CHRISTMAS VOLUNTEERING IN LIVINGSTONE
Want to give back this holiday season? Although Christmas should be a time of family and joy, for many people it is a time of sorrow and despair as they yearn for lost loved ones or struggle with financial burdens. Giving your time by volunteering is one of the best ways to get into the spirit of the holiday, spread festive cheer and kindness, and uplift communities.
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
SPECIAL CHRISTMAS ACTIVITIES
Christmas on this project is a truly unique and meaningful experience. You will spend Christmas at Maramba Old People’s Home where you will have a party with games, carols, and cards made by the children from Holiday Club. There will be Christmas decoration and card making for the kid's houses and Old People’s Home and you will get to spread the festive cheer by delivering gifts to the communities. There will also be a delicious Christmas Lunch at one of the best locations in Livingstone (cost is about USD 50.00).
Volunteers assist in running a Reading Club to support the development of literacy and reading skills among Livingstone’s youth, as well as an Adult Literary Club to help improve literacy rates among adult members of the community and subsequently improve their chances of gaining employment. If you are artistically inclined, you will also assist at Art Club to plan artistic and creative activities including masks, finger painting, Christmas crafts, and paper mâché.
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 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 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.