For EcoSwell it all started with friendships, a passion for sustainability and a surf trip back in 2013. Four lifelong friends travelled along Peru's coast in search of waves and found the off the beaten track town of Lobitos. Whilst there they caught some of the best waves of their lives, met some of the kindest people imaginable and were exposed to breath-taking natural beauty and wildlife. Jacques Cousteau once said: "people conserve what they love" and the group of friends had fallen for Lobitos. Seeing the environmental and social constraints the town was enduring though, contrasting with the natural beauty of the locality made them realise that if nothing was done, Lobitos' essence would not be a lasting one. EcoSwell is the manifestation of this call to action. Since then, the EcoSwell family has grown to a team of over 50, consisting of international ambassadors and staff, with operations well beyond Lobitos, to other surrounding towns and cities within Peru. The high calibre of their sustainability projects have impacted over 35,000 people and resulted in the organisation receiving various awards for their work.

Manchester students can now join EcoSwell's volunteer program which has been described by previous participants as a life altering and transformational experience. The program offers a variety of fronts to which students can apply to, which are aimed at helping the communities EcoSwell works with develop sustainably. These include:

  • NGO Management
  • Renewable Energy
  • Reforestation/Ecosystem Restoration
  • Research
  • Medical and Dentistry
  • Water and Sanitation
  • Marketing and Communications

As part of this experience, students will stay at the EcoSwell HQ with students from other universities and with professionals from a variety of disciplines. They will be able to immerse themselves in the Lobitos lifestyle, enjoy the beach, surf, swim with turtles, go out to sea to fish with the artisanal fishermen, go cave exploring, enjoy the delicious food Peru has to offer and more. EcoSwell firmly believes that the impacts of their work are magnified when their team of staff and volunteers are happy, so you can expect a unique experience in terms of work-life balance whilst there.

EcoSwell is registered as a non-profit in Peru and in the UK. 


  • Any student UG or PG can apply.
  • Manchester students can join EcoSwell projects during the summer and year round. Placements last for a minimum of four weeks.
  • Volunteers will receive pre-departure information and support from EcoSwell's Volunteer Program Administrator and Project Supervisor.
  • Volunteers will be pick-up from Talara airport and driven to the EcoSwell house in Lobitos.
  • Volunteers will stay in the EcoSwell HQ, located a stone's throw away from the sea.
  • Your financial contribution to EcoSwell will depend on the project you choose. For the renewable energy and medical projects the total is approximately GBP 1,980 (for four weeks) and for other fronts it's GBP 1,895 (also for four weeks).
  • All your meals are covered, accommodation, airport pick-up and drop-off, project related costs and team supervision as well. Your financial contribution also helps fund EcoSwell's development projects, so you are having an impact just by joining.
  • Additional activities such as surfing, yoga, swimming with turtles, fishing and eating out are not included in this financial contribution but are highly accessible.
  • Flights and international insurance are not included.
  • A breakdown of how EcoSwell invests your financial contribution can be found here.
  • Please apply by searching for 'EcoSwell' on Volunteer Hub and click 'apply' on the relevant advert.

Find out more