.

Typical endeavors include growing cash crops such as vegetables or coffee, producing artisanal goods from local materials, developing basic budgeting, marketing or group organization trainings to support these endeavors, and addressing nutritional issues through gardens or new recipes. Additionally, the SAS program partners with local agencies, organizations and NGOs, including the Ministry of Agriculture Development (MIDA) and FAO.

Youth in Development

The Youth Leadership Development (YLD) program complements national government initiatives carried out by the Ministries of Education and Social Development. The program seeks to provide opportunities for Panamanians 12 to 19 years old to build on their skills and knowledge, develop self-esteem, navigate relationships, engage with their communities and pursue future employment. YLD Volunteers collaborate with youth service providers such as school counselors, teachers, local leaders, parents and youth leaders to co-plan and co-facilitate activities in the school and community.

Potential activities include: workshops, clubs, day camps, mentorships, service-learning projects and awareness days. Volunteers and service providers monitor and evaluate youth participation using specific objectives and evaluation tools. To support each other’s growth as organizers, mentors and facilitators they share ideas, information, responsibilities and constructive feedback.


The Community Environmental Conservation (CEC) program's goal is that Panamanians are equipped with the knowledge, skills and attitudes to address climate change through the implementation of mitigation and adaptation activities in order to promote conservation, resilience and wellbeing in their own communities. Volunteers work with skilled community members, and in primary schools (with both teachers and students) collaborating on prioritized projects to address their local environmental challenges.

Typical activities include training on natural resources conservation (i.e. tree nurseries/reforestation, solid waste management, and organic gardening); promotion of renewal energy (eco-stove construction); cultivate leadership (through camps and clubs); offering skills in project development and management; co-planning and co-facilitating environmental education activities. Additionally, the CEC program partners with local agencies, organizations and NGOs, Ministry of Environment (MiAMBIENTE) and Ministry of Education (MEDUCA).


The Youth Health and Well-Being program aims to strengthen the knowledge, skills and attitudes of young people, aged 12-19, in the Comarca Ngäbe-Buglé, through health education, life skills, and connections with friendly health services that allow them to improve their health and well-being, and make decisions about healthy lifestyles. Volunteers collaborate with health promoters from both the Ministry of Health (MINSA) and the Ngäbe Traditional and Natural Health Association (ASASTRAN) to facilitate health and life skills training. The program seeks to improve adolescent health by reducing early pregnancy, STIs (particularly HIV), and sexual violence while promoting school attendance and healthy relationships.