Our Mission
Unexpected Moments of Magic Panama is dedicated to empowering individuals worldwide through the encouragement of self-exploration through social entrepreneurship, volunteerism, philanthropy and education as powerful forces for worldwide change. Be the change!


Our Services

With 6 years of service & having worked with over 2,500+ volunteers we have the confidence and knowledge to provide you with all that you will need to take part in a successful and rewarding volunteer in Panama program. Below you will find a list of services that are provided when you volunteer with UMMP.

Varied Project Options
UMMP offers such a wide variety of project options there’s something for everyone. Projects include working with children, teaching English, environmental projects, construction, conservation, wildlife, healthcare, women’s empowerment, and much more. The possibilities are endless and we are determined to place you in your area of interest, so if we do not already have it, we can find it!

Volunteer Enrichment Activities
While you are volunteering in Panama , you will also have the opportunity to explore the beauty Panama has to offer by participating in a variety of Volunteer Enrichment Activities. Whether you want to lay on a white sand beach, go whitewater rafting, zip-line through the jungle, relax in a natural hot spring, hike a volcano, go on a mountain bike adventure, take a coffee tour, go rappelling or rock climbing, sweat your stress away in a yoga class, learn to dance salsa, go cliff jumping, horseback riding, learn how to make your own jewelry, interact with the wildlife of Panama, learn to cook, go sport fishing, scuba diving, skydiving, or on an ATV tour, kayaking, birding, have a spa day, explore the Panama Canal or shop till you drop, we have got it!

All tourists arriving in Panama through Tocumen International Airport receive free medical insurance with top level coverage in case of emergency during the first thirty days of their stay. Once you arrive, you must get your brochure and a user card at the airport. Your user card and passport can be presented at any health center. The insurance policy will cover accidental death (up to $20,000 dollars), hospitalization and medical expenses for injuries due to accidents or in case of contracting a disease in Panama (up to $7,000 dollars), expenses for dental emergency (up to $ 2,000 dollars), administrative legal assistance by accident (up to $ 3,500), and lost or stolen documents, among others. The policy does not however cover incidents caused by negligence, those related to alcohol & drugs, and those caused by extreme sports.

Project Placement
The UMMP team are dedicated staff that are there for you every step of the way. We aspire to provide you with all the resources, support, and information you will need to ensure an unforgettable volunteer experience.

Volunteer Resources
At the Starfish Volunteer House we offer a plethora of resources to make your placement successful. Resources include: all level textbooks to learn Spanish, arts-n-craft supplies for placements, games, English teaching materials, books in English & Spanish, computer games, sports equipment, WiFi Internet with access to computer and printing, Volunteer Project Binders and much more!

Communication & Support
Throughout the process, we are committed to working with you to answer your questions or concerns. Your Volunteer Coordinator will be in touch with you, and can answer any questions you may have and provide guidance while you are preparing for your placement, during your placement and after your departure.

Personalized Staff Support - Volunteer Coordinator
Once you have submitted your online application, your UMMP Volunteer Coordinator will contact you within 72 hours for your initial volunteer interview & information session. This is a great opportunity for our team to get to know you better and a for you to ask any questions you may have about the program.

Expert Staff
The Founder & Executive Director of UMMP has volunteered & traveled in over 30 countries. She also holds a Masters Degree in International Nonprofit Studies. Additional UMMP staff are also experienced international volunteers and committed to serving the community of Panama.

Program Guide
The Panama Program Guide is provided to give you all the information you will need to help you prepare for your trip and all volunteers are required to read it. The Program Guide covers important topics such as arrival process, emergency contact details, rules & guidelines of the program, travel advice, visa information, vaccinations & much more.

The orientation session plays a key part of your volunteer placement as this is the time we get to know one other on a deeper level. During the orientation, we will cover topics such as: exploring your goals & dreams, creating a bucketlist, an introduction to the local culture & language, review of the Code of Conduct & expectations of the program, and health & safety.

The accommodation provided in the program fee is at the Volunteer House located conveniently in the center of town. At the Volunteer House, you will have the comforts of home including hot water, Wifi, television, kitchen access, & laundry services. Some volunteers also choose to add the Cultural Exchange Program where you will stay with a local family during your time in Panama. We also offer many other accommodation options to fit your needs including rentals and hotel options.

Breakfast is included in your program fee at the Volunteer House. For those participating in the Culture Exchange Program, meal plans are also available, which is a great way for volunteers to experience the local cuisine.

Language Lessons
Have the desire to learn Spanish? As a volunteer you will have the option of including Spanish Classes as part of your volunteer experience at a discounted rate. *This service is not included in your program fee.

Project Transport
Many of our volunteer placements are located within walking distance of the Volunteer House, but if other forms of transportation are needed, UMMP can help to make those arrangements for your transport.

On-going In-country Support
During your placement UMMP staff are available to support you 24/7. Our 24 hour emergency telephone number provides an opportunity for you, your family members and friends to get in touch with us in the case of an emergency.

Airport Pick-up
All volunteers arriving by plane will be picked up at the Enrique Malek Airport in the city of David by a representative of UMMP and taken to their accommodation. If volunteers choose to arrive by bus, they will be met at the bus terminal in Boquete upon arrival.

24 Hour Emergency Phone Line
UMMP has a 24hr/7day emergency hotline for volunteers and their family.

Crisis Response Plan
UMMP recommends volunteers register with their country's embassy before arriving in-country. Our staff are there to help volunteers follow their embassy emergency response plan, and will facilitate contact and updates between the volunteers, UMMP and families. UMMP has a 24hr/7day emergency hotline for volunteers and their family to contact in the case of emergency.

Letter of Recommendation & References
Upon completion of your volunteer placement, UMMP staff are more than happy to provide you with a letter of recommendation or reference whether it be for work, university, grad school or another volunteer placement.

Fundraising Guide
UMMP provides our volunteers with a comprehensive fundraising resource guide that will empower you to raise 100% of your volunteer costs.

Introduction Video
Hear from other volunteers who have served with UMMP and learn more about what to expect during your stay in Panama.

Online Journal
We provide online volunteer journals where you can post your latest news, making it easy to keep in touch with your friends and family while you're volunteering.

Lifetime Programs Access
Only pay your application fee once! This means you will have access to any UMMP volunteer program without needing to pay an application fee again!

Diploma of Volunteer Service
A printable certificate confirming the details of your volunteer placement which can be framed and/or used in your resume.

UMMP T-Shirt’s
UMMP branded T-shirt’s are available for only $20 to wear before, during and after your volunteer placement. There isn't an easier way to promote a good cause and be reminded of you time in beautiful Boquete!

Access to an Online Community
We love to stay in touch with our volunteers and our volunteer love to stay in touch with one another! Join us on Facebook, Twitter, Skype & Tumblr to stay connected no matter how many miles may be in between!

Media Resources
We provide you with access to UMMP articles, newsletters and videos on our You Tube Channel. You can also access the UMMP PowerPoint to use for presentations.

Phone Consultation
We can set up a time to chat with you about your upcoming placement and answer any questions you have.

Environmentally Friendly
We do everything we can to make the least possible impact on the environment. The Volunteer House is equipped to recycle and has friendly reminders posted on ways you can make a difference for the environment including minimizing electricity and water usage.

Preparation Checklist
To make the preparations for your volunteer placement even easier, we provide you with a volunteer checklist.

Contact Details of Fellow Volunteers
One month before you travel we will email a list of all the volunteers who will be starting in the program at the same time as you, along with current volunteers in Panama. This provides you the opportunity to start building your relationships with one another.