What is the Wildlife Orphanage and Rescue Sanctuary in Zimbabwe project all about?
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Volunteer with Kaya and get first hand experience in rescue, rehabilitation and release at Bulawayo’s wildlife rescue sanctuary. Established in 1973, the wildlife orphanage was set up to offer support to orphaned, abandoned and/or sick wild animals. The centre caters to four main areas; carnivores, primates, birds and a nursery with various animals that are rescued and released back to their natural habitat, when it is safe to do so. When it is not possible, the animals are cared for and used for educational purposes, zoological study or, in the case of endangered species, introduced into breeding programmes. Community education is a vital aspect of this placement. Fear and lack of understanding about wildlife and the environment has led to many animals being killed and their habitats being destroyed by local communities.The center relocates animals reported to be creating nuisances in the surrounding areas. It also organizes visits to local schools, thus far having educated 75,000+ children about the wildlife of the area. It also welcomes families and visitors into the centre to improve their understanding and awareness. The project has 25 full-time staff members, whom you will work with to secure a protected future for Zimbabwe’s wildlife.
Why choose this Wildlife Orphanage & Rescue Sanctuary project?
The centre is always welcoming new animals and appreciates extra support to care for them. The project also benefits by having volunteers who can help gather and sort research data and materials, such as photographs. Volunteers benefit from having up-close exposure to wild animals, whilst learning about the skills involved in animal protection and rehabilitation.
Role of the Conservation Volunteer
Volunteers on this project are involved in feeding, cleaning, bug catching, maintenance and sick/injured/orphaned animal care. You will help with animal release and rescue missions as well, with the chance to see how camera traps work. Volunteers rotate across the four areas of the sanctuary, getting the opportunity to work with a range of wildlife. You should be prepared to help with a wide range of work, as the needs of the centre change daily depending on the animals present and their needs. Volunteers will also join staff at the local school outreach programmes and help conduct talks for centre visitors.
What skills do I need to be a Conservation Volunteer in Zimbabwe?
There are no specific skills required for this program. You should be of good health and fitness and have a love of animals, of course! Vets and veterinary students are highly valued as well as those involved or studying animal sciences. Six month placements are available, but are subject to the successful completion of the first three month period.
WHY JOIN THE PROJECT
To experience amazing wildlife
To provide a safe place for wildlife to recover before being released
To support the efforts against wildlife poaching
Where will I work in Zimbabwe?
The project is located 20 minutes outside the city of Bulawayo – the second largest city in Zimbabwe. You will live in the private game area of a rural suburb in comfortable on-site huts with lounge areas, a mini library, and a game room. There is a swimming pool for the hot summer days and a fire pit for cold nights. The atmosphere is relaxed, which you will enjoy after a hard day’s work. Volunteers eat meals with the family that runs the centre, thus having the opportunity to connect with locals.
You can go on weekly trips into the city. For those staying three weeks or longer, there is the opportunity to travel to Victoria Falls (extra cost).
Details & Costs
- Duration: 2-12 weeks
- Cost: £1281/$2000 for 2 weeks
£461/$720 per additional week
- Requirements: Age 16+
- Location: Bulawayo, Zimbabwe
- Working hours: Tuesday – Sunday, 7:00 - 17:00 (night shifts may be required for some sick animals)
- Project availability: Projects start every Monday of each month and run year-round
- Arrival day: Monday
What is included
- Accommodation: shared room in a volunteer cabin on-site some with en-suite bathrooms, game room, fire pit, pool & volunteer dining area
- Food: 3 meals a day
- Airport pickup and drop off from Bulawayo Airport
- Training: pre-departure information pack and on-site orientation
- Support: 24 hour support
- Excursion Planning: staff help organise additional activities (prices may be extra). Trips include; Matapos National Park, Bulawayo Natural History Museum and Victoria Falls.
What is not included
- Police/Government Background Check: US and UK citizens will be processed through Kaya (admin fee applies); all other nationalities must provide local police check.
- Any costs for COVID-19 PCR tests required pre-departure and in-country
Easy 4-step application process
Apply online and pay your application fee to apply for your space on your chosen project. Our advisors will then contact you to guide you through the next steps.
Once we’ve received your application, we’ll review your details and be in touch to arrange your informal telephone interview with your Kaya Placement Advisor.
Following your interview, we will provide you a placement offer. Once you are ready to confirm your placement and dates, you can pay your confirmation fee to book and secure your space.
When you have confirmed your project dates we'll send you your Welcome Pack and lots of other helpful information to assist you with preparing for your placement.
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