Stretching 2,500 kilometres along the Indian Ocean, Mozambique is a beach-studded and palm tree lined African paradise. This tropical coastline is enticing both as a sunny escape and an excellent under-the-radar volunteering destination. Volunteering in Mozambique typically includes marine conservation – and lots of beach time! Why Volunteer in Mozambique? Mozambique may be a lush paradise on the surface, but beneath the sunshiny veneer are many development challenges. It is this contrast which makes Mozambique one of Africa’s most exciting volunteer destinations. Volunteers can enjoy discovering the white sand beaches, unique African culture and one of the best diving destinations in the world, while contributing towards meaningful projects. Volunteering in Mozambique is feel-good adventure at its finest. What to know about Volunteering in Mozambique The enigmatic nature of Mozambique can be both exciting and intimidating at the same time. To help uncover a few of the country’s mysteries, here are some useful things to know before you go to volunteer in Mozambique. Requirements For volunteer programs on the coast of Mozambique, there may be requirements regarding water safety. For example, when volunteering with GoEco you must be a strong swimmer to participate in a program and PADI certified if you are staying for less than two weeks. Safety You can feel secure as a volunteer in Mozambique. In-country support, detailed orientation and 24-hour emergency support are included in program fees so you won’t need to worry about your safety. Language Mozambique was colonized by Portugal, so Portuguese is still the official language of this country. Most of the population, however, are of Bantu descent and speak their own tribal tongue. Volunteer work is a great way to explore Mozambique if you’re not fluent in Portuguese, as you’ll have English-speaking staff on hand to support you throughout your stay. Accommodations Living conditions in Mozambique are typically basic but comfortable. You can expect electricity and running water, but WiFi is slow and not always functional. While you will still be able to keep in touch with your family at home, this is also a great chance to disconnect and immerse yourself in coastal life! Costs Most of your expenses will be included in the program fees. Accommodation, meals, training, airport transfers and even insurance is all covered when you volunteer with GoEco. You just need to bring along enough spending money for the occasional meal or coffee out, and for souvenirs! Mozambique is a cheap country for volunteering and pocket money of around $50 a week is usually enough to cover any additional costs. Packing Mozambique has a tropical climate and is therefore hot year-round. At the same time, it is a conservative country so you will need to cover knees and shoulders when you’re out and about in the village. Bring lightweight, loose-fitting, and comfortable clothes in fabrics like cotton and linen, so you can stay cool and dress appropriately. Natural fabrics are also easier to wash and dry. Of course, you’ll also need to bring lots of sunscreen! Health You should consult a travel doctor before leaving home to get the best advice on any vaccinations you need. It’s a good idea to bring along a basic first-aid kit to treat any scratches, blisters, or upset stomachs. For anything more serious, local staff will always be available to support you and make sure you get any vaccine you may need. Where to Volunteer in Mozambique The most popular location for volunteering in Mozambique is Praia de Tofo. This is a small coastal community settled along one of the most spectacular beaches in Africa. The warm sands stretch for miles, embraced by clear turquoise water. Off the coast, humpback whales, whale sharks and dolphins cruise by while sea turtles and manta rays glide past the reefs nearby. Conservation initiatives are critical for protecting the abundant natural beauty of the region. Many of the marine species found here are threatened. In just over a decade, the population of whale sharks off the coast of Mozambique has decreased by 80 percent. Volunteers in Praia de Tofo can make a real contribution towards marine conservation while enjoying the spectacular ocean environment. Volunteer Programs in Mozambique Volunteers can easily choose a program in Mozambique that fits their interests and personal goals. High levels of poverty mean there are plenty of volunteer opportunities in community aid and development, childcare and education and wildlife conservation. However, with the vast and beautiful coastline defining much of Mozambique’s identity, you’ll find the most exciting volunteer projects along the coast. Marine volunteer projects combine the best elements of adventure, Mozambique’s stunning natural beauty and important conservation work. Whale shark and Marine Conservation is a superb volunteering option, allowing you to get up close to the biggest fish in the sea, learn to dive and enjoy the lively yet laid-back pace of life in Tofo. Touching on conservation, adventure, and cultural immersion, this volunteer program is a versatile option that would suit many potential volunteers. As a volunteer with GoEco in Mozambique, you’ll be helping with hands-on research, collecting data that is instrumental in conservation efforts. Volunteers have helped to identify more than 400 whale sharks, adding them to a global database and contributing to the protection of this precious species. The data collected helps to guide conservation efforts and raise awareness of the importance of the marine environment both locally and globally. Much of the data collection takes place underwater, which means your hard work on the project is also an incredible adventure and prime opportunity to learn to dive. As well as contributing to important conservation projects, volunteering in Mozambique is a chance to discover a lesser-known country in Africa. You’ll have the inside scoop on some of the best beaches in the Indian Ocean, have unforgettable wildlife encounters, and maybe even learn a few words of Portuguese!