Volunteer Abroad in Cape Town

Back to Programs

A Guide to Volunteering Abroad in Cape Town

Named the best place in the world to visit by the New York Times in 2014, this South African gem promises to deliver nothing short of a life changing volunteer abroad experience. Referred to fondly as the Mother City, Cape Town, South Africa offers more than just breathtaking views of Table Mountain. Aside from many other natural wonders, Cape Town is an incredibly multicultural city, offering up a myriad of cultural delights. Those who choose to volunteer in Cape Town will find placements in nearly every field and numerous opportunities to positively impact communities for years to come.

Projects & Placements

The options for volunteering in Cape Town are plentiful, ranging from wildlife conservation and youth development, to business and human rights advocacy.

Working with children is common and can include projects such as: teaching English, sport coaching, and orphan care.

Building & Development. Building schools, initiating microfinance projects, and generally contributing to economic development of the city are all ways individuals can make a lasting impact through volunteering and participating in community work in Cape Town.

Health Care & Nutrition Education. International volunteers with a background in healthcare or nutrition have the ability to share a very valuable resource with locals, education in disease prevention, hygiene, healthy eating, medical techniques, and more. Nutrition and health care volunteer placements in Cape Town are highly needed and available.

Wildlife & Conservation. Equally rewarding volunteer work in Cape Town entails working with animals or contributing to conservation efforts, in which there is no shortage of opportunities.

Program Basics. Volunteer opportunities in Cape Town can vary in length from two weeks to six months, or can even be customizable. Program highlights often include cultural activities, homestays or communal housing, and free time, where volunteers can partake in the bountiful opportunities to explore South Africa.

Life in Cape Town

Activities in and around Cape Town make life in the Mother City exciting and awe-inspiring. From hiking to the top of Table Mountain, to exploring the Capeland wineries and many beaches, Cape Town has become a mecca for tourism, providing endless options for sightseeing, adrenaline rushes, and culinary masterpieces.

The currency in Cape Town is the rand (R), which is divided into 100 cents (¢), and prices for food and drink are usually considered quite reasonable for volunteers. Credit cards are widely accepted, and ATMs are available. However, travelers are warned to watch out for ATM scams by avoiding non-guarded or after-hours machines and refusing any offers for help completing a transaction.

While volunteering in Cape Town, volunteers will find that the city’s diversity requires individuals to be prepared for a variety of situations. Many program providers tell volunteers to remain open-minded, something that is not uncommon for traveling anywhere in the world; but due to South Africa’s troubled history, and status as a developing country, it is even more important to be flexible and understanding of the culture and realities as a volunteer in Cape Town.

Accommodation & Visas

Most volunteer programs in Cape Town assist volunteers in obtaining a visa and arranging housing. Tourist visas are relatively easy to get, however, volunteers should always research visa regulations as they are subject to change. The majority of volunteer placements in Cape Town offer prescreened home stays or dormitory housing options, which will no matter what be comfortable and clean accommodations.

GoAbroad Insider Tips

Volunteering in Cape Town provides a unique chance to contribute to the transformation of a once unstable city into a city of hope and possibility. While there are still many challenges to overcome, hence the need for dedicated and motivated volunteers, Cape Town’s relaxed atmosphere and booming economy appear to be the light at the end of a dark tunnel.

As a volunteer in Cape Town, individuals will be able to learn how to work in one of the most multicultural cities in the world and communicate with people from all walks of life, skills that are coveted by many employers and international careers. The multicultural, diverse nature of the city provides a slightly more comfortable transition into volunteer work in South Africa for first-time volunteers too.

Volunteering abroad in Cape Town offers volunteers a plethora of opportunities to make a difference, providing benefits for individuals interested in almost every field.

Read our comprehensive guide on volunteering abroad in South Africa.

Read More

A Guide To
Volunteering Abroad in Cape Town

READ ARTICLE

 Find Volunteer Programs in Cape Town Now

Save

This listing has been saved 103 times

Volunteer in Cape Town with Connect-123!

Volunteer in Cape Town with Connect-123 and have the opportunity to explore South Africa! Volunteer projects are available in many different areas, including Community Development, Education and Environmental Protection. Program costs cover in-country orientation, 24/7 staff support, and arrangements for local accommodation. Programs are available to participants from all over the world.

Save

This listing has been saved 673 times

Affordable Volunteering in South Africa: From USD250

The International Volunteer HQ provides meaningful volunteer placements to prospective participants from around the world. Have the chance to live in Cape Town, South Africa for a maximum of six months while helping local communities. This program offers volunteer placements in Sports, Childcare, and Youth Development.

Save

This listing has been saved 110 times

Extreme Volunteering in South Africa: GoEco

Choose from a wide range of volunteering programs offered by GoEco. They provide programs in Orphan Care, Wildlife Photography, Community Aid, and many other areas. A variety of exciting outdoor activities await volunteers in one of the most sought after adventure destinations in the world.

Save

This listing has been saved 248 times

Lend a hand in South Africa with Love Volunteers

Bring valuable services to the South African people through various volunteer opportunities offered by Love Volunteers in Africa. Help protect the environment and wildlife, or take initiative by participating in programs related to sports and community development. Volunteers must be at least 21 years old to be eligible.

Save

This listing has been saved 28 times

Global Vision International

Live in an attractive coastal village while exploring Cape Town's wine lands, Robben Island, and wildlife with GVI in Africa. Volunteer opportunities include healthcare, social enterprise, and arts and childcare among many others. Participants can also work educating children at a township school or conducting hygiene workshops in local communities. The program requires individuals to be 18 yea...

Save

This listing has been saved 50 times

Volunteer in South Africa with Projects Abroad

Take part in a meaningful volunteer experience in the coastal country of South Africa through Projects Abroad. Worldwide volunteers can explore the vibrant culture and help locals work to improve their community. This program offers Childcare, Eco-Tourism, and Conservation placements.

Save

This listing has been saved 94 times

Volunteer Work in South Africa with African Impact

Have a meaningful volunteer experience in Cape Town with African Impact. Volunteers can get involved in a wide range of programs including Child Care, Sports Coaching, and Veterinary Assistance. African Impact is a leader in providing volunteer tourism and offers well-structured, safe, and fun placements. We provide volunteers with a deep understanding of the impact of their contributions on lo...

Save

This listing has been saved 15 times

Volunteer and Travel in South Africa with Kaya

Join Kaya Responsible Travel and use your knowledge for the improvement of an African community by partaking in various volunteer opportunities. Undergo personal growth by helping those who are in need through healthcare, community development, and teaching. Sports coaching or agricultural projects are also available in the bustling city of Cape Town. To be eligible, individuals must be 17 year...

Save

This listing has been saved 3 times

NGO Internships in Cape Town, South Africa

Intern with an NGO in Cape Town, South Africa to have the fulfilling experience of a lifetime in a culturally diverse and naturally beautiful setting. There are thousands of NGOs who are involved in Cape Town and a huge field of internship placements available to interested applicants. Popular fields include working with literacy campaigns, HIV/AIDS clinics, orphanages, community centers, and m...

Save

This listing has been saved 14 times

South Africa: Wildlife Animal Conservation

Sign up for our Wildlife Volunteer Program, which gives you a truly exciting, lifetime experience! You will have the opportunity to participate in animal identification and tracking through game drives, as well as other fun activities. Your tasks will include (but are not limited to) the following: - Managing and maintaining the wildlife reserve - Helping with beach clean-ups - Assisting...

Save

This listing has been saved 10 times

White Shark Research Project

Despite the high profile media attention the Great White Shark (Carcharodon carcharias) receives, relatively little is known about its biology and the IUCN lists it as Vulnerable. While the total population is unknown, they are frequently found around the South African coast. One could say that the Great White Shark has never really received very good press. Often referred to as a 'man-eater', ...

Save

This listing has been saved 11 times

Plan My Gap Year

Become part of a needs-driven initiative in an Asian or African country through PMGY. Sign up for a childcare volunteer project in any of these countries: Cambodia, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Morocco, Nepal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, and Vietnam. Enjoy the simple rewards, such as a child’s big smile and heartfelt gratitude, after helping and bringing joy to kids. Experience...

Save

This listing has been saved 3 times

ISA Service-Learning in Cape Town, South Africa

Affectionately known as the Mother City, Cape Town was founded in 1652 and is South Africa's oldest city. Opportunities to serve year-round in Cape Town, South Africa, include daycares for lower-income families, education centers for disadvantaged learners, and human rights organizations. ISA’s service-learning curriculum provides you with a guided framework to examine your experiences in gre...

Save

This listing has been saved 1 time

Volunteer with Sharks in South Africa

The great white shark- the notorious villain of the sea- is often the world’s favourite misunderstood animal. Join this programme to spend your time monitoring these magnificent creatures and do your bit to help their conservation. Cage diving with sharks is an amazing experience. It gives you the opportunity to see sharks in their natural habitat. They are graceful and powerful animals, but...

Save

This listing has been saved 6 times

South Africa Adventure

Combine wildlife and community volunteering with culture and adventure in the Rainbow nation, South Africa, with Gapforce! Your adventure starts with an action-packed week introducing you and other volunteers to the customs and culture of South Africa. Next, you will volunteer with the Big Five on a wildlife conservation project before heading along South Africa's infamous Garden Route to Ca...