Newsletters from South Africa
Up until February 2015 our staff in South Africa regularly put together a newsletter, sent to volunteers working in South Africa at the time, those signed up to join a project in South Africa, and to previous volunteers. The newsletters contain information about the country and our projects, stories written by volunteers, advice on what to expect when volunteering abroad in South Africa, and much more. These destination newsletters are now replaced by a country blog, within www.mytripblog.org. If you're considering volunteer work abroad in South Africa the newsletters and the blog are a great way to gain more information.
2,34MB South Africa Newsletter - February 2015
Our Care volunteers, from all of our 12 care placements in Cape Town came together to paint and refurbish one of our care placements, Tehilah Educare.
1,89MB South Africa (Cape Town) Newsletter - January 2015
This year we welcome a new business project and project partner, Operation Smile. Operation Smile is an international children's medical charity that performs safe, effective cleft lip and cleft palate surgery, and delivers postoperative and on-going medical therapies to children in low and middle income countries.
1,84MB Southern Africa - Botswana Conservation Newsletter - January 2015
Today we started the day at 6:30am with everybody's absolute favourite activity: Road Creation! We created new roads as they might lead to a great location to see elands or something else really cool.
2,66MB South Africa (Cape Town) Newsletter - December 2014
On the 1st of December we celebrated World AIDS Day. On this day people are encouraged to help raise awareness about this pandemic, and also to help dispel the many myths about the disease by educating others about it.
1,93MB Southern Africa - Botswana Conservation Newsletter - November 2014
This morning Sophie, the conservation manager, showed us some camera trap footage from the previous night; from a watering hole just a couple of hundred meters from camp. Yesterday evening they had discovered a leopard kill up in a tree and the cameras showed us night time videos of the leopard eating its kill.
2,24MB South Africa (Cape Town) - November 2014
Thre's nothing better than having a volunteer walk into our office and freet us with a huge enthusiastic smile. That is exactly how 19 year old Shane Waxler stole the hearts of most off the staff here in the Projects Abroad South Aafrica office.
2,02MB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - October 2014
On day 31 we woke up early and left the camp at 6am for an adventure walk with Ali and Elsa, our guides. Best activity ever! We were so excited because we went to a new area, the neighbouring reserve where we will be working, too. We started exploring and found burrows to put camera traps, baobabs to protect, and much more.
2,34MB South Africa (Cape Town) Newsletter - September 2014
Projects Abroad Cape Town had the opportunity of hosting a unique group of young girls who are a part of the popular Girl Guide group in the UK. The Girl Guides that came to volunteer with us were made up of seven gorls aged between 15 to 20 years old, and they were accompanied by their three elder leaders who mentor the girls at their programme back home.
2,03MB Southern Africa - Botswana Conservation Newsletter - September 2014
September was welcomed with warmth at Motswiri Camp. The dry, hot weather that typically marks the end of Botswana's winter has arrived. The cold mornings and evenings of the last few months have been replaced by a much appreciated soft, cool breeze. It's really quite delightful.
2,05MB South Africa (Cape Town) Newsletter - August 2014
The level of education in schools based in poorer communities is known to be much lower than those in the more privileged communities. These schools face a number of issues such as text book shortage and overcrowding of learners in a single classroom. This overall affects the literacy rate amongst learners as students who are struggling do not get the extra time needed for them to catch up with the rest of their class mates.
1,95MB Southern Africa - Botswana Conservation Newsletter - August 2014
I had a great day here! First of all, my group went on an activity to control erosion (we had to put rocks into a truck and offload them into a hole that had to be filled). It is actually funny because my very first activity was collecting the same rocks that, on my last day, I had to put into the hole. A nice finish!
2,22MB South Africa (Cape Town) Newsletter - July 2014
SANCCOB is a non-profit organisation that saves and rehabilitates African penguins and other kinds of threatened seabirds. As one of our Animal Care Projects, SANCCOB gives regular tours to volunteers, educating them on the work that they do at the centre.
1,39MB Southern Africa - Botswana Conservation Newsletter - July 2014
This morning, we heard a lion roar. So we decided to do a "Spoor ID". To do this, we needed to drive in the direction of the calls. There we found the tracks of the lion and tried to follw them. This was very exciting but very exhausting as well. We walked for about 4.5 hours and around 11 km. We did not find the lion but it was an amazing experience. It was so great to know that there was a lion near us. I hope we will hear the lion again or that we will find its tracks again.
649KB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - June 2014
In the afternoon, we hid cameras in the bush and covered them in chilli sauce to keep the wild animals away. Someone came up with the hilarious idea to play the dung spitting game, which involved everyone taking two kudu droppings each and spitting them as far as possible! On the way back to camp, we stopped at a riverbank because Elsa was curious about it. We were exploring the riverbed when suddenly the trees moved and a huge animal appeared. Our guides, Sophie and Elsa, signalled to move backwards slowly and from a distance, we observed the magnificent elephant.
958KB South Africa Newsletter - June 2014
My favourite colour is green because it reminds me of nature. I love to see people’s facial expressions when I tell them I am a vegetarian. So far I have hiked up Table Mountain and the Lion’s head, my next one is Devil’s Peak. I really love Projects Abroad because of the work environment and the beautiful people I meet in the company and the volunteers from different countries; I leave work at the end of the day feeling accomplished.
710KB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - May 2014
Today we woke up at 5 am. After a short breakfast (even Hans took a small one), we left the camp at 6 am. Our mission for today was BRIDGE REPAIRING 2.0. Over the course of the morning, we filled up the trailer with sand four times. This was not the most enjoyable work but we couldn't repair the bridge without sand. We were all so happy when the 'machine' came to fill up the trailer. It took us about an hour to fill up the trailer with our spades and then the machine did it in 10 minutes! We were really happy to get help.
3,31MB South Africa Newsletter - May 2014
'G'day mate. I've had a ripper of a time here in South Africa. I'm going to miss everyone (especially Ivy). I enjoyed mixing cement, filling lots of sandbags and playing with the children. Before I leave, I will make sure to sign Amandine's flag. I deeply miss Dimitri and no one else. I am looking forward to having another encounter with my dear friend Robert (aka Robin). I also miss Larissa. We had good times at the Building Project together.
573KB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - April 2014
This morning we all woke up very tired. In fact, we spent the night on the kopje that we cleared the day before. It is such a beautiful place! It was really exciting to sleep in the middle of the wilderness! We took it in shifts to stay awake for 2 hours, while others were sleeping to keep guard for what happened around us. So, it was with a cup of tea that Michele and I were watching over the sleeping volunteers, and we had the chance to see two hyenas! At around 5:30 am, we woke up some volunteers to see the sunrise at the top of the kopje. It was gorgeous!
2,70MB South Africa Newsletter - April 2014
Niels van der Schans has been doing amazing work at the building project and has inspired many volunteers to do even more amazing work. He spent a lot of the time with the children and had greatly impacted their lives in a positive way. He had also brought his parents to come for a visit.
3,51MB South Africa Newsletter - March 2014
“With your pointing finger ready, open up the book. What does the first page say? “T-h-e c-a-t s-a-t o-n t-h-e m-a-t”. Excellent! Let us read it again, but this time, without sounding out the letters. Good job, Ashwin. High-five.” Being a Teaching volunteer is so much more than the conventional teaching method: I know and you need to learn. As a volunteer you have the opportunity to get to know the children, learn more about what motivates them, and most importantly help build their self-confidence.
4,10MB South Africa Newsletter - February 2014
I don't always see myself as a 'people's person'. I love it when I've gotten to know wonderful new people, but the process leading to that moment for me is exhausting. I am in desperate need of my alone time, and I hate to be in someone's way. All this considered; it was not an obvious choice for me to go and live in someone else's house, in a country wildly different from my own, with five girls from a bunch of other countries.
735KB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - January 2014
2014 is already here and the Conservation Project is back in full swing. Our staff came back from their Christmas break and immediately started preparing the camp for our first volunteer arrivals of 2014.
2,99MB South Africa Newsletter - January 2014
What a great way to start the New Year. From the great success stories of the holiday program, to the amazing work of the building project. I always found even numbers to be lucky and now that the year 2014 has started, I think it is true. 2014 is going to be a good year, with loads of activities and new initiatives.
3,27MB South Africa Newsletter - December 2013
With Christmas around the corner everyone is getting ready for the holiday spirit but it is also nearly the end of the year and everyone can feel it. There is something in the air that makes people a little more relaxed and more in a lazy-daze, but nonetheless the volunteers are still fresh and ready for action.
1,42MB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - December 2013
Good morning Botswana! At 5:30 this morning, we woke Camilla with a birthday song in the bathroom! This morning, we started at 6 am and drove to the two waterholes, in an area of the reserve called Little Serengetti, to clean the dirt out of them.
2,38MB South Africa Newsletter - November 2013
2013, are we ready to say goodbye? It is nearly the end of the year and everyone can feel it. There is something in the air that makes people a little more relaxed and more in a lazy-daze, but nonetheless the volunteers are still fresh and ready for action. This month is a month of giving and realization, with the great initiative of the human rights office and the great drive from the Bruseth/Bråten family.
1,54MB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - November 2013
The rains are here! Immense bellows of thunder, magnificent streaks of lightening build up in the scorching heat. Life giving water bursts from the sky, enveloping the parched earth and satisfying every waterhole, niche and participant in the ecosystem. In immediate response, the reserve flurries into action!
1,49MB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - October 2013
This morning we split into 2 groups. One group did bird census. The second group, including me, did a baobab census with Dave. We used GPS co-ordinates to find the trees which we should gather information about. These co-ordinates had been recorded by previous volunteers who located each of the trees.
2,41MB South Africa Newsletter - October 2013
In South Africa, we are all about family and friendship. Many volunteers arrive and leave, but they never forget the warmness and love shown by our rainbow nation.
1,09MB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - September 2013
Welcome to the September 2013 Botswana Conservation Newsletter! Spring is definitely in the air at Wild at Tuli and the summer rains should not be too far off. We have observed the reappearance of many different butterfly families; Monarchs, Acraeas and Pansies.
2,39MB South Africa Newsletter - September 2013
"Working on the building project with Deen and the other volunteer has been an incredible experience that I will never forget. From the very beginning everyone was so welcoming. I was made to feel part of a big family and I have now learnt so many new skills that I will take away with me." Dan
440KB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - August 2013
After some of us came home this morning from a successful sleep-out, the others left for Mathathane village to paint the classroom walls at the primary school. One hour of a windy car ride later, we arrived at the school.
1,49MB South Africa Newsletter - August 2013
Erica has really been fantastic. She's the most helpful person in the office, she has been pro-active with her work and she has done the most interviewing (even in her own time). She has put a tremendous amount of effort into the project, taking English lessons and getting her teacher to read over her work before it comes to me.
2,80MB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - July 2013
Approximately one year ago we started an experiment to see whether or not applying tree sealant to trees damaged by elephants would increase the chances of the tree recovering by preventing further damage from elephants and infection from termites and disease.
1,72MB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - June 2013
This morning, we all woke up around 6am after a nice weekend. After breakfast, was a sad moment as we said goodbye to Ellen, who is leaving after one month with us. We will miss her a lot!
1,01MB South Africa Newsletter - July 2013
Our Adopt-A-Family project, which provides a suitable and sustainable home for a family living in Vrygrond, one of the most vulnerable communities in South Africa, was a major hit for the Where Rainbows Meet organisation, and the day that brought everything together was just amazing!
1,10MB South Africa Newsletter - June 2013
Also on 11 June, Miriam (PAHRO Volunteer Supervisor), Sam (Project Manager) and Sherwin (PAHRO Legal Services Coordinator) spent the day volunteering at the Cape of Good Hope SPCA in Grassy Park.
1,43MB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - May 2013
Today I woke up at 4.30am, so I saw the African sunrise, which was very beautiful! At 5.30am, we took off to Thune Dam for bird spotting. The Thune Dam is a really beautiful place, especially when the sun is coming up from behind the mountains. We went to a few spots around the lake and spotted 22 different bird species in total. Too bad we didn’t spot the flamingo this week!
667KB South Africa Newsletter - May 2013
As the height of winter approaches, Projects Abroad South Africa is asking for various donations that can be distributed throughout the communities in which we work. Most things you’d get rid of can actually be used by someone at one of our projects (threadbare rugs, old mattresses, sheets, pillows, etc.). Donations can be collected – please arrange with Gisela Madden (074 103 6585).
700KB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - April 2013
In the afternoon, we were split into 2 different groups. Julie and Marco did a crocodile census with AB. Aurore, Matt, Anne and I did an elephant identification drive with Dave. We drove in different parts of the reserve and saw a lot of elephants, including a group of 22 with 3 juveniles. Very impressive! We saw another herd at Elephant Springs and another herd of 8. Lots of new elephants to add the database!
688KB South Africa Newsletter - April 2013
The human rights team’s last four court appearances in the Wynberg and Athlone Magistrates' courts were successful. Resident attorney Sherwin Daniels and his team of interns managed to get a juvenile accused of armed robbery out of detention and released into the care of his guardian without paying any sum of money for bail in a formal bail application.
1,96MB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - March 2013
This morning, my group left camp at 7am and headed to the Thune dam to conduct a bird census. After about an hour and a half drive, we arrived at the dam, a vast expanse of water stretched out in front of us, fringed by greenery. It reminded me of the mangroves back home in Australia. The dam was a recent government initiative to introduce a permanent water source to the area.
728KB South Africa Newsletter - March 2013
The Sibanye Garden Project was launched in 2011 by Where Rainbows Meet Training and Development Foundation. Since then, the organisation has put tremendous effort into the constant development of their organic garden. Highlights along the way include last year’s harvest as well as various donations from local businesses and governmental bodies.
1,72MB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - February 2013
Around 9:30am, we set off for Mathathane, encountering impalas, wildebeest and baboons as we drove out of the camp. We headed to the village general store for munchies, drinks and other items the volunteers wanted.
966KB South Africa Newsletter - February 2013
What makes Cape Chameleon a special and unique magazine? It is the collaboration of the many different volunteers from all over the world. At the moment we have volunteers from Germany, England and Switzerland who all have their own ideas and unique way of writing their articles.
1,77MB South Africa Conservation Newsletter - January 2013
After our first ever sleepout at Mamatumi, we returned to camp just after dawn to discuss our nocturnal sightings and enjoy some breakfast. With a few hours of leisure time before our next activity, we all stumbled to bed for some sleep.