Founded in 2001, Compañeros Inc is a private social enterprise that leverages volunteers, local labour, individual and corporate contributors, civic agencies, and academic institutions, to bring diverse people together to experience mutually beneficial educational programs and community development projects.
Number of students placed here
Partnership was established
2016 - Present
Focusing on organizing respectful volunteer service and cross-cultural learning programs, Compañeros Inc is dedicated to the development of better communities in Canada, the United States, and Nicaragua.
What did you take away as being the most valuable aspects of having participated in Beyond Borders?
“I think one of the most valuable aspects of beyond borders is the ability to challenge yourself in so many different capacities while in the placement (mentally, physically, emotionally...). You’re encouraged to critically reflect on the majority of your actions and interactions, and through this you can grow so much as a person and student. My level of self-awareness grew immensely. The most impactful aspect of this experience, for me, were the relationships I built with my host family who I still connect with. They were such generous and caring people. They were also so patient with me learning their language and always encouraged me to keep trying!”
What would you like to say to a prospective student considering the Beyond Borders program?
“There are so few opportunities quite like this one out there for university students. There may be some things holding you back, but there are so many more reasons to go and you don’t even know what they are yet. When you get back, you’ll wonder why you even questioned applying in the first place.”
Students will collaborate with their community partner upon arrival to outline their roles and responsibilities as a volunteer. Partners will introduce students to their organization and the variety of projects for students to participate in. Likewise, students will share their own skills and passions with the community partner in these first weeks. This process of mutual sharing and learning leads to co-developing projects, self-guided learning, and mentorship, such that all parties get the most out of this new relationship. What students work on at organizations changes year to year and depends on the student’s interests. Placement tasks could fall under any of the following categories:
- Education support
- Communication and Marketing
- Documentary research/Film making
- Sustainable Agriculture
- Community outreach
- Group building projects