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Buenas Cosas

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal Husbandry, Environment, Food, Garden Clubs, Home Improvement & Repairs, Homeless & Housing, Nutrition

Mission: Buenas Cosas is for travelers, volunteers and the local Maya villages we serve, supporting nature through sustainable community development. Buenas Cosas is a registered Guatemalan non-profit, and a pending 501(c)3, association of family, friends and neighbors who serve their community and nature. Every cent that enters Buenas Cosas goes directly to communities, programs and projects that cultivate Good Things – Buenas Cosas. Travelers, volunteers and their payments support sustainable, eco-happy development in our Partner Communities.

Results: Thousands of travelers and volunteer from 37 different countries have participated with Buenas Cosas Maya beach communities around lake Peten Itza in Guatemala. Thank You All!

Target demographics: Maya communities and nature in Peten Guatemala

Direct beneficiaries per year: Communities and families all around lake Peten Itza

Geographic areas served: Peten Guatemala

Programs: Maya Workshops, Ecotours, Maya Homestays, 3 levels of volunteering and lots more

Community Stories

66 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

AngelaLovesWine

Volunteer

Rating: 5

After Guatemala I went on to backpack Columbia, Brazil, then over to morocco and Asia. All different and wonderful experiences. My time at Buenas Cosas will always remain special to me. I relished in the little moments, like the kids hacking down the palm leaves (for fun and work). How everyone worked together. Was happy. And appreciated nature and life around them. An experience I journaled about and will forever remember, especially when laying in my handmade hammock.

BethanyV

Client Served

Rating: 5

Tom and I had a wonderful time at Buenas Cosas. We especially enjoyed our walk through the jungle to the beach Angelica's food was superb!

SolielP

Volunteer

Rating: 5

5Stars, no. Buenas Cosas is 6Stars. Buenas Cosas deserves it!!!

ConstanceP

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Being a solo-female traveler and very selective about my travel outside the US. Researched Buenas Cosas for several weeks before I made my final decision. The communication was excellent before my arrival. Upon my arrival, Angelica had excellent homemade empenadas waiting for my dinner and her children are all so very charming. Was not a volunteer - am just a traveler. But it was obvious the volunteers I met during my stay were very happy with their Buenas Cosas decision too. Many of the volunteers come in from the surrounding communities to the Permaculture Compound on their free weekends, fun weekends. Good conversations and lots of fun at the beach! Whether you're a traveler like me or someone wanting to volunteer, this place is tops on my list.

AdrianaS

Volunteer

Rating: 5

We had a wonderful time at Buenas Cosas. The Maya workshops and Maya jungle adventures are the best. We got to know many local people in the communities and it's clear this organization is doing good work.

1

Client Served

Rating: 1

Got there to discover rat feces on the beds and fleas bouncing around the place. While the space was laid out nice, Anjelica was rude towards us from the beginning. Any suggestions or comments have resulted in personal barbs and attacks.

Comments ( 1 )

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Buenas Cosas Good Things 10/12/2017

Matt Malouf is a liar. This is yet another attempt at an anonymous 'review' from a man who brought his family to stay at Buenas Cosas. Upon arrival his wife abused their daughter, he stormed out the door and into the darkness, only to return 15 minutes later with wild claims of rat poop and ill-treatment. After that horrid evening, Matt Malouf's claims expanded to include fleas, urine, etc. as he pursued a fraudulent PayPal dispute which was decided in favor of Buenas Cosas. We have video testimonials of witnesses to the abuse, another from a volunteer who stayed in the same room 24 hours later and more, all refuting everything in this 'anonymous review' and Matt Malouf's now dismissed PayPal dispute. This was a terrifying experience for those who witnessed the abuse. More than anything we regret having to share this nonsense in such a public forum.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I spent a couple weeks with Buenas Cosas volunteering in their local community and participating in a few of their eco-tours. My understanding of Spanish greatly improved while I was there, as did my understanding of the landscape, Mayan culture and history. The family at Buenas Cosas is incredibly welcoming and very open to helping their volunteers find the right activities to utilize their interests or skills. I was able to meet a few other families in the barrio and help them with various gardening tasks, as well as work with a small group of other BC volunteers at the local school - doing a little English language instruction and working with the kids to install a school garden.
I really enjoyed meeting the multiple generations of determined women who are working to make their communities stronger, healthier, and more sustainable. Angelica is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to food, politics, and community development. So much inspiration!
Through Buenas Cosas and their dedication to providing tours of northern Peten with authentic, local guides, I was able to take a trek into the jungle to visit La Danta pyramid and other historic sites. This multi-day journey still remains one of the most memorable experiences of all my travels!
Thanks Buenas Cosas!

NicholasdeCanada

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Did the Maya Medicinal Plants workshop and learned a lot. It was a lot of fun with hanging around with Angelica - I recommend Buenas Cosas.

1 BrigithandAlex

Volunteer

Rating: 5

We stayed for two weeks and it was amazing! We made coconut oil and learned about medicinal Maya jungle plants. Our Spanish got a lot lot better.

1 maryhamaca

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My name is Mary and spent a month at Buenas Cosas. Super fun learning to make my own hammock, eating the food and learning about the Maya culture. Thank you for everything Buenas Cosas.

RobertintheTreehouse

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Robert and I'm from Seattle. Been traveling for two years now - saw this place and I had to try it out and I'm glad I did. My experience here was really wonderful. Out away from the tourist crowds. Great tours. Enjoyed all my time here. Can't recommend this place enough.

MirellaandFiona

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

We stayed in San Jose for a couple of days and it was amazing! The family with stayed with was so kind to me and my friend and we got to spend some time with them. It was truly an amazing experience to get to visit a local pueblo. Everyone was so nice and so helpful. We spent most of our time swimming in the lake, which was so beautiful and peaceful. Buenas Cosas is a wonderful project, we had a dinner with Memo where we got to learn more about the beautiful things that him, Angelica and many other volunteers do to help the local communities. We also met Angelica who was truly an inspiration. I would definitely like to come back as a volunteer and get involved in one of Buenas Cosas many projects. Highly recommended. Stay there and to enjoy the magic with lovely people. We miss you guys!

sallydally

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Stayed at Buenas Cosas a couple weeks and I really recommend it. Really an interesting experience. A real pleasure, it meant alot to me and am very grateful for the experience.

Maayan4Israel

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It was really nice - it was good - really nice family - enjoy your time - have fun!

DaviddeCanada

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Had a great time I'd recommend it to anybody. It's a great place to stay - lots to do in the community.

jesseyhale

Volunteer

Rating: 5

“Everyone at Buenas Cosas did a little something every day to make our stay a little more enjoyable. We’ll both be coming back again – for sure.”

silkeywannes

Volunteer

Rating: 5

We spent 8 month at Buenas Cosas and it was great.

Volunteer

Rating: 1

I have to admit that I am quite disappointed with Buenas Cosas. I stayed there for two weeks, and while teaching English to the kids was a great experience, I think that Buenas Cosas in itself is a bit of a scam. The website makes it look like a well-organized and highly effective organization, while in reality it's just a small family that rips you off. I went there expecting a great variety of possibilities and encounters with other volunteers, but I found myself alone with a family that is supposedly the organization. I'm not sure that the money we pay as volunteers goes to benefit the kids or the society. Unfortunately, I didn't experience much hospitality. I couldn't help the feeling that I was being ripped off and that this was the way that the family supported themselves, feeding off of the money of the volunteers. Overall, what hurts the most is the dishonesty. I took time off to go and create positive change, yet that was not the aim of Buenas Cosas. It was difficult to accomplish. Their aim is to get as many volunteers as possible to receive as much money as possible so that they can pay for their living expenses and schools. Overall, I feel cheated and I do not recommend it for anyone!

Comments ( 1 )

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Buenas Cosas Good Things 07/25/2016

Aleksandra, es una joven muy imperativa. Estuvo en Buenas Cosas por dos semanas de voluntariado, desde el momento que arribo a Bc fue discutiendo una mejor calidad de comida antes de conocer lo que comemos la familias, ella queria comidas especiales, el primer dia fue saliendo con un su amigo a un tour, no fue compartiendo tiempo con la familia de Buenas Cosas su mayor tiempo en buenas cosas fue en tours con un su amigo guatemalteco de clase social, el tiempo que dedico a buenas cosas fue solo durante las clases de ingles con los niños en la escuela de la comundidad. Es una persona que le gusta utilizar a otros viajeros para que le acompañen a donde quiere ir sin importar que proyectos tengan los voluntarios con la comunidad todo es para ella misma. La familia de Buenas cosas pasabamos por una situacion de perdida de una familiar muy querido, el dia del fueneral de Zaira, regrese del funeral a las 7 por la noche, las palabras de Aleksandra cuando yo estaba entrando fueron "Tengo mucha hambre, puedes preparar cena para mi" estas son las palabras de una voluntaria como Aleksandra no importo el dolor que estaba pasando yo , lo que a ella le importo fue su cena nada mas y eso fue lo que compartimos esa ultima cena con ella, porque otro dia muy temprano sin despedirse salio al aeropuerto a su retorno. No recomendamos por nada a "Aleksandra" para que sirva como voluntaria en asociaciones que trabajen con comunidades haciendo voluntariado porque es una persona totalmente egoista.

RobinRobin

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Hi my name is Robin and I’m from Amsterdam. Was at Buenas Cosas for a few weeks and had a really good experience. Got to see what it’s like to live in Guatemala, living with the family. I’d recommend it to anyone.

1 ChiaraAustria

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Hello I am Chiara. I'm Eighteen and from Austria. I was at Buenas Cosas for two months in the Good Kids program. I was living with a host family in the village of Belen which is the thirty minute bus ride from the Buenas Cosas' Community Center. My host family was very nice, very polite and especially my Homestay Mom, Blanca. My room was huge. In the beginning, my Good Kids classes were quite chaotic and exhausting. But as soon as I got to know my students better and had a routine, I really enjoyed the lessons and I feel like we've actually made progress which is great. Thank you Buenas Cosas for making this happen.