GoEco - Top Volunteer Organization of 2015
GoEco - Top Volunteer Organization of 2015 Programs
This project takes place in beautiful Cape Town, South Africa, the oldest city in the country. From the iconic Table Mountain to the magnificent Cape beaches, this city
GoEco - Top Volunteer Organization of 2015 Reviews
Nothing short of Spectacular
Submitted by Alisa DiMaggio - Westchester Community College | December 19, 2016
My experience volunteering in South Africa was amazing in every aspect. I spent a total of 4 weeks there and it honestly was not long enough. I could have spent months in Cape Town and never would have gotten the slightest bit bored.
I stayed at SaltyCrax backpackers which was an awesome hostel with great staff. Everyone was so welcoming and nice. I immediately became part of the SaltyCrax family. Dinner every night was amazing (especially the Braai YUM). The rooms were really clean and there was a good hang out space in our house as well as outside, there was a bonfire, a lawn, and the bar is super cozy and a great place to hang out with the fellow volunteers and backpackers at night. Its a five minute walk from the beach, really good restaurants, the bus station, mall and local convenience store. Couldn't have asked for a better place to stay.
The project was amazing. All of the volunteers were a little nervous about what to expect walking into school the first day. We were in a really poor area and it was really sad to learn about the conditions that most of the kids were living in. The second we stepped in, all of the kids were waiting for us and were yelling, "TEACHER, TEACHER, TEACHER!!!" They were so cute and immediately ran up to us and started climbing all over us, giving us lots of hugs and kisses and just so happy to have attention and love. The littlest things make them so happy. Teaching them was a little overwhelming at first but they were an absolute pleasure and it brought tears to my eyes watching them learn and grow. You have the opportunity to create your own lessons and adjust them according to how you see fit based on the children's ability. Aside from teaching them, I had so much fun going outside with them during playtime and helping them swing from the monkey bars or kicking a ball around with them or just playing tag. They were such a pleasure and leaving them was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do but I would not trade that experience for the world.
Aside from the volunteering aspect, I had an amazing time in the city of Cape Town. You will NEVER run out of things to do there. On my free time I hiked Lions Head and Table Mountain, went to see the sunset on Signal Hill, learned to surf, went to museums and tours around the city, went to the beach, did a Cape Point tour where we saw lots of penguins, did a weekend trip where we visited the Cango Caves, walked with elephants, went kayaking in Wilderness National Park, jumped off the highest bungee bride in the world and went on a Safari. I also did the wine tour, visited Robben Island and shark cage dived. Aside from all the activities I did, there were SO many more that are available to you and it's super easy to book them through SaltyCrax.
I HIGHLY recommend this program. I booked through GoEco and they made the process super easy and they were very helpful with my many questions and concerns. Thank you GoEco for helping me make the best decision and for giving me the most amazing experience of my life. Nothing could ever compare to this trip.
Submitted by Olympe Larrazet Llop - Paris France | November 16, 2016
The sea turtle conservation project was my last project after 5 weeks in Costa Rica. When I first arrived here, I was really well welcomed by all the volunteers and the staff. I immediately felt really comfortable in this place and I could already know that I was about to have a great time here.
Every day, we knew at what time we were supposed to work in the hatchery for 6 hours and it was located in front of the most beautiful beach ever. I really felt like my presence had a meaning there and that my work was useful. We also had to patrol by night to find new eggs and I felt really sad when I saw that people stole the eggs on the beach. This project really need more volunteers to do a better job because we were not enough!
The lifestyle there was really cool, we were free to do whatever we wanted and it was easy to travel because we had buses passing every day. I could go to the park Marino Ballena, to Dominical ... There, "Pura Vida" really had a meaning !
I felt really lucky to work in that project and I learned a lot about other aspect of life since it was so different than my lifestyle in Paris. I met people passionate with the sea turtle conservation, working to save them since 18 years. If I could come back tomorrow I would pack immediately ... I could not ask for more during my 2 weeks there!
Program: Costa Rica - Sea Turtle Conservation
La Marina and Paraiso Carlisa
Submitted by Olympe Larrazet Llop - Paris France | November 16, 2016
I stayed 2 months in Costa Rica with 6 weeks of volunteer work. My first month was in 2 projects for animal rescue and conservation and I was really lucky because these 2 projects were amazing.
In the first one, I had the chance to meet a lot of people from all over the world and we had a really good time during the day at work. We lived together in a family house close to the project and the family allowed us to leave for amazing week end around the country at the end of the week. The team at work and our family were all really nice to us and did everything so that we could feel like home.
In my second project, it was really different because I was the only volunteer here for the first days but it was perfect. I fell in love with all the animals and I loved working there, feeding the animals, hanging with them during all day, listening to the parrots talking and laughing ... The team there was so nice to me and this project was a little paradise.
When you do something so different than your actual life, you can have hard moment because you are not use to take your time and to just enjoy the present. I live in Paris and I love my life but it is so different than my adventure in Costa Rica. I have learned to take more time to do things, to focus on one thing at the time and to stop wanted to rush everything. It was another way of living and I am trying to keep this good habit. I realized a lot of my dreams there, Costa Rica is an amazing country and the projects proposed by Go Eco helped me to discover it from another side than just travel in a country. I met a lot of local people and this was the best way to know the country and discover secrets places ! I can't wait to do it again.
Thank you Go Eco, it was perfect from the beginning to the end.
Volunteering in Cape Town
Submitted by Jonathan Koch - Gymnasium Neufeld | November 06, 2016
My stay in Cape Town was very inspiring and definitely something I would recommend. I worked in a school located in the Dunoon Township just a couple of minutes of driving from where we stayed. Even though the facilities of my school were quite impressive and better than I had expected, there was unfortunately not a single teacher to take care of the children. What that meant was that we, the volunteers, were the ones responsible for all the teaching. What sounds intimidating at first actually was really rewarding as I really felt like making a difference and helping the community by providing those children with some new knowledge.
Furthermore, I was once again surprised by how many great people you meet when traveling. No matter if staff or volunteer, every one seemed to be open and nice. I also felt quite safe all throughout my stay, even though South Africa is certainly different from Europe when it comes to that.
All in all, this was definitely not my last volunteering stay and I would like to do it again with goEco when the time comes.
Submitted by Tasha - Canada | November 03, 2016
I have always wanted to work with pandas, I'm so glad I got to have this experience! We started with a couplets exploring Chengdu, including visiting the panda research centre there before heading to our base. Every day we started with cleaning a panda enclosure then coming back for three feedings a day. We got to feed our panda through the enclosure bars, so up close and personal!
Lots if free time to watch pandas, read, play cards etc. Also opportunities to learn Chinese and calligraphy, play mah Jong watch movies and more in the evenings. Food was delicious and rooms were nice, shared with another volunteer. Highly recommend this program, I miss the pandas already!
Program: China - Giant Panda Center