Kariega’s Conservation Volunteer Programme is the ultimate Big 5 experience, where volunteers from across the world get the opportunity to get involved hands-on in conservation management on the reserve.
During your stay, you may see yourselves as “Assistant Conservation Managers”, as all the work done and data collected by you will be utilized by Kariega for conservation on the reserve. A dedicated coordinator will ensure that you have a wonderful learning experience and leave with a stronger understanding of conservation issues, feeling like you made an important contribution.
GOOD TO KNOW
Volunteer's accommodation is included. Volunteers are accommodated in a renovated, fully furnished house on the reserve - comfortable but not luxurious. You will be sharing bedrooms (bedding is provided) and there are communal bathrooms. There is an entertainment/lecture room with a pool table, a lounge with a TV, dining room and a fully equipped kitchen.
All the ingredients for three basic meals a day are provided. Volunteers are divided into cooking teams and all meals are made by the volunteers themselves at the house. Volunteers are also responsible for washing up and keeping the kitchen clean and tidy. The meals are basic, for example, cereal, porridge and toast for breakfast; sandwiches for lunch, and lasagna, veggies and salad for supper.
The working week at Kariega Volunteering Programme is from Monday to Friday. Working hours on the reserve are generally from 7.30am to 5.00pm, with an hour or two for lunch. Please note that working hours are dependent on weather, the season and nature of the activity (may vary from 7 – 9 hours per day). Saturdays and Sundays are off time.
Please note that unfortunately no free placements are offered. Kariega charges you a minimum fee of $7000 ZAR per week from each volunteer. You also will be asked to pay a My Proext's administration fee when you are doing your application.
Field volunteers will be provided with stimulating practical experience in the following activities/areas:
- CONSERVATION MANAGEMENT:
Activities form a large part of the volunteer program. Some of these activities involve physical work and therefore a certain level of determination from the volunteer’s side is required. Keep in mind that the "reserve needs" are always taken into account and you will help to fulfill those needs as a volunteer.
- EDUCATION - THEORY:
Each volunteer will be given a field booklet, which can be taken home at the end of the placement. Before you start with each practical task, the relative theoretical background on the subject will be discussed in the form of informal lectures. The theory provides insight into the value of the practical activities in which you may participate. Mammal, plant and bird checklists are included in the booklet and will help you to identify different species at Kariega.
- COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT:
We have identified an under-funded farm school near the reserve where our volunteer program can make a real difference. The school is small, yet very under-staffed and local kids aged 4 to 15 years attend it. Kariega volunteers visit the school one day a week and make valuable contributions to the children’s education. You might also help with the maintenance of the school’s facilities or by giving sports lessons to the kids.
- Elephant impact monitoring: Volunteers will help monitor elephant movement patterns, range utilization and vegetation impact with the aid of telemetry.
- Population status of leopards: This project, with the support of the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, aims to assess the status of leopards in the Lower Albany area and investigate the role of the Kariega as a refugee habitat.
- Lion prey selection monitoring: Volunteers will help to record as many lions kills as possible. This data provides the conservation department at Kariega with valuable information regarding prey selection.
- Rhino monitoring: The estimated number of rhino poached during 2012 in South Africa is 633. Kariega conservation volunteers help monitor and account for rhinos on the property on a regular basis.
- Birds in Reserve Project (BIRP): This project involves preparing a catalog of the birds, bird numbers and their breeding status in the reserve as part of a project headed by the University of Cape Town.
This service generates NO FEE for the My Proext's members. We are always looking for help with activities and services and many of them can be done remotely. If you have a particular skill that you can use to help Kariega, please don't hesitate to fill the micro-volunteers application form. We seek micro-volunteers for the following activities:
- REVIEWER: Review the text of the magazine and look for spelling/grammar mistakes.
- TRANSLATOR (ENGLISH TO SPANISH): Translate the contents of the magazine from English to Spanish.
- TRANSLATOR (ENGLISH TO PORTUGUESE): Translate the contents of the magazine from English to Portuguese.
- DESIGNER FOR COREL DRAW: Help with changes to be made in the magazine.
- OTHERS: Some other online activity you would like to support.