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In 1994 post-Apartheid, the South African government removed Physical Education from the school curriculum. While this course has since then been reintroduced, it only forms a small part of school curriculums and daily schedules. As a result, students' physical activity is very low. The need for intervention remains great as sport and exercise is an integral part of childhood development and helps to increase concentration and keep children off the streets and out of trouble.

This project aims to encourage children in the struggling communities of Cape Flats to engage in fun, beneficial physical activity. Volunteers will have the opportunity to become role models and friends to the children they coach as they instill self-confidence and the importance of leadership, teamwork, and communication.

Location of the Project:  Cape Town and surrounding area, South Africa
Project length:  Min 2 weeks - Max 12 weeks
Arrival Airport:  Cape Town International Airport (CPT)
Volunteer Work:  Work with children, sports coaching, community development
Age:  17-80. Age Exceptions: this project accepts volunteers who are 16 years old with signed documentation from a parent or guardian.
Number of Volunteers:  Up to 6 international volunteers

What's Included

Accommodations:  Shared room in a fully furnished house in Observatory, South Africa
Food:  Three meals a day (excluding weekends)
Airport Transfers:  Included on arrival and departure day
Insurance:  Comprehensive travel health insurance with volunteer abroad coverage
Orientation:  Orientation is included upon arrival and includes introductions to staff members, fellow volunteers, Cape Town, and the local communities.
Support:  Local in-country team and 24hr emergency support

What's not Included

Flights, personal expenses, meals on the weekend, visa (if required)

Voted one of the world's top tourist destinations Cape Town boasts an incredibly wide range of attractions. The area hosts several unique cultural and heritage sites, such as Robben Island, Table Mountains, and the V&A Waterfront. As a city alive with creativity, color, sounds and tastes, Cape Town also offers an abundance of outdoor activites, from hiking, to surfing, to water skiiing.

The area of Cape Town in which this project takes place is called Cape Flats. This area encompasses a number of townships, including Khayelitsha, Langa, and Philippi. These communities are a melting pot of different cultures, ethnicities and languages. Yet across these differences, there are many parallels such as poverty, unemployment and HIV/AIDS.

On this project, you will have the option to work solely on the sports development project, or you may also choose to volunteer part-time with the sports development project and devote the rest of your time to teaching, oprhan care, and healthcare intiatives.

Physical education: With this project, you will work alongside the school's physical education instructor and be responsible for any of the following:

  • Help develop lesson plans and games
  • Design fitness tests and drills to improve and track physical fitness levels
  • Share any of your own personal skills or passions in the area with the coach and students
After-school coaching: Become a mentor and friend to these children while providing them with after-school activities to keep them active. With this program you will:
  • Plan fun and active games (think obstacle courses and drills) for the children to enjoy
  • Play and supervise sports games, including soccer, cricket, field hockey, or basketball
  • Volunteers who choose to volunteer part-time with the sports development program will assist with other initiatives in the community, including: 
  • Orphan care: provide your support to a wide range of orphanages in the area. 
  • Teaching: work with teachers or provide one-on-one attention to children struggling to keep up in school. 
  • Healthcare: assist caregivers prepare medication and vitamins for children affected by HIV/AIDS.
A typical day: Your day will begin at 7:00 am with a healthy breakfast before you head out to your morning project at 8:30 am. After lunch at 12:30 pm, it's time to resume your afternoon tasks. Your work day will end at 5:00 pm, at which point you will return to the volunteer house for a debriefing and to discuss the schedule for the next day. Dinner is served at 6:00 pm, followed by free time to relax, watch a movie, go to trivia nights, or head off to one of the local pubs, coffee shops, restaurants.

During school holidays activities may differ from the usual schedule, but the work will be equally engaging and rewarding. The school holidays are as follows:
  • January 1st - January 20th 
  • April 2nd - April 12th  
  • June 27th - July 19th 
  • October 3rd - October 11th
  • December 10th - December 31st

Internet:  WiFi available for small fee.
Laundry:  Weekly laundry service is provided.
Accommodations:  Volunteers will stay in a fully furnished, comfortable house in the charming, Bohemian suburb of Observatory, close to the Cape Town city center. Volunteers will share a room with 2-6 other volunteers and bathrooms are communal. The house is staffed with both a housekeeper and cook, and volunteers have access to a locked safe to store their valuables. Daily transportation between accommodations and project site is provided.
Food:  Three meals a day are provided. Breakfast consists of hot or cold cereal, toast, coffee and tea, and is available on a serve-yourself basis. Lunch and dinner are prepared by the chef at the volunteer house. The chef has the weekends off, and therefore during these days the volunteers will need to purchase and prepare their own food.

Please take note of the project's minimum requirements:

  • Minimum age 17
  • Basic English
  • Passion for sports
  • Ability to work well with others
  • Immunizations (please consult your local travel clinic)
  • Police background check 

Project Orientation (Included):
On arrival at the Cape Town project, you will receive a comprehensive orientation, including:

  • Introduction to Cape Town and the surrounding areas
  • Overview of the Cape Town project and the communities in which you will be working
  • Introduction to all project staff
  • Familiarization of the surrounding neighbourhood where you will be living.

During your free time, you are welcome to explore any of the various exciting outdoor activities or culturally-enriching sites Cape Town has to offer. Past volunteers have enjoyed:
  • Exploring Africa's "Big 5" game reserve
  • Swimming with Penguins at Boulder Beach
  • The hop-on, hop-off Cape Town sightseeing bus
  • Hiking or taking a cable car to the top of Table Mountain
  • Cage diving with sharks
  • Sky diving
  • Shopping at the V&A Waterfront

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