We know that taking a Gap Year is a very personal decision. People want the freedom to explore and determine where they’ll go next. That’s why we encourage you to design your own custom Gap Year program using our invaluable connections and resources. What journey will you dare to imagine? We’ll help you bring it to life!

Spring Semester

Pick Your Own

We've got expert Program Specialists to help you custom build your dream gap year.

Fall Semester

Pick Your Own

No matter where you're coming from, or where you're headed, let our experts pave the way to your ultimate volunteer gap year!
Imagine taking a personal pilgrimage to explore religious traditions around the world—traveling from Morocco to Ghana and then to Thailand to learn about Islam, tribal traditions, and Buddhism first-hand, all while serving others along the way. Perhaps you’d rather spend 12 weeks in your dream destination, becoming fully immersed in the culture, language, and community dynamics. When you embark on a CCS Custom Gap Year, your possibilities are endless. If having too many choices feels a little overwhelming (the world is big place, after all), then you can call and talk with a Program Specialist (who is a CCS alum) to help you plan your trip.

Volunteer Opportunities

On a CCS Gap Year, you will make a difference. You’ll provide support and an invaluable cultural exchange by working with our local partners. Our volunteers work in many different areas of service, helping with sustainable projects. We work to match your skills and interests with the current needs of the local community.

Latin America

We offer programs in Costa Rica, Guatemala, and Peru—ideal destinations if you’re looking to improve your Spanish, explore ancient ruins and natural wonders, or wander local markets.

Costa RicaGuatemalaPeru

Custom Gap Year Programs with Cross-Cultural Solutions Latin America 1Custom Gap Year Programs with Cross-Cultural Solutions Latin America 2

“Little by little, one walks far. ”
Peruvian Proverb

"A single tree cannot make a forest."
Ewe Proverb

Africa

Leave the tourist books behind and make a real connection to the local people when you volunteer abroad in Morocco or Ghana. You can make an impact by providing support at local child care centers, schools, community-led organizations, and clinics.

MoroccoGhana

Asia

Experiencing night markets, rafting down a river, sampling the flavors of the Nan Province...all of these amazing adventures are at your fingertips when you enroll as a volunteer in Thailand. Most importantly, though, you’ll get off the tourist path as you're welcomed into a new community and genuinely immersed in the local culture through your volunteer service.

Thailand

“The purpose of our lives is to be happy.”
Dalai Lama

Our Projects

Your gap year will bring extra immersion and meaning through your focus on impactful service in the community. Find yourself working with children in Costa Rica, providing important early childhood education to low-income students. Or, head to Ghana, where you might be creating Wash stations in a school in need of basic sanitation facilities. In Morocco, immerse yourself in a unique culture when you're working with a community in need in the Middle Atlas Mountains. Or, go deep in Greece at a refugee camp, distributing water, milk, hygiene products, and clothing to refugee residents who have made an unimaginable journey. With your custom gap year, the world is truly at your fingertips.

Your Home-Bases

CCS Home-Base in Peru
Lima

Peru

Your Peruvian home away from home is located in a lovely community, just a short walk from a convenient hour laundry service and delicious restaurants. With little gardens inside and outside of the CCS Home-Base with plum trees and grapevines, you’ll never feel too far from nature. The CCS Peru Home-Base has bedrooms upstairs and downstairs and wood floors throughout. The common area is a great spot to play board games with fellow volunteers, or study up on your español. Then there's the food in Peru. You'll enjoy incredible local meals made up of meats, salads and veggies, all served with a side of amazing fiery sauce that will quickly become a new favorite!

Custom Gap Year Programs with Cross-Cultural Solutions Morocco Home-Base
Azrou

Morocco

In the MIddle Atlas Mountains, curl up with a cup of mint tea, chat with our Moroccan team about women's issues or their perspectives, or practice your Arabic. You’ll feel right at home with the aroma of fresh home cooked Moroccan cuisine floating from the kouzina -- kitchen. Whether Fatiha, the CCS cook, is preparing a savory couscous, or you're learning the ins and outs of the perfect tagine with Khadija, the Program Officer, you'll enjoy a menu full of healthy and delicious meals.

Thailand Home-Base
Nan Province

Thailand

The Nan Province home-base is located in one of the most beautiful and genuine communities in Thailand. Surrounded by plenty of outdoor space and greenery that characterizes this agricultural area volunteers can unwind in authentic Thai living areas or retreat to a cozy bedroom at the end of a rewarding work day. With shops only a 5 minute walk away, and the town center 10 minutes away, you'll have access to local amenities and soak up the unique cultures of the Nan Province. If you're looking for city life, the town of Nan offers vibrant night markets, unique street food stalls, and a seemingly unlimited number of coffee shops.

Your In-Country Directors

Ghana Country President
Ghana

Makafui Amenuvor

Makafui Amenuvor is kind, patient, and wise—an innovator and a go-getter. He often teaches volunteers how to hilife dance—not because he is a dance expert, but because he fully embraces life, which you’ll see in his dancing and in everything he does. Makafui is particularly engaged in girls’ and women’s empowerment issues and has worked with the Municipal Office of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice to facilitate discussions and develop community outreach campaigns aimed at educating women and girls about their rights and resources in regards to domestic and sexual violence.

Custom Gap Year Programs with Cross-Cultural Solutions Director Muhammad
Morocco

Mohamed Mhmmoudi

From the moment you arrive in CCS Morocco, you’ll feel right at home with the welcoming and open smile of Mohamed to greet you. A lifelong student and educator, Mohamed comes from a small Moroccan village on the outskirts of the Sahara Desert. Inspired by an international volunteer, Mohamed joined the Peace Corps as a Language and Cross-Cultural facilitator, and later earned the position of Volunteer Safety & Security Officer. He was later selected to become the founding Country Director for CCS Morocco. Mohamed is particularly passionate about education and literacy, as it allows individuals to understand, and therefore defend, their own rights. Mohamed understands what it means to be an international volunteer and he is passionate to share his culture with you.

Guatemala Country President
Guatemala

Juan Carlos Buonafina

Juan Carlos Buonafina is known for his kind personality and for his dedication to the people of his home country of Guatemala. Juan Carlos is an educator, an intercultural exchange professional, and an expert at guiding international volunteer experiences. After receiving his degree, Juan Carlos started his career with CCS, specifically leading the CCS teen program in the Maya Highlands of Tecpan. Join Juan Carlos on your Guatemala journey to gain a unique and unparalleled insight into life in the mountainside towns of Guatemala.

In-Country Staff
The CCS staff members are passionate about international volunteering and committed to the success of each program. It takes knowledge and experience to place an international volunteer into a community project, which is why all of our in-country staff members are from the communities where we work. They can share cultural insights with you that only a local person would know.
Their dedication doesn’t stop there: our staff wants you to feel completely at home. They’re always on--hand to support your needs, no matter how big or small. The CCS office is even located in the Home-Base. When you meet our staff, you’ll discover that these are the people who make CCS so special.
When can I go?

Dates & Fees

Spring Semester

Pick Your Own
We've got expert Program Specialists to help you custom build your dream gap year.

Fall Semester

Pick Your Own
No matter where you're coming from, or where you're headed, let our experts pave the way to your ultimate volunteer gap year!

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