South Africa

Askari WCP

It was a special honour to be able to experience Askari even if only for a brief slice of time. Two weeks isn’t long enough….
The thing that stands out most, aside from seeing some of the coolest creatures I have seen in my life, is the people: passionate and knowledgeable staff/guides and volunteers from all over the world who have come for the same reason – to experience the South African bush but more than that, to contribute to the restoration and conservation of it. That is what sets Askari apart from anything else I have done. That is what gives travel here a deeper significance. And the fact that we have over 17,000 hectares of wild space to ourselves is the best! There are no tourist crowds. No other game viewers full of people driving the same roads, blocking views…It is just us (whilst we are here) to appreciate, enjoy and help conserve. Wide open natural spaces full of serene beauty and magnificent creatures from the tiny termites with their monstrous mounds to the majestic lions and everything in between. And the deep red sunsets and sunrises are pretty spectacular too.
I love that anything can happen at any time and indeed it often does! You have to be ready and prepared or else you’ll miss it. Hope I can return someday…

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: South Africa
Posted: Jul 11, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Askari WCP

#itchangedmylife

Amazing to be part of such a wonderful group and programme. The staff are very welcoming and helpful. The level of enthusiasm is unbeatable. Askari has been the most amazing trip and I have learnt so much. They really teach and show the importance of conservation. I am super excited knowing I’ll return next year. It was so incredible that I couldn’t leave without knowing when I would return. Katie and Ed – you guys are just incredible and I feel privileged to have spent time with you both, thank you for everything!"

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

Connect-123

Beware before signing up with this program!

In my experience, the program is unorganized and promised me things that they could not deliver. I was looking for an internship in graphic design which they assured me they could find a placement for me that I would be happy with.

I started out with one point-of-contact person, and midway through my application process, I was reassigned a different point-of-contact person with no explanation given. I was given my first "offer" which included incorrect information on the official offer. However, the agency they pitched me only had four employees and was a 40-minute bus drive every day from where I would be staying.

I told my point-of-contact person that I was not happy with the offer, and to please show me something else. Weeks went by and there was no other official offer given to me. Every time I inquired about it, I was told "Oh, we have many great opportunities to show you!" but I never was. This started to make me feel uneasy, so I asked my contact person about the refund policy. After flat-out ignoring my question several times and telling me that I "didn't need to worry about that because they had opportunities coming" for me, I began to worry.

After expressing my concerns and recapping my experience with a program director, I was told they were going to "get direct with me" and told me that I shouldn't be working with them if I didn't trust them. Given the fact that I had paid them, I would have expected them to take the opportunity to reassure me or make me feel better in some way. They did not, but instead took no responsibility for not doing what they promised.

All in all, I had to back out of the program due to their false promises. I had planned my entire summer around being gone with the program, and missed out on many opportunities as home that I didn't think I would be around for. HORRIBLE customer service.

Program: Study Abroad
Location: South Africa
Posted: Jun 16, 2017
Overall:
2
Support:
1
Value:
1

Askari WCP

Askari is the best programme I could imagine. This is one of the few programmes what really include the whole animal kingdom. Not only driving around, but it is all about helping the animals and with this helping the environment. The guides teach you how everything is linked up with each other and that link is needed in the chain to make it work from the start of the food chain to the end. If you want to learn about real nature then you are at the right place here at Askari.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: South Africa
Posted: Apr 4, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Askari WCP

When I first arrived at Askari I was a little bit afraid and wondering if everything was going to work out, but when I got to know the people and the work that is being done at Askari I can safely say that it has been the best time I have ever had!

Program: Gap Year
Location: South Africa
Posted: Mar 28, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Askari WCP

The 12 weeks I spent in Askari were awesome! I met great people, learnt a lot about wildlife and how to conserve it and had a lot of fun at the same time! Pidwa and the animals living in the reserve are gorgeous, volunteering there is a real pleasure; everyday is different and you really feel like you're helping making a difference. Ed and Katie are great and very welcoming, they're always happy to share their knowledge about the bush and will make you want to stay longer!

Program:
Location: South Africa
Posted: Mar 28, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Askari WCP

I have had the best experience here at Askari which I will never forget. During my 12 weeks there I learnt so much about the bush and everything that is needed to be done to protect this incredible environment and all the flora and fauna within it. I have really felt that I have made a small difference in this short period of time and that wouldn’t have happened without all the hard work completed by Katie and Ed to make this experience possible. As soon you arrive you already feel like part of this family and this is what allowed me to enjoy my time here as much as I could. I couldn’t have asked for a better place to volunteer and better people to spend 12 weeks with! Well done Katie and Ed, keep up the amazing work and I hope to come back again in the future!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: South Africa
Posted: Mar 25, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Askari WCP

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!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: South Africa
Posted: Mar 24, 2017
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

ELIabroad Experiential Learning International

I wanted to have an international experience and combine it with an internship in Public Health. I ended up going with ELI to South Africa, Malissa at ELI arranged for me to intern with a professor who is well known in the field. I ended up helping with her research, entered data for a study she's working on, and did some of the writing. As result, the professor will list me as a co-author! She even invited me to a major international conference, where I met key Public Health officials from around the world.(Contacts!) I lived with other volunteers and interns at a group house, and that was amazing. We hung out at night and on weekends. Some of them traveled together, but I went on my own to see Victoria Falls and on a safari in Botswana. The research I did in Cape Town will be the basis for my thesis, so yes, I'd recommend ELI and the Cape Town internships. Totally worth it!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: South Africa
Posted: Dec 3, 2016
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Projects Abroad

I spent an incredible eight weeks in Cape Town with the Projects Abroad Human Rights Office (PAHRO). Most of my time was spent travelling to townships to meet with clients and researching and drafting legal documents alongside PAHRO’s staff. On Wednesday afternoons, I helped run educational workshops at the Bonnytoun youth juvenile detention centre. While much of what I worked on was challenging, I always had a strong support system in place. PAHRO’s staff were open to any questions and checked up consistently to make sure I was comfortable with my role. As well, I became close with several other law students from around the world who were volunteering within the same placement.

Cape Town is an amazing city, and Projects Abroad encouraged me to take advantage of all it had to offer. During nights and weekends I took part in a number of activities with other volunteers. My favourite memories include surfing at Muizenberg together every Friday, Braais at Mzoli’s, climbing Table Mountain, and Saturday mornings at the Old Biscuit Mill. I also enjoyed spending three days on the Garden Route along the African coast. Undertaking meaningful volunteer activities while experiencing Cape Town’s culture made for a trip that I’ll never forget.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: South Africa
Posted: Nov 2, 2016
Overall:
9
Support:
9
Value:
9

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