With countless volunteer programs to choose from, it can be a challenge to find something really unique — a program that gives you the opportunity to make a real and vital impact in lesser frequented areas, while also gaining life experience and memories that are truly out of the ordinary. African Impact has compiled a list of four unique volunteering opportunities that offer something above and beyond the volunteering norm:
Rural Zululand is an amazing part of South Africa that desperately needs help to combat poor medical care and the scourge of HIV/AIDS. Within this program, you’ll support home-based care programs, assist in clinics, and help organize health awareness workshops, all within the impressive setting of a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This project is suitable for people with all levels of medical skills, as your work will be adapted according to your experience. Surrounded by wildlife (hippos have been known to wander past the volunteer base after dark!) you will be minutes from world-class beaches, and one of the best SCUBA diving sites in the world (Sondwana Bay); frequented by whale sharks, dolphins, humpback whales and a huge array of marine mega fauna.
Zambia is an amazing country with friendly people and some of Southern Africa’s last untouched wilderness areas. This project offers much-needed teaching assistance at under-staffed Zambian schools and helps to improve the learning experience for children who are falling behind. This is an opportunity to give individual attention to children who really need it, to assist teachers who deal with a lack of resources, and to gain some valuable teaching experience. On top of this, you’ll get to know and assist the Livingstone community through a variety of building, farming and extra-curricular school volunteer projects. Based right next to the magnificent Victoria Falls, this project is guaranteed to leave you with memories to last a lifetime!
The Greater Kruger area is one of the most famous wildlife destinations in Africa. Volunteers will work alongside professional wildlife photographers to improve their photography skills whilst making a vital contribution to wildlife research with expert conservationists and zoologists. Volunteers’ photographs will contribute to ID kits used by reserve managers and scientists to monitor wildlife populations and will be used in decision-making processes for the park’s future developments. Volunteers also have the opportunity to explore the nearby Blyde River Canyon, cross the border into Mozambique or Botswana or experience more of beautiful South Africa.
Situated in the heart of East Africa’s world-renowned Masai Mara, this must be one of the world’s most spectacular volunteer destinations! As a volunteer you will head out on research vehicles twice daily, tracking elusive big cats and other large predators. This helps the reserve to monitor the effect of increasing human settlement on the wildlife populations with a view to conservation planning and species protection. The site is also on the route of the Great Wildebeest Migration; one of the greatest wildlife spectacles on earth. Within easy reach are Kenya’s idyllic coastline and the Tanzanian paradise island of Zanzibar. Play your part in conserving endangered species in one of the most enchanting parts of the African wilderness.