Africa

Askari WCP

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!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Mar 22, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Projects Abroad

I volunteered with Projects Abroad in 2015 in Tanzania, Africa. I had been working full time as a midwife and decided I wanted to work abroad to really appreciate how different things were. I spend a lot of time researching volunteering companies and I am so glad I did because I found Projects Abroad. From the minute, I sent off my first email I felt supported and informed. I was set up with a personalised web page that outlined everything I would need to know and get ready before I set off on the trip of a lifetime.

After a long journey from across the other side of the world I was relieved to have a local staff member pick me up from the airport and transfer me to my host family. My host family treated me as one of their own. I stayed with another volunteer who was able to show me around and introduce me to some other volunteers. My accommodation was different but certainly comfortable and all my food and water were provided.

A local staff member picked me up the following day and took me to my workplace and introduced me to the local staff. Each day I learnt new skills and was able to rotate through the antenatal and postnatal wards, attend some surgeries, take a patient in an ambulance and assist women to birth their babies. My hours were flexible and the staff were friendly and appreciative.

I spent the afternoons with the other volunteers. We went to the local markets, tried out local dishes in the cafes, went hiking, tried some local dance classes and attend language classes. There were plenty of opportunities to travel on the weekends and this is easily organised within the country once you arrive. I met some of the most amazing friends and we were always there to support each other. Projects Aboard organised a Thursday night social night and it was great to catch up and share stories and plan our weekend safaris. Travelling abroad teaches you patience, resilience, confidence and problem solving. You appreciate what you have and it’s very rewarding to help those less fortunate. We have a lot to give but they also have a lot to teach us!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Mar 2, 2017
Overall:
1
Support:
1
Value:
1

Global Leadership Adventures (GLA)

I had the time of my life volunteering in the 2 week Ghana children for Africa program. This hands on program and direct work teaching children really indulged me into the Krobo culture mentally and physically. This program was also very safe and I highly recommend it to any other teens in high school whom want a unique experience away from home. I made friends there that I will hold close to my heart forever and share the common interest of service work. I learned the true value of thankfulness of all I have and came home appreciating my teachers and living conditions so much more. Thank you GLA.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Jan 5, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Sankalp Volunteer Society India

I , Rukhsana Jeewa from South Africa, completed 1 week Street Kids Project in Jaipur India. It was an experience that I was always searching for . Purposeful ..........
It was my first travel out of my country on my own...... very nervous of what I would experience.
But to my surprise it was very safe and easy .
All transit to Jaipur was well arranged , from arrival to departure. Travel to and from school was on time . Tours as well in Jaipur and Agra .
My lodge was also comfortable and all meals well prepared, very tasty.
1 week is very short , every day at the school was a new day for me , enjoyable and purposeful . Kids are adorable , well mannered and respectful.
Punnima , very supportive at home and always seeing to my needs. Pranay and Amita irrespective of their lovely new baby at home, they stayed in closed contact during my stay, maintaining that there is no shortfall .
Enviroment , Lodge and school very safe .
I would definitely return for a longer visit , Keep up the excellent and noble work done to outreach for development .

After this visit a relationship has been formed especially with the kids at school.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Nov 9, 2016
Overall:
6
Support:
8
Value:
9

African Impact

Upon arriving in Zambia, I was immediately thrusted into the best exposure and training in the medical field I had ever encountered as an American pre-medical student. I never expected to have opportunities to weigh babies, assist nurses with taking vitals and preparing vaccines, clean wounds from HIV fungal infections and leprosy, and even shadow doctors in a different country on the other side of the globe.
If you are searching for a way to gain exposure to healthcare, see clinical cases in real life, and find the confidence within that you can succeed as a doctor, a nurse, a physical therapist, etc., this program is for you!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa, Zambia
Posted: Nov 6, 2016
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Original Volunteers

My time with Original Volunteers in Ghana was easily the best few weeks of my life, everything ran smoothly, I met some wonderful people both locals and other volunteers and every day was a new adventure.

First of all I was a little nervous about walking out of the airport into a strange place not really knowing what to expect, but straight away I saw a guy with a big Original Volunteers sign and my name written with it, so I walked over and he explained in good English who he was, showed me his ID and off we went onto a 3 or 4 hour journey into the Hills of Kwahu. It was late when I arrived and the other volunteers were sleeping so after a very warm welcome from 3 more staff members we called it a night. In the morning the other new volunteers and I were given a proper welcome, all the information we need was given and they answered all our questions, we spent the rest of the day getting shown around the local area, gathering supplies, mainly drinking water and snacks.

The next day is when the volunteering began, the days usually begin with a meeting where we all discuss what we will be doing and what we want to achieve. We had a good mix of teachers and builders so we split into our groups and headed off to work. We spent the first couple of weeks building a new class room for a small community in which the school was falling to pieces. As a volunteer builder you don’t need to bring anything special or have any special skills but it is hard work.

I did some teaching at a school called Sunrise where I met so many lovely children and teachers, it was an amazing experience. I had no teaching experience and no idea what to expect. The children have a curriculum but there’s no need to stick to it, the subjects are up to you within reason of course. I taught lessons on planets, simple maths and some simple English lessons. If you plan on teaching for your whole trip I’d recommend thinking of some lesson plans before hand and take any equipment you might need. Most of the schools have little or no equipment so taking stationary is a good idea.

Usually weekends are free time so we travelled to various places around the country, The first place we went was Mole National Park, it was amazing, we stayed in a hotel in the middle of the park surrounded by all kinds of animals, we saw elephants every day and every kind of monkey imaginable, the only crime I saw in Ghana was a Baboon stealing my Hobnobs.
There is also a nice pool and well stocked bar, friendly staff and quite nice rooms.

My other favourite place is Kokrobite, a small beach front community with a few hotels and a very nice atmosphere, this is the place to come to unwind, there Is a western owned hotel called Big Millies, they organise beach parties with bars, live music, Bon Fires and nice food.

Another great place to visit is Cape Coast, we spent two days there and visited the old Slave Castle which was very interesting and taught me a lot. The next day we visited Kakum National park where we had a mini jungle trek followed by the Canopy walk which is a 350 M walkway suspended high in the trees, I highly recommend this as it gave a unique perspective of the rain forest.

There is so much more to do in Ghana it’s impossible to fit it all into one trip but whatever you do you will love it.
I was so sad to leave Ghana I have been back once already and I will going again next year, I genuinely recommend Original volunteers, they are cheap, supportive and reliable.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Aug 16, 2016
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Nakuru Hope

I am so thrilled that there is a site that you can actually say how you're volunteering was so that others can see for themselves, I didn't have this when I was searching for a volunteering experience, I wish I did.
I spent just over 5 weeks at the most amazing school and orphanage in Nakuru, Kenya called Gabriels, which is Nakuru Hope's centre and it's amazing!
Right from the beginning when I finally came across Nakuru Hope through Google and sent an enquiry which actually went to the founder of Nakuru Hope, her name is Susan Saleeba, within a day I got back everything that I needed to know, what I was going to do, where it was, what the costs were and all that information that you just want straight away because you can't wait to go.
I emailed Susan with my concerns and there was some, like safety, diseases etc, and what I liked was that she was straight up and explained all the facts and that if my parents or friends were concerned she was available for a Skype discussion to alleviate any concerns.
I got an account of the charges, and there wasn't one for organising everything, because its done voluntarily from her office in Perth, Australia. It was great to get it early so that I could budget.
When I arrived I was met at the airport and had an overnight stay which was organised at a really interesting historical Club just over from the city of Nairobi. I was picked up the following morning and had a choice to go to the Elephant Orphanage and the Giraffe Park, I did both, it was pretty cheap as well and glad I did as it was my first time in Africa and to see the giraffes up close as well as the elephants it was an experience. The we drove through Kenya to Nakuru, its a big town with everything that you could want, supermarkets, banks etc. We arrived at these big yellow gates and when they opened for the van all the children ran to welcome me, I was with four other volunteers from different parts of the world, I had met them at the same club overnight. The children are amazing, lots of laughter and big smiles.
My first day was a bit daunting as this was all new to me, one of the other volunteers was making her second visit. Where we would be living for the next few weeks was really great, its like a dormitory but we all have curtains plus there's is a bathroom and proper toilet, a little kitchen where we had our breakfast and dinner was prepared each night by a lovely Kenyan lady, her name was LUcy and she cleansed and looked after all of us. The days were filled with countless experiences. Working in the classroom with the kids, playing and teaching them songs. I went to the farm where they grow vegetables and it was great to see how they feed all the children with fresh vegetables like kale corn spinach and there were tomatoes going in as well. The kitchen work was fun we had a day making chapatis for all the children and talking to Josephine and Julius who work in the kitchen just talking and learning about each other. Christopher is the head of the school and orphanage and he is amazing with all the children, he comes out with funny little thoughtful sayings that make you think and understand so much more. We had plenty of time to ourselves as well but I really just wanted to stay where we were, some of us frequented the local cafe and went shopping. Its hard to sit and have a hamburger and thick shake when you know that there are so many children out in the slums that we visited that had nothing no food nothing to sleep on. Chris took us out many times to visit families of the children so that we could see for ourselves the lives of these little ones. It really is shocking but the wonderful thing that Nakuru Hope does is calls them all their family and they are right there to help whenever they can with whatever needs doing. One lady burnt her self really badly on the coals that they cook with, Chris straight away got her to the hospital, took the children into the orphanage bathed, feed them and looked after them with the staff helping so that the mother could get better. Anyway I just wanted to let others know that everyday meant something to me and I know now how important it is to help and to care about those who really don't have anything except for Nakuru Hope. I am thankful for Susan for right away helping me with my doubts and making all the arrangements and for Christopher who runs everything with the most amazing staff. I always felt safe, needed and it was very sad the day I had to leave it was like leaving my family, I hope that one day I will return what I do know is that the donations that they get really are given for the needs of the kids there is so much that is done. I hope one day you may also have an opportunity to visit and if you do I hope you too will feel at the end of your stay that you have made a difference. Its been 4 months now since I have returned to my own home, lives not quite the same now, i guess i look at things a whole lot differently. I am also hoping that when I get to Perth which is across Australia from me here in Melbourne that I will meet the most remarkable lady who began Nakuru Hope's Gabriels, she is as amazing as all that is accomplished.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Mar 15, 2016
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Daktari Bush School & Wildlife Orphanage

Staying at Daktari was such a great experience for me. I was impressed of the amazing people who made me feel welcome. I didn’t need previous knowlege to teach the chiledren and to take care about the animals I could easily handle it, because of the good introduction of the Daktari team.

Ian and Michelle are just like caring parents for the children, animals, the staff and volunteers.
I had the feeling to really make something useful for the the children and the animals.
I enjoed showing them the real world and the real south africa.

Reflecting the time in africa I really miss the beatiful landscape of Daktari, the morning Dogwalk, the colourful sunset, the run to „Leopard Rock“, singing and sitting around the ,,Bonfire’’ and last but not least the people from Daktari.

A big thank you to all the people who made my visit at Daktari unforgettable.

Best wishes

Sabrina from Germany

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Dec 30, 2015
Overall:
10
Support:
9
Value:
10

Give a Heart To Africa

Many of life’s best adventures are not meticulously planned far in advance. Thirty days after I retired from thirty years’ of teaching, I arrived in Tanzania in June, 2010, to volunteer at GHTA for the first time. I taught English to a fabulous group of men and women who were eager to learn. It stunned me that they would thank me every day for teaching them. I lived in the house that is attached to the classrooms in a secure compound in a neighborhood near the university. Our translators were so encouraging and helpful; Margaret sang as she cooked our dinner daily, and other volunteers quickly became my friends for the next two months. Although I have a teaching background, this is not a requirement; a willingness to help these students gain skills so they can discover opportunities for success and employment to provide for their families is vital. Though I loved my daily interaction with the classes, I loved our Friday home visits which gave us a chance to interact one-on-one and to meet the family (or, sometimes, the whole compound). It was the home visit that informed us clearly about each individual.
As you read other reviews on this page, you will find plenty of details about the basics of the school, the lovely town of Moshi, and the serendipitous array of weekend adventures. Though I thoroughly enjoyed my safaris, the coffee tour, the visit to Lake Chala, trips to Arusha, the Usambara Mountains, what I loved was the people. If you are reading this review trying to decide where to volunteer and how long to stay, let me be clear. At the end of two months, I was wishing I could stay longer. You also should know that I have returned twice, in October, 2011, and May, 2014, each time for two months. It was wonderful to share a home with other volunteers of varied backgrounds, languages, ages, occupations and travel experiences. We helped plan lessons and activities together and sought ways to help our students who struggled as well as challenge those who excelled.
One of the absolute highlights was celebrating the 5th anniversary of GHTA and meeting students and volunteers from the classes I had taught in 2010 and 2011 to see how their lives had been positively impacted by their time in our school. The very fact that Monika would seek to find them and invite them to come tells you that this is a community effort, not just a quick field trip into another country. What an absolute joy to come alongside them as they work in the co-op, run a spa, maintain a food stall in Uhuru Park, actively supporting one another. It is astounding that these mamas came as strangers to one another as they entered GHTA. If you are seeking to expand your horizons while making a true difference in the lives of women in the Moshi area, this is the place for you. It bears repeating that this NGO uses 100% of the fees to live and board in the house to support GHTA. No fees are divided by an umbrella organization; your placement as a teacher is established clearly when you are accepted. Former volunteers and board members are available to answer questions you might have. You will be independent, you can learn some Kiswahili, you will bond with these women very quickly and invest your time and energy in their educational experiences. You will come to love the neighborhood children in the bi-weekly after-school program. You will make some lifelong friendships with other volunteers. You will not leave GHTA unchanged; my perspective on life has not been the same.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Dec 17, 2015
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Institute for Field Research Expeditions - IFRE

I was placed in Moshi, Tanzania by IFRE. I had the most incredible experience. I was originally signed up to work in an Orphanage, but I would have had to walk 45 minutes every day by myself to get to the job. I decided to join the people living in the volunteer house that were teaching at a local school, and in the afternoons I went to the local orphanage that was just 5 minutes away. It was truly life changing, and I could not have asked for a better experience. I am young, only 17. I had been trying to get myself to Africa for about 3 years but the teen programs were always too expensive. I found IFRE because I was trying to find an affordable way to travel to Africa and volunteer, yet still be safe. During my trip I never felt unsafe. Deo, the in country coordinator and owner of the house, was awesome! He was super nice and funny and helped me get set up as soon as I got to Africa. The only complaint I have is that I didn't get my insurance until I was already in Tanzania, when I should have gotten it before. Other than that it was amazing. I created incredible bonds with the children I worked with and with some of the local people in Tanzania. Currently I am still connected to those people through Facebook and email! Because I enjoyed my trip so much, I am planning to go back to Tanzania! I wanted to thank IFRE for giving me the opportunity to have the incredible experience I had.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Oct 7, 2015
Overall:
10
Support:
8
Value:
10

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