Is teaching IT in South Africa right for me?
Do you have basic IT knowledge and computer skills? Are you looking to give back and empower others? Want to travel and experience a different culture? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then this is the ideal volunteer project for you.
Since you’ll only be teaching basic computer skills such as Microsoft Office and using the internet, you don’t need to have specialist knowledge or previous teaching experience. You will have a local staff member or teacher who can help you when needed. You will also receive a thorough induction upon arrival, so that you are fully prepared. Finally, we run regular teaching workshops where you can share experiences, plan lessons, and discuss topics of interest.
However, advanced skills are always an asset, so do let us know if you can help in other areas.
Our volunteer IT Teaching placements in South Africa are open to all ages and levels of experience. It’s well suited to those who are proactive and can take the initiative. It’s also an opportunity for you to develop your personal skills, like planning.
The project is available year-round, except for a short time over Christmas and New Year, and you can join for a minimum of four weeks. Our start and end dates are flexible, so you can choose a time that suits you.
What will I do at my volunteer IT Teaching Placement in South Africa?
During your time on this project, there are many different tasks you can get involved in. These include:
- Teach basic computer skills to children and adults
- Work to improve the existing curriculum
- Assist where needed on general tasks
- Support the development of students
Your work will focus on the following areas:
Teaching basic computer skills to children and adults
Your main role will be to teach your students basic computer skills. You will cover basic programmes such as Microsoft Word, Powerpoint and Excel. Showing students how to use the internet and email is also an important part of the project.
At your placement, you’ll have a syllabus to follow. This makes the teaching process a lot easier. You’ll work to develop students’ confidence and abilities so that they are comfortable working on computers. This is a great way to gain even more IT teaching work experience while in South Africa.
Working to improve the existing curriculum
There is also room to improve the current curriculum, and new ideas are welcomed. You can do this by updating existing course manuals where necessary, or even designing new courses. For example, you could create a short course which focuses on graphic design, or hardware repair.
Assisting where needed on general tasks
There are plenty of other tasks you can help with on this placement. These may include computer maintenance and repair, developing databases, and helping with administration. You might also have the chance to get involved in other areas outside of IT if you’re interested, such as running sports activities or helping with childcare.
Support the development of students
At the IT centre, you’ll spend time working to empower students and improve their job prospects. You can spend extra time with these students, helping them to develop their CVs or search for jobs. You can also find additional free courses that they can complete online to build on their skills.
Where in South Africa will I work?
You’ll be based in an underprivileged area with high unemployment in Cape Town. The centre we work with provides skills training to members of the local community, with classes ranging from Business to English.
Cape Town is a famous tourist destination, known for the distinctive Table Mountain, stunning beaches and rich cultural heritage. There is plenty to see and do here, so you’ll never be bored. With a fairly extensive public and private transport network, you’ll also be able to get around and explore the sights with ease.
A typical day on the Teach IT project
After breakfast at your host family, you’ll be transported to your work placement by a Projects Abroad driver.
A typical day on this project runs from 9am - 3pm, Monday to Friday. You will have your evenings and weekends free to relax and explore your new surroundings.
If you choose to work at the community centre, you’ll spend the day teaching people from the area, mostly young adults. There will be a staff member on hand to help. However, there is scope for you take the initiative on this project, and plan your day as you see fit.
You’ll follow the syllabus for the computer training course, covering the basics such as Microsoft Office and using the internet and email. When you’re not busy teaching, you can work on updating the course manuals, assisting students with their CVs, or designing new courses.
Once you’re done for the day, you can take the opportunity to make the most of your time in beautiful Cape Town. Take part in our regular socials, where you can get to know your fellow volunteers and the local staff. Swap stories with your host family over a delicious South African style dinner. Or discover the local markets, museums, and beaches.
What are the aims and impact of this project?
The aim of this project is to teach computer skills in South Africa to disadvantaged children and adults, helping them become more computer literate.
Computer skills are critical in an increasingly digital modern world. Knowing how to do effective research on the Internet, and use programmes like Microsoft Office can open the door to better jobs. In South Africa, a large percentage of underprivileged schools don’t have computers for children to learn. As a result, these children’s computer literacy skills are low.
You’ll become part of our efforts to solve this problem. You’ll do this by teaching basic computer skills at a community centre. By equipping people with computer skills, you’ll help improve their chances of finding employment.
Join us in South Africa and use your knowledge and computer skills work to help those in need.
Volunteering for professionals
This project is also perfect for qualified professionals. With your skills backing up our ongoing efforts, we can make an even bigger difference together. We'll match you to the placement where your skills are needed most.
This means you can share your training and and knowledge with others. You can work hand-in-hand with our partner organisations and local communities to support sustainable development.
If you have relevant skills or qualifications, read more about how you can make use of them with Projects Abroad.
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.
Leisure activities and free time
Known as the Rainbow Nation, South Africa has a diverse mix of cultures. Our projects are based in Cape Town, a region filled with an exciting variety of activities to do during your free time.
You can catch a wave at Muizenberg beach or just relax in a seaside restaurant. There’s plenty of local cuisine to try, including delicately spiced Cape Malay curries and the creamy milk tart dessert.
South Africa has a difficult past, which you can learn more about at the District 6 Museum and Robben Island.
For an awe-inspiring experience, you can spend the day getting lost in the towering silos that make up the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Arts Africa. Finally, no trip to Cape Town would be complete without a cable car ride up iconic Table Mountain.
We run many different projects in South Africa, so there’s sure to be other volunteers in the country with you. So if you want to travel with a group, you’re sure to find like-minded people who’ll join you on your adventures.
Safety and staff support
Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have the support you need to enjoy your trip with peace of mind. Our Projects Abroad staff are available 24 hours a day to help, and will be on-hand to make sure you settle in well at your accommodation and placement. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.
Find out more about safety and backup.
Meet the team in South Africa
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