Rehabilitation assistant

founded in 2012
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Coordinator | Sarah
Coordinator | Sarah
Book with Flex Option! Choose new departure dates or change to a different volunteer program at no extra costs.


Hand Raising Orphaned Wildlife
Become a Surrogate Monkey Mum
Releasing Rehabilitated Wildlife Back into the Wild
Experience Life in the South African Bush living amongst the animals at the Centre
Learn More About the Care of Wild Animals
Helping wildlife requires a lot of work! So we need volunteers to help us in our struggle by participating in the daily tasks of the center. This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Age 18+
DIY Wild is a wildlife rescue and rehabilitation centre based at the foot of the stunning Hlumu Hlumu Mountains in the Mpumalanga region of South Africa.

We are the only primate rehabilitation in the province, and as such our work focuses mainly on vervet monkeys. The majority of these monkeys come in as tiny babies after their mothers have been shot, poisoned or hit by cars or killed so that people can raise the baby as a pet.
We also take in any other wildlife that needs to be rescued and to date have successfully worked with mongoose, many antelope and bird species, warthog, bushpigs, bushbabies, small predators and reptiles. 
DIY Wild is a non profit organisation and, with no government support, relies solely on the donations from volunteers to continue its vital work. Without the volunteers, DIY Wild would not exist and the many animals we take in each year would not have a future.

Volunteers are essential for the success of this project and are required for every aspect of the day to day running of the project. There is no typical day and although many of the jobs are a daily necessity such as feeding and cleaning, there is always a new experience or job that needs doing. We will ensure you will get involved and have fun while learning new skills, meeting new people and experiencing a new way of life all while making a huge difference to wildlife conservation.
While you are a volunteer with us you will be treated as a professional member of the team and it is important that you use your initiative and listen and learn. By all working together as a team we can achieve big things for the animals in our care. 

Typical day

Typical everyday tasks can include:

•Daily feeding routines and sorting of new food deliveries
•Hand raising and bottle feeding of orphans (Nov-May)
•Working in the baby monkey nursery (Nov-May) to supervise and ensure they are playing, sleeping, feeding etc.
•Cleaning, cleaning, cleaning!! We need to ensure all the enclosures and work areas are kept clean to avoid any infections.
•Helping to administer medicines
• Construction projects - helping to build enclosures, fixing fences, taking down old fences, painting, fixing, maintenance, laying pipes etc.
• Taking part in animal rescues or releases
• Land maintenance such as alien tree removal or burning fire breaks
• Enrichment projects

The extra work can include:
• Cleaning, sorting and feeding the mealworms
• The weekly food shop
• Food collection
• Sorting food donations
• Gardening - we have a vegetable garden we are trying to get going to help us become more self sufficient.
• Helping with fundraising ideas
• Helping in the office
• Helping with educational tours
• General site clean ups

Free-time activities

Volunteers get one day off per week to relax, hike the local mountains or waterfalls or visit the local resort (this is dependent on a vehicle being available to give you a lift and a petrol donation). The day off you will be allocated will be dependent on other volunteers at the project but if you are travelling as a group then we will try and give you off time on the same day.

You also have the opportunity to go to a waterfall about 30 minutes walk from DIY Wild or hike on the mountain Hlumu Hlumu ( appro. 2hours).
Forever Resorts borders our property and is ideal for a day trip on your day off. They have natural hot spring pools, a water park, a spa and activities such as quad biking and horse riding. A R50 fee is required to cover petrol to drop you off and pick you up.

Kruger National Park: It would be a shame to come all the way to Africa and miss out on seeing the Big 5 in their natural habitat.
You can book a trip to Kruger through us of varying lengths (day trips, 1 night and 2 night stays) 

The boarder to Swaziland is just 45 minutes drive from us. Once in Swaziland you can visit the famous glass blowing centre at Ngwenya and numerous beautiful waterfalls and dams. 

These are extra trips and can be arranged on site.



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 (basic level)
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
No skills or previous experience are required - just a passion for wildlife and the willingness to get involved with all the work at the centre.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 07:00 - 18:00

What's Included

Services by DIY Wild
 The fees included:
  • Accommodation in shared rooms 
  • 3 Meals a day in the Hlumu Lodge Restaurant
  • 1 transfer to and from Nelspruit
  •  Room cleaning twice a week 
  • A 24/7 dedicated volunteer coordinator
  •  Full training in all aspects of work

Airport Pickup at Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport

We pick up volunteers from Nelspruit on a Monday. We suggest the citybug bus from JHB airport but there is also the option to fly up to KMIA airport

Volunteers stay in shared accommodation in our volunteer house. There are a maximum of 3 people to a room with a shared bathroom. 
We provide all bed linen and towels and 1 of our housekeeping staff will clean the chalet twice a week
Bedroom (Double)
Food & Beverages
 Daily meals will generally consist of the following:
  • Breakfast:  A selection of cereal and muesli, toast with jam, fruit, tea and coffee.
  • Lunch: Eaten between 12-1pm Basic lunches such as sandwiches, pasta, salads, pies, omelette.
  • Dinner: We provide ingredients for bulky filling meals such as pastas, stews, bolognaise, stir frys, rice dishes etc.

Internet Access
Sorry, no 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 Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport (MQP) in Nelspruit. We assist you to find cheap flights to South Africa.
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 South Africa provides security and is a plus to have.
If you are intending to volunteer in South Africa you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for South Africa.

Dates & Fees


Details on arrival

You will need to fly into Johannesburg OR Tambo airport and take a bus to Nelspruit. The most economical is the CityBug which goes directly from the airport to Neslpruit. The cost is approximately R390 each way.

We pick up volunteers every Monday (until 4pm) from Nelspruit. 
If you arrive early into Nelspruit we can recommend a backpackers to stay overnight.

Please note it is essential to book your bus ticket in advance as there may not be any seats left on the day.

This program is paused due to COVID-19

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
1 - 12 weeks

Program fees

Costs: Prices in USD
1 week (min. stay)
3 weeks
4 weeks
5 weeks
6 weeks
7 weeks
8 weeks
12 weeks (max. stay)
Average fees
$443 /week

Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated. DIY Wild 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 DIY Wild during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.

Why book with Volunteer World

Extra security layer by Volunteer World
Volunteer World is the world's leading comparison platform for international volunteer opportunities. We guide you through a safe and easy application process - including all necessary payments. Planning your next meaningful trip with Volunteer World gives you free access to our:
Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if DIY Wild cancels your trip
Support & Mediation
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Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by DIY Wild.

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Rehabilitation assistant

Helping wildlife requires a lot of work! So we need volunteers to help us in our struggle by participating in the daily tasks of the center.



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