Main Menu

Full On! Volunteering in Zimbabwe at the African Wildlife Orphanage

As part of a six month travelling adventure with my partner Josh, we spent two weeks volunteering in Zimbabwe at the African Wildlife Orphanage project which is located just outside Bulawayo. This orphanage has been owned and run by the very dedicated Wilson family for more than 40 years. Our time there can best be described as exciting, interesting, fun and just plain full on!

We arrived in Bulawayo by way of the Pathfinder Luxury Coach Service from Victoria Falls. The very friendly and welcoming Nicky  came to pick us up from the bus station and after about half an hour we had arrived at our new home for the next two weeks. Teak, the 3 month old Bushbuck, was a particular favourite of mine. I especially enjoyed it when it was his ‘outdoors’ time, which was only possible when it was warm enough. He loved to run around and jump everywhere, either escaping or chasing after imaginary friends. It was really wonderful to see!

During our two weeks, we fed and cared for a pair of Coucals (birds), a Lowry Bird chick (think mushy banana in a syringe), rabbits and their babies, hedgehogs, baby antelopes and two of the cutest vervet monkeys in the world (Terrance and Bandit). We also assisted with feeding the carnivores (lions, leopards, an African wild cat, a banded mongoose and jackals) and the adult antelope (Greater Kudu and Bushbuck). Teak, the 3 month old Bushbuck, was a particular favourite of mine. I especially enjoyed it when it was his ‘outdoors’ time, which was only possible when it was warm enough. He loved to run around and jump everywhere, either escaping or chasing after imaginary friends. It was really wonderful to see!

We were truly sad to leave; we made wonderful friends (both human and animal) and we are already making plans to go back again. It really is a fantastic place, with dedicated, hardworking and knowledgeable staff who provides a much needed service in Zimbabwe by taking care of wild and domestic animals that would otherwise not survive on their own. The owners Kevin and Nicky and the staff also practice what they preach in that they have released countless animals back into the wild whenever possible. Josh and I are really happy and proud that we were able to contribute to the work being done at the African Wildlife Orphanage and recommend it to anyone who has a love of animals.