Wildlife conservation and community volunteer projects and internships worldwide

Volunteer in Africa

"I personally have been all over the world, and visited many different waters and coral reefs. Therefore, I feel safe saying that Mauritius’s coral reefs are a jewel in the worlds ocean, offering one of the most pristine, and diverse coral reef systems I have ever seen."

Alex, USA

About conservation volunteering in Africa

It’s difficult to picture Africa without picturing sweeping landscapes of dry grassland and twisting thorn trees or deep red sunsets setting aglow rocky hills and vast plains.  And of course, you cannot picture Africa without picturing the incredible wildlife it has become so well known for; herds of elephant crunching through tall grass, leopards and lions stalking in the shadows around groups of impala and rhinos rolling in mud to temper the heat of the day. But don’t forget that amidst these seemingly unending displays of nature are bustling cities that rival some of the best in the world.  There is also a spirit that runs throughout the heart of the continent and you can find it expressed in the smiles of all the people, across cultures and across countries.

Opportunities to take part in conservation volunteering in Africa range from tracking desert elephants and cheetahs to researching and monitoring lions, to volunteering with sea turtles in a rehabilitation centre in Kenya, to coral reef research programmes in MauritiusBig Five Game Reserve wildlife monitoring and research in South Africa and to community building programmes in Namibia.  Learn about diverse cultures, live and volunteer in stunning locations and interact with friendly people when you volunteer in Africa.

Our Projects in Africa

  • Wildlife Conservation & San Bushmen Community Project, Namibia

    • Duration 10 days to 12 weeks
    • Prices from £1025

    Join this project as a wildlife conservation, carnivore conservation or medical volunteer and help conserve wildlife or provide medical care to the San Bushmen community. Specialist Wildlife Rehabilitation courses also available. Rhino Rangers anti-poaching programme also available.

  • Ocean Research Conservation Project, South Africa

    • Duration 1 week - 10 months
    • Prices from £635

    Volunteer with dolphin, seal and whale research in South Africa. Take part in marine conservation, penguin rescue and educational projects along the South African coast.

  • Watamu Sea Turtle Volunteer Project, Kenya

    • Duration 2 Weeks+
    • Prices from £980

    An opportunity to take part in Kenya sea turtle conservation involving research and monitoring, working at a turtle rehabilitation centre and protecting nesting sites along the Watamu Coastline.

  • Blue Lagoon Coral Reef Project, Mauritius

    • Duration 1 week to 3 months
    • Prices from £595

    Volunteer in Mauritius in the Indian Ocean and take part in a coral reef monitoring and marine conservation volunteer and internship programme, which includes coral reef farming and restoration, lagoon monitoring and sea turtle research in the beautiful Blue Bay Marine Park.

  • Desert Elephants Volunteer Project, Namibia

    • Duration 2 - 12 weeks
    • Prices from £945

    Track desert elephants and take part in community building volunteer work in the beautiful Damaraland region of the Namib Desert.

  • Shamwari Big Five Game Reserve Volunteer Programme, South Africa

    • Duration 1 - 12 weeks
    • Prices from £1215

    Join an award-winning conservation team in a Big Five Game Reserve in South Africa, boasting a huge variety of game over a vast 23,000 hectares.

  • Kariega Big Five Game Reserve Volunteer Programme, South Africa

    • Duration 1 - 12 weeks
    • Prices from £595

    Become a Wildlife Conservation Volunteer in a Big Five Game Reserve in South Africa, and get involved in elephant, rhino and lion monitoring programmes.

  • Nature’s Valley Internship Programme, South Africa

    • Duration 8 to 12 weeks
    • Prices from £1795

    Gain hands on Conservation, Education and Ecological Research experience in South Africa and help protect Nature’s Valley.

  • Wildlife Reserve Volunteer Programme, South Africa

    • Duration 2 - 12 Weeks
    • Prices from £995

    Volunteer at a wildlife reserve in South Africa. A true bush experience which gives volunteers a chance to live amongst and help to protect a range of amazing wildlife species.

  • Seychelles Island Conservation Volunteer Programme

    • Duration 2-4 Weeks
    • Prices from £708

    Join various island and tropical wildlife conservation projects within the beautiful Nature Reserve on Cousin Island in the Seychelles. These projects are aimed at conserving the natural environment of the island that include sea turtle monitoring, bird ringing, habitat conservation and censuses of tortoises, skinks and geckos.

  • Big Cat Sanctuary Volunteer Project, South Africa

    • Duration 1-12 Weeks
    • Prices from £655

    Volunteer at an ethical big cat Sanctuary in South Africa. Contribute towards animal welfare whilst learning about the conditions big cats face in captivity.

  • Volunteer at the Jane Goodall Chimpanzee Sanctuary in South Africa

    • Duration 4 Days - 2 Weeks
    • Prices from £495

    Volunteer at the Jane Goodall chimpanzee sanctuary in South Africa. A chance to experience these amazing endangered species up close and contribute to chimp rescue and conservation efforts.

  • The Great African Seaforest Marine Volunteer Programme, South Africa

    • Duration 1-12 Weeks
    • Prices from £600

    Join a team of passionate marine biologists and conservationists in the field and get hands-on experience working on marine research and conservation projects. Assist with scientific monitoring projects, citizen science initiatives and explore the kelp forests whilst on fish and shark surveys with the research team. Contribute to long term monitoring programmes of the great African sea forest.

  • Looking for a Volunteer Project Abroad?
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    WorkingAbroad is the Go-To Website for Ethical & Responsible Volunteer & Internship Opportunities Abroad

    We run volunteer programmes in over 30 countries across the world focusing on wildlife conservation and community development projects and every project we offer adheres to our ethical standards.

Interesting Facts

Interesting Facts

  • Africa is the world’s hottest continent, and the world’s second driest continent.
  • Deforestation rates in Africa are twice the average for the rest of the world. Kenya and Zambia only have about 1-5% of the primary forests remaining.
  • Africa has over 25% of the world’s bird species.
  • While Egypt is most well known for its pyramids, the Republic of Sudan actually has 223 of its own pyramids, double the number of pyramids in Egypt.
  • Four of the five fastest land animals reside in Africa: the cheetah, the wildebeest, the lion, and the Thomson’s gazelle.
Wildlife in Africa

Wildlife in Africa

Conservation volunteering in Africa gives you the opportunity to experience what the African continent is famous for: its incredible wildlife – especially the Big Five.  From the smallest bird to the largest mammal, Africa provides a home to some of the world’s most beautiful species.  Across multiple countries, you can discover the elephant, leopard, lion, rhino and buffalo, the big five, who share the terrain with a considerable array of other species from giraffe to hippo and from zebra to the endangered riverine rabbit.  Namibia is famed for being home to the largest free-roaming cheetah and black rhino populations. And, in addition to this, it is one of only two countries where you can find desert elephants, which is where our Desert Elephants Volunteer Project is based too.

Off the coast of the continent, Seychelles and Mauritius offer volunteers the chance to work with the famous giant tortoises, and to research sea turtles and coral reefs.

Conservation Threats

Conservation Threats

There are multiple species across the African continent and off the coast that face considerable threats from a number of sources.  Poaching, illegal trading and trophy hunting has been particularly harmful for many big mammals like the rhino, and elephant.  In addition, growing populations have continually exacerbated conflict between human and animal populations.  By taking part in conservation volunteering in Africa, you can get involved in several of our programmes focusing on human-animal conflict resolution in Namibia in particular with regards to elephants and leopards.

In addition, increasing temperatures and inconsistent rainfall are placing incredible pressure on the availability of natural resources, and along coasts, a number of unsustainable practices threaten marine life and coral reefs.   Our volunteer programmes in Africa aim to address these issues and to conserve and protect the species in question.