South Africa

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

Global Vision International (GVI)

I did the GVI internship on April last year. For that I spent 3 months on a game reserve and another 3 months in a work place.
First thing you should know: game reserves are, above everything else, a business. There's no truly wild place in South Africa. Being the property of someone and a profitable business, it must be managed. I would say the reserve is like a zoo without cages.
For that, we need to give way to the tourists satying at the lodges, going on game drives. As I said, the reserve is a business, and a lot of wrong decisions can be made, not regarding the well being of the wildlife. What we in our time in GVI is locating everyday the lions and the semi-imprinted cheetah (which sometimes you will get out of the vehicle and go into the block to locate her on foot). We take basic data as behaviour, location and wheater conditions and type it at the computer back at base. Only the volunteer responsible for data on that specific drive will do it, though. Other activities during drive include operating the telemetry equipment, doing vehicle check before drive, operating the spotlight on the way back to base when it's already dark.
We collect data on other animals we might come across, like rhinos, elephants, buffalos, hyenas, etc. But these we do not track, so it's not the priority to locate first, coming across them only by chance or if we have time left after finding the "key" animals.
Sometimes volunteers will do other tasks such as reserve work by cleaning the roads, educational bush walks, base work (which is a rotation of volunteers to look after the base - cooking, cleaning - during the day).
As an intern, you will have some extra activities that the common volunteers don't. That would be basically for your education about the bush and conservation through game reserves. You will have a few lectures and will have to do some assignments. You will have a mentor to talk about your goals. And you will learn about tracks, birds and trees. But most of your knowledge, will come from your own effort. There as several books available at base and staff members willing to answer your questions. But if you don't commit yourself with your self education, you won't learn as much as you could.
There's three bathrooms, two of them with shower (not the best of showers, but at least there's hot water). Currently there are three dorms for volunteers. Most of the matress are very old and used and you will sleep on bunk beds. It's something you can get used to quickly, sleep in a room full of people and later on you can even miss it. Most of volunteers go to bed early, before 9, as we need to get up before the sun rise. The meals are prepared by the volunteers in charge, a pre made menu that can be adjusted to any diet requirements.

My second part of the program was spent in CROW (Centre for Rehabilitation of Wildlife) based on Durban. Even if I had all the help from GVI to get there, with tips of flights, places to stay and transport, I had to deal with the costs.
CROW has nothing to do with GVI except the booking, so I won't give the feedback of my time there here. But I got there thanks to GVI. When calculating the fee for volunteering at CROW, through GVI the value is around 4 to 5 times more. So if you're interested, I recommend booking directly with CROW and not any travel or volunteering agency.

The cost for internship or volunteering with GVI is very high. There are plenty of game reserves that take volunteers for much less. Of course I can only talk about my experience with GVI, and in general I'm really thankful that it started a 2 year journey through South Africa. In the end was definetely worth it. I will always remember my time at the reserve and cherish deeply as one of the greatest moments of my life.

I recommend this program for whoever wants to do a safari in South Africa and take good pictures while making friends and getting closer to the environment. Is a much better way to know the wildlife and also to keep yourself busy during a trip. You will have an amazing experience. It just wouldn't be my first option for an educational internship.

Program:
Location: South Africa
Posted: Oct 24, 2016
Overall:
8
Support:
9
Value:
1

Daktari Bush School & Wildlife Orphanage

We Went to volunteer in South Africa at DAKTARI Bush School & Animal Orphanage because we wanted to show our teenage sons (17 & 15) a "real" South African bush with its animals, people and scenery.
Our stay exceeded all expectations! Upon arrival, inclusion by the staff and other volunteers was wonderfully warm & easy. Accomodations simple yet Clean. The work with the animals and teaching Children was fun, interesting and rewarding : as active professionals my husband and I are extremely busy in our Daily lives... here, the whole family relaxed and the one week we spent, felt like one month.

it was the most wonderful experience and adventure we have had as a family! We highly recommend it!

Program:
Location: South Africa
Posted: Sep 2, 2016
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Daktari Bush School & Wildlife Orphanage

This was the perfect volunteering experience for a first time solo traveller, and I would definitely recommend it!

Program:
Location: South Africa
Posted: Aug 29, 2016
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

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