Conservation and Community Outreach
A 3-week venture into the amazing Kafue National Park in Zambia gathering information on fauna and flora using various techniques, teach conservation education at the local school and work with the empowerment of women’s groups.
A three-week venture into the amazing Kafue National Park in Zambia gathering information on fauna and flora using various techniques, teach conservation education at the local school and work with the empowerment of women’s groups.
Gather information to support conservation organisations while learning about conservation in a national park environment, including law enforcement and threats to wildlife. Learn to use camera traps and, if possible, we go on bushwalks looking at how to track big game and recognise different animals spoor.
Teach at the local school the conservation curriculum developed by the project. It uses creative ways to teach the kids about the wildlife in the park they live next to, how to alleviate human-wildlife conflicts, and why it is important to protect the wildlife. Outside of term-time the volunteers do workshops with the kids and teach them whatever skills the volunteers have, like football, music or art camp.
We also work with local women’s groups to help them empower themselves and create an income. If the volunteers have skills they can teach that would be amazing, like sewing or bead making.
Volunteers start and end their placements at the Elephant Nursery at Lilayi where they will meet the orphans and learn about our work with them.
There is no experience necessary to be a volunteer other than a keen interest in wildlife conservation. There is a volunteer supervisor who will be helping the volunteers as well as giving the appropriate training. If volunteers have any relevant experience and can build up the capacity within the project staff that of course would be a plus but not necessary – we try to tailor each volunteer experience to the specific volunteer.
Play with the local children as well as teaching them about animals and conservation.
Learn to use camera traps and see what amazing wildlife pictures you can take.
Meet the small elephant orphans at Lilayi Elephant Nursery where you will stay for the first and last night of your time with us.
Enjoy life in the African bush with all the wonderous encounters with the wildlife here.
- Assist in our behavioural study on the smallest elephant orphans as they recover from their initial traumas of being separated from their mothers and learn about life from each other.
- Prepare their milk bottles and generally help out at the nursery.
- Teach school children about animals and conservation using our active and creative lesson plans.
- Learn about the work of the anti-poaching units and fire-fighting team and their challenges.
- Gather information on biodiversity.
Volunteers will be staying in our tented camp along the riverfront. Usually each volunteer gets their own tent but might have to share if the need arises. The camp is basic but well established with some home comforts, like a seated toilet and a hot bush shower – which really makes a difference after a long hot day in the bush. There is a small kitchen where volunteers can cook their food over a gas cooker and sometimes there will be cook outs around the campfire. Refrigeration is limited so the diet is predominantly vegetarian. The project provides food for three meals per day, but the volunteers are welcome to supplement with some comfort foods like chocolate and crisps. Clean drinking water is available unlimited.
We use solar power to charge phones, laptops and torches. However, our solar system is not extensive so charging facilities are limited (particularly in cloudy weather) and will prioritise the project communications and work necessities. We employ full-time staff in all the camps in various capacities, including for security, so the camps are never unattended.
As we are in the African bush there is always the possibility of encountering wildlife, both big or small. On arrival all volunteers are given clear safety briefings to minimise any dangers. All management staff have basic first aid qualifications and the camp has a fully comprehensive medical first aid kit.
Age range: 18-99 years. We do allow in certain cases 17-year olds with parental consent.
Group size: Max. 3 volunteers at a time.
Mukambi Camp by Kafue National Park, Zambia.
All volunteers start and end their stay with us at the Lilayi Elephant Nursery at the outskirt of Lusaka, Zambia.
The cost to participate in this project is USD $2,500 for the 22 days. This will be used to cover the costs of the volunteers during their stay and the remainder will be donated to the project.
Elephant Orphanage Dates
The available dates for 2019 are:
16 January – 6 February
13 February- 6 March
13 March – 3 April
10 April – 1 May
8 – 29 May
5 – 26 June
3 – 24 July
31 July – 21 August
11 September – 2 October
9 – 30 October
6 – 27 November
4 – 18 December – short one due to Christmas
- All project-related transport
- Accommodation at our tented camps at the Lilayi Elephant Nursery and Mukambi Camp.
- Three meals a day (the volunteers help prepare the meals)
- Experienced staff support, training and supervision
- The documentation required to apply for a work visa (usually obtained on arrival at the airport)
- Two working t-shirts per volunteer
- National Park Entry Fees for Kafue National Park
- Local staff whom prepare volunteer accommodations, maintain the grounds, and secure the property is safe and secure.
What’s not included
- Plane tickets to Zambia
- Travel insurance
- Business visa ($50 – we will provide the necessary documents to obtain the visa)
How to get to the project?
- We will pick you up at the airport or hotel within Lusaka on the project start date.
Are the dates set or flexible?
- In order for the volunteer supervisors to be able to plan their time we do try to stick with the set dates, though we can be a bit flexible in certain cases.
Is it always 22 days or can it be shorter/longer?
- This is a set programme of 22 days and is difficult to make shorter. The programme is incorporating all three departments of the organisation, it therefore is a packed programme which is difficult to cut down into fewer days. In certain cases we do accept shorter-time volunteers and the cost is calculated accordingly.
- Longer term volunteers are easier to plan for, however as a business visa to Zambia is only 30 days that is the maximum amount of days we can do.
$2500 seems like a lot of money – why is it so expensive?
- Yes, $2500 is a lot of money but it also covers a long period of time, 22 days. Most holiday destinations would cost a lot more for the same time period for accommodation plus food – and with us you get an amazing experience, you get to make a real difference, plus you learn a lot about elephants, wildlife conservation, and so much more.
“The approach taken by the project in research, community outreach, and wildlife protection has inspired me, I would love to learn more and find ways to better my country in its approach to wildlife conservation. I am glad to have been a part of such an inspiring organization protecting elephants, and to have gotten the opportunity to observe and learn about these incredible animals.” – Muriel Simukonda, August 2018 Volunteer.
Elephant Orphanage and Community Outreach
Linking People & Conservation
The African Conservation Foundation is an award-winning charity focused on protecting Africa's endangered wildlife and their habitats. We build local capacity for long term sustainability of projects.