Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the difference between and intern and a volunteer?

Interns

  • Intends to develop skills in a profession
  • Work is taken on in order to learn more about a given profession
  • Can work with universities for credit requirements
  • Contracted arrangement
  • Provides students with skills to help them transition from study to work
  • Focus is on learning – expect to learn skills that will further one’s academic or career goals

Volunteers

  • Driving force is to help out where needed
  • Work is unpaid for the main purpose of benefitting someone(thing) else
  • Does not include academic study or college credits
  • Not bound by a contract of employment but signs a volunteer agreement
  • Tends to focus on service
  • Focus is on service – yet learning skills and about the issues is still very much a part of it as well

How long are the internships?

The standard length is 3 months, however, you have the opportunity to apply for longer providing you get the necessary visa approved, we do not want to limit your learning experience!

How long are the volunteer programs?

Our conservation management volunteer program is for 4 weeks, coinciding with start and finish dates for the intern intake. The Black rhino and Tillietudlem volunteering projects are both 2 week rotations, which you can do 4 weeks in total if you wish and mix and match with the variety of programs we offer.

What will you get involved in as an intern?

Your own designated project will be a focus however, you will assist other intern’s projects as well as relevant reserve and management activity carried out during your stay. It will be useful to have general maintenance skills as well, with some building and creativity required with regards to particular projects you might take on.

What will you get involved in as a conservation volunteer based at Somkhanda?

You are fundamentally a support for all interns and conservation staff. You will get involved in physical labour, data collection, monitoring, maintenance and all sorts of other game reserve management tasks. A working knowledge of basic household maintenance is very helpful but not required.

What will it cost?

Internships - ZAR24,300

Volunteer programs – varies see individual pages for Somkhanda/FreeMe/Tillietudlem

Where will you stay?

There is a dedicated intern and volunteer camp with shared ablutions. The interns reside in two-room tents with proper beds and mattresses, end table, solar lamps, wardrobe, desk and chair.  Volunteer’s accommodation is a one-room dome tent, with bed, mattress, end table and solar lamp. The intern and volunteer camp is walking distance to the intern office and lodge area where much of your office work will take place.

What other facilities are there on site at the intern camp?

The communal areas include a recreation tent with a fully kitted kitchen, outlets for charging electronics, food foot lockers, lounge area. Shared ablutions include flushing toilets, sinks and roofless hot showers.

What hours will you work?

You are in charge of your own time, you need to get your project done and that drives your working hours. Standard practice is 9 hours from 8 am to 6 pm with an hour for lunch. There’s nothing to stop you from starting earlier and finishing earlier or starting later and finishing later.

What time off do you get?

Every week there is a town trip, this day is considered as a day off. Over the weekend all interns and volunteers get involved in the local community cattle dipping which is a short morning, and the rest of the day is treated as off time. You can accumulate days off and take 4 days off in a bulk holiday to enable you to go on other adventures as well, all leave time needs to be approved.

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