Africa

Frontier

Staff in-country all very supportive and professional. Great fun and very informative.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: May 25, 2014
Overall:
8
Support:
10
Value:
8

Global Volunteer Network (GVN)

An absolutely wonderful, diplomatic, kind and responsive team working with you. I'll be joining the "Public Health Improvement" project in Uganda for 6 months starting in September of this year.

I have to tell you how impressed I am with GVN. Fiona and Miriam were my first contacts. Fiona (at the main office) continues to be absolutely responsive, helpful, detail-oriented and kind. Though my contact with Miriam is much more limited, she helped me work through the "medical insurance" maze quite nicely.

And then there is Leslie, with The Real Uganda ("on the ground" in Uganda, she places volunteers appropriately.) What a hoot! She is so much fun, so very responsive. I can ask her ANYthing to "do I REALLY" have to wear skirts to, "oh my God, I'm a vegan....will this work"...and she endlessly has funny and appropriate (and quick) suggestions for me. It's obvious that the "vollies" are her "babies" and I feel as if I'll be in good hands.

Leslie's idea to send me past "activity reports" about previous work done by the Public Health project resulted in my making two important contacts, so I can prepare and study in topics beforehand.

Rather than wait and possibly waste time when I get there, I contacted Dr. Wanyama via email (he just returned rom South Sudan in the warzone where he was volunteering...) and he and I have been noodling around some ideas for a project he wants me to work on in the remote villages once I arrive. This has made the experience 'real' for me immediately and given me the focus I wanted. With my background in research and medicine, this will be perfect.

Here's to the journey!

Charlotte Michael Versagi

(6 mother, Uganda, Public Health Improvement Project, starting September 1, 2014.)

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: May 16, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Comments

Hello! I am looking for my friend Charlotte. Please have her contact me as she deleted her email for some god awful reason lol Ed Higgins 6236927571

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

My trip to Ghana with IVHQ was the best trip of my life. I got to know a new culture, see new people and live almost the same way as they live. We had a host called Beathrice who was just like my mother. Full of spirit and laughter. She cooked for us and made sure we were satisfied. I slept in a volunteer house 5 minutes (walking distance) from the orphanage called Potter's village. The children are adorable. At first my heart broke and almost fell into tears when i first met them. The terrible smell, their bedrooms and everything else was so overwhelming. I needed almost 2 days to adjust since it was my first trip ever volunteering. I played with the children, woke up early and helped them brush their teeth, bathe and get dressed before school. In the afternoon i would go play with them, read for them and sometimes simply just hug them since they need a lot affection and love. One girl called me her mother and chose her family name to be the same as mine. This made me cry and realised how blessed i am. The children at the orphanage are full of spirit, eager to learn and very sociable. They became like family to me and i am definitely going back this summer. My trip with IVHQ was very safe, very affordable and i had a 24/7 support from them. Water was provided at all times, food was exotic and delicious and the other volunteers became like my closest friends. The shower was not working so we had to bathe with a bucket. This may sound terrible, but it was actually a new and fun experience. It was a trip to remember and made me stronger and down to earth. I recommend it for everyone to try, since we only live once.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Apr 28, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Comments

Hi Luana, Thank you for sharing a detailed run down of your experience volunteering on our Ghana program. It is great to hear that volunteering in Ghana was the best trip of your life and that you felt supported by IVHQ throughout your trip. Thank you for volunteering with IVHQ and we hope to have you volunteer with us again in the future.

Frontier

I spent six weeks on the TZM frontier program on Mafia Island. I enjoyed the surveying of the fish and snorkeling in the hugely bio diverse waters of Mafia island.
Landing on mafia island displayed a very interesting contrast between rural and developing areas because the only developing object one sees is the airstrip everything else is rural. As I retrieve my bags from the bungalow sized airport I’m flooded with vibrant colours, the smell of the sea in the air, the busy streets filled with fast moving tuktuks (3 wheeled taxis), motorbikes, trucks and of course the immense African heat blaring down. As I leave Kilindoni with another frontier volunteer the ride to the camp takes 40 minutes to an hour. Once one leaves Kilindoni which is a decent sized village hub, for the next hour or so all to be seen is vast amounts of vegetation with a few buildings along the way.
Eventually we get to the village of Untende which is much smaller in comparison to Kilindoni. The villagers of Untende are friendly, they have a certain relaxing charm about them that makes you feel welcome and at home and are always ready to help despite the significant language barrier. Camp life was exactly as I expected it to be. Thatched buildings with very basic amenities and furniture. The toilet is a long drop which involves squatting in order to do what one needs to do. The one thing that did surprise me was the fact that everyone had to collect fresh water for their homes for whatever use. By this point I didn’t think that the village was that rural. Seeing as the village was indeed very rural I didn’t expect any bars or any homes to have DSTV (the South African equivalent of Sky) however there was very good bar in the village that had a decent selection of African beer such as Tusker. I also managed to find a house where we could watch the Barclays premier league and catch some of the Six nations rugby.
The culture on Mafia was refreshing in both a religious and admiring way. Mafia is split between Islamic and Christian faith. The Muslims and the Christians live together as Tanzanians without strife or conflict. Other countries around the world should take example.

Program: Gap Year
Location: Africa
Posted: Mar 13, 2014
Overall:
8
Support:
8
Value:
7

Frontier

Hello there,
it is my last hour here in Nosy Be, Madagascar.
I have spent four unforgettable weeks of teaching , exploring , enjoying life Four weeks of smiling , waving and greeting the Malagasy kids !These small creatures could fill you up with happiness !
So , coming to the island you will eat delicious food, dance who cho cho (a typical Malagasy dance), sunbathe, drink the best cocktails, swim, see a whale (eventually) , see lots of geckos (they are everywhere!) , walk bare foot (ohh God , I will miss that, it kind of makes you feel free), I will stop here because the list is endless.. Just come here and find out for yourself :) !
I would highly recommend this to anybody who desires a tropical, wild , African experience. I am glad I chose Frontier , I felt safe during my adventure, they do perform their duties on a very high, professional level.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Feb 24, 2014
Overall:
9
Support:
10
Value:
9

Abroad China

Going to China was a goal of mine since I was about 7 when I saw it in a movie, and at the age of 21, I was able to spend an amazing one year studying and exploring there. I created a short video of the beginning of my adventures in China, which will give me forever memory I ever had.
The Go Abroad China made the research, preparation, transition, and experience abroad easy and smooth. They provided all of the necessary details and logistics of going to a different country, as well as a great network of support all throughout the process. I was especially happy with the transition that Go Abroad China provided. I like to say that they provided three opportunities of transitions prior to beginning my new life:
1.) Getting to know Go Abroad China services that they provided in China.
2.) Getting to know China and Chinese culture
3.) Getting to know my Chinese study university.
If all of these steps had occurred at once, I feel that I would have been very overwhelmed. But Go Abroad China offered the opportunity to make the transition slowly and have an amazing time learning and exploring all throughout the process.
China is the place that I have begun to call my home, where my friends have become family, and my dreams a reality. When we fully EXPERIENCE the world and the wonders it has to offer, we CONNECT with who we are, and DISCOVER who we can be. Throughout the whole process of studying in Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Go Abroad China was amazing. From the beginning, they answered every single little question I had and made the entire process simple from financial aid to housing to the abroad university I picked, they were there every step of the way. I strongly recommend Go Abroad China to anyone who is thinking about studying abroad! Each of them went above and beyond of what I expected and made our time abroad just like home. Going with Go Abroad China was one of the best decisions I have made during my college career!

Program: Study Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Feb 20, 2014
Overall:
7
Support:
9
Value:
6

African Impact

If you are looking for a volunteer experience that is legitimate, sustainable and enjoyable all whilst making a truly valuable impact then look no further, African Impact is the largest on the ground facilitator of volunteer opportunities in Africa! So where you want to be and what you want to do is totally up to you, and trust me, you will be in safe hands!

So i chose to volunteer in sunny Cape Town with the teaching projects out there. I spent half my time supporting teaching at a pre-school in a local township and the other half with GAPA (Grandmothers Against Poverty & Aids) - a truly incredible project that supports grandmothers to provide after-school care, fun and food to children within the largest township community, Khayelitsha.

I learnt more than I could have imagined, not just about the culture and lifestyles of the communities, but also about the nature of volunteering itself. It's about offering support whilst remaining completely sustainable, less about the hand outs and more about enabling and empowering others. This means that your impact is truly lasting and unforgettable.
At Luntu you will meet some very special children who will fall in love with you as soon as you walk in through the front door! Their squeals of joy and the songs they will teach you will buzz around your head forever. I spent most mornings reading stories, teaching English and supporting their play.

GAPA volunteers help to support grandmothers in providing a safe place where children can simply enjoy being children. Grandmothers often become parents again to their grandchildren as the middle generation are affected by HIV/aids, the project enables them to get together, offering care, love and attention to the communities children and also gives them an opportunity to start earning a small living again, making and selling unique hand-made toys, jewellery and accessories which make fantastic keep-sakes and souvenirs! You will have fun organising games and singing songs, playing cards or painting pictures in the dusty yard. As a Primary School teacher back in the UK, I was amazed at what you can do with little resources! The children are strong, happy, motivated and independent. They will fight for your attention and obsess over your hair, they will love you just for being there.

You will have plenty of fun at the volunteer house, making friends from all around the world. Theme nights, pub quizzes, coffee shop crawls! You will be pretty well looked after too by the wonderful Shecky and Jane! The cooking is traditional, delicious and dinner is always on the table when you come home from project! They’ll even do your washing for you so that you can concentrate on the important things, like enjoying yourself, sorting resources or planning for more fun!
You will never be on your own, fellow volunteers will become your family out there and with constant support from African Impact project co-coordinators and Interns you will work together to plan fun and engaging activities and not forgetting the incredible local project leaders who are always on hand for a quick Xhosa lesson or two!

Cape Town is so vibrant and colourful, it’s constantly buzzing! There is so much to see and do that you will be spoilt for choice! We spent our weekends and free time exploring Obs (the volunteer house local town) where there is an eclectic mix of late night coffee shops, pubs, clubs and live music! We clambered up Table Mountain and abseiled down again, sampled tasty treats at the Biscuit Mill markets. We then joined the Cape to Addo tour at the end of our volunteer adventure, where we bungee-jumped, braved black-water tubing and bare-back Ostrich riding! We sunned ourselves at a citrus farm and spotted elephants on Safari – a perfect way to round off an epic South African adventure. There are plenty more opportunities from shark-cage diving to sky diving, the possibilities are endless and your volunteering experience will be unforgettable.

So here's a few tips:
- Bring a jumper (it gets cold indoors!)
- Be open minded (if your friends want to stop off to try sheep’s head on the way to project – do it! Try the local treats, they will leave you wanting more no matter how strange they seem!)
- Learn some Xhosa – the go go’s will appreciate a ‘molo!’
- Why not pack a few extra resources in your back-pack – kids love to play cards and parachute games!

Volunteering provides a broader perspective on all aspects of life, it deepens understanding and ignites intrigue. To volunteer is to learn, to enjoy, to experience. To be excited, exhilarated and to explore a sense of awe and wonder. If it does all this for you, just imagine what you can do for others.

Volunteer with African Impact Cape Town City Projects - You know you want to!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Feb 12, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Global Crossroad

Me and two of my friends came to Kenya for a three week volunteer program. Before we arrived we skyped multiple times with Jimmy Wambua who was our assigned advisor throughout our travels. He was very helpful answering any and all of our questions. We were picked up from the airport by Jimmy and stayed a couple of nights in Nairobi at his house where he helped us plan a few tourist activities. He also helped us get our bus tickets to Watamu where we would be staying and volunteering in the clinic for the remainder of our trip. In Watamu the program placed us in a host house where we were treated as a part of the family providing us with our daily meals as well as cleaning our rooms. They were extremely nice people and we even were able to accompany the house father to the orphanage he started and runs in the area. Overall, the trip was a great eye opening experience. Everything the organization said was accommodated in our expense was provided to us, Jimmy was a big part of making this trip great for us as well.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Jan 17, 2014
Overall:
8
Support:
7
Value:
8

Frontier

Africa is a different (incredible) world. My god. I did not know it was possible to run a hospital with one stethoscope per ward and seemingly even fewer doctors but somehow Malindi district hospital seem to pull it off.

My names John and I've just got back from an incredible 2 weeks volunteering in a rural Kenyan hospital. Now I know that with the recession and NHS privatisation healthcare standards might slip a little but the day you are on a medical ward and you hear one doctor shout to another “can I borrow your sterile gloves” your going to think the NHS ideology has really lost its way. But when your in a busy Kenyan emergency room and the patients keep coming what are you going to do? Send a letter to the government? No, your going to deliver the best care you can provide under the circumstances and that is why Malindi hospital was fantastic.
Of course at first I was nervous about getting involved with patient care but the staff are really friendly and will take the time teach you about the “aseptic technique” protocols and show you have to take basic measurements like blood pressure so that you can really get stuck in and make yourself useful.
I swear I must be faster at taking BP now than my GP here in Essex.
I was also allowed to assist in theatres where patients where having their operations. One of my favourite jobs was holding the torch for the consultant when all the lights in the building cut out so she could finish the Caesarean section. Where else but Africa???

On the weekends me and the other volunteers chilled at the beach (where the locals drive their mopeds up and down like maniacs) and then normally had a Tuska or 2 at stardust (a local bar).

Amazing 2 weeks!
100% worth it!
I love Malindi District Hospital!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Dec 11, 2013
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Askari WCP

I’m so glad I made the decision to pick Askari for my trip to Africa. From the moment I arrived all my nerves and concerns disappeared, and from then on I had such a varied and exciting experience that the four weeks flew by. The range of activities that you’re exposed to as a volunteer is fantastic – you could be involved in anything from setting up camera traps to monitoring herbivores to darting an animal so it can receive medical treatment. But what’s unique about Askari is that you are truly contributing to the running of a game reserve which has wilderness preservation as its core purpose, and nothing the volunteers do is just for the sake of giving them a good time. As a result, I’ve learnt so much about conservation here and developed much more of an understanding about how a reserve functions. Alongside this, I’ve seen fantastic animals every day and had many encounters with lions, elephants, honey badgers (and others too many to list) that I’ll remember forever. Katie & Joe are brilliant, and will not only look after you during your stay but also take care to teach you as much as possible about the activities you’re doing and wildlife you’re seeing. I really find it hard to fault Askari, and I would recommend it in a heartbeat.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Dec 9, 2013
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

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