Run by: The Great Projects
Reference number: Family Desert Elephants in Namibia
This award-winning family volunteering family is now available to enjoy as a family; a unique adventure in the beautiful Namib Desert. The project exists with the sole purpose of protecting the Namibian population of desert elephants and ensuring safety and security for the communities who live alongside these herds.
Families volunteering on this project will join the staff in the vast Namibian Wilderness and help with elephant conservation activities including tracking and monitoring, constructing walls to protect valuable water sources, and will also take part in the education of locals as to the value of elephant conservation.
Arrive in Swakopmund by the evening of Sunday 2nd, ready for the briefing at 6.30pm on Monday evening. We recommend that you stay at the Villa Wiese which is reasonably priced, has family rooms and is nicely decorated.
Transfer to Base Camp (4 hour drive). You will arrive in camp around 4pm, unpack and get settled in. In the evening after dinner, project facilitator Hendrick will give the group a briefing about the week ahead, what you will be doing, what animals you may see, and health and safety issues out in the bush.
Start of the build project. In the morning you will head out to the build site. The group will enjoy a lunch break during the heat of the day and then start work around 2pm and work until 5pm. You will sleep at EHRA base camp every night, but will remain at the farm during lunch time.
Spend another day on the build project helping the farmers who live on the Ugab. This is a really integral activity for volunteers during this project, as you will not only understand how local Namibians live in Damaraland, but you will also be helping to safeguard these settlements from mischievous elephants raiding wells for water!
Today is the last day on the build project. When you are finished, you will have a small celebration with Festus and Ella, the owners of the farm. You will then head back to base camp to relax after a job well done!
Today the group have a day to relax and explore the area surrounding base camp. Hendrick will take those who are interested on a nature walk and will also tell the group about different survival skills and edible plants from the desert. In the evening Hendrick the facilitator will give you a briefing on patrolling.
Today, volunteers will pack up the patrol vehicles and head out early on patrol. During patrol, volunteers will sleep under the stars without a tent listening to the incredible sounds of the desert - an amazing experience for all! Keep your ears peeled for the elephants as well as a whole host of other wildlife species.
At some point during patrol you will also pay a visit to the local school, A. Gariseb Primary School, in a small village on the Ugab River called Anixab. The group will be able to meet the teachers and pupils of the school and see how the school operates.
On each day of patrol there will be an element of walking so that children don’t get bored on the cars for the whole day! If you head down into the wetland areas of the river system you may even have a fishing competition!
Today is the last day of patrol! Around lunch time the group will head back to EHRA base camp, for yet another fabulous shower in the rocks and last night around the fire and sleep in the tree house!
After a leisurely breakfast volunteers will pack up and head back to the coast town on Swakopmund on the Skeleton Coast. The aim is to be back around lunchtime to get involved with a range of activities including sand-boarding, quad biking and dolphin cruises to name a few!
This trip has no fixed departures but restrictions may apply - check operator website
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