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Volunteer & Travel

Help in Children Center & Travel

Durban, South Africa

We volunteer during the week and travel around the country weekly to Lesotho, Mozambique, Kruger National Park, Soweto, St.Lucia, Drakensberg, Wild Coast, Cape Town.

Your role as a volunteer

Volunteers get an opportunity to shadow our teachers while they teach the children until the volunteer can handle a class on their own.We also have roles in the kitchen for volunteers that are enthusiastic about preparing food. We try to grown our own food in our vegetable gardens and make effort in providing healthy food for the children and volunteers.

One of South Africa's biggest supermarket provides our centers with food that we distribute to all the centers and the communities. Volunteers assist with packaging the distribution throughout all the centers. There are gardening projects positions available to volunteers that are keen on being outdoors and maintaining the vegetable gardens in all three centers. We are at the revamping stage of all the centers so painting has been a big part of the process so we need volunteers to continue to paint the centers.

The location

Our location is not in your typical traveler route, these areas have a deep local history and culture. The culture is dominated buy Zulu speaking communities that are proud of the culture and traditions.Volunteers are immersed in the Zulu culture and tradition throughout their stay. We prefer volunteers that are open minded, respectful and are willing to work as a team towards the betterment of the centers.

The center

Children are brought to the center everyday from Monday to Friday where they are fed, clothed and taught by our qualified care givers and teachers. The age range is from 1 year to 6 years old.We opened two more centers in the South of Durban, 30 mins from the city, in a rural beach town which is on large property but fewer children at 50. This center is where we house the volunteers, we have a volunteer house that we are converting into a backpacker/hostel specifically for volunteers. 

The third center is in the north of Durban in an informal settlement that was formed from the migration of rural Zulu and Xhosa speaking worker moving in the urban area after Apartheid. This also has about 50 children and the same policies apply in all three centers.Our biggest centre has 300 children in Kwa-Mashu

We provide a stable family environment and are supportive towards our volunteers. We guide you in dealing with culture shock and how to navigate in your new environment whilst you are part of our family structure. 

Who we are looking for

We look forward to hosting people that want to have an authentic experience not typical to your everyday tour or traveling. Come and enjoy the warm and friendly people of South Africa, rich in heritage and culture that is unique in our diverse country. We are located a few minutes from the Indian Ocean so we have a beach town atmosphere and our warmers are warm enough to swim and world class surfing. This is a great area for those that share an active life style. Hiking the highest mountains in the country is only a couple of hours away.

We are in a malaria free zone but volunteers should consider malaria prevention when we venture to places like the Kruger National Park

Volunteers do not have to bring any special equipment other than a positive attitude. 

We arrange a Skype orientation  just to prepare the Volunteers just before they leave for South Africa

Included weekly trips

Every week we travel to exciting locations around South Africa so we experience backpacking to places like the Drakensberg Mountains, Lesotho, where we hike and enjoy the Basotho culture. Other locations are Johannesburg/Soweto, Kruger National Park,Mozambique, Kwa-Zulu/St.Lucia and Hluhluwe Game Reserve,Wild Coast, Garden Route and Cape Town. All these roadtrips are included include accommodation at backpacker hostels,food and activities like Safari, hiking and walking tours. This is included in the price just depending on how long you are volunteering.

Also Included in the price are weekly trips to:

Lesotho/Drakensberg/Kruger National Park/Johannesburg/Soweto/Mozambique/Wild Coast/Garden Route/Cape Town/Kwa-Zulu/St.Luciaan

St Lucia/Wetlands/Hluhluwe Game Reserve 

Example of one of our trips:

St.Lucia/Hluhluwe Game Reserve

Day 1 

06:00 am: Drive to St Lucia about 3 hours north of Durban 

09:30 am: Arrive at Tented Safari Lodge in St Lucia 

10:00 am: Enjoy breakfast, brunch, relax by the pool at the lodge. 

                   Walk around the small town or head to the beach 

14:00 pm: We go for a booked boat ride to see the Hippos 

16:30 pm: Boat ride ends 

17:00 pm: Volunteers return to the tented lodge to have time to themselves. 

                   For the rest of the evening everybody can prepare their own dinner with food supplied 

                   Get a chance to mingle and meet other travellers for the rest of the evening  

Day 2 

5:00 am – 14:00 pm: Safari at Hluhluwe Game Reserve, lunch included. 

                    Volunteers can spend the rest of the day as they wish. 

Day 3 

This is our lazy day before we head back home. 

Volunteers can choose to hang out at the lodge or go for a walking tour or just hand out at the beach 

15:00 pm; We drive back to the volunteer home (3 hours)

Drakensberg Mountains

Day 1 

06:00 am: Drive 2.5 hours to the Drakensberg Mountains from Durban. 

09:00 am: Check in at the Backpacker Lodge and prepare to go for a hike 

10:00 am: Go for the Amphitheatre/Tugela Falls hike, lunch included. 

16:00 pm: Hike ends, we return to the backpacker lodge. 

17:00 pm: We enjoy a rest at the hot bub before dinner. 

19:00 pm: Dinner is served at the lodge 

Day 2 

07:30 am; Prepare for a trip to Lesotho, don’t forget to bring your passport. 

                   Drive to another country within South Africa, meet the Basotho and be part of their village. 

                   Experience the culture and the history of the Lesotho Kingdom. 

                   Lunch is included. 

16:00 pm: Lesotho trip ends 

18;00 pm; Return to the lodge to mingle with other travellers and prepare for dinner. 

Day 3 

We usually reserve this day for nothing but relaxing and enjoying the beauty that is the Drakensberg mountains 

16:00 pm: We leave for the volunteer house 

Typical day

Mondays & Wednesdays 

8:30 am 
  • Day at the Centre begins  Activities throughout the day include:  
  • Cooking for the Children  Teaching  Playing Sports  Washing hands,
  • Brushing Teeth, Changing clothes  Feeding  Vegetable garden         
  • Painting the Centres  Administration at our office in Durban 
3:30 pm 
  • Day ends at the Centre  Volunteer have an option to be taken to the beach (5 mins away) for the rest of the afternoon.
 Tuesdays & Thursdays 

 08:30 am 
  • Drive 45 mins to the Kwa-Mashu Centre 
  • Pick up food to deliver to Centre around the area 
  • Distribute food to the children  
  • Distribute food to the local community 
  • Distribute food to the care givers and staff  
  • Pick up food for the volunteer house
 14:00 pm
  • Drive back to the volunteer house 
  • Volunteers have the option to be taken to the mall (7 mins away) or supermarket for the personal shopping. 
Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays 

 06:00 am 
  • we leave for one of our road trips to Drakensburg/Lesotho/St.Lucia/Hluhluwe/Mozambique/Wild Coast/Johannesburg/Soweto/Kruger Park
  • Johannesburg/Soweto including Kruger trips leave on Thursdays 
  •  Each trip has its own itinerary but we generally spend 3-4 day weekends at one of our travel destinations  
  • The Cape Town/Wild Coast/Garden Route takes 7 days 
  •  Days might overlap depending where we go so please be flexible and enjoy the ride 
Daily Schedule

08:00 am
  • Help our care givers with preparing breakfast for the kids 
  • Keeping the children entertained before breakfast 
 09:30 am
  •  Working with the our care givers with teaching children, songs and basic educational activities 
10:30 am 
  • Help Kids wash hands and prepare for snack time. 
11:00 am 
  •  Nap time for the kids and volunteers take a break for 45 Minutes
 11:45 am
  •  Volunteers play with the kids outside until lunch whilst others are helping prepare lunch 
12:30 am
  •  Watch over the children while eating lunch. 
 14:00 pm 
  • Volunteers choose from different educational activities for the children. 
  • Volunteers can choose to be part of our garden program. 
  • Other Volunteers are allowed to hold workshops to educate our caregivers about child care or any other education workshop. 
  • Some can be placed permanently in the kitchen. 
  • We paint all the centres 
  • We also take our volunteers to our other Centres and they can help with support groups and an opportunity to see how the other Centres operate. 
  • Teach kids English. 
  • The children are from ages 1-8. 

Details on Arrival

Day of arrival:   1st of every month except December and January

  • Pick up from the airport 
  • Drive to South of Durban where we have a centre with accommodation for volunteers   
  • Welcome dinner with everyone 

Free-time activities

  • We are located 2 km from the beach so volunteers can enjoy the beach after work
  • Once a week we go to yoga in the morning before work. 
  • 7 km away there is  Shark cage diving and we arrange for volunteers to take part if interested. 
  • Mnini dam is 500 meters away for any water sport including stand up paddling and kayaking.
  • Once a week we take volunteers to the mall 7 minutes away for any shopping required.  
  • Surfing 
  • City walking tour
  • Live music at local establishment
  • Township tour
  • Walking safari
  • Food Markets

Water Sports
Swimming
Concert/Music
Diving/Snorkling
Climbing
Safari/Zoo
Hiking
Sports
Yoga/Meditation

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). Of course, there is an exception for children that are accompanied by their parents.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (basic level)
Criminal Background Check
required
Education Requirements
at High School level
Required Documents
CV, Identity document and indemnity form
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 and Thursday from 09:00 - 15:00

Suitable for

Singles
Couples
Families
Groups
50+

Any questions? Just ask. We at Volunteer & Travel are happy to help you.

Contact Project Coordinator
Contact & Reservation
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Included Services

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Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by Volunteer & Travel.
Services by Volunteer & Travel
No matter how long you stay, the following services are included: Volunteering opportunity, accommodation onsite and on all trips, safaris, tours. most foods and airport pickup. 

The included trips depend on the duration of your stay with the program

4 Weeks:
  • Drakensberg
  • Lesotho
  • St.Lucia/
  • Hluhluwe Game Reserve
  • Johannesburg
  • Soweto
6 Weeks:
  • Drakensberg
  • Lesotho
  • St.Lucia
  • Hluhluwe Game Reserve
  • Johannesberg
  • Soweto
  • Kruger National Park
  • Wild Coast
8 Weeks:
  • Drakensberg
  • Lesotho
  • St.Lucia
  • Hluhluwe Game Reserve
  • Johannesburg
  • Soweto
  • Kruger National Park
  • Mozambique
  • Wild Coast
12 Weeks:
  • Drakensberg
  • Lesotho
  • St.Lucia
  • Hluhluwe Game Reserve
  • Johannesberg/Soweto
  • Kruger National Park
  • Mozambique
  • Cape Town/Garden Route
  • Wild Coast
Airport Pickup at King Shaka International Airport

Volunteers are picked up and dropped off at the King Shaka International Airport (Durban)

Accommodation

We have a volunteer guest house within the centres which is used by all volunteers. The rooms are shared between 2 people.

There is hot water and electricity and the bathrooms are shared. On our weekly road trips we stay in hostels/backpackers 
which are 3 star and above.

Dorm Room Guest Family Guesthouse Hotel Bedroom (Double) Youth Hostel
Food & Beverages

We provide food and drinks which volunteers prepare themselves. Foods like rice,pasta, fruits and vegetables are provided, sometimes picked from the property. Once a week we drive the volunteers to the mall 7 mins away to do some personal shopping.

Lunch is provided at the centres Breakfast and dinner is prepared by each volunteer. We are vegetarian friendly

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.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is King Shaka International Airport (DUR) in Durban. 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.
Costs (Prices in USD)
4 weeks (min. stay)
$2,390.00
6 weeks
$2,968.00
8 weeks
$3,459.00
12 weeks (max. stay)
$4,460.00
Average fees
$485.00/week

You can volunteer at the project site in Durban/South Africa between 4 weeks and 12 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Volunteer & Travel 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 South Africa.
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 Volunteer & Travel during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.
Africa Southern Africa South Africa Durban, 55 Monty Naicker Street
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