Wildlife Conservation Internship

High­lights Require­ments What's Included Dates & Fees Rev­iews
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founded in 1997
Natalie
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Coordinator | Natalie
Coordinator | Natalie

High­lights

Start your career in conservation off right with three months of training and another three-month work placement.
Listen to the quiet hush of the wild open spaces, waking each morning to a chorus of savannah birds and drifting off to the nighttime hum of endemic frogs and crickets.
Learn to identify predators, like lions, cheetahs, and leopards, as well as megaherbivores like elephants and rhinos.
Live and work alongside Field Guide Association of South Africa, FGASA, qualified guides, growing personally and professionally by learning from their experiences.
Earn an ILM Endorsed Leadership Certificate as well as an EFR qualification, and complete a Biological Survey Techniques program.
Complete a three month training program then gain another three months of field experience with a South African conservation organisation or private nature reserve. This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Age 18+
Singles
Couples
YOUR FIRST 12 WEEKS OF TRAINING
During the first 12 weeks of your wildlife conservation internship in South Africa you will be staying with other conservation enthusiasts and our staff at the GVI base in the heart of Karongwe private nature reserve, an an hour from Kruger National Park. 

Here you can work with GVI to assist reserve management with maintaining a health predator and prey population as well as environmental rehabilitation projects like invasive plant removal. We also collect data on cheetah feeding behaviour and the impact of elephants on fragile plant species in collaboration with our local and international partners. Environmental education programs are also run in the nearby communities.

Before heading out to collect data, you will complete a rigorous training program, which will include how to use telemetry equipment and tracking knowledge to follow animal movements through the natural environment, learning about the identifying characteristics and common behaviours of a wide range of South African mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and insects, how to set up a biological survey for conservation research purposes, analyse conservation data, and best practices for Emergency First Aid in remote environments. 

YOUR 12 WEEK WORK PLACEMENT
After successfully completing the training phase of your wildlife conservation internship in South Africa, qualifying candidates will continue on to their three-month work placement. Depending on your skills, interests and the requirements of our partner organisations, you may stay on with the GVI team taking on new responsibilities, or be based at a partner conservation organisation, at a private nature reserve, or an ecotourism lodge catering to tourists. Accommodation at the work placements vary, but all offer basic but comfortable accommodation for their staff.

The work placement of the internship offers you the opportunity to put your newly acquired knowledge and skills into practice, gaining highly sought after work experience in the conservation field. After a successful internship, qualifying candidates may be given the opportunity to work for GVI or selected partner organisations in South Africa, or in other countries around the world where GVI operate. Over 50% of GVI staff are recruited from our alumni database. Qualification for positions is at the sole discretion of Global Vision International.

Typical day

-Rise each morning to the sounds of an authentically African birdsong at dawn, and head out in open-topped safari vehicles to conduct research vital for the conservation of key predators species, like cheetahs and lions.

-Head back to camp, when the sun is at its height, input data, study, assist with cooking or tidying, or relax with other participants in our shared outdoor social space. 

-When the African sun starts to set over the Drakensberg mountains at dusk, head out again to conduct further research. Return when the stars in the Southern night sky are at their brightest and share a meal and the day’s stories with fellow participants. 

-In your free time, explore Kruger National Park, a 45-minute drive from your accommodation, or the Panorama Route, including the magnificent Blyde River Canyon.

Free-time activities

During the expedition you will have 1 day off a week. In this time you could visit the stunning local mountains (Karongwe), go curio shopping, or just spend some time wandering around the local town. At the end of each 4 week cycle volunteers have the opportunity to take 4 days off, during which they are free to arrange their own trips if they wish. Before and after your program you could visit Kruger National Park, the Blyde River Canyon, go bungi jumping or canyoning at Sabiethe possibilities are endless! 
Sightseeing
Climbing
Hiking
Sports

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 (basic level)
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday

What's Included

Services by Global Vision International (GVI)

WHAT'S INCLUDED

  • 24-hour emergency phone
  • 24-hour in-country support
  • Access to Alumni Services and Discounts
  • Airport pick-up (unless otherwise stated)
  • All necessary project equipment and materials
  • All necessary project training by experienced staff
  • Certification and summary of training and experience received
  • Confidential professional reference
  • Final evaluation
  • First Aid & CPR training and certification
  • Leading biological surveys course
  • Location orientation
  • Long term experienced staff
  • Meals while on project (except on work placements for long term internships)
  • Research training
  • Reserve fees and permits
  • Safe and basic accommodations (usually shared)
  • Teamwork and leadership experience
  • Telemetry training as relevant
  • Weekly evaulation with your mentor
  • Welcome meeting
  • Wildlife identification techniques
  • Work placement - if successful during the first 12 weeks of the internship

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

  • Additional drinks and gratuities
  • Airport and reserve transfers
  • Extra local excursions
  • Flights
  • Food during the placement portion of your internship
  • Internal transport to placements
  • International and domestic airport taxes
  • Medical and travel insurance
  • Personal items and toiletries
  • Police or background check
  • Visa costs (where necessary)

Airport Pickup at Hoedspruit Airport
We will ensure, whenever possible, that one of our dedicated staff will be available to meet you at the airport. We will arrange with you prior to your departure that, should you arrive in the agreed upon pick up window, a member of our staff will be there to welcome you, easily identifiable in a GVI t-shirt or holding a GVI sign and wearing a friendly smile. This means there will be someone there to greet you as you land, and from there you will be transported to your GVI base to start your adventure and meet the rest of your team.
Accommodation
Live in the heart of the South African savannah sharing a renovated farmhouse with Field Guides Association of Southern Africa qualified guides, other GVI staff, and participants hailing from all four corners of the globe. Lodgings are large dorm-style rooms with shared bathrooms. The base is solar-powered to ensure less impact on the natural environment.
Dorm Room
Food & Beverages
Most breakfasts feature cereal, oats, and fresh fruit, and or lunch, it’s usually sandwiches and salads. Dinner might be anything from a traditional South African ‘potjie’ stew to pastas and stir frys.
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 Hoedspruit Airport (HDS) in Hoedspruit. 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.
Vaccines
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

NO CREDIT CARD FEES

Details on arrival

Set Start Dates with Guaranteed Departures:


  • 2019
  • 06 Apr 2019
    29 Jun 2019
    21 Sep 2019
  • 2020
  • 11 Jan 2020
    04 Apr 2020
    27 Jun 2020
    19 Sep 2020

Availability
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Duration
24 - 24 weeks

Program fees

Costs: Prices in EUR (USD)
24 weeks (min. stay)
€8,750 ($9,800)
24 weeks (max. stay)
€8,750 ($9,800)
Average fees
€365 ($409) /week

Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Global Vision International (GVI) 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 Global Vision International (GVI) 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
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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 Global Vision International (GVI) 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 Global Vision International (GVI).

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  Africa Southern Africa South Africa  Karongwe Reserve,  Karongwe Reserve

Wildlife Conservation Internship

Complete a three month training program then gain another three months of field experience with a South African conservation organisation or private nature reserve.

$365/week

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