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What Can I Expect?

Volunteering in Africa, especially for the first time, can be daunting, but also thrilling! We want our volunteers and interns to have peace of mind and know that we have a network of experienced, trained staff on hand to support and guide you through your volunteering journey.

When people think of travel to Africa, the term ‘culture shock’ comes up a lot, because volunteers are exposed to diverse new cultures, ways of life, animals and scenery which you might not have experienced before.

Of course, the people and wildlife you’ll encounter as well as the program activities will differ from project to project. Below are some guidelines to help prepare you for your volunteering trip.

Pre-departure Support
Travel expert africa

One of our knowledgeable Destination Managers, equipped with on-the-ground experience, will be assigned to you upon your enquiry. They will guide you through the booking of your volunteer placement from start to finish!  

Always at your fingertips via e-mail or Skype, they will be able to answer any and all questions before, during and after the confirmation of your booking with us. 

Orientation & Induction
Safe volunteering

At all of our projects, volunteers go through a comprehensive induction program which prepares them for their volunteer activities, duties and engagement with local people. Volunteers learn about cultural sensitivity, mutual respect and understanding, what to wear and how to greet people.

The orientation program also includes a safety briefing and insight into the landscape and history of the area, as well as a detailed explanation of the daily schedule.

Cultural Exchange
Cultural exchange

The volunteer experiences we offer in Africa are based on three key points:

1) volunteers having an amazing time and experiencing everything Africa has to offer;

2) volunteers learning as much as they can about local history, culture and wildlife and soaking up the essence of the country they’re in; and

3) supporting local communities and conservation efforts through education and hands-on help. It’s also important to us that volunteers understand their contribution so they leave knowing they have achieved something remarkable.

Because we work closely with communities, you will be engaging with local people on a daily basis whether it’s through teaching, support groups or other volunteering activities. People within the local communities have as much to gain from this cultural exchange as you do.

Volunteer vacation

Africa is famous for its magnificent wildlife and many of our projects are focused on conservation and research. Even those that aren’t allow volunteers to encounter wild animals in their free time or over weekends where they’re encouraged to take part in safaris and day trips.

Our Big Cat Research Program in Kenya’s Naboisho Conservancy allows volunteers to get up close and personal to lions, cheetahs, leopards, wildebeest, elephants, buffalo, wild dogs and more.

Our conservation programs in South Africa will get you acquainted with Africa’s Big 5 and you’ll learn about animal behaviour, population trends and conservation.

If you’re lucky you’ll even catch a glimpse of some of the breath-taking African birdlife from your window!

Weather & Climate
Humanitarian holiday

The weather across the African continent is diverse and changes throughout the year, though you can usually expect beautiful sunny days in most parts.We would advise that all volunteers read through their pre-departure information carefully before arriving on our projects, and do some research of their own.

African climates are divided into two sections; the wet season and the dry season.

The wet season is characterized by hot weather and heavy rain, but rain is typically at night and helps to cool the temperature for sleeping.

The dry season is characterized by more moderate temperatures and little rain.

No matter the season, you should be prepared with rain gear, jumpers for cooler mornings, and a hat to protect you from the sun.

Living at Volunteer Accommodation
Thanda game reserve south africa

You’ll find your home away from home amongst our staff and your fellow volunteers at the volunteer accommodation on your project. Our teams on the ground – from coordinators to housekeeping staff – will provide you with round-the-clock support. Breakfast at most accommodations is self-service, while lunch and dinner are prepared, sit-down meals.

The volunteer house is also a great place to meet people from around the world and learn about different cultures. Our volunteer accommodations host people from across the globe and are the birthplaces of thousands of lifelong friendships. Communal meals, movie nights and barbecues happen on a regular basis, and socialising with other volunteers and interns, you’ll certainly make memories to last a lifetime.

Project Work
Wildlife work

A volunteer’s day is jam-packed with action and amazing experiences. Some volunteers will spend each weekday traveling into the local communities to work alongside community partners including teachers and healthcare workers.

Other volunteers will spend the early mornings and late afternoons exploring Africa’s expansive game parks while completing research and conservation tasks. Although the days are long, breaks are given and downtime is taken to ensure everyone is energized for their work.

Free Time
Rugby in cape town

Although your days will be packed with volunteer duties and projects, free time will be dispersed throughout the day, as well as during evenings and weekends. Volunteer accommodations are equiped with lounge areas, gardens and often pools where you’ll have the chance to kick back with a book, your journal, or just hang out with your fellow volunteers.

Mealtimes and evenings are great times to bond with your newfound friends and relax so you’re ready for each busy volunteer day.

Sightseeing in cape town

You’ll work hard as a volunteer, but there will also be time to play hard as plenty of free time is given to you on evenings and weekends to explore all Africa has to offer. You can sign up for cultural tours and learn more about the local commuities and their history, or explore nearby game reserves, historical landmarks or tourist centres – the possibilities are endless.

Volunteering is a weeklong venture and although there may be optional activities you can take advantage of on project during the weekend, your weekends are yours to relax, explore and venture out and about.

Adventure Activities
Shark cage diving

There’s no shortage of adventure on the African continent – so step out of your comfort zone and bungee jump over Victoria Falls, abseil down the side of Table Mountain, snorkel in Zanzibar’s coral reefs – the possibilities are endless! Our project teams on the ground will help you book tours upon your arrival, so you can experience it all with your fellow volunteers.