The aims of this project are to ensure that the Masai Mara remains a valuable source of income for the country as well as to increase local community involvement in the tourism industry. As a volunteer on the Masai Mara Project you will help to preserve a balanced relationship between the local Masai communities and the threatened species in the area. You will be involved in exciting conservation and wildlife research activities in a new and spectacular Masai Mara conservancy area. You will also be assisting at the Koiyaki Guiding School to train up local Masai guides to promote sustainable tourism in the area.
What's not Included
The Masai Mara in Kenya is known as one of Africa's finest safari destinations, most famous for its annual wildebeest and zebra migration, which has been called "the greatest wildlife show on earth." This area has one of the highest densities of carnivores in Africa, as well as supporting a range of endangered species. Kenya itself is located on the equator on the eastern coast of Africa, boasting a range of ethnicities and cultural vibrancy. This project is situated in the newly established Naboisho Conservancy, in the heart of the Masai Mara and just north of the National Reserve. This conservancy area is geographically linked with a number of conservancies as well as the Masai Mara National Reserve, encouraging wildlife to move over large areas.
You will be involved in three primary initiatives: wildlife monitoring and conservation efforts, environmental education at a local primary school, and developing resources/helping to educate future local tour guides at a guiding school. Activities can include but are not limited to:
- Lion research and data collection
- Elephant monitoring and research
- Diverse data collection, particularly during the Great Migration in the summer months (game drive routing, road identification, species recording, and wildlife monitoring)
- Running an environmental club and develop English skills at a local primary school
- Help out at a tour guiding school for local residents to become more involved in the tourism process surrounding Masai Mara. This may include teaching English, cultural lessons, building/repairing facilities, etc.
Please take note of the project's minimum requirements:
- Min age 18
- At least 1.55 meters tall (5 feet 1 inch)
- Police clearance form
- Volunteers MUST travel with proof of a Yellow Fever Vaccination
- Good level of English
- Motivation to learn about conservation
- Motivation to work with children and/or adults
- High level of independence and flexibility
- Immunizations (please consult your doctor)
There are many optional travel and excursion options that volunteers will be able to arrange once on site. (At an additional fee) These include the following:
- Walking safaris
- Night out in the bush
- Excursion to Masai Mara Game Reserve
- Balloon safaris
- Dorobo Bush Camp overnight including guided walk
- Lamu getaway
- 2 night stay at Basecamp Masai Mara overnight including game drives in National Reserve
- Overnight stay at Basecamp Wilderness
Holidays: Please note that the project will be closed for a Christmas break from mid December to early January.