||All year round, subject to school vacations - you
choose your start and finish dates.
1 week to 12 weeks or longer, subject to visa requirements
||No qualifications or experience required, just lots
of enthusiasm and a love of children.
Full Price List
►Full pre-departure support and assistance,
►Payment Protection insurance
►Meeting you at the nearest airport
►Transfer to your accommodation
►Transport to and from your project
►Local in-country team support and backup
►24-hr emergency support.
►Certificate of Completion
What's not included
Insurance, Cost of Visas (if a visa is required), Return
transfer to airport.
Who can do
This project is open to all nationalities and all ages
Suitable for gap years or those taking a year out,
grown-up gappers, career breakers, anyone interested in
teaching or working with children overseas while doing
voluntary work, teaching projects abroad, or study abroad.
Also available as a summer placement in South Africa, short
breaks or for those wanting to do TEFL teaching.
WHAT YOU'LL GAIN FROM DOING THIS PROJECT:
An exciting, never-to-be-forgotten adventure into Africa and the many
diverse cultures in South Africa
The enormous satisfaction of helping disadvantaged children and
knowing that you made a difference to them.
New skills, more confidence, a greater understanding
of a different culture, invaluable personal and professional
An entry on your CV or résumé that will put you head
and shoulders above most others in the job market.
And best of all ... an unforgettable experience!
program is in the beautiful Western Cape’s Garden Route are situated in
Knysna. We work with a few schools
that cater for many children from the poorer township
Our program has been running in this region for many
years and the impact our volunteers have had is amazing. The result is a community that has benefited
tremendously since we started.
the schools are
generally very high, but materials and
resources may be scarce. Even with the lack of facilities, the enthusiasm
of students and staff more than make up for this.
The children have such energy and you'll be welcomed
with enthusiasm - it's difficult to stop them smiling!
begin your placement by assisting the teachers but, depending on your
ability, you may progress on to being given complete control of a particular
class or group. You'll
receive a lot of help and support from the teachers and staff at the schools,
but you should be prepared to use your own initiative and ask when you need
TEACHING ENGLISH & OTHER SUBJECTS:
You will normally be asked to stand up in front of a class and teach
conversational English - you are not expected to be an expert on grammar or
literature. The important thing is to help people speak English. You may also be
asked to help with other subjects, but this is optional and only if you
The Teaching Suggestions Booklet we provide you with has ideas for
teaching English and will also help structuring lessons in other subjects. Video
facilities are available in some schools and audio equipment is quite
You will most likely teach in more than one school.
Most of the schools are State schools, both secondary and primary. You will
generally be asked to help out with any age groups.
class size ranges from 15 to a manageable 40.
Please visit these links for further details on other subjects that you can
teach in Knysna:
Teaching Drama & Music
Teaching Design Technology
The best way to describe this project is to let one of our previous volunteers
tell you about it in her own words. Felicity du Pulford taught at
Sunridge Primary, and this is how she describes a typical day on her project
(but please note that this is only one school and that work in other schools may
We didn't anticipate how much there would be to do in Knysna, so our only worry
is fitting it all in. Last week, after meeting all the other guys, we went out
on Friday which was lovely. Pauline gave us a tour drive around Knysna, so we
got to see the beautiful views of the lagoon and town.
Our headmaster is so approachable and welcoming. It’s
difficult to describe just how welcome the children make us feel, the atmosphere
at the school is just so happy, the teachers so willing to help and we just seem
to have slotted into place.
We have been to both the soup kitchen and the orphanage. Lewis and I are keen to
go to both as much as possible, and love getting to know the kids. We're going
to be very muscly by the end of the month though - all of them want picking up
and swinging around all the time!
Knysna has absolutely everything we could want or need, and we are being well
looked after. We're just starting to regret that we are only here for
SEMESTERS IN SOUTH AFRICA:
Please note that this placement is not available during the
school vacations, so it’s important to consult the school
semesters below to plan your placement dates. Your project
coordinator will also assist you with your placement planning,
as well as suggest alternatives and exciting things to do during
the vacation periods.
Dates for the
2015 school semesters are given below.
Term 1: 21 January –
Term 2: 13 April – 26 June
Term 3: 20 July – 2 October
Term 4: 12 October – 9 December
Dates for the
2016 school semesters are given below.
Term 1: 13 January –
Term 2: 5 April – 24 June
Term 3: 18 July – 30 September
Term 4: 10 October – 7 December
Please see a complete
list of current public holidays for 2015 and 2016 at
Generally the last week
before terms end is given to exams and tests. This means
that you will generally find your work load dropping during this
week and you will usually find more free time than normal school
EXTRA ACTIVITIES YOU MAY BE ABLE TO INCORPORATE INTO YOUR PROJECT
You may also have the opportunity
to provide help and support to the local community through the various
afternoon activities we have to offer. This is an excellent way to immerse
yourself in the African culture, but most importantly to give a caring
hand to the local community. The activities could range from helping out at;
The Children's Home:Make the afternoons fun and exciting for these lovely
children by playing games, helping them with homework and just being
there to give them the attention that they so appreciate.
After-school drama or sports - Take some time out after school to set up after
school sports or drama clubs, the children love it and it's a great way
to get to know them better in a relaxed and fun environment. If
you'd like to set up a drama or sports club, please let us know when you
apply so that we can arrange it with the school before you arrive.)
community projects - Past volunteers have helped to paint the
outside of a crèche that was in desperate need of a lift. The crèche is
now looking very cheerful with brightly coloured walls. A jungle gym was
donated to this orphanage and volunteers also helped to put it together
for the crèche too! There may be other similar projects available at the
time you're there that you might want to participate in.
Township soup kitchen: On days that your school roster
might allow you to finish a little early, our volunteers sometimes help at a
local township soup kitchen. The soup kitchen is open on a Monday, Wednesday
The project may possibly be
extended to involve local unemployed people, or street kids, or even elderly
people or children's orphanages. These are just a few ideas and it may be that
some volunteers will have more ideas that will help to make this project a
worthwhile one that will benefit the community for a long time to come.
Morning Assembley at one of the schools
Thanks to Travellers volunteers, these orphans had their first
trip to the circus
ACCOMMODATION: THE VOLUNTEER HOUSE:
The volunteer house in Knysna is within walking distance of the town,
yet set against a natural green belt. The bird life is prolific and
often the local Vervet monkey troop comes to visit to entertain the
volunteers with their antics. The sunset views from the top balcony of
the volunteer house of the Knysna lagoon are beautiful and great way to
relax after a day working at your placement or to catch up on your tan
in the summer. See photo on right-hand side.
The house is large and spacious and also has a self-contained
flat downstairs for couples and families. The bedding in the two same sex dorms and the towels
in their ensuite bathrooms are changed regularly every Friday by
our much loved cleaner, Pretty, and there is plenty of cupboard
space to store your clothing.
Facilities include a kitchen kitted out for cooking, dining
area, a few bathrooms, TV, DVD
player, free Wi-Fi, garden and several wooden verandahs.
is an outside courtyard and garden in the secure grounds where you can have
a typical South African barbeque known there as a ‘braai’.
Make sure you try the local spicy sausage known as ‘boerewors’
and the Karoo lamb chops are to die for on a ‘braai’, but if fish
is more to your taste then a fish ‘braai’ with South African
‘snoek’ is a must.
You'll be given a food budget which will cover your basic
essentials (but not extras like alcohol, snacks and eating
out). The kitchen has all the cooking amenities that you might
need to take advantage of preparing meals with some of the great
seafood, meat, fresh fruit and vegetables South Africa has to
There are supermarkets and local shops where you'll do your food
There are plenty of excellent restaurants within walking
distance that offer the most incredible local and international
cuisine which our volunteers rave about. Knysna is also famous
for its oysters and even has an annual Oyster Festival where
everyone eats and drinks far too much!
The waterfront and marine is beautiful and full of restaurants
and cafes with cuisine that ranges from breakfast, coffees,
cakes and snacks, through to sumptuous meals and various
different nationality menus.
Volunteer house in Knysna
View from the house overlooking
Got any questions? Please email us:
VIDEOS AND PHOTO GALLERIES:
So far what is the best thing about your placement?:
"I don't think I could actually define my "best experience" as one moment. What
with teaching at the school, rehearsals for my play, the dance classes, soup
kitchen, orphanage, hanging out at home with the other guys, going for a drink,
the worlds highest bungee jump, trips to the beach, and countless other
activities we really are spoilt for choice. I have been here for over 2 months
now and I can honestly say there has not been 1 day that I haven't enjoyed!!"
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN
YOU BOOK YOUR PLACEMENT:
Once you have applied for a placement, we'll
contact you and send you our Welcome Pack. You'll also receive Log-on
details and password for our Volunteer Extranet where you'll have
access to all the documentation and information which we've put
together to facilitate preparations for your adventure! Your
Project Co-ordinator for your country will liaise with you
throughout the arrangements process, as well as while you're on
your placement and on your return home.
The documents you'll have access to also include a Country
Factfile, Safety Guide and any manuals that may assist you on
your particular program (e.g. Teaching Guide, Sports Manuals, Enrichment
Suggestions for Animal Care, etc.). We do all we
can to make your stay one that you'll never forget. This is a truly awesome, elegant and beautiful country.
As with all our destinations, the culture and heritage is
different to what you're used to ... which, although one of the
most exciting aspects of travelling, should be borne in
Self-reliance and independence are highly appreciated in
all our destinations and will help you to make the most of this
On Arrival, your Introduction to the Country: When you arrive you will be welcomed by a member of our South African staff who
will take you to your accommodation and introduce you to everyone. During your first few days you'll be given an induction so that you can learn
about the country and its culture, as well as other useful information, like how
to use the transport system, banks, safety issues, tipping, and lots more.
"The area is beautiful and travelling is easy. The house we stay in is lovely
and the Travellers workers are such kind, loving people which really makes it
feel like a home away from home. What with all the other volunteers and the
Travellers staff, it really does feel like our own little family ... well, our
own very big family, I suppose!!"
Lots of eager-to-learn children just waiting for you!
excellent case study by a group that raised the funds to work with
township schools in South Africa
LOCATION, EXPLORING AND SIGHTSEEING:
The best advice you'll get from us
is to try to see some of the country while you're in South
Africa. It's big (huge!) and each different region is exciting
and very, very beautiful. Cape Town is probably
the most beautiful city in the world (I can say that, I grew up
there :-) KwaZulu-Natal comes a very
close second, albeit very different. Knysna is
where South Africans go on vacation, which gives you some idea of
how lovely the region is. When you lie on the beach and watch
dolphins jumping the waves, you'll think you're in Paradise.
is approximately 500km from
the beautiful capital city of Cape Town and voted South Africa’s
favourite town 4 years in a row! Its mountainous backdrop, impressively
sized estuary and indigenous forests really give the town a natural feel
to it. Although it still has that ‘small-town’ feel, Knysna is growing
rapidly, and has all the amenities you could ask for such as banks,
hotels, internet café’s, cinemas and shopping malls.
About 20-30 minutes' drive away from Knysna you'll find
(better known simply as Plett), which is a bit smaller
than Knysna, but equally stunning. Its' pure white beaches stretch
as far as the eye can see and there is a lot to do, from whale and dolphin
watching, to hiking trails and awesome nightlife.
The Garden Route is famous for all sorts of activities from adrenalin
sports such as bungee jumping, skydiving and shark cage diving to more
relaxed pursuits such as hiking, quad biking in the forest or visiting one
of the many animal sanctuaries in the area. Your local Travellers liaison
will be happy to assist you in finding interesting things to do and places
to see so make the most of it!
Knysna nestles on the banks of a
beautiful lagoon in the heart of the ‘Garden Route’ of South Africa. It is
surrounded by a natural paradise of lush indigenous forests, tranquil
lakes and golden beaches, making it a real natural wonderland.
Knysna is a vibrant town, buzzing
with creativity and energy, and the pulse of good
music. It's a place where the you can enjoy the mellow
atmosphere of street cafes, watching the world go by. The
main street is very leafy with trees along the pavements and it has a wonderful
vacation atmosphere with sun umbrellas everywhere.
Most cafes have outdoors
seating areas overlooking the street or on the pavements, with colourful sun
umbrellas - a perfect place to sit with the sun on
your face, watching passers-by ambling along, sipping a steamy cappucino or
staving off the heat with a cold drink.
Read more about Knysna and its
To read about Travel arrangements and what happens when you
arrive in your new country, please
Support & Backup:
To read about the excellent
& Backup we provide before you leave and during
please click here.