Our Team

Mariana Lara - President

Mariana Lara – President

Having worked in the USA for 10 years, Mariana returned to Ecuador, and started working as coordinator for one of the largest US-based volunteer placement organizations. As coordinator of this institution, she travelled frequently around Ecuador searching for host families, volunteer and internship placements. During her travels, she was exposed to the harsh realities of marginalised communities in the Ecuadorian territory, and to the positive difference that dedicated volunteers could make to the lives of those in real need. Her compassion prompted her to take action to support those whose lives are a daily struggle, and over the years has made numerous financial donations and other forms of assistance to under-privileged communities and individuals to ensure their well-being. It is within this context that the Fundación VENAEcuador was established, with a view to supporting the excercise of universal human dignity throughout Ecuador. Since its foundation, VENAEcuador, under the guidance of Mariana, and with the help of dedicated volunteers, has successfully raised funding for a wide range of social and community assistance programs, information about which can be found here. Mariana’s repertoire indludes building a Red Cross emergency center, school reconstructions and many more projects that have enriched the lives of those who most need help. She can be contacted on mariana@venaecuador.org


Arjun Chaudhuri – Organizational Development

A past volunteer of VENAEcuador in the field of human rights, Arjun returned to Ecuador in 2012 with the objective of strengthening and consolidating the important work of the foundation. A strong believer in the humanitarian mission of VENAEcuador, Arjun is tasked with the internal and external development of the organization, and the marketing and promotion of its altruistic projects. He has extensive experience living and working in the field of development and has supported projects across South America and West Africa. As a student of International Relations and with broad experience contributing to social inclusion issues, he maintains a strong ideological commitment to the protection and promotion of human rights across the Ecuadorian territory.


Miguel Armijos – Tours & Excursions Manager

With a strong commitment to promoting sustainable tourism across Ecuador, Miguel has years of experience working as a guide, and since the foundation of our organization has been showing volunteers and interns around the city in the exclusive Quito Tour that we offer all program participants.Tasked with the promotion, sales and coordination of the huge range of tours that VENAEcuador offers all over Ecuador, participants benefit from his wealth of knowledge about the country and its culture, a local perspective on life, and his dedication to the complete satisfaction of our clients. So if you’re looking for a culturally interesting tour, grounded in local insight, and profound knowledge of Ecuador’s highlights