Support Healthcare and Women's Rights

Agency
·
founded in 2014
Kira
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Coordinator | Kira
Coordinator | Kira
Book with Flex Option! Choose new departure dates or change to a different volunteer program at no extra costs.

High­lights

Experience the Tanzanian way of Life and the traditional life of the Maasai Tribe first hand.
Support a local NGO fighting for the rights of women and protecting them from FGM (female genital mutilation) and other risks such as teenage pregnancies and HIV / Aids.
Learn what responsible volunteering means by immersing into the culture of your host country and actively promoting intercultural exchange and sustainable support.
Make new friends for a lifetime among fellow volunteers, colleagues and all the people you meet along the way while living in one of the most beautiful countries of Africa.
Enhance your professional and soft skills and learn for a lifetime.
Support the important work of an NGO fighting FGM, HIV/Aids, teenage pregnancies among Maasai Communities and other at risk groups in Northern Tanzania (Clinic&Outreach). This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Age 18+
Singles
Couples
Groups
50+

We are STEP Africa – Exchange for Change, a Tanzanian social enterprise that was founded in German-Tanzanian cooperation in 2014. We organize and supervise meaningful and ethical volunteer placements and internships in Arusha, Northern Tanzania. Till date we have hosted over 500 interns and volunteers from all over the world.

With our programs we aim to contribute towards international understanding and give our participants intercultural and global ability to act. With the support of our participants we are committed to worthy projects and initiatives in Tanzania. We believe that working together in intercultural teams by exchanging ideas and viewpoints will let everyone involved, Organizations such as volunteers and interns, benefit in the long run.

Our team combines relevant qualifications and many years of experience in project coordination, volunteer mediation and social work in Tanzania and abroad. Our supervisors are available as contact persons on site at any time for our volunteers and projects. We offer our volunteers the opportunity to use their knowledge in Tanzania to get involved in meaningful projects and to gain valuable professional experience in different fields such as Social Work, Women’s Rights, Primary Schools, Daycare Center, Health Care, Animal Welfare and Environmental Protection.

We firmly believe in the power of change through intercultural exchange. With our programs we promote and demand equal rights and cultural tolerance. We place our volunteers exclusively in projects in which they can gain valuable experience for their future. Our volunteers do not replace local employees. Volunteers are assistants who offer support to local staff and, for example, perform tasks for which there is otherwise too little time. It is important to us that we only place our volunteers in projects that share our values towards international volunteering.

Our Volunteers are encouraged to start fundraisers for their respective institutions in Tanzania before, during or after their stay in Arusha. We have experienced great success with this in the past and present and saw our volunteers making great impacts in this area as well. We are connected to several European NGOs founded by our former volunteers that are continuing to support and promote their former work institutions here in Tanzania.

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Project description  

HIMD is an NGO (non-governmental organization) founded by Mackrine Rumanyika in 2003, which works primarily for those affected by female genital mutilation, HIV / AIDS and teenage pregnancy, but also supports many other programs. HIMD relies on a health-based approach and is a non-confessional and non-tribal organization. The NGO is active throughout northern Tanzania in the regions of Arusha, Kilimanjaro, Manyara and Mara. The following programs are among the core activities of the organization.

 

Ekenywa Dispensary

Ekenywa Dispensary is a small clinic with 8 beds in the Ngaramtoni district of Arusha. The HIMD Head Office is also located in the immediate vicinity.  The clinic specializes in pregnancy care and birth support and mainly treats patients from the Masai communities that surround Ngaramtoni. General medical treatments, preventive examinations and minor surgical procedures are also carried out in the clinic.   Many of the treatments are free of charge or come with minimal fees for patients. The clinic also works with “NHIF” (National Health Insurance Fund), the national public health insurance, which covers a wide range of treatments at very affordable prices.

 

Youth Friends Corner

In the rear of the Ekenywa clinic premises, three wooden huts with tables and benches were built. Young people can gather in these “Youth Corners” and receive free advice on contraception and general sex education. Pregnant teenage girls are also advised and attempts are made to find individual solutions for them, as in Tanzania pregnant girls are permanently excluded from school and often also expelled from home by their parents.

 

The “Youth Friends Corners” were set up outside the main clinic in order to offer the young people a protected space in which they can speak freely and without fear or judgement.

 

Emayani Dropping Center

Due to the high demand within the Maasai community, the Emayani Dropping Center was established in Ngusero, in which girls and women who are fleeing from circumcision and forced marriage can find a temporary home. The house currently houses around 35 women. Most of the women managed to escape with the help of the Maasai women's groups (see below), which have now formed in many villages. In cooperation with local authorities, educational institutions and families, individual solutions are sought for the women in the center. Many choose to do an apprenticeship and start an independent life.

 

Maasai women groups

Visits to women's groups within the Maasai communities are an integral part of the work that HIMD does. Many women's groups have been supported and promoted for years, so that the meetings are accepted, albeit reluctantly, by the families and husbands of the women.

During the meetings, HIMD provides information about the health consequences of female genital mutilation (FGM). Although this practice is illegal in Tanzania, it is still widely practiced within the Maasai tribe. Husbands hope to make their wives compliant and, since sexual intercourse is associated with pain for women through circumcision, to keep them from cheating.

The health consequences of FGM are fatal. Many girls and women suffer from severe inflammation as a result of unclean procedures and other chronic secondary problems such as incontinence. In addition, an above-average number of Maasai women bleed to death during the birth of their children, since the birth canal and vagina have become less elastic and prone to multiple tears and deep injuries due to the tissue that has been narrowed and scarred as a result of the circumcision. Since most women do not go to the clinic for delivery, medical help often comes too late in such cases.

Women who are not circumcised are sometimes mutilated without their consent during the birth of their first child in order to preserve the “honor” of the family.

The formation of women's groups within the Maasai villages has been becoming more and more popular for years, because they give women a framework in which they can speak freely and share their experiences. Mutual support also creates local trade initiatives and small businesses that enable the women to earn additional income.

During the visits to the women's groups, HIMD explains the health consequences of FGM without judging the cultural practice per se. Therefore, a health-oriented approach is chosen, not a culture-critical one. Models are used to explain the consequences of genital mutilation for women and their husbands. Practical tips on scar tissue care and general health topics are provided. By including the entire village community, the educational work should gradually bring about a complete cessation of the practice of female circumcision - even if this is a long way.

 

Over the years, HIMD has convinced dozens of former female circumcisers to quit their jobs and instead support them in their educational work and, if necessary, enable young women to escape circumcision and forced marriage. HIMD describes these women as “champions”, as more and more villages and those affected can be reached with their help.


Mobile Clinic

The HIMD medical team organizes regular mobile clinic days in remote villages and rural areas, so that even people and families without local health care can take advantage of treatment options. Vaccinations and screenings of children and pregnant women are carried out, but also other diseases and injuries and, if necessary, patients are being referred to larger clinics in Arusha.

 

"Tuwatetee" Project (educational programs in schools and colleges)

As part of the Tuwatetee program, HIMD employees visit various schools and further educational institutions in order to raise awareness among young people and young adults. These programmes are not only about sex education, contraception and HIV / AIDS education, but also include topics such as personal development as well as education on legal issues. The work within the program is very sensitive for the employees and involves numerous hurdles, as sex education in Tanzanian schools is not an integral part of the curriculum and is not welcomed by all school principals and local officials. Young people who obviously need individual help will be helped discreetly by forwarding the contact addresses and telephone contact of the HIMD team.

 

"Awareness" Programs

 HIMD is involved in numerous action days and events to educate the general public about their work. This includes stands at trade fairs as well as participation in action events such as the World Aids Day and the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

 

 

Individual help for women, families and children with disabilities

Many more families and individuals receive help and support by HIMD. In addition to the women and families known from the "Outreach" programs described above, employees also make regular home visits to children and people with disabilities in order to develop individual support services and solutions.


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Further important Information: 

Fundraising
The Baby Home is a charity organization and does not receive additional public funds but solely relies on local and international sponsors and supporters. Running a baby home is far from cheap as many staff have to be paid, as well as expensive infant milk and high medical bills. Raising funds in addition to your volunteer work is of course not a must but we highly encourage our volunteers to start a little fundraiser before, during or after their stay in Arusha. We have experienced great success with this in the past and present and saw our volunteers making great impacts. Besides of this it is very rewarding to see with your own eyes how far even a little amount of money can go. Several of our former volunteers even started NGOs and associations in their home countries and are continuing to support and promote their former work institutions here in Tanzania

Preparation
Preparing for a volunteering assignment abroad isn't always a simple task as there is a lot to keep in mind. Our team will be there for you along the way. We have our own STEP Africa preparation area. Once you apply and we confirm your application you will get online access to this area where you find a detailed 90 pages preparation handbook as well as many further updates & information and the contacts of other volunteers travelling at the same time as you. In case of any questions you will always be able to reach us via E-Mail or Phone / WhatsApp. 

On the Ground Support and Emergency Availability
The whole STEP Africa Team is on the ground in Tanzania. We are like an extended family and you will always be able to talk to us in case of any problems, questions or if you simply want to have a chat. We are there for you! Of course we are available 24/7 in case of any emergency.

Vaccinations/ Medical Care in Tanzania
We recommend that you consult your trusted travel doctor for individual advice on travel vaccinations and malaria prophylaxis. There aren't any mandatory vaccinations for entering Tanzania and the risk of contracting malaria is considered very low in Arusha due to the altitude. If you plan a trip to the island of Zanzibar, you will need to get a yellow fever shot as it is mandatory there. 

Arusha has some good private medical facilities, so in case you fall ill you will be in safe hands. 

Booking of Flights and Insurances
Booking your flights and respective travel insurance is not included in our fees and will be your own responsibility. This however is an advantage for you, as you will be able to scan for the best and most affordable offers from your home country or country of residence. Of course we are always happy to help and offer advice in case you are unsure what is the best solution for you. 

Visa
In order to volunteer in Tanzania you will need a Visa for Humanitarian and Charity Activities which costs $100 for US-citizens and $50 for citizens of all other countries. This visa is valid for 3 months. Those planning to stay for up to 6 months will need a visa extension which costs $300 ($250 for non US-citizens respectively)

COVID-19
Tanzania received the "Safe Travels Stamp" from the World Travel and Tourism Council. There are no entry restrictions or quarantine when entering the country though some airlines require PCR and / or rapid tests before check-in. Both tests are available in Arusha as well. Tanzania has chosen a slightly different approach during the pandemic and decided to remain mostly open in order to allow economic activities to continue. Approaches such as lockdowns seem to be right for many western countries but in a developing country like Tanzania where there isn't any functioning social security system such measures can do more harm than good. Of course also in tanzania hygiene measures were raised and regular hand washing, sanitizing and checking of body temperature are conducted. You may choose to wear a mask in daily life. All our projects are open and grateful to receive volunteers, especially during these challenging times. 

Typical day

The NGO welcomes volunteers with various skills and interests and thus your daily schedule will heavily depend on where within the organization you will work. 


A typical week consists of team meeting discussing the prospect and outcome of outreach activities. There are days where you will join the team to visits of remote villages and communities, where you will be warmly welcomed by the local women and health workers. According to your skills you can participate in training sessions and clinics. You may also choose to spend days at the women rescue center where young Maasai girls escaping FGM and forced marriage find refuge until a long-term solution is found. If you are a medical professional or student in this field you may also choose to work at the NGO's own clinic, providing day-to-day as well as emergency medical services and assisting during child birth and minor procedures. Another important part of the NGO's work is public relations and fundraising. Help spread the word about this meaningful cause by updating homepage and social media profiles and letting the world now about the difference HIMD makes in Tanzania.

Possible work fields include:

  • Healthcare
  • Community / Social Work
  • Teaching
  • Public Relations / Social Media / Fundraising
  • NGO Accounting

Free-time activities

The project is based in Arusha, Tanzania. There are several free time activities volunteers can engage in. We organize Safaris, mountain climbs and shorter tours like hiking, horse riding, visit to a nearby massai village, trip to the hotsprings and waterfalls, coffee tours, etc. to the nearer surroundings at affordable rates. We always make sure, that all guides and staffs are being paid fair wages. At the same time there are lots of things you can do during your free time or at the weekends in Arusha itself. There are different markets like second hand market, spice markets or massai market, as well as typical african restaurants and bars. Furthermore, the area you will live is very beautiful and you can either go to a lake and do canoeing or you can go to a lodge with a pool near to the hostel to relax for little money. Our other volunteers from the hostel will be happy to show you everything and if you join them at your free weekends!

Swimming
Concert/
Music
Sightseeing
Shopping/
Souvenirs
Climbing
Safari/
Zoo
Hiking
Museum/
Opera
Sports
Riding
Yoga/
Meditation

Require­ments

In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s) or if your are accompanied by your parents.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (intermediate level)
Criminal Background Check
required
Required Documents
CV, Copies of relevant certificates and a short letter of introduction in English
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
An strong interest in the field of healthcare, social work and women's rights is mandatory. Ideal are students or professionals from the above or related fields, however, most important is the right mind set and motivation.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 08:30 - 16:00

What's Included

Services by STEP Africa
SERVICES INCLUDED:
  • Project / Internship Placement according to your wishes and ideas
  • STEP Africa – Volunteer Guidebook and access to online volunteer Area
  • Visa support
  • Airport transfers both ways (Kilimanjaro International and Arusha Airport)
  • Orientation day in Arusha and project introduction
  • Accommodation with breakfast & dinner from Monday to Friday
  • 24/7 emergency contact
  • Our team members are by your side as contact persons / problem solver / idea givers and more throughout your stay.
NOT INCLUDED:

Flights (from $ 700 both ways), Travel Insurance (from $ 15 / month), Humanitarian Visa ($50 for first 3 months, $ 250 for up to 6 months), pocket money, vaccinations (many domestic health insurances cover parts of the travel vaccination costs)

Airport Pickup at Kilimanjaro International Airport

The price includes airport pick-up and drop-off from Kilimanjaro International Airport and the local Arusha Airport. Our driver can pick you up at any day or night time and at any day of the week.

Accommodation

Our STEP Africa House – located in the quiet and central suburb of Njiro, Arusha – is the “headquarters” of our Organization. It’s the home away from home for all our volunteers and interns during their time in Tanzania. Our office is also in the house, and our Swahili teacher comes here to teach his lessons. The hostel is a cozy guest house just a few minutes away from the hussle and bussle of Tanzanian life. It is in a central yet quiet location, a few hundred meters from the closest bus connections, 1 km from supermarkets, the Njiro Complex with restaurants, cinema & more and a short ten-minute drive to the city center of Arusha. All of our projects can be easily accessed from here. At the STEP House you will always meet like-minded people with whom you can exchange experiences and gather new ideas for your project. A typical Tanzanian breakfast is served consisting of white bread and black tea and other side dishes such as eggs, fruits and mandazi (Tanzanian baking specialty) and delicious local dishes for dinner (vegetarians are served separately!). We want you to feel comfortable in our House, which is why we attach great importance to a friendly and personal atmosphere. In the cozy backyard and in the garden you can relax from busy day at your project and the sometimes exhausting African everyday life.

The house consists of a total of seven bedrooms (dorm rooms with bunk beds and two double rooms). There is also a kitchen with a fridge for our volunteers, an oven, bathrooms, a common room equipped with comfortable sofas and a TV, as well as a covered dining area with numerous tables and benches outside.

Dorm Room Bedroom (Double)
Food & Beverages

At our volunteer house you will receive Breakfast and Lunch from Monday till Friday. During the weekends you can use the kitchen or find food in one of the many restaurants (both local and international cuisine) in Arusha. 

Internet Access
Good access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) in Kilimanjaro. We assist you to find cheap flights to Tanzania.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Tanzania provides security and is a plus to have.
Vaccines
If you are intending to volunteer in Tanzania you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Tanzania.

Dates & Fees

NO CREDIT CARD FEES

Details on arrival

You can join this program at any time of the year!


As a volunteer you will live with all our other volunteers at the STEP Africa House in Njiro, Arusha. This is where our driver will take you after you arrive at Kilimanjaro International Airport. Your first day will be an orientation day featuring an Arusha Town Tour and detailed briefing by our coordinator Upendo and STEP director Kira. You may also choose to sign up for our Swahili Course. Once you are well rested and prepared you are being taken to HIMD office and introduced to their work, following the discussion of your schedule. 

Availability
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Duration
2 - 26 weeks

Program fees

Costs: Prices in USD
2 weeks (min. stay)
$360
3 weeks
$480
4 weeks
$600
5 weeks
$720
6 weeks
$840
7 weeks
$960
8 weeks
$1,080
9 weeks
$1,200
10 weeks
$1,320
11 weeks
$1,440
12 weeks
$1,560
13 weeks
$1,680
14 weeks
$1,800
15 weeks
$1,920
16 weeks
$2,040
17 weeks
$2,160
18 weeks
$2,280
19 weeks
$2,400
20 weeks
$2,520
21 weeks
$2,640
22 weeks
$2,760
23 weeks
$2,880
24 weeks
$3,000
25 weeks
$3,120
26 weeks (max. stay)
$3,240
Average fees
$152 /week

Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated. STEP Africa will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Deposit (15%)
The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.
Final Payment (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with STEP Africa during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.

Why book with Volunteer World

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Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if STEP Africa cancels your trip
Support & Mediation
We cover your back no matter what happens
Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by STEP Africa.

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Support Healthcare and Women's Rights

Support the important work of an NGO fighting FGM, HIV/Aids, teenage pregnancies among Maasai Communities and other at risk groups in Northern Tanzania (Clinic&Outreach).

$152/week

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