No matter field they’ve volunteered in, any person that has volunteered abroad will tell you the same thing: It was a rewarding, fulfilling experience. As human beings, it’s probably a part of our make up to feel good, knowing that we’ve helped others, whether it’s animals, nature or people, that are unable to help themselves.
The type of volunteering you do will be determined by your personal preference. Some people love working with animals and this can be broken down into wild animals, house animals, birds, animals on the verge of extinction and so on, while others prefer working with people. Some prefer working with adults, some with the elderly and some with children. Some prefer working with people with special needs, and others with underprivileged or abused people. Some people prefer trying to save the planet some prefer working with marine life. There is no right or wrong. One area of volunteering is not more important than the other. If you actually think about it, the fact that people that volunteer have diverse preferences is a wonderful thing, because it means that there will be help for every area where help is needed.
Where would one go? Volunteer abroad in Africa of course! More specifically volunteer in South Africa. It’s a wonderfully diverse country. If you prefer working with wildlife and like the idea of a busy city that’s not too far from wildlife parks such as the Kruger National Park, Johannesburg is the place to be. For something a bit more laid-back than Johannesburg, but where you can volunteer in just about every category, volunteer in Cape Town.
Known as one of the most beautiful cities in the world, Cape Town boasts the famous Table Mountain, Robben Island, Kirstenbosch Gardens, Cape Point and gorgeous white sand beaches, like Camps Bay and Boulders which is known for its penguins. The restaurants and coffee shops range from homely to quaint to decadent and there’s no shortage of nightlife. Activities include skydiving, shark-diving, breathtaking hiking trails and surfing, just to name a few. You’ll never run out of things to do in your free time.
What makes volunteering abroad in Cape Town even better, is the wide range of volunteering that can be done there. Volunteer with underprivileged, abused, special needs people of all ages or volunteer with animals. There’s even a place where you can volunteer to work with sharks if that’s where your heart lies. Most of the volunteer packages will arrange your accommodation, meals and transport to and from the place you choose to volunteer.
Although English is a commonly spoken language in South Africa, there are 11 official languages, so you’ll hear it spoken in a variety of accents and you’ll probably pick up a few new words. You’ll meet people that come from diverse walks of life and cultural backgrounds and taste a variety of South African dishes.
So why volunteer abroad? The answer is easy. You get to travel, discover new places, meet new people, make new friends from different parts of the world, learn new cultures and sometimes even new languages while doing something worthwhile. Volunteering to help others is a wonderful gift, so why not treat yourself to some travelling adventures at the same time?