GENDER EQUALITY INTERNSHIP
Gender Equality Internship in Africa. Join our experienced and hardworking team who are dedicated to improving gender equality and promoting female empowerment in rural Zambia. You’ll gain professional experience within the framework of international development and specialise in gender empowerment initiatives. This internship speaks to someone who is passionate about gender issues, developing hard skills in a non-profit role, and using their strengths to mentor and provide support on education, health, prevention of early pregnancy, personal safety, sustainable living, and growth in self-belief.
Read a past volunteer’s blog about creating a Gender Equality curriculum.
Livingstone is a beautiful, rural town in southern Zambia just a stone’s throw away from the mighty Zambezi river and the border of Zimbabwe. It is a hub for visitors looking to experience one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World - Victoria Falls, locally known as Mosi-oa-Tunya, 'the Smoke that Thunders'. Livingstone is the ultimate playground for adventure-seekers, wildlife enthusiasts, and lovers of the great outdoors. Whether you’d like to bungee jump, swim in the ‘Devil’s Pool’, white water raft down the Zambezi, join a river safari or enjoy an African sunset, every experience in Livingstone is unique. The town itself is relaxed and friendly with an intriguing culture and history. Here, you’ll find arts and craft producers, museums, colonial architecture, traditional village life, as well as delicious local food and laidback African lifestyle.
You’ll be staying in the heart of Livingstone at a private volunteer house within the popular and vibrant Victoria Falls Backpackers Zambia. This comfortable backpackers’ is 15 minutes from Victoria Falls and is a 5 minute walk from Livingstone’s town centre which has many stores and a great selection of cafes and restaurants for you to explore at weekends. You will have access to a swimming pool, lounge, bar, fire pit area and even a climbing wall! These communal areas offer the perfect space to get to know each other and relax at the end of the day. Bedrooms are dormitory style with bunk beds and shared bathroom facilities, as well as daily housekeeping. The staff can share knowledge about the area and are happy to help organize river cruises, canoe safaris, and trips to Chobe National Park. You won’t want to leave your “new home” as the staff will become your new family!
You will receive three fresh and delicious meals a day cooked by local chefs during the week. For breakfast you can expect cereal and toast, along with a cooked option such as eggs, pancakes or French toast. Lunch could be a wrap, pizza or sandwich paired with a fresh crispy salad. For dinner you might have a pasta dish, curry with rice or an authentic stew. Vegetarian options are available and we can cater to most dietary requirements. At weekends you will have access to the kitchen to make your own food, though most volunteers choose to visit local cafes and restaurants. Café Zambezi makes great traditional Zambian food and is a favourite amongst locals, while Maramba River Lodge is a popular spot for sundowners and Fez Bar is a popular place to hang out with locals and do a little dancing in the evenings!
To keep in touch with family and friends back home, Victoria Falls Backpackers has complimentary WiFi for you to use during your stay. You can also purchase a SIM card with data bundles if you wish.
Weather in Livingstone tends to be stable and sunny from August until late October when the "monsoon" rains start to hit. Either side of this time, the weather is very pleasant. The climate is tropical or sub-tropical depending on altitude, with a hot, humid, and rainy season from mid-November to March and a dry season from April to mid-November. October is typically the hottest month of the year.
PROJECT IMPACT AREAS
IMPLEMENT THE 6 PILLARS
During your placement, you will be working on a number of existing initiatives that are based around our 6 pillars: education, health, safety, income generation, early pregnancy, and self-confidence. This will include our Adolescent Gender Empowerment Program (AGEP), which aids in the development of girls aged between 10 and 16, as well as working with a women’s group to teach skills and income-generation techniques.
DEVELOP NEW PROGRAMS
Using the 6-pillar framework, you will use your time and passion to develop new programs to empower young women. We love for our interns to share their skills with the girls we work with, including backgrounds in confidence-building activities, self-defence, or even dance as a form of self-expression!
It is also essential to include boys in all our programming, so your role will include developing a framework for how to include more boys in our outreach.
Throughout your stay, you will be supported by our Internship Supervisor, as well our project coordinators who will add context to your specific interests within this field; this will provide a deeper insight into the history of Zambia, as well as the challenges for women. Your supervisor will support you with the tools to use throughout your experience and beyond, exploring personal goals and opportunities for your future.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Gender equality in Africa
What is Gender Inequality?
Gender inequality is a big issue all over the world. Women are responsible for 60% of work done globally and yet only earn 10% of household income and own 1% of property. Gender inequality is prevalent in Africa where 70% of women are excluded financially. Africa has a $42 billion financial gap between men and women. Closing the gender gap for women and girls is crucial in Africa where millions of girls are not in school and are therefore at risk of being left behind. In fact, 4 million of them may never set foot in a classroom. Issues regarding gender inequality often include education, health, safety, income generation, employment, early pregnancy, and self-confidence.
What are the Gender Roles in Africa?
Gender roles can vary across each of the different countries in the African continent so there is no single model of gender roles in Africa. Many cultures have different ideas about male and female roles. However, women have generally been subordinate to men in both family and public life.
Is There Gender Equality in South Africa?
In South Africa, gender equality is protected and promoted by the Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act of 2000, Employment Equity Act of 1998, and Domestic Violence Act of 1998, among several others. Gender equality is also included in South Africa's Constitution. While these efforts have helped promote and support gender equality in South Africa, there are still a handful of challenges that hinder gender equality in the country including high levels of GBV, harmful traditional practices, and discrepancies in gender representation in top management in both private and public spheres.
How Can Gender Equality in Africa Be Improved?
There have been several efforts in promoting gender equality in different countries across Africa, focused on empowering girls to set and achieve goals for their future and overcome social and economic barriers which constrain their ability to be successful in school, providing gender-based violence services and improved referral systems, and promoting women's participation in political parties and electoral processes. Other programs and efforts have helped launch activities of economic growth and created an enabling environment where women can pursue productive livelihoods, find employment, develop skills, and access various business services and resources. As an intern in our projects, you will be working in different initiatives related to education, health, safety, self-confidence, early pregnancy, and income generation. You will have the opportunity to raise awareness on gender inequality, provide support in local communities to strengthen families, mitigate gender-based violence, support economic development, help inspire youth to learn key skills for employment, enhance education, and promote women's empowerment.
Why is There Gender Inequality in Africa?
There are many theories about the cause of gender inequality in Africa. Many scholars suggest that gender inequality in Africa began with colonialism and slavery. Over time, these have had an effect on the political, educational, and economic inequalities between men and women in Africa. More recently, religious and traditional practices and the economic climates that enable men to provide for their families have caused women to believe that they do not have equal competencies in employment or politics, or that they have to conform to stereotypes. In 2018, the Global Gender Gap Index reported that it would take 135 years to close the gender gap in Africa and nearly 153 years to close the gap in North Africa.
Livingstone is known as “Africa’s Adventure Capital” because there is so much to see and do. Take advantage of your proximity to the great and mighty Victoria Falls, as well as the other adventures the Zambezi has to offer. Zambezi boat cruises, white water rafting, and canoe trips are all ways in which you can encounter these great waters. You can also ride quad bike trails, swim in “Devil’s Pool” (seasonal) or view the breath-taking scenery from the air in a microlight or helicopter. For the adrenaline junkies, why not try the famous bungee jump or gorge swing?
Livingstone, Zambia is safari country. Here, you can spot a whole lot of wildlife, with elephants being particularly prevalent along the river banks. do rhino bushwalks or even take a boat safari to spot elephants off the Zambezi River. Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park offers a convenient safari where you can spot elephant, zebra and more, against beautiful backdrops of the Zambezi River. The real highlight of the park is the re-introduced white rhino, which you can track on foot in a thrilling wildlife encounter! A water safari is also a fantastic way to see wildlife grazing on the river banks – expect elephants, hippos and crocodiles. Across the border in Botswana is Chobe National Park, famed for its huge elephant population (currently estimated at over 120,000!). An overnight safari to this National Park is a popular weekend activity that many past volunteers have enjoyed.
Livingstone has a rich culture and you can embark on a walking or cycling village tour to a local African village, giving you further insight into the traditional way of life. You can also shop at some of the many markets and stock up on locally hand-made goods for your loved ones back home or find interesting local foods to try.
Once you have submitted your application, a Destination Specialist will be in-touch to discuss the project with you.