Welcome to Wildlife Volunteering

Key Information (4 Home Truths about Themba Travel)

1) Themba means ‘hope’ in the Xhosa language. You can become part of our mission to restore hope and dignity to people by sharing your skills and experience. We have selected the projects we work with because we have known and worked with them for years, trust them and know that they greatly impact their surrounding communities. You are there to help, share and learn. If you feel the need to take charge, you are in the wrong place.

2) You might not know what you are doing from one day to the next. Any given day’s activity will be set by the project leader locally. Of course, we love to use your specific skills, but those steps need to be swept sometimes! You must be flexible and adaptable.

3) You are going into what is likely to be a very foreign feeling environment. You will meet wonderful people, and create new connections across countries and cultures, but face some of the harsh realities of life in South Africa. You need to have an open mind; you will also need resilience.

4) Your weekly fee covers charming, comfortable en-suite accommodation, daily transport to and from your chosen project, meals, and welcome transfers. Overall, you can expect to be comfortable and well looked after while on your Themba volunteering holiday. Your fees also include a donation, the level of which varies by project up to 5 %.

About the project

The quiet of the bush, the fragrances of nature, wide open spaces filled with the sounds of incredible wildlife…This is by far one of the main reasons visitors flock to South Africa every year

Whether you are slightly curious or want a career in conservation, our wildlife volunteering project, is a great opportunity to encounter the beautiful beasts and learn about their environments. And beyond that, you will also learn about the impact of conservation on the people who live next to the reserve. Led by experienced field guides and conservationists, you will get the chance to contribute to conservation.

Your Impact

We aim to educate you about conservation issues so that you continue to be a mindful global citizen after your program. Our mission is to build conscious travellers that love nature, our wildlife and the people as we share our passion for making a difference.

You will support Dinokeng Game Reserve’s efforts to degrade land returning to its former glory through rehabilitation & conservation. Conservation in such an environment comes with many challenges ranging from eradicating alien plants to managing veld and game and avoiding inbreeding, especially in smaller reserves, to protecting endangered species. We are there to help and to contribute collectively to conservation. We contribute up to 5% of your project fee goes towards conservation efforts in the reserve.

Contributes to United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal #15: Life on Land

Some of the major causes of environmental decline, is the loss of natural habitat, lack of protection of biodiversity, human-animal conflict and the ignorance of the effect humans have on ecosystems. Understanding these causes, will help us find solutions to protect and conserve and take better care for our enviroments. 

Skills and Experiences required

No special skills are required. Training will be provided. All you need to have is a curiosity for wildlife, being teachable and have a keen interest on how your stay with leave a positive impact.

Arrival & Orientation

The wildlife program starts on the first and third Monday of a month. Once your application has been approved for the project, please book your flights to arrive at OR Tambo Airport in Johannesburg. Your airport pick-up will be before or no later than 12 midday on arrival day and ready to take you to your accommodation just 1hour out of the city. 

Orientation starts at 2pm and is hosted by our friendly field guides. It covers everything you need to know about your volunteer project. An introduction to South Africa’s culture, customs, conservation, rules and expectations, safety, and activities will be taught throughout your stay. The orientation will also allow you to meet other volunteers and make new friends! 

Schedule

The wildlife volunteering project is located in the Dinokeng Game Reserve, Hammanskraal, about 45 minutes outside Pretoria, and you will volunteer on the reserve.

Accommodation & Location

The name of the Dinokeng Game Reserve (DGR) is derived from the languages of the Batswana and baPedi people who traditionally inhabited the area. Meaning “a place of rivers”, Dinokeng lies in the catchment area of two rivers that flow into the Olifants and Limpopo rivers and onto the Indian Ocean. 

The DGR is situated in the Gauteng Province of South Africa and is currently 19 000 ha. Temperatures vary between 0° and 40° with a long-term daily average of 21°. The Dinokeng Game Reserve is Malaria-free. Your accommodation is basic and comfortable for 8 individuals and small groups (18 years +)  

Pricing

Duration

Project Fees:

2 Weeks

£1,395 

Additional 2 Weeks

£850  

Already know what you want to do?

Fees include:

*Duration of wildlife project is 14 days.
*Combine a 1-week social project in Cape Town with a 2 week wildlife project and get 10% discount on the total price.

Fees exclude:

Not sure which project to choose?​

Speak to someone who’s from there.

Call us +44 793 9379 636 or email us at [email protected]

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