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Tikodane Community Center

Assistant in Health Initiative

Katete, Zambia show on map

Health initiative volunteers will help Tiko promote basic health and nutrition practices in the villages which sport worst statistics from our nutrition in the world

The project

Our mission is to fight poverty in Katete through better education, health and entrepreneurship; helping people to help themselves while maintaining their traditional values. 

In order to achieve our mission of better health, we have established a number of health initiatives like HIV/AIDS counselling, teaching basic health to village representatives, malnutrition research, health seminars, and so much more. Katete still follows very traditional beliefs like witchcraft. Much of our work is providing education and reinforcing that education continuously. 

Volunteer work

Volunteers will continue this effort through several means including hosting health seminars, going to women’s clubs in surrounding villages, and helping provide HIV/AIDS counselling. Volunteers will be responsible for learning and teaching the 19 Steps out of Poverty for the Subsistence Farmer as well as familiarizing themselves with ongoing health efforts. 

Volunteers will also need to keep detailed reports for the Management Committee to inform them about their activities. The Tiko crew will work alongside volunteers. They are very familiar with the villages and can assist in translating as well.

How it works

The individual activities are tailored to the skills and interests of the volunteers. We encourage volunteers to  pick one of the health project or combination of projects. Volunteers can also suggest a program to add to that area of concentration if the inspiration should strike them. Each project does have a different schedule and can also depend so much on the day, the season, what holidays are happening, community events like a headman initiation, how many funerals are going on, etc. It is almost impossible to dictate a typical day because there isn't one. Usually, volunteers establish their own routine

The location

Tiko is situated right at the Great East Road, three kilometres from Katete centre. The road runs from South Africa to Tanzania. Volunteers will be living at the Tiko Lodge which is part of Tikondane Community Centre and has a variety of different types of accommodation. Volunteers will be able to go into the villages nearby and host seminars at Tiko. They will quickly become part of the Tiko community. 

Who we are looking for

Volunteers should be open minded, caring, and have a sense of humor. People in Katete are especially nice and volunteers can expect support from the Tiko crew and Elke, Tiko’s director. No special equipment is required; just a lot of patience in the knowledge that changing mindsets is a multi generational job.

We are looking forward to you joining the Tiko family. Zikomo!

Typical day

A typical day at Tikodane depends on the volunteer and the project. Most volunteers work Monday to Friday during the hours of 08:00 to 16:30. However, volunteers decide what schedule is best for their project. In the rainy season for instance they get two days off to work in their own fields. There is a management committee meeting every Monday and intern meeting every Wednesday. Volunteers will be welfared with an afternoon party and we'll go along for cultural safari's when there are tourists. It helps to be used to go by bike, otherwise a bike taxi might do the trick to go to the villages. It gets dark at 18:00 but it's always nice to sit on the verandah to eat African food from the restaurant, but self catering is possible.  

Details on Arrival

It takes around 6 hours to get to Tiko from Lusaka, so we recommend spending the night in Lusaka and setting off early at 06:00 – If you come with a later bus, you may have to wait for hours, until it is full.

(Please contact us for information on getting here from Lilongwe, Malawi which is also around 6 hours away)

Lusaka airport transfer: Taxis can be found outside the airport and cost around US$30 to the city.

Lusaka accommodation: There are many backpacker hotels in Lusaka close to the busstation

Lusaka to Tiko transfer:

Bus to Tiko is US 17 one way from Lusaka Intercity Bus station and takes 6-7 hours.

Taxi is US$ 280, if you want to be fetched from Katete.

At the end of August there is a very impressive traditional ceremony taking place near Katete. For that you have to book early.

Free-time activities

Free time and entertainment

Katete is a quiet town so you won’t be out partying every night. However, you experience life in a small rural town as many people in Zambia live and get to spend time working with Zambians that you probably won’t find in a city or typical gap year package. There are activities and places to visit nearby and in the surrounding area!

  • Katete market for local food
  • Cultural safari to Kachipu village – A guide gives a brief tour of a Zambian village followed by a vegetarian feast, and watching a traditional girls’ initiation dancing ceremony, Chinamwali. Depending on availability, Gulewamkulu, the Nyau ghost dance, is performed in nearby village. Recognized UNESCO in 2005, when dancing, the men are believed to be spirits with magical powers and no longer mortals. An intriguing and invigorating insight into local culture and tradition. 
  • Bike ride with Tiko bikes
  • Visit St Francis Hospital
  • Hike up Mphangwe mountain
  • Katete nightclub – maybe not for everyone or every week but worth a visit for the experience!
  • Film afternoon on Saturday and Sunday
  • Pool, once the pool table is done
  • Trip to Msoro cathedral – worst road ever but an adventure to a cathedral build by the first missionaries arriving in Zambia.
  • South Luangwa National Park (3 hours) – You can take a taxi direct (US$ 90) or a bus (US$9). You can stay at Flatdogs Camp sleeping in a safari tent surrounded by elephants and hippos. This is one of the lower end luxury lodges and Tiko volunteers get a discount. Well worth it!


Program 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 from 08:30 - 16:30

Suitable for

Wheel Chairs

Included Services

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We refund your fees if Tikodane Community Center cancels your trip
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Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by Tikodane Community Center.

Before your journey

Profound consulting and ongoing support (free)
Tikodane Community Center (your host organization) provides consulting and is keen to answer all your questions. Once you reserved your spot, you will receive the contact details of your volunteer project.
Online preparation course (optional, from $49)
Prepare yourself and become a confident and well informed traveler. Global Travel Academy takes you on a journey before you leave home, helping you to become one of the world's greatest travelers. Our trusted partner for online learning offers courses in "International Volunteering", "Travel Health & Safety" and "Travel Safety Abroad".

On-site services

Services by Tikodane Community Center

This includes 3 meals a day (breakfast, lunch and dinner) and accommodation at Tiko.

The standard package includes all meals, but if volunteers stay longer and decide they prefer to self-cater, the price will be reduced for accommodation only.

NOT INCLUDED: Drinks, transfers, accommodation in Lusaka, and tourist activities  


Accommodation is in the lodge at the community centre. Rooms are simple twin or double rooms, most with ensuite toilet and bath. Volunteers will have their own room unless they prefer to share. You can also pick a dorm bed in our traditional African hut, albeit without toilet and bath

Bedroom (Double)
Food & Beverages

We include 3 meals a day at our wonderful restaurant. We are able to provide vegetarian meals. We serve traditional African food as well as some western options like spaghetti. Water is available from the tap and is safe to drink.

Internet Access
Limited access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees. An airport pickup isn't included within the program fees either.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Kenneth Kaunda International Airport (LUN) in Lusaka. We assist you to find cheap flights to Zambia.
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 Zambia provides security and is a plus to have.
If you are intending to volunteer in Zambia you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Zambia.
Costs (Prices in USD)
1 week (min. stay)
2 weeks
3 weeks
4 weeks
8 weeks
12 weeks (max. stay)
Average fees

You can volunteer at the project site in Katete/Zambia between 1 week and 12 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Tikodane Community Center will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Crowdfunding Service
Generally, volunteering abroad involves certain costs. In case you need financial support, we will assist you to fundraise your volunteer program in Zambia.
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 Tikodane Community Center during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.
  Africa Eastern Africa Zambia  Katete, Great East Road next to St. Francis Hospital

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