SOUTH AFRICA

SOCIAL WORK, PSYCHOLOGY, COUNSELLING WORK EXPERIENCE IN KNYSNA, SOUTH AFRICA

Work with social workers and community workers who provide Counselling services and workshops to people and groups in need of emotional support. These can include marital and family stress, depression, mid-life crisis, divorce counselling, HIV-related counselling, conflict management, parenting, women and men’s programmes.

FAMSA (Families South Africa) is a registered NPO and very much family orientated. They exist to enhance relationships and emotional wellbeing through counselling and training to better equip individuals, families and communities. It is one of a chain of Affiliates throughout South Africa who fall under a National Body each of which are independently run. You'll learn a lot about all the areas of counselling and social work that they deal with.

"The perfect start to my Social Work Career"

"Thank you so much for everything and all the support. Last week I started my first placement on MA social work course, it’s in a refuge working with woman and children fleeing domestic violence.

"I've been using some of the training and experience you provided me with and have been using that knowledge in my course work. Thank you so much for such an amazing experience (especially letting me go the prison). It really has provided me with the perfect start into my social work career." Heather Harman

SUMMARY: THE BASICS

Hi, I'm Jim Morel, Project Coordinator for South Africa, and I'll be working with you to arrange your ultimate experience here, so if you've any questions, please contact me:
+44 (0)1903 502595,
or email: info@travellers
worldwide.com
Price: £1,695 (approx. US$2,160) for 4 weeks
£250 (US$315) for each additional week.
Excludes flights. Please see Full Price List & prices in other currencies
Duration: From 4 weeks to 12 weeks or longer, subject to visa requirements.
Start Dates: Available all year round, except between December and mid-February. You choose your start date.
Requirements: Minimum age 21. You should be studying, or be qualified in, Social Work, Psychiatry, Psychology or Counselling, or a related subject.
What's included: Arranging your Programme
Full pre-departure support and assistance
Payment Protection insurance
Accommodation
Food
Meeting you at the nearest Airport
Transfer to your accommodation
Daily transport to and from your project
Local in-country team support and backup
24-hr emergency support
Certificate of Completion
What's not included: Flights, Insurance, Cost of Visas, Return transfer to the airport.
Who is this
Programme suitable for?
SOLO travellers or travelling with friends.
GROUPS (up to 24)
GAP YEAR BREAKS from School or University.
GROWN-UP GAPPERS, career breakers and retired.
ANYONE interested in gaining overseas work experience. Also suitable for anyone just wanting to study abroad and learn about Social Work practices overseas.
Also suitable as a summer placement or short break.
Open to all nationalities.

WHAT YOU'LL GAIN FROM DOING THIS PROJECT

  • An exciting opportunity to travel, see the world and experience a foreign culture first-hand.
  • New skills, more confidence and invaluable personal and professional development.
  • The enormous satisfaction of knowing that your work experience placement is assisting a disadvantaged local community and that you are making a difference.
  • An opportunity to take a break from the traditional academic track or your current career path in order to gain life experience and global cultural awareness
  • An entry on your CV or Résumé that will enhance your career opportunities and make you stand out from the crowd.
  • Make friends, form relationships and build memories that will last a lifetime.
  • Opportunities to enjoy some exciting adventure and cultural activities while on your programme.
  • And best of all ... an unforgettable experience!
FAST TRACK
BOOKING

Fill in the form by clicking the button above. We'll contact you no later than the next working day to confirm. Then we'll do the rest for you.

SEE ALL PROJECTS IN SOUTH AFRICA info@travellersworldwide.com

ANY QUESTIONS?

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Staff and interns in the FAMSA office
Staff and Work Experience Students gathered together in the FAMSA Office.
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WORK CONTENT AND DESCRIPTION

"The volunteers we receive through Travellers Worldwide add a special dimension to our activities. Some come with the enthusiasm and youth of being newly qualified and others with a wealth of experience, having practiced and worked for many years. Excerpt from the Project's AGM Minutes

Your role and the types of work/activities you are given may vary and may depend on certain factors such as what’s required at the time that you're there. You'll work as part of the team and may spend various periods of time during the day attending community networking activities, assisting in the preparation of and attending community workshops, attending case study groups, data capturing and reporting, administration, attending the Family Foundation counselling courses that run throughout the year (aside from South African school holidays) amongst other things.

Mainly adults are counselled.

You'll assist in some or all of the following services:

Counselling:
You could attend small case study discussion groups which meet monthly covering marriage preparation and enrichment, relationships, individual, family, re-marriage, divorce, trauma and mediation counselling. You may assist the Counsellors in group sessions (no one-on-one counselling). Due to the nature of the work, counsellors themselves must undergo compulsory monthly supervision.

Trauma Support:
This takes place at the FAMSA offices. FAMSA provides a trauma counselling programme to victims of crime and violence. Other forms of trauma support are sickness, accident, rape, death/loss, family violence, abuse, and HIV/AIDS. With the client’s permission, sessions may be observed.

Training:
FAMSA offers various forms of training that you can get involved with, from basic counselling skills, trauma support, group work training, stress management, life skills, personal growth and intimate partner violence throughout the year as part of their Family Foundation counselling course. These do not run during the South African school holidays. These are aimed at local volunteers, international volunteers, professionals and the public to provide them with the tools to be able to assist with counselling, support and effective listening skills.

Parenting support:
Community workshops are given to parents to help them gain skills to be better equipped parents, assisting them with effective parenting skills and addressing specific problems in groups and individual counselling.

Programmes:
FAMSA runs various programmes giving support and assistance to groups of mainly women and men programmes. These include the Men Care and “Women of Wow’ programme. These are programmes for men and women which are aimed at equipping them with knowledge and skills to cope with daily situations they find themselves in.

Occasionally an “Anger-in, Anger-out” workshop takes place at the local Knysna Correctional Services Facility where they impart life skills and information to the Inmates, thus assisting in rehabilitating and empowering them.

Fundraising:
If you have any skills in fundraising and marketing, you'll be welcomed with even wider arms! As with any work of this type in the NPO sector, funds to support it are always difficult to come by, so any help that can be enlisted is always very deeply appreciated. You could also be involved with fundraising and marketing projects while you are on the placement.

Administration:
As this is a work experience you will also be involved with the daily activities that take place in a Non Profit Organisation in South Africa which can include administration, data capturing, minuting team meetings, report writing, client intake and attending stakeholder meetings and engagements, for example with the Community Policing Forum and other community networking forums in the NPO sector. Sexual Offences forum is also attended monthly.

A TYPICAL DAY:
07:30 Breakfast
07:50 Leave for project
08:00 Arrive at project
12:00 Lunch (this can differ day to day)
12:30 Back to work
16:00 Finish for the day at your project (unless a progamme is being run)
16:30 Arrive home, shower, relax
18:30 Dinner
19:00 Relax , watch DVD’s, read, contemplate the meaning of life

If you're qualified and have experience, the Centre would be especially delighted to have you as you could share your expertise, skills and experience, so your assistance would be very valuable indeed! Please stipulate in your cover letter your field of expertise and how you would like to share your knowledge during your placement.

MORE ABOUT FAMSA:
The FAMSA (Families South Africa) Centre's counselling programmes include a wide range of methods and techniques by which clients are helped:

  • Facilitate personal and inter-personal problems
  • Assisting clients to adopt more constructive attitudes and skills of relating
  • Enhance their functioning in significant relationships and other interpersonal transactions.
  • The Centre's motto is ‘We believe in every person’s potential to solve their own problems. We give support and guidelines for optimal functioning.’ They are part of many centres all around South Africa and each centre is independently run and are responsible for their own funding.

    Funding:
    Funding for the NPO sector is uncertain, therefore FAMSA relies heavily on the Provincial and local government, the National Lotteries Commission and various members of the public and businesses to ensure they can continue offering the many services they provide to the surrounding community.

FAST TRACK
BOOKING

Fill in the form by clicking the button above. We'll contact you no later than the next working day to confirm. Then we'll do the rest for you.

SEE ALL PROJECTS IN SOUTH AFRICA info@travellersworldwide.com
Staff and interns in the FAMSA office
Street collecting for funds to support FAMSA in their social work with local families and children.
Work experience student attending training of community workers at Famsa
Work experience student Heather Harman attending a training session of some local community workers.
The Women of Worth Community Group
The Women of Worth Community Group Meeting.
A Counselling room at the FAMSA office
A Counselling room at the FAMSA premises. Cosy, comfortable and relaxing to aid their work.
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ACCOMMODATION

The volunteer house in Knysna is within walking distance of the town, yet set against a natural green belt. The bird life is prolific and often the local Vervet monkey troop comes to visit to entertain the volunteers with their antics. The sunset views from the top balcony of the volunteer house of the Knysna lagoon are beautiful and great way to relax after a day working at your placement or to catch up on your tan in the summer. See photo on right-hand side.

The house is large and spacious and also has a self-contained flat downstairs for couples and families. The bedding in the two same sex dorms and the towels in their ensuite bathrooms are changed regularly every Friday by our much loved cleaner, Pretty, and there is plenty of cupboard space to store your clothing.

Wi-Fi / Internet: There is FREE Wi-Fi / Internet in the Volunteer House, but you will need your own device.

Facilities include a kitchen kitted out for cooking, dining area, a few bathrooms, TV, DVD player, free Wi-Fi, garden and several wooden verandahs.

There is an outside courtyard and garden in the secure grounds where you can have a typical South African barbeque known there as a ‘braai’. Make sure you try the local spicy sausage known as ‘boerewors’ and the Karoo lamb chops are to die for on a ‘braai’, but if fish is more to your taste then a fish ‘braai’ with South African ‘snoek’ is a must.

FOOD:
You'll be given a food budget which will cover your basic essentials (but not extras like alcohol, snacks and eating out). The kitchen has all the cooking amenities that you might need to take advantage of preparing meals with some of the great seafood, meat, fresh fruit and vegetables South Africa has to offer.

There are supermarkets and local shops where you'll do your food shopping.

There are plenty of excellent restaurants within walking distance that offer the most incredible local and international cuisine which our volunteers rave about. Knysna is also famous for its oysters and even has an annual Oyster Festival where everyone eats and drinks far too much!

The waterfront and marine is beautiful and full of restaurants and cafes with cuisine that ranges from breakfast, coffees, cakes and snacks, through to sumptuous meals and various different nationality menus.

The area is beautiful and travelling is easy. The house we stay in is lovely and the Travellers workers are such kind, loving people which really makes it feel like a home away from home. What with all the other volunteers and the Travellers staff, it really does feel like our own little family ... well, our own very big family, I suppose!! Luke Brennan

FAST TRACK
BOOKING

Fill in the form by clicking the button above. We'll contact you no later than the next working day to confirm. Then we'll do the rest for you.

SEE ALL PROJECTS IN SOUTH AFRICA info@travellersworldwide.com
Volunteer House for projects in Knysna
The front entrance to the volunteer house covered in bougainvillea blossoms, with the Travellers minibus in the drive.
Lounge in the Volunteer House for projects in Knysna
The Lounge in the volunteer house, with French doors leading to the patio.
Patio in the Volunteer House for projects in Knysna
One of the communal patios for sitting outside at the volunteer house.
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ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

YOUR SAFETY, SUPPORT AND BACKUP:
Read important information about the Support & Backup you receive before you leave and during your programme.

Read about the Safety and Security measures we take to ensure your safety and wellbeing while on our programme.

MORE ABOUT FAMSA:
The FAMSA (Families South Africa) Centre's counselling programmes include a wide range of methods and techniques by which clients are helped :

  • Resolve personal and inter-personal problems
  • Select and adopt more constructive attitudes and skills of relating
  • Enhance their functioning in significant relationships and other interpersonal transactions

The Centre's motto is ‘We believe in every person’s potential to solve their own problems. We give support and guidelines for optimal functioning.’ They have centres all around South Africa and in Knysna they are supported by the Department of Social Development, the Knysna Municipality, the Lotto and various members of the public and businesses.

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU BOOK YOUR PLACEMENT?
Once you have applied for a placement, we'll contact you and send you our Welcome Pack. You'll also receive Log-on details and password for our Volunteer Extranet where you'll have access to all the documentation and information which we've put together to facilitate preparations for your adventure! Your Project Co-ordinator for your country will liaise with you throughout the arrangements process, as well as while you're on your placement and on your return home.

The documents you'll have access to also include a Country Factfile, Safety Guide and any manuals that may assist you on your particular programme (e.g. Teaching Guide, Sports Manuals, Enrichment Suggestions for Animal Care, etc.). We do all we can to make your stay one that you'll never forget. This is a truly awesome, elegant and beautiful country.

On Arrival, your Introduction to the Country:
When you arrive you will be welcomed by a member of our team who will take you to your accommodation and introduce you to everyone. During your first few days you'll be given an induction so that you can learn about the country and its culture, as well as other useful information, like how to use the transport system, banks, safety issues, tipping, and lots more.

VOLUNTEERING WITH CHILDREN AND VULNERABLE ADULTS
As well as protecting all our volunteers, Travellers Worldwide is committed to all our projects and dedicated to practices which protect children and vulnerable adults from harm. Read Travellers' Child Care and Vulnerable Adults Policy.

LOCATION | SIGHTSEEING:

The best advice you'll get from us is to try to see some of the country while you're in South Africa. It's big (huge!) and each different region is exciting and very, very beautiful. Cape Town is probably the most beautiful city in the world (I can say that, I grew up there :-) KwaZulu-Natal comes a very close second, albeit very different. Knysna is where South Africans go on holiday, which gives you some idea of how lovely the region is. When you lie on the beach and watch dolphins jumping the waves, you'll think you're in Paradise.

LOCATION - KNYSNA:
Knysna is approximately 500km from the beautiful capital city of Cape Town and voted South Africa’s favourite town 4 years in a row! Its mountainous backdrop, impressively sized estuary and indigenous forests really give the town a natural feel to it. Although it still has that ‘small-town’ feel, Knysna is growing rapidly, and has all the amenities you could ask for such as banks, hotels, internet café’s, cinemas and shopping malls.

Knysna nestles on the banks of a beautiful lagoon in the heart of the ‘Garden Route’ of South Africa. It is surrounded by a natural paradise of lush indigenous forests, tranquil lakes and golden beaches, making it a real natural wonderland.

Knysna is a vibrant town, buzzing with creativity and energy, and the pulse of good music. It's a place where the you can enjoy the mellow atmosphere of street cafes, watching the world go by. The main street is very leafy with trees along the pavements and it has a wonderful holiday atmosphere with sun umbrellas everywhere.

Most cafes have outdoors seating areas overlooking the street or on the pavements, with colourful sun umbrellas - a perfect place to sit with the sun on your face, watching passers-by ambling along, sipping a steamy cappucino or staving off the heat with a cold drink.

About 20-30 minutes' drive away from Knysna you'll find Plettenberg Bay (better known simply as Plett), which is a bit smaller than Knysna, but equally stunning. Its' pure white beaches stretch as far as the eye can see and there is a lot to do, from whale and dolphin watching, to hiking trails and awesome nightlife.

The Garden Route is famous for all sorts of activities from adrenalin sports such as bungee jumping, skydiving and shark cage diving to more relaxed pursuits such as hiking, quad biking in the forest or visiting one of the many animal sanctuaries in the area. Your local Travellers liaison will be happy to assist you in finding interesting things to do and places to see so make the most of it!

FAST TRACK
BOOKING

Fill in the form by clicking the button above. We'll contact you no later than the next working day to confirm. Then we'll do the rest for you.

SEE ALL PROJECTS IN SOUTH AFRICA info@travellersworldwide.com DOWNLOAD THIS INFORMATION in .pdf How to Fundraise for your Program

ANY QUESTIONS?

Please with any questions and include your phone number, if possible, to help us give you the best possible response.

We'll get back to you very shortly, but if you haven't heard from us within one working day, please check your Junk Mail / Spam folder. Thank you.

The Waterfront in Knysna. It's very beautiful, but also filled with excellent restaurants, ice-cream sellers ... and more!
Exploring anywhere in South Africa is mind-blowing! Take time not to miss anything, particularly the wildlife reserves close to Knysna - easy to get to, and amazing when you get there!
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OPTIONAL ADD-ON ACTIVITIES:

Make the most of your time there! To help you do that, we've put together some exciting activities, courses and tours that you can add to your itinerary. These are designed to be fun, but also to enable you to learn, and expand your personal and professional development enjoyment ... but mostly for your enjoyment! :-)

Cage Dive with Sharks in South Africa

CAGE DIVE WITH SHARKS:
Price: £135, includes breakfast/lunch and return transfer from Cape Town.

Getting into the cage with the sharks around is truly breath-taking and gets the adrenaline going! When feeding actively around the boat, the sharks are curious and often come close-up to the cage to look at the diver. You’ll usually see at least two or more members of the Marine Big Five - sharks, dolphins, whales, seals and penguins.

Click here to read more...

You’ll be collected from your arranged accommodation in Cape Town between 3.00 and 5.00 am) and driven to Gansbaai, the shark capital of South Africa. Enjoy a light breakfast while the safety briefing and other formalities are concluded, including sizing you for a wetsuit. After an exhilarating 20 minute boat trip, it anchors in or nearby “Shark Alley”. The shark diving then commences and lasts around 2 hours, sometimes longer.

On return to the harbour, you’ll receive a light hot lunch while viewing the video of the day. A copy of your own personal experience is available on DVD after the tour (optional extra).

Duration: Total duration from meeting point until departure is about 5 hours with around 3 hours at sea. Please note: Due to tides and collection schedules, exact collection times from Cape Town will only be confirmed after 16h00 the day prior to your tour.

Included:
• Hot tea / coffee and light breakfast, plus snacks, drinks and sweets on-board the boat
• A hot light lunch upon return (beef lasagne, rolls and Greek salad)
• Educational information and safety briefing
• Diving equipment and wet-suits available at no additional cost
• Scuba diving in the cage for experienced divers (conditions allowing)
• Assisted snorkeling in cage for inexperienced divers
• View Cape Fur Seals from the boat (conditions allowing), plus enjoy land-based whale watching in Hermanus (July – Dec)

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Penguins at Boulders in Cape Town

1-DAY CAPE PENINSULA & WINE TOUR:
Price: £68.

ITINERARY: We begin the morning with a leisurely stroll along the cobbled streets and brightly coloured houses of the Bokaap while sampling some of the local traditional snacks before heading through the exclusive seaside suburbs of Clifton and Camps Bay where we have a short photo stop.

We then carry on along Victoria drive...

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... through Houtbay and along the scenic Chapmans Peak Drive eventually arriving at The Cape of Good hope Nature Reserve where we have the option of doing a 40 minute hike from the most south west tip of Africa, Cape of Good Hope to the Cape Point Light House.

We then start driving north to Boulder Beach Penguin colony, where on a nice day you can actually swim with these sea birds! By this stage you would have built up quite an appetite. We stop for a traditional Cape lunch of fish ‘n chips in the old Kalk Bay harbour where the local fishing community goes back generations.

After everyone has had their fill, we stop briefly at the Shark Spotter, entrusted by the local surfers of Muizenberg to look out for Great White Sharks. From here we travel through the lush Constantia Valley to one of the oldest wine farms outside of Europe for a relaxing end of the day wine tasting experience, where we also learn about the history of farming in the Cape in beautiful surroundings.

Included Highlights: Lunch and refreshments in Kalk Bay, Cape of Good Hope Entrance Fee & Boulders Beach Entry Fee to see penguins, Wine Tasting in the Constantia Wine Valley, Walking tour of Bo-Kaap.

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Bungee jump

3-DAY WEEKEND WILDLIFE SAFARI & BUNGEE ADVENTURE:
Price: £245, includes accommodation, breakfast and dinner. Leaves Cape Town every Friday and returns on Sunday afternoon.

A rip-roaring adventure through the Garden Route where we fit as much as possible into 3 awesome days. You can experience a Game Drive, enjoy some treetop ziplining, visit a local farmers market, an elephant and a monkey sanctuary, the Cango Caves AND The World’s highest Bungy Jump!

Click here to read more...

Day 1 Friday ǀ Overberg, Garden Route, Myoli Beach: We leave Cape Town, heading past Swellendam, to a Private Game Reserve on the Garden Route. Here we go on a safari where you can see Lion, Buffalo, Elephant, Rhino, Cheetah and Giraffe in their natural habitat. After lunch we will enjoy some fun with a canopy tour, experience the thrill of crossing rope bridges, wobbly crossings and zip wires high up in the trees. Next we carry on our way to Sedgefield.
Included Highlight: Game Drive Safari
Optional Activities: Treetop Adventure & Zipline

Day 2 Saturday ǀ Garden Route, Knysna, Tsitsikamma: After a morning visit to a popular local farmers and craft market in Sedgefield village, we make our way to the Crags where you have a two of options to choose from:
1. Elephant Sanctuary where you learn about, and interact with orphaned elephants.
2. Monkey Sanctuary where rescued monkeys roam free in a large jungle area.

Our next stop is the World’s highest commercial Bungee Jump at 216 meters where you have the opportunity to experience this adrenalin pumping activity! From here it’s back to Myoli beach to carry on with the festivities.
Included Highlight: Local craft and farmers market
Optional Activities: Elephant Sanctuary, Monkeyland, Bloukrans bungy jump (216m), Bloukrans Bridge walking tour.

Day 3 Sunday ǀ Little Karoo, Oudtshoorn, return to Cape Town via Route 62. We head to the Town of Oudtshoorn, the “Ostrich Capital of the world”. Here you can choose between:
1. The Cango Caves where we will embark on a 1-hour guided tour of the cave system to view its massive caverns millions of years old. Cango Caves is a world heritage site and one of the great wonders of the natural world. If you enjoy spelunking and don’t mind trying to squeeze through some smaller gaps then you are also welcome to take the 1.5 hour adventure tour!
2. Go on a guided tour of the Cango Endangered Wildlife Ranch for an opportunity to pet cheetah, cage dive with crocodiles and view and learn about many rare and endangered animal species.

Included Highlight: Cango Caves (Adventure or Standard Tour) OR Cango Wildlife Ranch
Optional Activities: Pet a cheetah, cage dive with crocodiles.

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3-day Garden Route Safari in South Africa

3-DAY ELEPHANTS, CAVES AND BUNGEE SAFARI
(One-way from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth or Knysna):

Price: £255. Leaves Cape Town every Monday morning (early).

The 4-Day tour is ideal for volunteers to use to get to our Wildlife Sanctuary project near Port Elizabeth, or one of the Knysna projects. You save on a connecting flight from Cape Town and get to take part in a fun-filled experience with lots of amazing activities. The tour bus will drop you off at either project destination mentioned above on Day 3.

Click here to read more...

Day 1 – Monday ǀ Cape Town to Oudtshoorn Little Karoo, Cango Caves, Wildlife Rehabilitation Ranch: We head into the semi-arid Little Karoo along the scenic Route 62 driving to the town of Oudtshoorn, known as the ostrich capital of the world. Here you can choose between:
The Cango Caves: a 1-hour guided tour of the cave system to view its massive caverns and a wonderland of stalactite and stalagmite formations, millions of years old. Cango Caves is a world heritage site and one of the great wonders of the natural world. Or if you enjoy spelunking and smaller gaps, you are also welcome to take the 1.5 hour adventure tour!
A guided tour of the Cango Endangered Wildlife Ranch: you can pet cheetah, cage dive with crocodiles and view and learn about many rare and endangered animal species.

We then head over the Outeniqua Mountains to the lush coastal region known as the Garden Route where we will head to the beach town of Sedgefield for our first night. If time allows we will also head to the beach for a swim in the Indian Ocean.
Included Highlight: Standard or adventure guided tour of Cango Caves OR Cango Endangered Wildlife ranch.

Day 2 – Tuesday ǀ Sedgefield – Jeffrey’s Bay, Monkey Sanctuary, Elephant Sanctuary, Kloofing, Bloukrans Bungee & Tsitsikamma National Park. This morning we drive through Knysna on our way to the Crags where you have two options to choose from:
1. Elephant Sanctuary where you learn about, and interact with orphaned elephants.
2. Monkey Sanctuary where rescued monkeys roam free in a large jungle area.

Our next stop is the World’s highest commercial Bungee Jump at 216 meters where you can experience this adrenalin pumping activity. Finally, to end the day, we take a beautiful walk through the indigenous Tsitsikamma National Park to the Storms river swing bridges before we head to the famous surfing town of Jeffreys Bay where we stay at a backpackers directly on the beach.
Included Highlight: Tsitsikamma Forest.
Optional Activities: Elephant Sanctuary, Monkeyland, Bloukrans bungee jump (216m), Bloukrans Bridge walking tour.

Day 3 – Wednesday ǀ Jeffrey’s Bay – Addo National Park – Sedgefield Game Drive (Addo), Surfing, shopping time (Jeffrey’s bay). There are 2 options to choose from this morning:
1. Sleep in then explore the town's many surf factory shops, or go for a surf lesson.
2. Wake up early and head to Addo Elephant National park where we go on a morning game drive to view the multitudes of wild animals. Addo has the Big 5 and also the highest concentration of African Elephants in the world!
Included Highlight: Jeffrey’s Bay/Addo Entrance & Game Dive with tour Guide
Optional Activities: Surf Lessons, Shopping OR Addo Game Drive with National Parks guide (morning).

Please note: This is where the 3 Day One Way to PE/ J-Bay/ Knysna will end.
• Volunteers destined for our Wildlife Sanctuary placement are dropped off at the project.
• Volunteers destined for the Knysna projects will be dropped off at our accommodation.

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Caves, Elephants Safari

4-DAY ELEPHANTS, CAVES AND BUNGEE SAFARI:
Price: £280, includes accommodation and food. Leaves Cape Town every Monday morning (early), returning to Cape Town on Thursdays.

Day 1 – Monday ǀ Cape Town to Oudtshoorn Little Karoo, Cango Caves, Wildlife Rehabilitation Ranch: We leave the Mother City behind and head into the semi-arid Little Karoo along the scenic Route 62 driving to the town of Oudtshoorn ...

Click here to read more...

... known as the ostrich capital of the world, it is situated in a beautiful, fertile valley between the Outeniqua and Swartberg Mountains. Here you can choose between:
1. The Cango Caves where we will embark on a 1-hour guided tour of the cave system to view its massive caverns and a wonderland of stalactite and stalagmite formations, millions of years old. Cango Caves is a world heritage site and one of the great wonders of the natural world. Or if you enjoy spelunking and don’t mind trying to squeeze through some smaller gaps then you are also welcome to take the 1.5 hour adventure tour!
2. Go on a guided tour of the Cango Endangered Wildlife Ranch for an opportunity to pet cheetah, cage dive with crocodiles and view and learn about many rare and endangered animal species.

We then head over the Outeniqua Mountains to the lush coastal region known as the Garden Route where we will head to the beach town of Sedgefield where we spend our first night. If time allows we will also head to the beach for a swim in the Indian Ocean.
Included Highlight: Standard or adventure guided tour of Cango Caves OR Cango Endangered Wildlife ranch.

Day 2 – Tuesday ǀ Sedgefield – Jeffrey’s Bay, Monkey Sanctuary, Elephant Sanctuary, Kloofing, Bloukrans Bungee & Tsitsikamma National Park. This morning we drive through Knysna on our way to the Crags where you have a number of options to choose from:
1. Elephant Sanctuary where you learn about, and interact with orphaned elephants.
2. Monkey Sanctuary where rescued monkeys roam free in a large jungle area.

Our next stop is the World’s highest commercial Bungee Jump at 216 meters where you have the opportunity to experience this adrenalin pumping activity. Finally, to end the day we take a beautiful walk through the indigenous Tsitsikamma National Park to the Storms river swing bridges before we head to the famous surfing town of Jeffreys Bay where we stay at a backpackers directly on the beach.
Included Highlight: Tsitsikamma Forest.
Optional Activities: Elephant Sanctuary OR Monkeyland. Bloukrans bungee jump (216m), Bloukrans Bridge walking tour

Day 3 – Wednesday ǀ Jeffrey’s Bay – Addo National Park – Sedgefield Game Drive (Addo), Surfing, shopping time (Jeffrey’s Bay). There are 2 options to choose from this morning.
1. Sleep in and take some time in the morning to explore the towns many surf factory shops, or go for a surf lesson in one of the most famous surf spots on earth.
2. Wake up early and head to Addo Elephant National park where we go on a morning game drive to view the multitudes of wild animals. Addo is home to the Big 5 and it also has the highest concentration of African Elephants in the world!
Included Highlight: Jeffrey’s Bay/Addo Entrance & Game Dive with tour Guide.
Optional Activities: Surf Lessons, Shopping OR Addo Game Drive with National Parks guide (morning).

Day 4 – Thursday ǀ Sedgefield to Cape Town: Return to Cape Town via Sir Lowry’s Pass. After breakfast we start our journey back to Cape Town. For our first stop we will enjoy some fun with a canopy tour, experience the thrill of crossing rope bridges, wobbly crossings and zip wires high up in the trees. We then visit an Aloe factory, where you can purchase a variety of Aloe Ferox products. Finally, enjoy a wonderful scenic drive back to Cape Town, arriving early Thursday afternoon.
Included Highlight: Visit to an aloe factory.
Optional Activities: Treetop Adventure and Zipline.

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5-day sharks and wildlife safari

5-DAY WILDLIFE, SHARKS, CAVES AND BUNGEE SAFARI
(One-way from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth or Knysna):

Price: £365. Includes Accommodation and Food. Leaves Cape Town every Saturday morning (early).

This is the ideal tour for volunteers to use to get to our Wildlife Sanctuary project near Port Elizabeth, or one of the Knysna projects. You save on a connecting flight from Cape Town AND you take part in a fun-filled experience with lots of amazing activities.

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Day 1 – Saturday ǀ Cape Town to Struisbaai: Overberg, Whale Route, Cape Agulhus: Depart Cape Town at 8:30 am and Stellenbosch at 9:30 am, our exciting journey begins on the whale route in Gordons Bay for a stunning drive along the R44 mountain pass overlooking False Bay to the vibrant coastal town of Hermanus. After a picnic lunch on the seafront, we continue to Birkenhead Brewery to sample some fine beers before moving to the southernmost tip of Africa in Cape Agulhas National Park.

We then make our way to the harbour where there is an option to embark on an exciting ski-boat cruise to search for dolphin and whales (June to November). Accommodation is along “Die Plaat”, the longest beach in the Southern Hemisphere. This day is a relaxing one for you to get to know your fellow travellers.
Included Highlight: Land Based Whale Watching in Hermanus/Shopping Beer/wine tasting at Birkenhead Brewery
Optional Activities: Shark cage diving.

Day 2 – Sunday ǀ Cape Agulhas to Sedgefield: Canoeing & Hike: After breakfast we drive inland towards the famed Garden Route! After a scenic drive we begin a beautiful canoe trip down one of the many tranquil rivers, followed by a short hike to a stunning waterfall. We finish off the day with some beach time down at Myoli Beach.
Included Highlight: Canoe trip & hike to waterfall.

Day 3 – Monday ǀ Oudtshoorn day trip: Little Karoo, Cango Caves, Ostrich Farm, Wildlife Ranch: We drive over the stunning Outeniqua mountains into the semi desert Klein Karoo and Oudtshoorn. The ostrich capital of the world, Oudtshoorn is situated in a beautiful valley between mountains. The Cango Caves is our first stop with a 1-hour guided tour of the cave system to view its massive caverns and a wonderland of stalactite and stalagmite formations, millions of years old. Cango Caves is a world heritage site and one of the great wonders of the natural world. If you enjoy spelunking and smaller gaps, you can also take the 1.5 hour adventure tour!

Next is an option to view and ride ostriches on a working ostrich farm, or go on a guided tour of the Cango Endangered Wildlife Ranch for an opportunity to pet cheetah, cage dive with crocodiles and view many rare and endangered animal species.
Included Highlight: Standard or adventure guided tour of Cango Caves Optional Activities: Tour of a working Ostrich farm + riding (weight restriction applies to riders). Cango Endangered Wildlife ranch.

Day 4 – Tuesday ǀ Sedgefield – Jeffrey’s Bay: Monkey Sanctuary, Elephant Sanctuary, Kloofing, Bloukrans Bungee & Tsitsikamma National Park: This morning we drive through Knysna on our way to the Crags where you can choose from:
1. Elephant Sanctuary where you learn about, and interact with orphaned elephants.
2. Monkey Sanctuary where rescued monkeys roam free in a large jungle area.
3. Kloofing trip through a spectacular gorge with jumps, abseils and swimming.

Our next stop is the World’s highest commercial Bungee Jump at 216 meters, which you can do - optional. Finally, we take a beautiful walk through the indigenous Tsitsikamma National Park to the Storms river swing bridges before we head to the famous surfing town of Jeffreys Bay where we stay at a backpackers directly on the beach.
Included Highlight: Tsitsikamma Forest Optional Activities: Elephant Sanctuary, Monkeyland, Bloukrans bungee jump (216m), Bloukrans Bridge walking tour.

Day 5 – Wednesday ǀ Jeffrey’s Bay – Addo National Park – Sedgefield: Game Drive (Addo), Surfing, shopping. There are 2 options to choose from this morning.
1. Sleep in and then explore the town's many surf factory shops, or go for a surf lesson in one of the most famous surf spots on earth.
2. Wake up early and head to Addo Elephant National park where we go on a morning game drive. Addo has the Big 5 game animals and the highest concentration of African Elephants in the world!

A relaxed drive back towards Sedgefield for the night. Time permitting, we'll visit the famous Knysna Heads for some absolutely amazing pictures where the ocean meets the inlet to the Knysna Lagoon.
Included Highlight: Storms River/Jeffrey’s Bay/Addo & Knysna Heads
Optional Activities: Black Water Tubing, Canopy Tour, Surf Lessons, Shopping, Addo Elephant NP tour (morning)

Please note:
• Volunteers destined for our Wildlife Sanctuary placement, can get dropped off at the project or choose to be fetched in Jeffrey’s Bay after the activities.
• Volunteers destined for the Knysna projects will be dropped off at our accommodation

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7-day extreme adventure safari experience in South Africa

6-DAY WILDLIFE, SHARKS, CAVES AND BUNGEE SAFARI:
Price: £395. Leaves Cape Town on a Saturday morning and returns to Cape Town the following Thursday afternoon.

This is the ideal tour for volunteers wanting to arrive at our Wildlife Sanctuary project near Port Elizabeth, or one of the Knysna projects. You save on a connecting flight from Cape Town and get to take part in a fun-filled experience with lots of amazing activities. The tour bus will drop you off at any of the destinations listed above on Day 5.

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Day 1 – Saturday ǀ Cape Town to Struisbaai: Overberg, Whale Route, Cape Agulhus: Departing Cape Town at 8:30 am and Stellenbosch at 9:30 am, our exciting journey begins today along the world famous whale route in Gordons Bay for a stunning drive along the picturesque R44 mountain pass overlooking False Bay to the vibrant coastal town of Hermanus. After a picnic lunch on the seafront, we continue to Birkenhead Brewery to sample some fine beers before moving on to the southernmost tip of Africa in Cape Agulhas National Park.

We then make our way to the harbour where there is an option to embark on an exciting ski-boat cruise to search for dolphin and whales (June to November). After the cruise we take a walk back to the accommodation along “Die Plaat”, the longest beach in the Southern Hemisphere.
Included Highlight: Land Based Whale Watching in Hermanus / Shopping. Beer/wine tasting at Birkenhead Brewery
Optional Activities: Shark cage diving (MUST be pre-booked in advance).

Day 2 – Sunday ǀ Cape Agulhas to Sedgefield: Canoeing & Hike: After breakfast we drive inland again, this time towards the famed Garden Route! After a scenic drive we begin a beautiful canoe trip down one of the many tranquil rivers in the area, followed by a short hike to a stunning waterfall. We finish off the day with some beach time down at Myoli Beach.
Included Highlight: Canoe trip & hike to waterfall

Day 3 – Monday ǀ Oudtshoorn day trip: Little Karoo, Cango Caves, Ostrich Farm, Wildlife Ranch: We begin the day with a drive over the picturesque Outeniqua mountain range into the semi desert region of the Klein Karoo and Oudtshoorn, the ostrich capital of the world. Oudtshoorn is situated in a beautiful valley between the Outeniqua and Swartberg Mountains. The Cango Caves will be the first stop, a 1-hour guided tour of the cave system to view its massive caverns and a wonderland of stalactite and stalagmite formations, millions of years old. Cango Caves is a world heritage site and one of the great wonders of the natural world. If you enjoy spelunking and smaller gaps, you are also welcome to take the 1.5 hour adventure tour!

Next is an option to view and ride ostriches on a working ostrich farm, or go on a guided tour of the Cango Endangered Wildlife Ranch for an opportunity to pet cheetah, cage dive with crocodiles and view many rare and endangered animal species.
Included Highlight: Standard or adventure guided tour of Cango Caves
Optional Activities: Tour of a working Ostrich farm + riding (weight restriction apply to riders). Cango Endangered Wildlife ranch.

Day 4 – Tuesday ǀ Sedgefield – Jeffrey’s Bay: Monkey Sanctuary, Elephant Sanctuary, Kloofing, Bloukrans Bungee & Tsitsikamma National Park: This morning we drive through Knysna on our way to the Crags where you have two options to choose from:
1. Elephant Sanctuary where you learn about, and interact with orphaned elephants.
2. Monkey Sanctuary where rescued monkeys roam free in a large jungle area.

Our next stop is the World’s highest commercial Bungee Jump at 216 meters where you can experience this adrenalin pumping activity. Finally, we take a beautiful walk through the indigenous Tsitsikamma National Park to the Storms river swing bridges before we head to the famous surfing town of Jeffreys Bay where we stay at a backpackers directly on the beach.
Included Highlight: Tsitsikamma Forest Optional Activities: Elephant Sanctuary OR Monkeyland. Bloukrans bungee jump (216m), Bloukrans Bridge walking tour.

Day 5 – Wednesday ǀ Jeffrey’s Bay – Addo National Park – Sedgefield: Game Drive (Addo), Surfing, shopping. There are 2 options to choose from this morning.
1. Sleep in then explore the towns many surf factory shops, or go for a surf lesson.
2. Wake up early and head to Addo Elephant National park where we go on a morning game drive to view the multitudes of wild animals. Addo has the Big 5 and also the highest concentration of African Elephants in the world!

Included Highlight: Jeffrey’s Bay/Addo Entrance & Game Dive with tour Guide
Optional Activities: Surf Lessons, Shopping OR Addo Game Drive with National Parks guide (morning).

Day 6 – Thursday ǀ Sedgefield to Cape Town: Return to Cape Town via Sir Lowry’s Pass: After breakfast we start our journey back to Cape Town. For our first stop we will enjoy some fun with a canopy tour, experience the thrill of crossing rope bridges, wobbly crossings and zip wires high up in the trees. We then visit an Aloe factory, where you can purchase a variety of Aloe Ferox products. Finally, enjoy a wonderful scenic drive back to Cape Town, arriving early Thursday afternoon.

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4-day Kruger  National Park Wildlife Game Safari Tour in South Africa

4-DAY KRUGER NATIONAL PARK SAFARI:
Price: £645 per person, includes game drives, tented accommodation, breakfasts and dinners. Leaves Johannesburg daily at 7:00.
Join this 4 day tour to the majestic Kruger National Park, one of the top wilderness reserves in the world and home to the highest concentration of lions in Africa. You'll stay at a private Wildlife Reserve with permanent safari tents.

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Day 1 Sunset Drive, Kruger National Park: We collect you from your hostel or Johannesburg Airport and travel via Dullstroom or Nelspruit to the lodge in a Big Five Game Reserve. Transfer to an open-top game vehicle for a Sunset Drive. After dark, spotlights are used to locate nocturnal animals. Dinner in the open Boma and overnight in air-conditioned chalets.

Day 2 Bush Walk, Kruger National Park:
Awaken at sunrise for an exhilarating day of unforgettable bush life. Drive to a remote part of the Balule Game Reserve, where you enjoy a 4h Bush Walk. Your experienced field guide will lead you through the bush. The thrill of following Africa’s large animals until you can take a photo will remain with you forever. Adrenalin surges will be acute, notwithstanding the presence of your armed ranger. Return for brunch. At around 14h30 we go on an afternoon game drive. Transfer to Marc’s Camp where accommodation is in tents equipped with beds and bedding, soap and towels, electric light and fan. Dinner and overnight at in the camp.

Day 3 Orpen Gate, Kruger National Park:
After breakfast you travel on the open-sided Gameviewer to the Orpen Gate of Kruger. The added elevation and absence of windows allow for excellent viewing and photographic opportunities. Your qualified guide will show you various animals, large and small, that frequent this outstanding wildlife paradise. The zone of Kruger you visit has the highest percentage population of giraffe, zebra, wildebeest and impala that attract numerous lions and other predators. Dinner and overnight at Marc’s Camp.

Day 4 Bush walk at Kruger National Park, Johannesburg
We enjoy an early morning Bush Walk accompanied by an armed ranger. You will be shown various interesting details of the bush, including insects, spoor and scats. You have an excellent chance of encountering Buffalo, Nyala and other game on foot. After breakfast, we drive to the Three Rondawels of the Blyde River Canyon. We return you to your hostel or airport at around 17h00.

Includes:
• Return transfers from Johannesburg
• 3 hour Sunset Big 5 game drive in Big 5 reserve
• 4 hour Big 5 walk with armed ranger
• 2 hour afternoon game drive on Balule Game Reserve
• Full Day Kruger Park on open vehicle
• Breakfasts, Dinners, Accommodation and bedding
• Sunrise bush walk with armed ranger
• Blyde River canyon and Three Rondawels

Excludes: Lunches, Transfers, Drinks & Laundry

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REVIEWS AND FEEDBACK:

ANNA BAUER
American
Social Work, Psychology and Counselling Work Experience in Knysna

Upon receiving my Masters degree in Social Work, I made the decision to do a six week internship with [Travellers Program with FAMSA (Families South Africa)].

What I learned and experienced during my six weeks was more than I could have ever imagined. It was without a doubt a once in a lifetime experience. Although it has been three years since I did my internship at FAMSA, I’m still talking about all the wonderful things that I was able to accomplish and all the knowledge that I had ascertained from being there.

One of them was visiting an all-in-one medical service clinic, which offered an outdoor area for those with Tuberculosis (TB) to shower, etc. I was very impressed.

Not only did I learn several valuable skills, I also gained a multitude of real life experiences that were different from my own. Those experiences encouraged me to better myself, and to additionally engage and work in the communities.

These are just a few of the experiences that I was fortune enough to attain and gain some firsthand knowledge while being at [the Travellers FAMSA program]. If you have your degree in Social Work, Psychology, and/or Counseling I highly recommend this program. I’m already planning my next trip back to Knysna, SA. Anna Baur, LLMSW

SUSAN SUTTON
British
Social Work, Psychology and Counselling Work Experience in Knysna

I discovered FAMSA through Travellers Worldwide who organise gap year type placements. This project was of particular interest to me as a qualified counsellor. My aim at the start of the placement was to be exposed to as much counselling as possible, to learn about the culture in South Africa and to be as useful as possible to the project.

My initial impression that first Monday morning when I arrived for the 8am staff meeting was one of warmth and laughter. Throughout my time at FAMSA I have found that the staff team feel like a family. The 'family' is strong, caring and communicates well with each other. Each family member knows their worth and the care, respect and support for each other is evident. Each member of staff made me feel welcome in their own way.

I quickly learned that the challenges facing this organisation in South Africa were no different to the voluntary organisation I am involved with in the UK. There is a shortage of male volunteers, much time is spent encouraging volunteers to attend training and supervision and of course there are the perennial funding challenges.

Whilst I have been here I have had the opportunity to deliver two training workshops. Volunteers and staff were keen to take advantage of the training which was well received and I had some positive individual feedback. Members of staff who couldn't attend approached me personally so I could update them on the information missed.

My knowledge of and many years experience in administration meant I was never bored and was able to make myself useful helping out with numerous admin tasks. In particular, covering for the Administrator's role for a day not only meant I was being useful but that I learnt a great deal about the demands made on the organisation.

I really valued the time I was able to spend time with staff observing their work with groups. This was a real privilege and I appreciated their presenting skills and their ability to support all group participants in exploring and sharing their lives relating to the topics being considered.

VEP Group Supervision was one of the many highlights and an education about what can be included in group supervision - dancing and food! I will definitely be taking that suggestion back to the UK.

It has been interesting carrying out client evaluations and has given me an opportunity to chat with a variety of clients. All of whom hold FAMSA in the highest esteem. I have also helped design a questionnaire for feedback on a specific project.

A delicate situation arose which I was able to help with. This was where a couple were unhappy with the service they had initially received. Working with another staff member we were able to turn this situation around and the couple were finally very happy and praised us for our work, support and professionalism. I was please that I was able to use my counselling skills with this family who were in a crisis situation. I was also able to have one counselling session with a client who had experienced a bereavement.

I found that the staff meetings are a positive start to the week. A chance for all staff to gather to reflect on the previous week and to share what will be happening in the week to come. It is a chance to celebrate successes and ask for support and guidance. It is refreshing that each staff member takes a turn to chair the meeting, thus each week there is a slightly different focus.

The Strat Meeting was a wonderful opportunity for me to get an overview of all the projects and to see where there are areas of concern and to see what the focus for the coming year is.

Unfortunately, due to the timing of my placement I was not able to be involved with the work of all the projects because they were finishing for the year.

Overall this has been an extremely positive experience for me. I have learnt much about counselling in different cultures and the challenges that raises. I would like to view this as an initial visit and the start of a long term working (volunteering) relationship with FAMSA. To use the family analogy I hope I am the cousin from the UK who visits regularly!

Thank you to everyone who has welcomed me into the FAMSA family.

CATHERINE ZIELINSKI
British
Social Work, Psychology and Counselling Work Experience in Knysna

Hi Sharon! Sorry it’s taken me a while to give you some feedback but here it goes…

Let me get the tiny bit of negative out the way first, in the description of work content there is quite a bit of detail regarding counselling: – Trauma support, parenting support and marriage and relationship counselling. I would think that while it is obvious a volunteer would not be taking part in one to one counselling I was expecting to at least witness a group session taking place I feel like that would have been a valuable aspect of the experience and unfortunately during my time I wasn’t exposed to any of the counselling side of things at all, I accept this could very well be down to the time of year or the fact I wasn’t there a particularly long time ...

The programmes seemed to be the focus during my time and it was fascinating to see how the social workers put these programmes together both practically and conceptually. It was certainly eye opening and inspiring to go along to the talks and events in the community, this is when I felt I had ample opportunity to speak with the local people and try and learn about South African culture I think this was a hugely worthwhile experience.

I was ECSTATIC to find out I was going to the Knysna Correctional facility! Assisting with the anger management programme (I which I felt actively involved) and having the opportunity to speak directly to the prisoners about their lives and their experiences was certainly the highlight of my time in Knysna. I was also given tours of the prison and spoke to the medical department, chefs, parole managers, guards and the prison social worker. I like that I was given quite a wide breadth of information of the prison system and how it differs to the UK and all the prison staff and inmates were really enthusiastic about educating me which was honestly a wonderful feeling. I will be mentioning this experience in my application to Sheffield University to start my MA in Forensic Psychology.

Another highlight from my programme was having Anneke Barnard come in and do an introduction to mindfulness. She received her training from Jon Kabat-Zinn and Saki Santorelli in the US, the introduction was really compelling and I am so grateful that I was asked if I wanted to attend, (which of course I did) and it was massively valuable for me both personally and academically.

On a personal note, Sharon, I want to say a massive thankyou to you. With all the things you have going on I don’t know how you found the time to organise activities for us and take us out and socialise with us!

I loved every minute of my experience and I don’t think it would have been the same had you not been there. It was like having an instant friend!

Thanks for everything and I hope to see you and all the staff at the Centre again! Kindest regards, Catherine.

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RESPONSIBLE & ETHICAL TRAVEL:

Sustainable and ongoing development of local communities is always the primary aim of our volunteer projects and this project is no different. You'll take up where others before you left off and thus helping to continue making this project sustainable.

We are passionate about mutually beneficial interaction with the local community. The team members are locals and very community-minded.

We've been working in this local community for nearly 20 years, so our interaction for all local institutions and businesses is very extensive. Our South Africa Manager sits on the boards of various organisations (like our Street Kids project, for example) and is regularly acknowledged for her efforts on behalf of Travellers to improving the local community.

SUPPORTING THE COMMUNITY:

We work closely with the local community to achieve maximum benefits and emphasis is always placed on doing what is best for the local environment. To this end, information on how to leave minimal negative impact on the environment is given to you prior to your departure as part of your documentation from Travellers Worldwide. This is also highlighted in your induction on arrival.

We have local staff in each destination where we have Programmes and where we work with local partners, again the staff employed are locals. We have long-standing relationships with local people, making this a sustainable, on-going project. Your work here contributes to, and helps to continue, the long chain of worthwhile achievements in this community. You'll also be directly influencing the local economy and supporting international tourism, an important part of the country's general economy. So, by living in the local area, you're bringing in income through tourism and education through cultural exchange!

The accommodation on this project is locally owned and all the staff are from the neighbourhood. Where food is provided, produce is purchased in nearby shops, helping provide authentic local cuisine. Where you've chosen host family accommodation (where available), families are selected based on their desire to provide real cultural exchange and at the same time a warm family environment.

Meals are included in the programme, provided through a monthly allowance. Volunteers are able to spend this allowance each day in any of the many local restaurants and cafes, tasting local cuisine.

Social Responsibility: The information we provide prepares you for your placement and how to deal with the local people. It also briefs you on the Do’s and Don’ts and makes you aware of the possible impact of your behaviour. However, you are also expected to do research on the country you're going to and their customs and culture. The research you do will help you to gt the most out of this exciting travel and experience opportunity.

Cultural sensitivity: Volunteers receive an induction and orientation on arrival which covers things like being sensitive to the culture you’re in, everyday processes which will be different to what you’re accustomed to, how to have the maximum beneficial imprint and the minimum negative impact.

We stress the importance of responsible tourism, cultural differences and acceptable/unacceptable conduct. Where appropriate, volunteers are briefed on local customs, particularly those that are different to the volunteer’s accepted norm.

Economic Responsibility: By living in the volunteer house provided by the project you’ll, again, be providing much needed income and employment to the local population. The house is simple and built from natural materials and you are actively encouraged to recycle, be efficient with energy and water usage and preserve the natural surroundings. All food is provided and sourced locally. Your transport to and from the project will usually be either on a bicycle or walking again contributing to green efforts.

For 25 years our volunteers have lived in local communities around the world, spent their money with local traders and brought funding to the projects they work with. Travellers employs local staff and works with local support staff. This helps to fund the project directly and through bringing money into the local community.

In general, the organisations we work with around the world often struggle to financially support and maintain the work they do, so every penny raised makes a real difference.

Our aim is to create always a Win-Win-Win situation in terms of the benefits for, (a) the local communities and institutions you work in, (b) our Volunteers, i.e. you, and (c) for Travellers. We do not embark on any project that is not beneficial to all three of these stakeholders.

The impact of pollution: As this project is located in the township, volunteers are transported in our own minibus as a group, thus lessening the impact of pollution by individuals having to do multiple trips. Regarding recreational transport, almost everything is wthin walking distance in Knysna. However, where transport must be used, we always encourage and recommended the use of public transport and all nearby public transport routes are shown to all new arrivals. If taxis are required, you will be encouraged to share with other volunteers in order to lessen the impact of pollution wherever possible.

Having regard for the local community by being consciously aware of your impact is encouraged in all our documentation for all our projects in all our destination countries. This is because we feel very strongly that many countries are subject to, for example, water shortages, high cost of energy and high impact of energy usage, the negative impact of litter and general pollution. Thus we encourage you to be aware of these possible impacts so that they contribute positively and not negatively to the community in this respect

POSITIVE EFFECTS THAT TRAVELLERS HAS ON THE LOCAL ENVIRONMENT:

We provide you with many tips on how to be a responsible traveller regarding the environmental impact you have.

We want you to be immersed in the culture, by living and working with local people. We work with local communities, local charities, local government bodies and local schools. We also often partner with local organisations whom we have vetted to ensure that they are committed to the projects they run, that they have the same responsible attitude to the local community that we do, that they are eco-friendly and have ethical policies.

In our projects and in our headquarters offices, we take an environmentally responsible attitude towards recycling and reusing of waste products. We encourage all participants to offset their flight emissions via a carbon offset scheme. Our volunteers are given pre-departure Information that encourages them to minimise waste and reduce their use of water and electricity, in other words, to live sensitively in the environment that they’re working in.

Travellers also give donations as and when required by projects. This is often done through our charitable arm, The Bridge The Gap Foundation. Our projects enable vital conservation, research, care and education work to take place directly where it is most needed. Our volunteers contribute, all over the world, to projects that would not exist without them.

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An amazing view of the Knysna Heads - the Indian ocean on one side and the Knysna Lagoon on the other. These are the narrow straits where the river estuary pours into the Ocean.
Another Bucket List activity is to go cage diving with sharks, or taking a tour out on the boat to go Whale, Shark and Dolphin spotting.
South Africa is Wildlife Heaven for anyone interested in Elephants, Big Cats, Rhinos, Monkeys ... and just about any other animal - don't miss the opportunity to take a safari through a local Game Park.
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