Wildlife conservation and community volunteer projects and internships worldwide

Desert Elephants Volunteer Project, Namibia

2 - 12 weeks from

18+ for individuals - families 4+
minimum age

  • Become directly involved in spearhead elephant conservation work
  • Get back in touch with nature and learn camp craft and survival skills in the desert
  • Track and learn about the famous desert adapted elephants in the stunning Damaraland
  • Give back to the local community by taking part in community building projects

Family volunteering group sleeping out under stars in Namibia

Food, Lodging and Travel

The mobile base camp is set up at each project site, which will be as comfortable as possible! You will be accommodated in two man tents or you can choose to sleep under the stars. Washing facilities are limited but a ‘bushman’ shower will be made available. Toilet facilities will be in the form of long drops (enclosed and private). Meals are prepared by you on a rotational basis, over the open fire, and eaten around the campfire together. You are supplied with basic, but balanced food with adequate vegetarian options. Whilst on patrol, you camp wild, and sleep under the stars on your bedrolls with mosquito nets. No showers or toilets out there, so roughing it. You need to get to the assembly point in Swakopmund (we give advice on this). From the first day of project until your return to Swakopmund, all transport is supplied.

Vicky McNeil and volunteer at Desert Elephant project in NamibiaRequirements

This project is real spearhead conservation work.  It is not about cuddling baby animals, or being an observer of conservation from the comfort of a game drive vehicle. You need to have an open mind, a willing heart and be prepared to put in work for something bigger than yourself.  This is about true adventure with likeminded people that care, about teamwork and tolerance.  You will live close together, close to the ground, and close to the animals.  Your project manager is there to make your time in the bush educational and safe, but it is up to you to make a success of the expedition.  They ensure that you have the means to be comfortable and well fed, and would teach you how to be that.  You need to have an average degree of fitness, as lot of the work is manual, and you could spend a lot of time in high temperatures on foot.  A bit of training beforehand would make your time more comfortable.  You need to be able to speak English.  All applicants over 18 yrs are considered.

Volunteers relaxing in NamibiaMedical

Your project manager is first aid qualified, and has years of experience in handling problems in the field. Namibia has first world medical facilities available, and first-rate emergency service. It is compulsory for volunteers to have medical insurance cover for evacuation and repatriation. We also require you to complete a medical form. Please note that the area of operation is regarded as malaria free, but if you are traveling on afterwards, consult with your physician.

How to get there

You can fly either into Walvis Bay, which is a 20 minute drive away from Swakopmumd or to the capital of Namibia, Windhoek which is a 3.5 hour drive.  Often flights will be routed through Johannesburg or Cape Town and if flying in from the UK, Frankfurt.  We can arrange all your airport transfers and there are safe and reliable services available.   We can also give you advise on what airlines to search for the best deals.

Desert Elephants Volunteer Project, Namibia

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