Discover the 'behind-the-scenes' of a game reserve and contribute to real conservation management in South Africa's Great Karoo. Come get your hands dirty with us!
Have you ever wanted to get involved in the daily running of a game reserve whilst doing meaningful conservation work? Then Samara’s Conservation Volunteer Programme could be for you!
Samara is a 70,000 acre game reserve and a hub of conservation and animal reintroduction efforts in the Great Karoo. As a volunteer you will work on ongoing wildlife research and management projects as well as assist with community development and environmental education programmes. Come get your hands dirty in a unique South African bush experience!
Our conservation ethic over the past 20 years has been guided by professional advice and conservation best-practice, working with a number of NGOs and government bodies such as SANParks. Since 1997, we have achieved a lot, with some notable successes. However, much more remains to be done to achieve Samara’s potential. Our vision is nothing less than a fully-restored Great Karoo ecosystem, a haven for endangered species, a purveyor of ecosystem services and a tool for social upliftment in this hauntingly beautiful land. We are working with various stakeholders in the region to create the 1.3 million acre Great Karoo Mega-Reserve, and you can help contribute to this ongoing conservation journey.
About the Volunteer Programme
We started the Volunteer Programme in 2010 with the aim of engaging young people from around the world in the 'behind-the-scenes' running of a game reserve whilst doing work that actually contributes to the running of the reserve. This includes land rehabilitation, alien vegetation control, cheetah monitoring, rhino security and anti-poaching, community outreach and working with our other projects, from the Tracker Academy to the research projects on the reserve.
The volunteer programme also offers you the opportunity to contribute to an ambitious and worthy cause far bigger than ourselves - the creation of the 1.3 million acre Great Karoo Mega-Reserve. When you stay and volunteer with us, you join Samara's journey to preserve and revitalise this unique ecosystem.
You will leave Samara with a deeper understanding of the bush, as well as useful skills and techniques used in current scientific research, conservation and reserve management. We also hope you will leave energized by the experience of living so closely with nature.
On a typical day, you'll wake around 7am and get going with some of the following activities:
The programme is open during the months of June, July and August. Open dates for 2017 are Friday 2nd June to Friday 1st September inclusive.
In your free time you'll have the chance to explore the beautiful landscape in which you are staying. Activities include hiking, walking, game drives, camping (weather permitting), swimming in the river (weather permitting). Trips to surrounding attractions such as the Valley of Desolation, Graaff-Reinet, national parks nearby or even the coast for some surfing can be arranged on request and at extra cost.
Accommodation is in basic single or double rooms. There are separate communal bathrooms for boys and girls. The maximum number of volunteers that can be accommodated is 10. Camp facilities include a kitchen, living room, braai area, outdoor seating, Wifi, telephone and laundry.
Meals are cooked by volunteers and volunteer programme coordinators in teams. Menus are prepared each week to cater for any dietary requirements or preferences.