What is the Tree Planting and Environmental Education Summer Initiative all about?
If you want to attend an eco festival like no other and you have an interest in volunteering, working with communities, and developing your own knowledge on issues such as reforestation, recycling and permaculture, then reserve your ticket to volunteer at this tree-planting and environmental eco festival. This summer, the festival will once again be taking place in the incredible Garden Route of South Africa.
This festival is a truly beautiful thing; people of all ages from all over the world coming together to get the hands dirty in re-foresting. The aim of this year’s festival is to address the deforestation that occurred during devastating wildfires in June 2017 in the Eden District along South Africa’s beautiful Garden Route. The fire really impacted the social and environmental communities in the area. The festival aims to rebuild and help regeneration through the planting of indigenous trees, while introducing ecosystem processes to the locals, and removing alien vegetation.
The festival lasts 1 week every summer, and participants of all ages (starting at 13 if unaccompanied) are welcome. Whether you are an individual or student interested in the environment, a professional keen to get your hands dirty and let loose, a study group wanting to do fieldwork, or a family who loves adventure and nature – this is a wonderful opportunity for all who want to be active and change the way we treat the environment.
Why choose Tree-planting Eco Festival Volunteering?
As a festival volunteer, you will be working with a team on a whole itinerary of first-hand environmental activities including planting thousands of trees, removing invasive species, and working with the local community on environmental education outreach. Within your team of local and global volunteers and ecologists, you will discuss and gain first-hand experience of global attempts to address mass deforestation, and solutions being implemented in the Garden Route area.
If you are studying you will be able to learn from experts in the field. You can also fundraise to help pay for your trip or to further help reforestation efforts. This project can also be added to one of our other projects in South Africa – speak to an advisor to find out more.
Role of the Eco Festival Volunteer in the Garden Route, South Africa
This is a festival like no other. Entirely sustainable and plant-based, you will not only get soil beneath your fingernails with tree-planting and weeding, but also taking part in mural painting, beach cleans, crafting eco-bricks, and enveloping yourself in wellness with dancing and jamming around a campfire, music, yoga, guided hikes, and much more. Take this incredible opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals from all over the world, and breath some coastal, forest air whilst you plant trees for the future of this stunning corner of the world.
What skills do I need to be an Eco Festival Volunteer?
There are no specific skills required! As long as you are fit and healthy, and able to get stuck in with tree-planting and other physical tasks, as this is a hands-on festival. Enthusiasm and a willingness to do what is required during every task is needed, especially as you will be inspiring others to change their habits. Come with a spirit of adventure and passion for the environment and make the most of this incredible learning experience.
WHY JOIN THE PROJECT
To work as a part of an international team to bring about cultural change
You want to make a hands on contribution to tackling deforestation and improving our environment
To discover South Africa’s Western Cape, its stunning scenery and incredible wildlife
Where will I work in South Africa?
About the Location
The Eden District is a breathtaking area. Knysna is known for the famous South African’s Garden Route due to the sandstone cliffs separating its tranquil lagoon with the Indian ocean. The Garden Route in the Eden District has lots of natural beauty, fun and adventure to offer!
The campsite is set up at a lodge just outside Knysna, one of the Eden District’s beautiful towns that was affected by the fires of 2017. You will be sharing your beautiful tented eco camp area with other volunteers. There is a communal dining area where all locally grown, plant-based meals are shared. There are eco toilets and eco showers.
With the beach, mountains, and forest surrounding you, there is no getting away from nature here. Full advantage is taken of this with outdoor yoga and stretching, hikes, beach walks, and of course plenty of dancing around the big campfire in the festival space.
You will need to bring a pillow, a good sleeping bag and warm blankets as the South African nights at this time of year gets cold. It is rustic but comfortable and incredibly welcoming and homely.
What to do in your spare time
You will have at least 1 full day off so if you’re adventurous, you could try some of these activities: Bungee Jumping, zip lining or Bridge Walk at the Bloukrans bridge. If you like to relax more, we suggest: Knysna lagoon cruises, shopping at local farmers’ markets, taking a bicycle tour of Knysna, or going on a Marine eco-tour, a Forest walk or Fynbos walks.
Details & Costs
- Duration: 1 week
- Cost 2020:
Over 18 = £865 / $1350 for 1 week
Under 18 = £846 / $1320 for 1 week
- Requirements: Age minimum 13 for unaccompanied minors. Younger kids are accepted as part of a family group.
- Location: Knysna, Western Cape, South Africa
- Project Activities: plant trees, remove non-indigenous and invasive plants, recycle, brighten up schools with eco murals, attend sustainability workshops, yoga, stretching, dancing, singing, music, quiz night, film night
- Working Hours: 7:45 to 5 pm. Additional activities available in the evenings.
- Project Availability:
June 29 – July 6 (All ages)
- Arrival day: Monday
What is included
- Accommodation: Tented accommodation for two in a secure camp.
- Meals: Three locally grown plant-based meals a day, and snacks in between
- Transfer on arrival and departure day to/from George Airport or the Knysna bus station
- Workshops & Activities hosted by field experts
- Training: pre-departure information pack, on-site orientation and project induction
- Support: 24-hour support
- Excursion Planning: staff helps organise weekend activities (activity prices may be extra)
- Fundraising Guide
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.
Easy 3-step application process
APPLY ONLINE Click here to apply online and pay your deposit to secure your space on your chosen project. Our advisors will then contact you to guide you through the next steps.
TELEPHONE INTERVIEW Once we’ve received your application, we’ll be in touch to arrange your informal telephone interview with your Kaya Placement Advisor.
GET PREPARED When you’ve been accepted onto your project we’ll send you your Welcome Pack and lots of other helpful information to assist you with preparing for your placement.
HAVE A QUESTION?
We pride ourselves on providing you high quality placement information throughout your application process and whilst on the ground. Connect with us if you have any questions.
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