Take a walk on the wild side in beautiful Kenya
In 2006, Gill (now our representative) approached us to suggest volunteering projects that would genuinely help her home community of Laikipia, a small town in the equatorial region of Kenya, far from the tourist hotspots. We now work with several schools in the Nanyuki area - near Mount Kenya - as well as the Naro Moro Home for disabled children and the Nanyuki Children's Home, which provides a loving home for around 80 kids.
Another very different option is to help out with research projects at a wildlife reserve in the area: you could find yourself working alongside trained zoologists on the welfare of black rhino and orphaned chimps.
All placements offer an optional three-day, two-night safari in one of Kenya's most-loved game reserves, Samburu, and a local induction course.
What will I do in Kenya?
As a volunteer in Kenya, there is a lot you can do...
- Childrenís homes: You will provide much-needed help at the Naro Moru Home for children with disabilities, run by three Italian nuns and wonderful local staff. They aim to make children more mobile using physiotherapy and walking aids. The on-site school really wants help with extra-curricular activities such as drama. The Nanyuki Childrenís Home cares for around 80 abandoned or orphaned children. They have basic living conditions and few toys, but the atmosphere is happy and loving and they always need help with everyday routines and entertaining the children. Read our blog for more information.
- Teaching: Work at one several Nanyuki schools and youíll find friendly, enthusiastic kids who are willing to learn despite great hardships - some are AIDs orphans, others are very poor. You would help teach basic subjects and, ideally, share your skills and interests - whether football, Sudoku or drama - after school. †Choose between a government primary with a large special needs department, a private (though not affluent) boarding school that takes in AIDs orphans and a state secondary school that has its own farm, vegetable patch and solar power. Read our blog for more information.
- Wildlife: One local Game Reserve is monitoring and trying to increase its population of black rhino and also runs a sanctuary for abused or orphaned chimpanzees. You will help to gather and assess data and lend a hand with daily chores and the running of the visitor centre. Youíll get great insight into local conservation methods. Read our blog for more information.
If you have any experiences - working with children, holiday teaching jobs, sports skills or working with animals - do let us know. It may influence the sort of job you end up with.
Your flight to Nairobi is included and Gill will meet you at the airport and settle you into your project. There will be many opportunities for expeditions - walking Mount Kenya, the optional Oyster safari, or learning to river raft - as well as joining in with African and expat social life.
Gilly is British but grew up in Kenya, in the Aberdare Highlands, knows everyone and has lived for many years in Nanyuki, where she and her husband farm cattle. She is a keen member of the community; you couldnít be in better hands.
Volunteers based near Nanyuki centre will live in a house rented exclusively by Oyster. You will need to cook for yourselves. Those based at the Naro Moru home or the wildlife reserve will live on site. All accommodation will be basic but comfortable. Please expect to share a room.
Cost and what is provided
The cost of a three month placement is £2225 excluding flights
What is Provided?
- Finding you a suitable volunteer project in Kenya
- Phone or face-to-face interview and informal briefing
- 1 or 2-day pre-departure course covering medical, safety and placement advice
- Help and advice from our UK office before departure and whilst in Kenya
- Advice on obtaining a visa on arrival
- (Optional) flight from London with flexible return date (modest fee levied by airline for date changes). Total cost with flight £2725
- Oysterís local representative who will meet you on arrival in Nairobi
- Induction course in-country with Swahili training to orientate you and brief you on local matters
- Transportation to Nanyuki from Nairobi airport
- Assistance and support from our representative during your placement
- Oyster is able to offer volunteers an optional 3 day safari in Samburu for around US$400 dependent on group size. This is a fraction of the cost of booking from the UK
- Accommodation whilst on placement
- Excludes food (approx. £1 per day)
- Free access to InterHealth's Travel Health Advice Service
- Free myTsafe secure document storage account - worth £39!
What do I need?
- A valid passport (most nationalities accepted)
- Insurance (covering your placement time and any planned independent travel)
- Cost of changing your return flight date if you need to (approx £30)
- Pocket money, any independent travel costs and return to the airport
- Food and transport costs (about £7-£10 per week)
- All home country travel costs (to airport and to interview if face-to-face)
And one more thing...
As many as 10 million people speak Swahili as their mother tongue, but itís widely used as a lingua franca across southern and central Africa. Worth putting in the effort!