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Simply Puerto Vallarta: Expats Flex their Philanthropic Muscles
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January 13, 2012
With over 30 non-profits in the Banderas Bay area, you can organize fund raisers, teach anything from arts and crafts to English, or just give a child a shoulder to lean on... (Video Diva Productions)

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico - There is much more to living in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico than just enjoying the sun and sand. Many expats have discovered that working with one of the many non-profit and charitable organization in the Banderas Bay area is an ideal way to learn about the culture and make friends while giving back to the community which embraces us.

"My wife and I like volunteering," says Mel Bornstein of the International Friendship Club, "We are very happy living in Puerto Vallarta, happier than we were back in the United States, and we want to give back to the community, rewarding them for the rewards we received by living here and so it's a pleasure for us to do all this work and help all these different people, who require assistance."

With well over 30 non-profits operating in the Bay of Banderas, there is never a reason to be bored. You could work with a different one every day for one month and then decide where you wanted to spend more time. Getting involved also provides a great way to socialize.

"We have been very active and we have a lot of fun," says Mel. He and his wife moved to Puerto Vallarta over 30 years ago and immediately began working with the International Friendship Club. "We met a whole bunch of people that had a common interest, they were here, they didn't have their family down here, didn't have their children down here or they had a friend visit from time to time but other than that, they were alone," states Mel, "and when you met up with other people who are equal to you in the same kind of loneliness, you wound up having a lot of fun, enjoying your life more."

Volunteering is not just for the retired, many younger people find a perfect cause and assist in a variety of ways.

"For me, in Puerto Vallarta, we don't have many distractions," says PURR Project cat shelter volunteer, Nicole Martin. "Life is very simple, thank goodness, so there is time outside of work to volunteer and to do things and there is a charity for everyone. I am involved with the marketing of the cat shelter because if people don't know about the shelter, what's happening, we won't grow, we won't be able to pay the bills."

With so many non-profit organizations in the Banderas Bay area, there are many options. You can organize fund raisers, cuddle an animal, teach anything from arts and crafts to English, or just give a child a shoulder to lean on, the list is endless. Get involved today.



Simply Puerto Vallarta is a multi-media promotion campaign that highlights the richness and diversity of Mexico's premier coastal tourist town. Unlike traditional PR efforts, the video series was designed to put the media message back into the hands of those it most affects - area residents.