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This project takes place in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. It is located on the outskirts of the town of Victoria Falls, a stone’s throw away from the magnificent thundering waters of the Falls.
As a volunteer on this project, you will be involved in conservation education as well as in all aspects of the day-to-day running of the conservation project, including lion walks and important research as well as general conservation activities.
Lion walks: Spending time with the lions in the wild each day is an essential part of the cubs’ upbringing. If the cubs are to be successfully released, it is important that they spend time in their natural environment. Since the start of this intensive lion walking program, there has been a marked increase in the lions’ awareness of their natural habitat, as well as an improvement in their hunting skills.
You will also be involved in the care of the animals who are housed overnight in enclosures. They need feeding, cleaning, and occasionally veterinary care to ensure that they are kept in the best of health.
Research: A number of research activities are conducted to better understand lion behavior and ecology. You will assist our research technicians in gathering and analyzing vital data necessary for making the best decisions for the lions’ welfare and gauging their progression through the release program. The research studies being undertaken during your placement will vary depending on the needs of the project at the time. Tasks may include looking at hunting and developmental skills, character traits, spoor sizes, or mane growth. Volunteers will receive all the training they need in order to ensure that they are able to provide valuable input to this program, regardless of previous experience.
Work in the National Parks: As a volunteer, you will work with the research team and rangers on any number of conservation activities that may include some or all of the following, based on the park’s needs at the time of your placement:
Conservation education: You will be involved in elements of community development, where you will help youth learn about wildlife, animal habitats and why it’s important to preserve the environment.
Internet: Wifi is available, though can be sporadic due to the remote location.
Laundry: Weekly laundry service. Laundry will be washed, ironed, and folded at an additional fee of $5.
Accommodations: Volunteers will be staying in shared, spacious safari tents in Fuller Forest with up to five other people. The accommodations are located on the edge of the Zambezi River, and the tents are a short walking distance from the showers and washrooms. There is a volunteer lounge as well with views of the 1500-hectare forest and Zambezi National Park.
Food: Volunteers are provided with 3 meals a day. All meals, unless a volunteer gets a packed breakfast for their lion walk, will be served at the main camp.
Please take note of this project’s minimum requirements:
During your stay in Victoria Falls, you will have plenty of opportunities to explore some of Zimbabwe’s spectacular sights. For an additional cost, you can also enjoy exciting activities in the “adrenaline capital” of Africa, including: helicopter flights over the falls, bungee jumping, horse-back excursions, game drives, gorge jumps, skydiving, canoeing and white water rafting.
Project Orientation (Included):
On arrival at the Victoria Falls project, you will receive a comprehensive orientation, including: