African Impact

167 Project reviews of African Impact

Project Details

Named the World’s Top Volunteer Abroad Organization for the 3rd year in row, African Impact is proud to offer multi-award-winning responsible volunteer projects, gap year

The year was 2004 and a handful of well-traveled people sat around a table in the heart of the Zimbabwean wilderness. With backgrounds in tourism, development and conservation, they knew they wanted to do something great. They wanted to use their passion and skills to start a travel company that made a difference. They wanted to introduce people to the Africa they knew. The people. The wildlife. The magic.


When we opened our doors to our first batch of international volunteers, we were a small, family-run organization with big dreams.


It didn’t take long to see that there were a lot more people like us. People who wanted to travel while truly experiencing a country at its best, and worst. People who wanted to genuinely connect with the local people and to leave a place better than they found it. We grew and opened new volunteer projects in new countries across southern Africa.


We eventually set up home in the most beautiful city in the world, Cape Town. As the industry grew we recognized that doing the right thing, being responsible, doing good, and still providing travel experiences was, at times, complicated. We grappled with what we were… a travel company? A tourism company? How was the volunteer experience related to the impact they made? The industry was evolving, and so were we.


We are incredibly lucky to have an amazing team of people behind African Impact, most who started as volunteers and have been on this journey since the beginning. This is our strength and what has allowed us, over the years, to go beyond volunteering, to focus on what it does best; provide an exchange of ideas and mindsets. We’ve learned that if a community has total buy-in and ownership of a project – and a volunteer is truly informed about their own role and contribution to this – volunteering has the power to transform both a community and a volunteer. That is a beautiful thing and what we witness every day on our projects.


Ultimately, our goal is to take volunteering, internships and group travel as far as it can go, combining genuine impacts with extraordinary experiences. Our story isn’t over, we haven’t even scratched the surface. So, learn more about us, ask the right questions and if we’re the right organization for you, we’re excited to welcome you on our journey.

 

How does African Impact go #BeyondVolunteering?


THE EXPERIENCE

We believe in the spirit of Africa and that your experience is just as important as your impact. Volunteering is a two-way thing. It’s not just about the help and skills that you can bring; it’s also about what this amazing continent, its people and its wildlife can give you in return. An experience filled with adventure, learning, and breathtaking moments will make sure you go home, share the magic of Africa, and come back. Ultimately, we combine extraordinary experiences…


THE IMPACT

…with genuine impacts. We know Africa, we live and breathe it every day. We know our communities, our families, our tribes and our staff. We have built every project hand-in-hand with them, meaning it is led and directed by them. We measure every single thing we do, so if you are looking for a part-time, sit-around in the sunshine kind of deal, we’re not for you. Our team of international and local staff live and work with you and will help you contribute to our long-term goals. This lets us go beyond what the world thinks of as ‘volunteering abroad’…


THE TRANSFORMATION

…and provides an experience that truly transforms communities and volunteers. Forget the savior complex; it’s out of the door by the time we’re through with our volunteers. We know you go home richer and worldlier. You are better friends, better neighbors and better people. Volunteering in Africa helps to change perceptions and stereotypes about Africa, its people, and its problems, while it provides local communities with an exchange of culture, mindsets and ideas. Welcome to Beyond Volunteering and our journey.

The main focus of the project is on
Contact Person
Andrew Bridge
Spoken Languages
English

Social Impact

We found no better way to describe what African Impact cares about than from our founder, Greg:

 

“In recent years, African Impact stopped being simply a volunteer enterprize and started being a collective representation of something more than just an organization or brand. It was subtle at first; when I used to visit our projects, volunteers would say, “I have this idea that I think could help African Impact”. This has turned to, “I have this idea which is so African Impact”. If something didn’t feel right, it used to be, “Something isn’t working, but we can’t put our finger on it”. This is now, “The way we are doing this is just not African Impact”.

 

Reflecting on this, I wondered what people perceive as the African Impact way. We know what we have tried to build over the years; an organization that provides exceptional experiences to our volunteers, whilst serving the communities we work with by making a genuine impact but, we’re starting to go further. I believe that we’ve begun to represent a set of values and a mind-set.

 

These values are honesty, transparency and always doing the right thing, while having fun, exploring and growing. In the face of increasing negativity about volunteering abroad, we’re creating a culture that strives to be the best, not the biggest. Admittedly, we don’t always get it right, but our process leads to constant change and development. It brings people on a journey with us that ensures everyone we work with feels part of the team.”

 

“You don’t get to just be “African Impact”, you can’t just buy the badge. You need to aspire to the values the organization represents. It’s been an almost unspoken, collaborative journey that we’ve defined as Beyond Volunteering.”

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