Oceans 2 Earth Volunteers

Thai Elephant Sanctuary

Bangkok, Thailand show on map
This elephant sanctuary gives refuge to domesticated elephants who have been rescued from a life of working on the streets or logging. This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Singles
Couples
Groups
50+

The Project

The elephant sanctuary gives refuge to domesticated elephants who have been rescued from a life of working on the streets or logging. Nearby forests give the elephants the opportunity to roam and forage in an (almost) natural environment.

The non-profit organisation provides care and assistance to Thailand’s rescued elephant population by providing the rescue and ongoing care of these gentle animals. 

The project has won numerous awards for its ethical contribution to the assistance of Thai Elephants and other animals and the project owner campaigns heavily for animal rights. The team have rescued dozens of elephants, including very old, blind, deaf and orphaned elephants, and given them sanctuary in beautiful, open spaces.

The Location

The sanctuary is on temple grounds near Tha Yang, a district in the Southern part of Phetchaburi province in central Thailand, about 160 kms/100 miles South of Bangkok. Phetchaburi province is famous throughout Thailand for its Thai desserts - Khanom Thai - delicious candy-like finger food made from egg, palm sugar, coconut, and a binding agent, usually crushed beans or flour. 

O2E's elephant project is perfect for those looking for a culturally authentic experience in Thailand, as well as for those wanting to experience a largely social aspect to a project as there are as many as 30 volunteers at the project at any given time. 

Our Volunteers

Your responsibilities could include

  • feeding and watering the elephants 
  • cleaning and preparing food
  • construction and maintenance of mud pits 
  • cleaning enclosures (pick up lots of elephant poo
  • sourcing food from local farms (cutting corn and banana trees up for elephant food)
  • planting trees and looking after other wildlife and the resident dogs.

You will make a positive difference to the lives of the animals at the centre by caring for and enriching the lives of elephants that have been rescued or handed in by the local people. Special projects for long term volunteers include the care of orphaned baby primates, caring for animals in the quarantine area and taking part in animal rescues.

Conditions Onsite

It can be very emotional work treating and caring for sick and abused animals so you should try to be prepared for this. Be rest assured that you are amongst like-minded people who are experiencing the same feelings and emotions as you and will be there to support you. 

Many of the elephants in the area are used for other forms of elephant tourism in the area such as local elephant shows and elephant riding. This simply exploits animal which O2E and its partners do not support. 

The work at the centre is both demanding and physical, especially in the hot months. You will need to be in good physical condition due to the nature of the work undertaken in a hot and humid environment.

There is no maximum age, however, you will need to be able to stand for long periods of time, work in humid or wet conditions and perform basic manual labour tasks. 

Volunteers applying for this project must be over the age of 18.

Thailand has rich, biological diversity. However, sadly increasingly, human pressures such as overexploitation, habitat loss and habitat degradation, are pushing many of Thailand creatures to the brink of extinction. In Thailand, as in every country in the world, animals are abused and exploited for profit and human gratification. There are many examples of animal exploitation for the tourist industry, such as animals performing in degrading shows and elephant riding camps. There is also a thriving illegal trade in wild animals for pets.  O2E ask that volunteers do not engage in activities that involve animal exploitation. 

Please Note

The first instalment of your project fees is due within 1 week after you paid the deposit on Volunteer World. This is a total of $495 AUD and comes off your balance. The balance is due 90 days prior to travel. For all further information about the fees, please scroll down to the section "Program Fees“.

Typical day

You will be involved in the daily routine of caring for the resident elephants at the centre.

Animals are fed several times a day therefore food preparation and feeding plays a large part in caring for each animal. 

Each day you will be provided entertainment by preparing food games and enrichments, enclosures require cleaning and the collection of discarded food is required. 

Rotational tasks include keeping the volunteer house tidy, sweeping paths, kitchen duties and feeding, washing and grooming the resident dogs.

Details on Arrival

Volunteers can start every Sunday, all year

To get there, fly to Bangkok, Thailand. The centre is located 4 hours south of Bangkok. O2E will organise your transport from Bangkok airport or your hotel to take you directly to the centre. or volunteers can take a bus to the local town where they will be picked up.

Free-time activities

After work you can relax at the centre and socialise with other volunteers. There is a variety of local activities available which are scheduled on a weekly basis. These include night market visits, dinner outings, trips to Cha Am and National Park wild elephant spotting. 

On days off, you may choose to spend the day or an overnight stay in Cha Am or Hua Hin relaxing on the beach, shopping, tasting the local cuisine or getting pampered. There is a weekly night market in Cha-am which sells lots of cheap clothes and souvenirs. 

Spend the day at Phetchaburi, the capital city of Phetchaburi Province and one of the oldest settlements in Thailand. Mentioned in historical records dating to the 8th century, and having significant standing artifacts dating to the 12th century, there are numerous temples in and around the city center and market area, in addition to the Royal Palace known informally as Khao Wang that dominates the skyline. The city is situated on the River Phet ("diamond" in Thai), which originates in the Kaeng Krachan National Park and flows into the Gulf of Siam at Baan Laem.

Phetchaburi is a predominantly agricultural province. The city reflects this with a large and thriving traditional market which buzzes with activity from pre-dawn until mid-day and is filled with various aromas. It is very much a working city, with few tourists.

Visit the local spa resort for the day or evening and make use of the pool, spa facilities and restaurants. A massage is the best way to work out those aches and pains!

A few minutes away from the centre is the local village where you can stock up on snacks and personal items or visit the Buddist Temple and big Buddha. 

Please note:

Thailand offers many activities that include animals. Do not ride an elephant, have your picture taken with an animal or visit a zoo or animal entertainment venue. These activities exploit, abuse and overwork animals and many are considered illegal by the Thai Government. 

Any tour, activity or show that involves the use of animals in Thailand falls outside the O2E Policy for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. 

Sightseeing
Shopping/Souvenirs
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) or if your are accompanied by your parents.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (fluently)
Required Documents
Proof of travel Insurance docs and Proof of vaccinations
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
No specific skills are required other than a love for animals, a genuine need to help them and a hard working ethic.

You should be patient, caring, willing to accept new ideas and be prepared to be challenged by alternative cultural views on the treatment of animals.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 06:30 - 18:00

Included Services

Extra security layer by Volunteer World
Volunteer World is the world's leading comparison platform for international volunteer opportunities. We guide you through a safe and easy application process - including all necessary payments. Planning your next meaningful trip with Volunteer World gives you free access to our:
Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if Oceans 2 Earth Volunteers 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 Oceans 2 Earth Volunteers.

Before your journey

Profound consulting and ongoing support (free)
Oceans 2 Earth Volunteers (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 Oceans 2 Earth Volunteers

What's included in this project?

  • Pre-departure support
  • Project Information Pack
  • Arrival orientation
  • Accommodation
  • Meals
  • All necessary training by staff and/or volunteers
  • O2E T-Shirt
  • 24-hour in-country support 24-hour
  • O2E emergency phone
  • Certificate of Participation, if requested
What's not included in this project?

  • Flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Bangkok airport or hotel transfer to project (O2E can arrange)
  • Personal spending
  • Visas and entry permits
Airport Pickup at Suvarnabhumi Airport
Accommodation

Basic shared rooms for 2-4 people on site at the centre.

Dorm Room
Food & Beverages

Breakfast, lunch and dinner with vegetarian and vegan options.

Fresh, filtered water is provided.

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 Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) in Bangkok. We assist you to find cheap flights to Thailand.
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 Thailand provides security and is a plus to have.
Vaccines
If you are intending to volunteer in Thailand you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Thailand.
Costs (Prices in USD)
1 week (min. stay)
$700.00
2 weeks
$1,122.00
3 weeks
$1,463.00
4 weeks
$1,794.00
5 weeks
$2,153.00
6 weeks
$2,494.00
12 weeks (max. stay)
$4,740.00
Average fees
$548.00/week

You can volunteer at the project site in Bangkok/Thailand between 1 week and 12 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Oceans 2 Earth Volunteers 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 Thailand.
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 Oceans 2 Earth Volunteers during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or cash at arrival at the project site.

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Reservation
The project site is open in: Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

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