Trinidad and Tobago
Location | Matelot, Trinidad and Tobago
Service Opportunities | Help develop eco-tourism in the area through restoration of the coastline, local hiking trails and access roads; support leather back turtle conservation efforts; serve with the local fisherman’s association on agricultural education and establish agricultural processing facilities and much more!
Cultural and Recreational Highlights | Witness and participate in local events, sports, music and life. Visit the Castles around the Queen’s Park Savannah and the Caroni bird Sanctuary. Take the two hour ferry ride to the beautiful Island of Tobago and visit some of the best beaches in the Southern Caribbean, Tobago is home to the famous Nylon pool and Buccoo Reef and a rich and unique blend of people foods and festivals.
Programs in Trinidad and Tobago take place primarily in Matelot, which is one of the most remote settlements in Trinidad and Tobago. It is the last village on the North Eastern Coast of Trinidad, on the Paria Main Road. It is approximately 70 miles from the capital Port of Spain and is accessible via a single paved road which runs from Toco in the east and is separated from the rest of the island by the hills of the Northern Range. The population of Matelot is approximately 1000 and has remained fairly constant due to a continued exodus of young and productive persons who seek employment in urban areas. As the major sources of income for the remaining residents of Matelot are from fishing, hunting and agriculture, this provides a unique setting for students to experientially learn the complexities of agriculture and sustainable development.
Lodging Local hotels and guesthouses | Food Vegetables, fruit, rice, fish
Visa U.S. Citizens do not need a visa for travel to Trinidad and Tobago | Communication Cell networks, internet, etc.
Closest Airport Port of Spain, Trinidad
Our Community Partners
DORCAS Women’s Group | In Trinidad and Tobago, Amizade works with the DORCAS Womens’ Group. Amizade partners closely with the women’s group to identify the needs of the community, and how our volunteers can best be utilized. This includes working with eco-tourism, revitalizing local hiking trails, maintaining access roads and coastlines; helping the community to construct recreational facilities for the community, expanding a local park, and establishing agricultural processing facilities.
Learn more about the DORCAS Womens’ Group here!
- Behind God’s Back: Matelot, Trinidad | Caribbean Airlines, Caribbean Beat.
- The Golden Age and Decline of Matelot, Trinidad (1885-1945) | Dane Morton-Gittens
- BBC Country Profile: Trinidad and Tobago
Local News Sources:
Why Matelot? Is what many people may be wondering. What is the draw to this area? Why do residents think this could be a tourist destination?
We had the pleasure of working with some very talented Matelot natives in exploring the local culture. Michelle, one of the founding members of the Dorca’s Women’s Group spent an afternoon demonstrating head wraps and dress wraps using a Parea, which is a piece of cloth that can be made of a variety of fabrics with different patterns that can be tied or pinned to create head wraps, dresses, skirts, shirts and other articles of clothing.
Our main instructor in the field of fruits, nuts, and other vegetation was Mr. Jose. Mr. Jose is a Matelot native who lives on the back road of the community. Matelot is basically situated on two hills – the main road runs up and down these hills and the two additional roads circle around the outside, one on the coast and the other up on a ridge in the back. Mr. Jose lived on the ridge.
The DORCAS Women’s Group was established about four years ago by Beulah, Michelle, and another woman in the village. “How much housekeeping can one do?” Miss Beulah said to me in explaining the idea for the group.
From the moment we met Robert in the Port of Spain airport on Saturday evening near midnight, it was obvious to me there was lot of learning to be done, and a lot of fun to be had. Robert was our cab driver, he owns a house near the bed and breakfast we’d spend a short night in in the outskirts of Port of Spain.
Amizade is proud to announce that, for the first time in 8 years, we are expanding to two new countries: India and Trinidad and Tobago! In Trinidad, Amizade will be partnering with the small fishing community of Matelot, working to tackle a range of environmental issues including preservation of the coastline, maintaining local hiking trails and working on conservation efforts for the leather back turtle population. In India, Amizade will be working on leadership development in the southern Tamil Nadu region.
Healthy and Safety
As you or your loved one prepares to serve with Amizade in Bolivia, you can rest comfortably with the knowledge that Amizade has an exceptionally strong safety record and ability to respond to any emerging challenges. We have safely partnered in Bolivia since 1996. For the most up-to-date health, safety, and security briefings, please review the following: