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Volunteer with Children in Africa

Childcare centres in Africa can take many different shapes and sizes. Many have children as old as 18 and as young as babies. These children are in need of love, care and affection which local staff are often to busy to offer them on an individual basis.

Your work in a care centre in Africa will provide these children with the attention and mental stimulation that all children need to develop healthy social skills and self-confidence. Volunteer work in African care centres can make a large impact on both you and the children themselves. We recommend going for eight weeks or more if you are doing a project that involves social work. However, some projects can accommodate volunteers for as little as two weeks.

You can impact the lives of numerous children in Africa by donating your time and energy volunteering in a care centre in Ethiopia, Ghana, or Tanzania. Our care work volunteers come during various stages of their life – gap years, university vacations, career breaks, and volunteer vacations. Volunteering in African care centres offers a rewarding combination of the new, exciting and life-changing.

Children and Volunteer Work in Africa

German volunteer plays with child on the Care project in Africa

Becoming a volunteer with children in Africa is both easy and rewarding. Volunteering at an African care centre utilizes a wide range of the volunteers’ interests, talents, skills, and knowledge. There are opportunities for our volunteers to work in every and any aspect of a care centre; whether it is teaching the children and helping them with their homework, playing a game of tag or telephone with them, by simply sharing your time, experiences and knowledge with them you are making a difference in their lives.

The voracious need these children have to seek and learn about any subject matter – sports, history, music, life, philosophy, or farming – is both awe-inspiring and humbling. Volunteering with these children will give you an intimate insight into a new and exciting world. A world where childcare is a privilege and a gift, where children who have nothing will share whatever they can with a complete stranger, and where you can change the lives of people and children just by being yourself.

Children and Adults with Special Needs and Volunteering in Africa

Female volunteer working with special needs children in Morocco

In addition to working in care centres in Africa, there are also volunteer opportunities to work with children and adults with special needs. Volunteers are desperately needed and greatly appreciated in these care centres in Africa filled with people with physical or mental disabilities.

The care centres in Africa are overfilled with people in need of daily care and constant medical attention which is not available to them due to the staff being overworked and not large enough to give adequate individual attention to every patient. You have the choice to work in AIDS hospices or schools for the handicapped, the blind and the deaf.

There is no requirement for a medical degree, specialized training, or any previous experiences in care work of any sort. All that is required is a strong desire to help children and adults with special needs. By helping these vulnerable children and adults you are giving them a better chance of having a future with hope and the possibility of living independently.

Volunteer in a Day Care Centre or Kindergarten in Africa

Volunteers with Children at Care placement in South Africa

Kindergartens in Africa are filled with children eager to learn. As a volunteer, you would help set up and organize daily activities for these children to help stimulate their minds and capture their interests. There are a variety of activities you can do with the children such as art projects, games and songs.

Volunteers who work in Africa can also work in care centres. These volunteers will be exposed to children of all different ages, from babies to teenagers. You will help prepare meals as well as possibly teaching the children literary skills and about appropriate personal hygiene. Interacting with the children on a daily and personal basis is both incredibly rewarding and enlightening. You will learn all about a new culture by working in Africa, but you will learn about a whole new way of life and a new way to look at things by working with these children.

Volunteering in Orphanages in Africa

Over the years, our volunteers have worked with children at orphanages and residential care homes in Africa. They have done incredible work at these placements, improving living conditions there and creating opportunities for children by supporting their education and care. However, we have decided to move our focus away from orphanages and homes toward community and family-based care. This is because we believe stable family environments are best for the children we work with. Read more about orphanage volunteering and our position on it.

This means that instead of volunteering in orphanages in Africa, volunteers will work in placements like day care centres, kindergartens and schools, or support groups for the elderly and mothers and babies. This will help Projects Abroad build stronger relationships with local communities and – most importantly – help families stay together and flourish.

"Most importantly the work with the children was quite amazing. Being a private kindergarten, the school was well organized and the children studying here are really lucky. A big part of this successful teaching method was down to Ayantu, my supervisor. She is great, always having new, interesting ideas and inspiring me and the other teachers a lot. I always enjoyed helping her creating new activities and I somehow became an artist, drawing nearly every day. My favourite classes for teaching were the nurseries (the 1st grade). Having fun with the children by singing, drawing, telling stories and basic teaching (abc, numbers) was really rewarding. After 3 months the development the small kids made was clearly visible."

Lisa Jung
Care in Ethiopia

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