Volunteer with Children in Africa
Childcare volunteering is a life-changing opportunity to support the positive development of children in African communities. Here’s everything you need to know before starting your adventure with us!
What can volunteers expect from our childcare projects?
Meaningful volunteer opportunities
When you join our childcare volunteer projects, you can expect an incredible volunteer experience that genuinely transforms the lives of you, the children you work with, and the community you are working in!
As a childcare volunteer, you’ll spend your days working with local staff in childcare centres that aim to support young children’s positive development. Volunteering with children of unique ages and learning styles, you’ll engage in creative activities that build skills across a wide range of developmental areas, including literacy, motor skill, and social interaction! By engaging in positive interactions with kids from challenging circumstances and troubled backgrounds, volunteers can create positive long-term impacts on struggling a youth’s developmental journey and inspire them to follow their dreams.
Immersive African travel adventures
Childcare volunteering is an incredibly immersive experience, taking volunteers into the heart of incredible African communities. Here, life-changing cultural exchanges and opportunities to build meaningful relationships with locals lie around every corner. Working with and learning from locals each day, you’ll learn from their beautiful and inspiring ways of life.
Did we mention it will be an action-packed adventure? With iconic African landmarks like Mount Kilimanjaro and Table Mountain on your doorstep, there is no shortage of incredible volunteer opportunities to explore Africa in between project work. Living in shared accommodations with African Impact volunteers and interns, the possibilities for adventures with fellow travellers are endless. Embark on the Marangu Cultural Tour in Tanzania, surf in Cape Town, or explore the Maasai Mara Game Reserve in Kenya. Volunteering with us is truly the impact-driven adventure of a lifetime!
How do you volunteer in childcare abroad?
If you are eager to start your volunteer journey in childcare, joining an African Impact program is an incredible place to begin! Our childcare volunteer programs are developed with local community members and stakeholders, ensuring every project creates sustainable and measurable impacts that put the community’s goals first. Here are a few of the tasks volunteers can look forward to working on during our childcare programs.
Early Child Development
Volunteers on our childcare programs regularly support local staff in various early childhood development settings, from preschools to foster care homes. Working with young children from underprivileged backgrounds, volunteers will lead engaging learning activities with kids in groups and one-on-one environments! By focusing on building skills in developmental areas like reading, writing, basic math, motor abilities, and social play, volunteers help support youth’s positive development at a young age, building the essential skills needed to thrive in primary school and beyond.
Supporting Local Teachers
Schools in Africa are often vastly understaffed and underfunded. As a result, many children in schools across Sub-Saharan Africa – at no fault of the teachers who work in these regions – are often neglected the personal attention they need to grasp fundamental concepts. On our childcare programs, volunteers can support local teachers by providing this necessary one-on-one attention in classrooms. Identifying children who may need help, volunteers assist struggling kids by going through class lessons at a slower pace, ensuring they develop a solid understanding of key concepts. This work can open up opportunities for kids to get excited about learning and positively transform their educational journey!
After School Care
After-school programs provide safe and engaging environments where children can learn and grow once school has ended for the day. With many children’s parents still working or not present in their lives, these programs are often essential for protecting kids from dangerous after-school activities like substance abuse.
Volunteer opportunities here are highly varied and could include providing homework support, making crafts or playing cooperative games. Creating opportunities for kids to engage in healthy relationships and safe play, working in after-school care is an incredible way to support children’s positive development!
Is childcare volunteering right for me?
Absolutely! If you are passionate about working with children and eager to contribute to sustainable development goals in a local community, our childcare volunteer opportunities are undoubtedly for you!
Intensive Pre-Project Training
Before starting your volunteer adventure with us, you’ll go through an intensive training program with fellow volunteers to prepare you for your childcare community placements. We’ll go through our Child Protection Policy in-depth during this training program, outlining strict guidelines all volunteers must adhere to while volunteering with children during their project. Reviewing these policies, we’ll discuss essential guidelines for safe child interactions and ways in which volunteers can be engaging and inspiring mentors for youth at their projects.
Criminal Records Check and Child Care Policies
Additionally, before arriving in Africa for their placements, we require all volunteers to submit criminal records checks. This policy is firm and deeply ingrained in our Child Protection Policy, which aims to protect the well-being and safety of all children we work with during these projects. You can learn more about our Child Protection Policy by scrolling to the bottom of this page or clicking the following link.
What will I gain from volunteering with children overseas?
Making an impact
Volunteering with children is a life-changing experience. Working with children from underprivileged backgrounds, volunteers can support the positive development of kids in powerful ways. Leaving each day at your volunteer project knowing you’ve made an impact in the lives of children is one of the greatest gifts to gain through this incredible experience.
The benefits of volunteering go far beyond project work, however! Immersed in a local African community throughout your placement, you’ll have opportunities to live with locals, where life-changing cultural exchanges occur. These exchanges are a transformative experience for both volunteers and local communities alike. Building meaningful relationships with locals and authentically learning about a new culture, you’ll walk away from your volunteer project more open-minded, inclusive, and empathetic.
Why does volunteering with children matter?
Why childcare volunteering matters in Africa
Sub-Saharan Africa has the most significant rate of extreme child poverty globally, with just under 50% of all children living in extreme poverty. As such, many young children face a multitude of intense challenges and limited opportunities growing up.
Childcare programs support positive development in young children, improving their chances of succeeding in school, and in turn, receiving a quality education that can help lift themselves and their community out of the cycle of intense poverty. Creating a safe and engaging environment where youth can learn and grow, these programs can be transformative to young children’s academic and personal developmental journey.
By working in communities struggling with developmental issues and collaborating closely with the African Impact Foundation, we aim to empower children in Sub-Saharan Africa to receive the education, care and support they need to pursue their dreams. Passionate volunteers are integral to helping us achieve this mission. As a childcare volunteer, you’ll make tangible, long-term positive impacts on the lives of young children, directly supporting kids in our childcare programs. Your work on these projects matters deeply to the positive development of communities and truly has the power to transform lives!
How are our childcare projects different?
Our Childcare Policies
At African Impact, we firmly believe it is our responsibility to safeguard children’s well-being across Africa. We’ve developed a strict set of guidelines, including our stance on orphanage volunteering and our Child Protection Policy, which outlines how we hold ourselves accountable to this responsibility in clear language.
Child Protection Policy
Developed with the African Impact Foundation and non-profit organization, Keeping Children Safe, our Child Protection Policy is a comprehensive document that describes the firm policies all African Impact staff, volunteers, and partners must adhere to when working with children. Within this document are strict requirements that volunteers must follow before, during and after their projects, including completing a criminal records check, sustaining safe interactions with children, and abstaining from violating children’s privacy through pictures, videos and other media.
Our stance on orphanage volunteering
In addition to our Child Protection Policy, African Impact has developed a firm stance on orphanage volunteering. Orphanages are a deeply nuanced issue in Africa, with many of these institutions devastatingly exploiting children for economic gain. As a volunteer organization, we do not work with orphanages and have no affiliation with this type of institution.
However, there are still 52 million orphaned children in Africa who are not receiving the education, support or permanent families they need. At African Impact, our mission is to positively improve children’s lives in local communities in positive, secure and long-term ways. Understanding this issue’s complexities, we continue to work with orphaned children in reputable child and foster care settings, ONLY if these institutions’ long-term aim is to place children in safe and permanent family settings.
This description of our stance on orphanage volunteering is brief and barely scratches the surface of our response to this complex issue. You can learn more about our position on Orphanage Volunteering by clicking here.
Being a responsible traveller
When researching credible and responsible volunteer organizations, it’s essential to clearly understand how they put the local community’s safety and needs first. If you are considering volunteering with children, please take the time to learn about what policies the organization has put in place to protect local children and communities’ privacy and safety.
Responsible volunteering is at the heart of what we do and something we do not take lightly. If you have any questions regarding our stance on Responsible Volunteering or our Childcare Policies, please contact us. We would love to discuss any questions you may have!