The Big Five Safari Reserve gives volunteers the opportunity to work and live in a conservation area with the presence of the incredible Big 5!
About the Program
The Big Five Safari Reserve began in 1999 as a joint conservation venture. Today the reserve consists of six independently-owned lodges. The lodges are owner-managed by the descendants of the original families who arrived here with the British settlers of 1820.
The Big Five Safari Reserve Volunteer Project is a unique conservation initiative that allows animals to be re-introduced to the area where they once roamed freely and so making a contribution to the conservation of our natural heritage. The challenge has been to re-establish the original flora and fauna species to the area and to return the land to nature.
Gap year students and volunteers can be part of this bigger picture and work and live on this reserve and help with all the aspects of running a safari reserve in Africa.
Guidance and Supervision
The coordinator on site is an experienced game ranger who will take you to and from the volunteer house to the reserve, work together with you and teach you all there is to know about the land, plants and animals.
As a volunteer at the Big Five Safari Reserve,
your primary responsibility is managing the free roaming lions, with the rest
of the day filled with tasks and duties based around the reserve.
The list below provides the details of various projects experienced by past volunteers. Please note that duties may change at any time, which means no week at the reserve will be the same!
General reserve Duties:
Working and living on a safari reserve is a
dream of many, and this is your opportunity to be a part of the bigger picture
of conservation. Don’t forget that although small changes can take a very long
time to make an impact on nature, and are difficult to see in a few weeks, your
role as a volunteer or gap year student adds immeasurably to the restoration of
the land to what it once was. By participating, you do not merely help on a
temporary basis on the reserve itself, but you also contribute to the future
financially, and impact the environment positively. You have the possibility to
see more than just the reserve and can spend some time at the community project
in Paterson as well, giving you the chance to see South Africa and its people
in a different light.
Working hours are flexible, but we start early most days, daily activities will include:
There are different activities to do in and around the area of the projects. However, you do need to have transport but there will always be an opportunity to arrange this transport with other volunteers.
If you want Khaya to arrange your transfer from Port Elizabeth to the project, this will cost an additional 75 EUR / 85 USD / 70 GBP one way. If you also would like to be picked up at the end of your volunteering period, the total price for both transfers will be double that amount
Volunteers are accommodated in a one-storey, 7 bedroom house; which overlooks a large garden and is within walking distance of the local bar and basic shops. Most of the rooms are doubles or triples and are male or female only. There are 3 bathrooms in total with a hot water shower and toilet.
Your meals are all included when on the reserve and consist of self-service breakfast and lunch and a home-cooked dinner. Volunteers are expected to be independent and proactive and be able to contribute to the household chores. This is not a luxury lodge where you are catered for, but rather your home that you share with other passionate, hard-working, like- minded volunteers!
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