It was the most amazing experience of my life. Fell in love with the bush and Africa. I’ve learned here a lot and become one with nature. It is really fun living with a group so diverse and surrounded by all the animals. I will defenitely come back!
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I had been thinking about doing such project for a long time, I am really glad that I picked Askari. I stayed there for 6 weeks and time flew by so fast, I really wish I had stayed longer. Katie and Ed are awesome people, they have so much knowledge but they can also be really fun. The volunteer's house is in the middle of the bush, during your free time there are quite a few things to do in the garden such as having a dip in the pool, playing volleyball, having a nap in the hammock or even admiring the view on the sable station. An electric fence surrounds the house so it is safe to go about your business outside.
A special bond was created with the other volunteers, even after 1 month we still speak to each other everyday and we have planned to meet up in the next few months.
Overall I would definitely recommend Askari, it is a life changing experience. If you hesitate don't, you won't regret it!
This has been something I've wanted to do for years now and I am so grateful I've had the opportunity to do it with Askari. It took me a while to find these guys on the internet but i'm so glad I took the time to find an organisation that really does care about wildlife and conservation, unlike a lot of other programmes out there (watch 'Blood Lions'). Katie and Ed and all the other staff at the reserve are lovely and extremely passionate about what they do which is really satisfying to see, they have taught me so much in the space of 4 weeks. The volunteer house is in the heart of the bush but it is extremely safe and has wonderful amenities; there is a pool where you can cool off from the midday sun, a volleyball court, large garden-big enough for a kick around, braii area and a couple of hidden chill spots if you want to take a minute alone and soak up your surroundings. Everyone helps out with the cooking and the dishes along with other duties which helps create a communal atmosphere among the volunteers and essentially brings you all closer together!
During my time at Askari we were lucky enough to get involved with the reserves anti-poaching team and also a cheetah introduction project along with many other exciting things! Our group were also lucky enough to see the big 5 along with an abundance of other wildlife, be prepared for some spotting though, you have to be vigilant..this is the wild bush not a zoo! A trip into town is scheduled once a week in order to get the weeks groceries and personal supplies for the weekend, which are at your own leisure, that being whether you hire a car and explore the surrounding area or have some fun and drinks at the house with the group, the choice is yours.
Definitely be prepared for some creepy crawlies and to get your hands dirty, but also to make lasting memories and new friendships! Overall I had an amazing time and would definitely recommend Askari to other keen conservationists or just those who want to experience the african bush. Thank you!
I regularly do volunteer projects overseas, with a focus on wildlife/conservation.
This project was the best I’ve done, and I’ve worked in Tonga, Indonesia, China, Thailand and this was my 4th trip to Africa. The framework was well set-up, the facilities way better than I’ve experienced before and it was ethically focused and not on income generated from the volunteers. I felt very appreciated, respected and included. The coordinators were outstanding and that can make or break it in my view. Their passion was contagious! Great organisation and a good blend of activities. I learned heaps! 10 out of 10! Makes it hard to consider doing anything else really! Lots of great sightings of wildlife, absolutely outstanding.
"To put this wonderful experience into words is nearly impossible but I will try. Firstly Ed and Katie are 2 of the nicest people you could wish to meet. Their knowledge is amazing and enthusiasm to pass it on makes you want to try and use this knowledge to better yourself. The physical activities were very enjoyable and made you feel like you were really contributing something positive to the projects. We arrived as individuals and 4 weeks later leave as a very close knit team having experienced so much together. Anybody thinking of coming here, stop thinking and book your trip. I promise you will not regret it for a second and the experience will stay with you forever. Askari is a priceless diamond in the South African crown and must stay that way. Thank you so much for everything. "
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