Elizabeth Gerner’s Experience in Zimbabwe

Elizabeth Gerner
Volunteer Name:Elizabeth Gerner
Project Attended:Lion Breeding & Rehabilitation Volunteering
Country Attended:Zimbabwe
Tell us about how your two weeks in Zimbabwe made you want to go back to Africa Whilst I was in Zimbabwe, I got to experience things that only a handful of people get to experience. The lifestyle there was so refreshing that I was glad to get up early in the morning and clean out lion enclosures, a task that some found less than pleasant! After living this and getting home and repeatedly telling family and friends about my time there, I realised I wanted to go back to Zimbabwe, but I also realised that there is so much more of Africa to see, encouraging me to do some more research into other projects and spotting the project in South Africa with penguins, I had to snap up the opportunity!
Both of your projects have had a wildlife focus, and you stated in your application form that you love meeting new people. Tell us about the people you met at the project and why you want to work with wildlife? At the project, I found everyone to be extremely friendly. I have never smiled at people so much in my life! Everyone I saw in the park all said hello and asked me how I was and they all seemed to be genuinely interested in my answer. I wanted to work with wildlife as I have always had an interest in animals, whether it was my own pets or animals in the zoo and when I saw the project I knew I had to go and have a hands on experience with one of the world's most beautiful animals.
What have been the highlights of your trip? The lion walks, elephant rides, horse rides were amazing! Not to mention the trip to the orphanage!
Why did you choose to volunteer with Kaya? They came to the university and had a good range of options to choose from.


Testimonial


“Make sure to get involved in as many things as the project offers! The last thing you want is to go home and think ‘I wish I’d done that when I was there.’ Don’t let fear hold you back. I almost let my fear stop me from riding an elephant, but as soon I was on him I didn’t want to get back down! (Though I had to because my legs were aching!) I have just booked a project to go to Cape Town with penguins and I’m in the middle of working hard to save up so I can go back to volunteer again! This all means that I have to be extremely careful and I’ve sacrificed many nights of partying but I know the end result will be totally worth it!”