Do conservation volunteer work in Kenya and help protect endangered animals and local ecosystems. This is an opportunity to see wildlife in their natural habitat, and learn from conservation experts in the heart of East Africa. You’ll be based at the Soysambu Conservancy, where we work to preserve biodiversity through research and monitoring methods.
The major focus of the project is the endangered Rothschild’s Giraffe. Only a few thousand remain in the wild, and a significant portion of the population lives in Soysambu. We need to protect the species before they become critically endangered. You’ll also do hands-on work, like removing alien plants and building waterholes for wild animals. All of your activities are supervised by experienced conservationists.
You’ll live and work in the conservancy, staying in a ranch house with other volunteers. Seize the opportunity to live in the savannah and have the ultimate African adventure!
Children aged 3-14 must be accompanied by at least one adult paying full price
We offer discounts for families and groups of friends travelling together. Call us on 1300 132 831 for more info.
Book by 31 January 2019 and get a $320 discount! Excludes start dates in June, July & August Click here to read more
When you apply you only pay $495, which comes off the total price.
Looking to do more than one project? Call us on 1300 132 831 to see if we can offer a discount.
Completely flexible dates
Soysambu (Read More)
Shared accommodation at Conservation base Read More
Anyone aged over 16 can join
What's included in the price?
Food (three meals a day)
Travel and medical insurance
Airport pick-up and drop-off
Full induction and orientation by an experienced staff member on arrival
Transport to and from your work placement
In-country support and 24-hour back-up from our team of full-time local staff
Emergency assistance from our international emergency response team
Project equipment and materials, including access to our database with thousands of resources
A supervisor/mentor at your work placement
Training and workshops from our experienced local staff
Regular social events and community activities with other volunteers and interns
Access to our local office with internet connection
Certification of project completion
Access to our alumni services and discounts
Visa support and advice
Fundraising support, including your own personalised fundraising website
Pre-departure preparation by your own specialist Volunteer Advisor
Personalised MyProjectsAbroad website, with all the information you need about your project, accommodation and destination
A free cultural awareness course
Membership to our volunteer social media groups, to share information and to get in touch
Support to help you complete registration or internship documents, if applicable
What's not included?
Visa costs (where applicable)
Is a wildlife conservation volunteer opportunity in Kenya right for me?
This project is great for anyone passionate about protecting wildlife in Africa, and who has an interest in working in the great outdoors. It’s also a great opportunity to have an off-the-beaten-track adventure.
Pursuing a career in conservation? This project offers a perfect balance between research and doing hands-on work. You will learn directly from conservation experts, giving you a good all-round experience to add to your CV. You can use this experience in interviews and talk about what you learned and the challenges you faced.
This project runs year-round, and you can join from a minimum of one week. However, it is recommended to stay longer, as you’ll get to see and do much more.
What will I do on this project?
As a volunteer on this Conservation Project, you’ll support the work of local conservationists to protect wildlife in the Soysambu Conservancy. Here are some of the tasks you can expect to do during your placement:
- Research the Rothschild giraffe and other endangered species
- Set up camera traps and study animal behaviour
- Conduct community outreaches
- Remove invasive species
- Maintain waterholes to ensure vital water access to wildlife
Your work will be divided into five main categories:
Endangered species research
Our major focus is to research the ecology of the Rothschild's giraffe and share this knowledge with other reserves. This is pioneering research that could determine the fate of this subspecies, as only a couple of thousand giraffes remain in the wild. Our work in Kenya goes a long way in maintaining a habitat where they can flourish and breed in peace.
Setup camera traps
As animals are very active by night, camera traps help us study their natural habitats, behaviours, and movements. You will be involved in setting up these cameras around the reserve. This will also serve as the perfect way to do mammal inventory. Inventory helps measure the success of our efforts, when counting a populations’ potential growth.
In addition to working in the reserve, you will also participate in a community outreach once a week on a Thursday. The outreach activities vary upon the needs of the community at the time. They could include:
- Teaching children about the importance of protecting the environment
- Teaching English
- Playing sports like football
- Building a toilet or oven
Invasive plant removal
Alien plant species are a big problem in Kenya. They destroy endemic plants that provide a habitat for the local wildlife. You’ll help remove these plants. You’ll also help clear and maintain trails to make sure visitors don’t wander off the dedicated paths. This helps protect indigenous plants.
Maintaining natural water holes for animals
You will help maintain water holes and boreholes. This will ensure that water is constantly stored for the animals, and is vital to their survival during times of drought.
Where in Kenya will I work?
During your time in Kenya, you will be based at the Soysambu Conservancy.
The conservancy is located in the heart of the ancient, beautiful Great Rift Valley in Nakuru County. Soysambu is in the Kenya Wildlife Service’s list of endangered ecosystems. This is why we need volunteers to support the work of local conservationists.
You will live with other volunteers at the conservancy in a ranch house, which has been modified into dormitory-style accommodation. Dormitories are separated according to gender. The house has an outside area for activities and a spacious living area for relaxing or socialising. You can choose to have your meals indoors or outdoors, and relax after a long day’s work while admiring the spectacular views.
Please note that electricity is only available in the evenings when the solar power is used.
What is a typical day on this project like?
You usually work five days a week. Depending on the activities, you may be required to start earlier, finish later, or work over the weekend.
Work is divided up among all the volunteers using a weekly schedule. On a typical day you can expect to work from 8am to 12pm. Then, you will have a break with some time to eat, sleep, read and relax. After this, at around 2pm, you will go back out to work in the afternoon, when the heat starts to abate.
Workdays are usually split into physical and non-physical days. You’ll alternate between days for digging, cutting, and general physical labour. This is followed by days for collecting data, GPS mapping, and species research.
Evenings are spent cooking and eating, playing games, and preparing for the following day.
Trained local staff are on hand to supervise activities and provide support, and will accompany you wherever you go on the reserve. You will also be able to take part in workshops designed to teach you about different aspects of the project and the environment.
Since you will be sharing accommodation with your fellow volunteers, you will be able to spend your evenings and weekends getting to know each other better.
What are the aims of this wildlife conservation volunteer opportunity in Kenya?
The aim for this project is to preserve the ecological well-being of the area and ensure the survival of precious wildlife species.
Kenya is well known for safaris and wild animals that can be seen roaming from the roadsides. However, the human population continues to grow. There is an increasing threat of poaching, pollution, and damage caused by residential and commercial development. Reserves such as Soysambu create havens for wildlife and allow wilderness areas to flourish.
With such a wide range of research and practical work being done at Soysambu, you’ll gain a new range of skills. You will also get an increased awareness of the African landscape, its animals, and their ecology.
Our major focus in Soysambu is preserving the Rothschild’s Giraffe. Roughly 5% of the Rothschild Giraffe population live in Soysambu. The research we do is critical to ensuring that the species is able to thrive here.
We also strive to involve the local communities. At Soysambu, we work side-by-side with local communities. This includes running educational programmes and workshops in local schools. The goal is to share knowledge with children about the importance of protecting animals and the environment.
Join our African Savannah Conservation Project today, and become part of our long-term efforts to protect Kenya’s wildlife.
We set out the aims and objectives of our projects in documents called Management Plans. We use them to properly plan the work you’ll do. They also help us measure and evaluate our achievements and impact each year.
Ultimately, our Management Plans help us make our projects better. This in turn means you get to be part of something that makes a real impact where it’s needed. Read more about our Management Plans.
Measuring Our Impact
Our projects work towards clear long-term goals, with specific annual objectives. Every volunteer and intern we send to these projects helps us work towards these goals, no matter how long they spend on our projects.
Every year we take a step back and look at how much progress we've made towards these goals. We put together a Global Impact Report, which documents our achievements. Find out more about the impact our global community of volunteers, interns and staff make, and read the latest report.
Visiting Africa was a dream of mine for my whole life. I remember watching nature documentaries as a child and being enchanted by the variety of animals and habitats in the world.
Conservation Volunteer Work in Kenya
De-snaring was the most popular activity among the volunteers because you see the results of your work straight away. The snares can leave nasty injuries on the animals so it is our job to remove them.
Conservation Volunteer Work in Kenya
Meet the team in Kenya
Not quite what you’re looking for?
Take a look at the following pages where you'll find collections of similar projects: