Torres Del Paine National Park
The National park Torres del Paine is situated between the Andes and the steppe of Patagonia, in Chile. Of a surface about 200.000 hectares, the park was created in 1959 and declared reserve of the biosphere on April 28th, 1978 by the UNESCO. It accommodates more than hundred species of birds and 25 species of mammals, among which diverse endangered and visible only in certain sectors, such as the deer of the Andean South and the puma.
AMA Torres del Paine
AMA, Agrupación Medio Ambiantal (Environmental Regroupment ), is a non-governmental organization (NGO) created in 2004 having for objective to watch the development of a sustainable tourism and the biodiversity conservation within the National park Torres del Paine.
The organization work in association with the CONAF, Corporación Nacional Forestal, in charge of the administration of the park Torres del Paine. Its first project consisted in to improve the tourist paths of the private zones which surround the national park.
Afterward, AMA joined with various specialists and launched a program of voluntary service to set up projects of “recovery” of the used paths.
In 2004, the program of ” Minimization of the human impact ” is thrown and AMA participates in improved the management of waste and the recycling of the glass bottles within the park.
Next year, a devastating fire propagated to Torres del Paine. AMA then got fully involved in the protection of the area and the implementation of a reforestation program with the support of volunteers, of local citizens and the cities surroundings (Puerto Natales, Punta Arenas).
Other fires sadly started and it is thanks to the efforts used by AMA and its collaborators that new trees will come to restore a little of life in the destroyed zones. The organization allows in particular children of schools to participate and understand the importance of the protection of the biodiversity.
With time, the association saw itself confiding more and more tasks concerning the sustainable tourism and concerning the preservation of the environment within the park Torres del Paine.
Aims of the organization
º Help to preserve the integrity and the diversity of the ecosystems
º Reduce the impacts generated by the human activities
º Contribute to the scientific investigations
º Increase the environmental education
Volunteer with AMA
AMA association evolves for several years and improves in time its work and its program of volunteering. You can choose to act for a period of 15 days or of a month. If you wish to participate for 3 weeks or more than a month, you can get organized with the coordinators of the association.
The work of any volunteer, according to its duration of investment, is made in the same area, with the same team, for the same objectives. The more the volunteer stays, the more he has the opportunity to grow rich of a complete, positive and constructive experience.
It is also necessary possible to become a permanent volunteer. This role consists in integrating the team for a duration of more than 3 months and to participate in the management of the volunteers groups, in their activities and in the organization of the dayly tasks.
The volunteers have domes built as dormitories, toilets, hot showers, electricity under solar energy, a space of work and relaxation, the WiFi and four meals by days, with options for the vegetarians (breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner). (Like a prince!)
It is strongly recommended to bring its own sleeping bag because even if the association can sometimes help out, it is not equipped to supply every volunteer. Beds are all provided with blankets, but when the temperatures fall at night in certain periods, it’s better to have a sleeping bag to add.
As volunteer, you will have the opportunity to go for a hike within the park, lasting days if you wish. It is also recommended to possess a tent for the occasion. For those who do not have it, it is often possible to borrow the tent of another volunteer or possibly from the organization AMA, but these are generally rather impressive.
The work realized by AMA is varied: counter implementation, maintenance of plantations for the reforestation, research for native bumblebees, reports on waste, construction of footbridge, creation or improvement of trekking path, floral, creation of descriptive panels etc.
The activity depends on the climate and on the number of present volunteers. For example, when it is raining, the outside tasks are almost impracticable; the work is then directed on activities internal as maintenance of the dome or the signalling system.
It is important to take into account that the investment can be hard, it is necessary to be in good physical condition. It is also essential to appear as volunteer only if you are motivated to put a lot into all the types of tasks. Indeed, the work of the association is very important for the national park Torres del Paine and AMA takes care of the majority of needs bound to the biodiversity of the park.
To know more about the volunteering with AMA, check on the web site here.
Do not hesitate to contact the members of the association to ask them your questions, they will be capable of answering you in Spanish or in English.
EVI meets AMA
It is as a volunteer that I went to the park Torres del Paine within the association AMA, with the aim of participating in its actions, learning more on its functioning and communicating about the set up work.
I stayed one month with the NGO and it allowed me to have an overview of the multiple activities undertaken by the group. I was able in particular to observe their organization and the commitment taken by active persons and I had the opportunity to collect the feedback of the volunteers and the professionals of the National park. The experience was very positive.»
Lisa Rispal, founder of EVI
AMA sometimes faces some concerns of organization, particularly when the activity is low (rainy days, excess volunteer’s large number for a specific period). However, the team tries hard every year to use its experience to go by improving, in particular thanks to the help of permanent volunteers who bring a not insignificant support for the functioning of the on-the-spot work.
During my presence on the field, I was able to intervene on various projects. I was then able to notice the passion which have the members of the team for the work they exercise for the preservation of the park. I support completely the actions of AMA and I encourage each to be interested in it, closely as by far, to understand why this type of organization exist within the natural areas, how we can act to help them and especially, to know how to participate to protect the biodiversity during our visits. » Lisa Rispal.
EVI support AMA
We support the AMA organization and encourage it in its approach for the biodiversity conservation of natural National Parks of Chile.
Without the help of the people and the external structures, AMA would have never been able to end in the remarkable work which it undertakes now. Thanks to its team, the tourist visits are easier, the environment is more respected, the reforestation takes form, children are made sensitive in the conservation of the nature and the people of the whole world can participate to it.
Support AMA Torres del Paine, become a volunteer or make a donation on the official website.
You can also donate here, by clicking the following link and by specifying at the time of your payment the following comment: “AMA Torres del Paine”. Your participation will then be directly transmitted to the organization AMA.
One thank you to all!