"It was truly eye opening and in lots of ways life-changing"
Marie Decadt, from Belgium, volunteered for 2 weeks in July 2019
I had an unforgettable time at the Elephant Sanctuary. Met some amazing like-minded people, learnt about the local indigenous Bugong people and the amazing connection they have with the elephants. I also saw how hard-working all the staff are at the sanctuary to provide the very best for all the elephants, and was shocked when in my second week I saw the indigenous protected land of the project illegally deforested. That’s why I’m planning on running 10k in December and aiming to raise money to employ rangers to patrol the forest that is being encroached upon. Despite this, I had a truly amazing time and it was truly eye opening and in lots of ways life-changing.
"It is somewhere I will remember for the rest of my life."
Grainne Finnegan, from Ireland, joined the project for 2 weeks from July-August 2018
I had an amazing time at the project, everything was organised so well. My flights were messed up and I ended up coming a day late and they were so accommodating and helped me make my way out to the project. Working at the project was different every day helping out with the maintenance side of the project and then more elephant based volunteering, but there was a chance to see the elephants every day and learn so much about them.
Since I stayed for a second week, I then got a chance to work with Paul making bamboo lamps which I enjoyed so much and learned so much from him as he is an architect and I am an architecture student. I honestly can’t express how much I learned about elephants and Cambodia culture and people during my time at the project, it is something and somewhere I will remember for the rest of my life. I honestly can’t express how special of a place it is and I am so glad it is where I got the opportunity to see and learn so much more about elephants.
"I would highly recommend this volunteering experience"
Elizabeth Roe, from the UK, joined the project in August 2018
I volunteered at the elephant sanctuary for 1 week, which was an incredible experience. The location is beautiful with the added bonus of gracefully magnificent elephants. It is incredible to see them in their natural environment, see and learn about their different personalities and how we can do more to help support them. It is right in the heart of the Cambodian jungle and the project is run in partnership with the local village people.
The project really puts its elephant’s well-being at the heart of everything it does. Over the week we had the opportunity to meet all of the elephants, which includes light trekking, volunteering activities and to carry out health checks on the elephants. The volunteering activities included working in the seed nursery, clearing pathways, building bridges, making medicine balls for the elephants and some indoor jobs for when it was raining. The staff were all really friendly and helpful.
The accommodation was cleaned every day, it is in the jungle so be prepared for a few creepy crawlies. The weather was very changeable and they would adapt our volunteering activity to reflect this. It can be very muddy and slippery, plus you are asked to not wear revealing clothes, cover shoulders and wear long trousers to respect the locals. I would highly recommend this volunteering experience, there is never a dull moment always something to do and if you do have some downtime you can relax in a hammock overlooking the outstanding jungle.