We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Dove Missions Voluntourism - 1-Day Volunteer with Youth
Ranked #13 of 50 Tours in Puerto Plata
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Dove Missions is a non-profit organization that offers a safe & organized way to volunteer with youth while vacationing in the Dominican Republic. We have 140 children enrolled in our programs and offer 15 educational and vocational classes. Typical 1-day Volunteer Itinerary: - 9am: Pick-up at Hotel - 10am: Activity at the youth center - 12pm: Lunch - 1pm: Visit typical neighborhoods where the kids live - 2pm: Activity at the youth center - 4pm: Debrief and drop-off at hotel
Reviewed 12 April 2013

We spent the day with Dove Missions this past Tuesday. It is a day I will never forget. I learned that giving up a small portion of my vacation can make a difference in other people's lives. The power of one is where it starts. Liz is a wonderful giving person who is making the difference in kids lives each and every day. The families we visited in villages and various locations throughout the city have nothing. No running water, no bathrooms, but the are warm and happy people. If you want to experience real live of way too many families and children, spend some time with this organization. You will not forget it and it is a great way to spent quality time with a great organization.

1  Thank CaliforniaSueSue
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DoveMissions, Public Relations Manager at Dove Missions Voluntourism - 1-Day Volunteer with Youth, responded to this reviewResponded 5 August 2015

"The power of one is where it starts." YES! We love having volunteers spending time with us because we're really able to put this belief into practice. We know that the power of one has the power to make a big impact - and we love reading this in your review!

Thank you so much for spending time with us in the DR and for your review. We appreciate you!

Thanks again,
Dove Missions

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a ReviewReviews (76)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language

65 - 69 of 76 reviews

Reviewed 22 March 2013

My wife found the Dove Missions website purely by chance. It was the heartfelt message that touched us, so we decided to dig a little deeper. What we found!

Liz, the founder and CEO, has spent the last four years of her life dedicated to the development and caring of the youth of Puerto Plata (Dominican Republic), and doing it all on a very thin shoestring.

What she and her small staff have to offer is a day of "Voluntourism." You will be collected from your hotel by a member of staff, and given a chance to see the city, tour the barrios, have lunch, and then meet the kids (Our personal favorite ). Is there a cost? Yes, there is a small fee, but considering this venture is non-profit,our personal view is that it is money well spent , and probably more bang for your buck than you can get at some other "attractions" you may have visited on your travels.

Other reviews on this page explain the program in much greater detail than I shall, so I urge you to read what others have written about their amazing time spent with Dove Missions.

The five star rating is well earned and for all the right reasons. No "watered down drinks"or "unmade beds" to complain about, no "rude waiters" trying to rip you off to be graded on Trip Advisor...

Just a few hours out of your lives to see how great we have it, and to see how others live, and what people like Liz and her staff are doing to enrich the lives of those less fortunate than ourselves . Give it a whirl, I think you will enjoy the journey.

3  Thank gjgeary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DoveMissions, Public Relations Manager at Dove Missions Voluntourism - 1-Day Volunteer with Youth, responded to this reviewResponded 7 August 2015

Thank you so much for your kind review and the time you spent with us while in the Dominican! We are so grateful for our volunteers - they are the backbone of the work that we do! We are so glad that you happened upon our website and were so touched by what you found there. We are truly grateful for the services we have the chance to provide our children and its an honor to have volunteers like you join us in those efforts.

Let's get a return trip planned soon - the DR misses you! :)

Thanks again,
Dove Missions

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 February 2013

My wife and I just returned from a trip to Puerto Plata, and decided to try and find somewhere to spend a day doing something different, and came upon Dove Missions. We made arrangements a little last minute (the week before) but things with both our schedules worked out, and we setup a day in Puerto Plata.

We got picked up at the resort by Martina, who I think is titled the field director. She was a great individual, and has a great knowledge of the area, as well as a passion and love for the work shes helping with at Dove Missions. She took us on a bit of a tour of some of the sights in the surrounding area, which was great, and we certainly learned and saw alot. It was also neat to get a different perspective, that you wouldnt normally get on tours and trips through the hotel or tour company.

We then headed to the Youth Centre itself in Puerto Plata, and spent some time there. From what I understand, the center is setup to accomodate different age/sex children each day, and the day we were there I think it was for 6-9 year old girls. On our arrival we were met by a large group of absolute sweetheart children, who were so thrilled to greet us. We were immediately pulled inside by the children, and spent some time with them. We brought along a few things; some crafts, schools supplies, clothing, and snacks, and had some projects to work on with the girls that they seemed to love doing. We both learned the game of jacks, and the girls just seemed so incredibly happy to have someone there to spend time with. These are children from a variety of different backgrounds, and to have a centre like this to spend time in is an incredible opportunity for them, and an absolutely wonderful, and possibly life changing opportunity for them.

At the centre, we met the founder, Liz, who has made this her life mission, and was incredibly passionate and inspiring about it. It is incredible what she has done for these children and the community.

After spending some time with the children and staff at the centre, we then headed to the home of Domingo, a 17 year old boy who has known Liz(the founder) for 10 years, and know works with her helping out at the centre. He was an incredible individual, who has been through more than I could imagine, and is a very impressive young man. We went to his house, and met his family, and saw where the children coming to the centre come from. The one thing that amazed us, and inspired us, was seeing how happy these people are with what they have, it was really something, and quite an eye opener.

We were then treated to an amazing, local lunch at Liz's, and headed back to the centre, where we spent more time with the group of children who had attended for the afternoon. Again, they seemed to happy to be spending time with us, and were so great to spend time around. After spending the rest of the afternoon there, we headed back to the hotel with Martina.

Throughout the rest of the time we were there, we kept in touch with Martina and Liz, and met up with them several times throughout the week. It was a great local connection to make, and great to spend some time and gain some knowledge from some people who live there.

We are also sorting out sponsoring a child at the centre, something that after seeing the impact it can make on these children and their families lives, we decided we must do. From what I understand, for $30US a month, we sponsor one child at the centre. There are a number of children that attend the centre that are sponsored, and a long line waiting to be. Sponsoring one of these children provides food essentials, medicine and school supplies for the child and their family, and also gets the child and their parents involved in attending, and helping out at the youth centre itself. We figured for what it can do, it's a small price to pay to make a big difference.

Now I know this was a bit long winded, and is the first review Ive done on trip advisor, but I hope it portrayed what an excellent experience this was, and an absolute highlight of our trip.

5  Thank Tom A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DoveMissions, Public Relations Manager at Dove Missions Voluntourism - 1-Day Volunteer with Youth, responded to this reviewResponded 7 August 2015

Thank you so much for your review and the kind things you said about Dove Missions! We loved your words about how happy our kids are despite the conditions they live in - conditions we couldn't even imagine unless we were to see them ourselves. We absolutely agree.

It's unbelievable what our children have been though and how, despite that, they have happy hearts, grateful spirits and giant smiles on their faces. Oh if we could live in a similar way! Having the chance to spend our days in this environment with these children is truly a blessing, and we're delighted you were able to experience it with us.

Come back and see us soon - let's get a trip in the books!

Thanks again,
Dove Missions

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 July 2012

DOVE Missions is a definite ‘TO DO’ when in Puerto Plata. It is good for young and old alike, who want to get the real Dominican experience, while helping indigent children and their families. Serve the least of our brothers, learn from them and feel your hearts transformed.

Their smiles, their looks, their warm embrace...you’ll go home wanting to take one, two, three or all of those kids with you.

Play with them, laugh with them even if you don’t have the faintest idea of what they are saying. In just a few minutes, you’ll feel their love, their need for love, and your need to be loved as well.

DOVE MISSIONS is a potent analgesia.

I have a very bad spinal stenosis L4-L5-S1 which gives me terrible back and leg pain. The 5 days I volunteered with my husband and 3 children, I walked almost a mile with them to the park TWICE and cheered with them as they played baseball (they are VERY GOOD!); I went swimming with 2 groups of young girls in a river pool, to help the young ones ‘swim’ safely; sat on a hard chair all day to watch the older girls make beaded jewelry (they are very GOOD at it)…my back and legs did not act up, my Lord gave me that strength those days. I am home now, my back and legs are aching, but my spirit feels healthy.

DOVE MISSIONS lets you feel ‘it is more blessed to give than to receive’.

Matthew 25:35-40 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me’ ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’

5  Thank tghcsa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DoveMissions, Public Relations Manager at Dove Missions Voluntourism - 1-Day Volunteer with Youth, responded to this reviewResponded 5 August 2015

We love this! And you are absolutely right - it is so much more of a blessing to give than it is to receive. We believe this and hope to live it out in all of Dove's actions - thank you so much for including this in your review!

We're so glad you had such a great time while you were with us - we're looking forward to you returning. We know the kids would love to see you soon!

Thanks again,
Dove Missions

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 July 2012

Dove Missions will change your views on life, and is an unforgettable experience. It's amazing how much of an impact you can have the kids little lives in only one day, and how much of a positive impact they will have on you.

My family has been volunteering at Liz's youth development club every year for 4 years now and we stay for weeks at a time. We sponsor more than 6 kids at the club.

Bring an sense of humour, an open heart, and leave the boring resort in the dust. At Liz's Dove Missions you get the chance to play with a classroom of wonderful kids who are happy with so little.

At the Dove Missions youth development centre, you will:
-Play baseball, basketball, patty-cake, english flashcard games.
-Bring an activity and find 10 willing kids to play with you.
-Be immersed in Spanish. Prepare to learn...
-Be hugged by little kids
-Appreciate that family, laughter, friends are more important than money.
-Be moved to tears when you have to leave.

The rates are $350 USD a week for 5 days of volunteering, and include lunch at Liz's house (delicious local food made by her cook Mia) and pick-up and drop-off at your resort in Puerto Plata.

Liz is very flexible in preparing specific activities that you are interested in. For example, she organizes Haiti tours (rare opportunity to be accompanied by her safe and responsible Haitian husband into a difficult to visit country), kite-surfing, farm visits. As an ex-pat who lives in the D.R. permanently she knows many places to visit that tourists cannot find out about on their own.

Last warning: Visit Dove Missions can be addictive. For us, a day visit turned into a week. Which turned into a month-long trip next year, which turned into a yearly trip.

Don't miss it.

5  Thank BMfromON
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DoveMissions, Public Relations Manager at Dove Missions Voluntourism - 1-Day Volunteer with Youth, responded to this reviewResponded 5 August 2015

Volunteering with Dove Missions can be an addicting experience - you won't want to stop! Yes!

Thank you so much for your continued support for Dove and our children, we're so grateful. We love having you and your family visit us so frequently - let's get another trip scheduled ASAP! We're ready for you all to come back!

Thanks again,
Dove Missions

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers who viewed Dove Missions Voluntourism - 1-Day Volunteer with Youth also viewed

Puerto Plata, Puerto Plata Province
Puerto Plata, Puerto Plata Province
 
Puerto Plata, Puerto Plata Province
Puerto Plata, Puerto Plata Province
 

Been to Dove Missions Voluntourism - 1-Day Volunteer with Youth? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing