VOLUNTEERS

Volunteer helpCURRENT PROJECT: Building Nandavu Community School, near Livingstone, Zambia

PROJECT DESCRIPTION:

Volunteers and members of the village community are working side-by-side to construct the school:

  • Digging foundations, collecting locally available building materials (stones, sand, gravel), making concrete blocks and helping to build the classrooms
  • Wood-working to make small tables and chairs for the pre-school

No previous experience or special skills are needed, as volunteers are assisted by a site supervisor, parents and other community members. The construction is overseen by a qualified and experienced builder.

Helping with writingPROGRAMME 2009: The building programme runs from April to October 2009. Volunteers can book in for a week or longer. Volunteers are picked up in Livingstone and brought to Jungle Junction's Bovu Island, where they stay while participating in the project. They receive orientation on the island and have a little time to settle in.

The next morning, a member of staff paddles them across the river to the village, where they spend time with the teachers and students (if it's term time) and meet the building site supervisor. Manual labour occupies the rest of the working week! Working hours vary from season to season, but an early start each day ensures that most of the physical work is done when it's cooler.

At the end of a week, volunteers return to Livingstone, unless they're spending more time at the project. For those staying longer than a week, weekends are free for visits to Livingstone, other places of interest nearby or for enjoying island life at the camp. Volunteers are encouraged to enjoy local activities in their time off: paddling a makoro (dug-out canoe); sampling the local brew; learning about the flora and fauna; playing football when the local team is practising; African drumming; and lying in a hammock with a good book...or with a friend who has read one!

Night life On Bovu Island

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE PROJECT

  • Assisting a small community in Zambia to build a school for their children
  • Experiencing rural African village life
  • Staying on Jungle Junction’s idyllic Bovu Island in the Zambezi River
  • Meeting travellers, NGO workers and volunteers from around the world.

There's a Facebook page called "Jungle Junction School Group", where you can view more pics and comments.

Adventure activitiesTRAVEL HIGHLIGHTS

The spectacular Victoria Falls, one of the Natural Wonders of the World, are only an hour's drive from the project. Livingstone offers one of the best white-water rafting experiences in the world, as well as 100-metre bungee-jumping / gorge-swing combo from the bridge across the gorge, microlite flights over the Falls and more. Botswana's Chobe National Park is an hour in the other direction from the project, with magnificent herds of elephants and the opportunity for safaris in the African bush. Click Regional Activities for details. Please note that prices quoted for activities can change, so check them nearer your date of arrival.

 

ACCOMMODATIONVolunteer accommodation

Volunteers stay in small thatched huts by the river on Bovu Island, a friendly camp run by Jungle Junction, just opposite the village and school. Each hut accommodates two volunteers and is furnished with two single beds with bedding and mosquito nets. Showers and flush toilets are shared by all guests on the island. The reed-walled showers are heated by firewood and have been described as "the best showers in Africa"! The thatched bar overlooking the Zambezi is a wonderful place to relax after a hard day’s work, especially when there’s a hat party going on!

Traditional meals

MEALS All food is freshly prepared and served at Bovu Island’s restaurant. Three tasty meals a day are provided for volunteers while they’re working on the project: a choice of breakfasts ("English or Continental"); light and nutritious lunches; and hearty evening meals such as beef stew, chicken korma, and Mexican chilli. Traditional Zambian meals are served from time to time and vegetarian food is available on request.

 

 

PROJECT FEE *

US$ 50 per person per day *

There is no administration fee. This is a community project initiated and run by the parents and teachers of the schoolchildren. The co-ordinator, Evelyn Roe, does not receive payment for assisting the community with fund-raising or recruiting volunteers.

 The project fee includes

  • One return transfer between Livingstone and Bovu Island at the start and end of the volunteer’s project
  • Accommodation and 3 meals a day on Jungle Junction’s Bovu Island
  • Use of tools and equipment for the construction work
  • Orientation on arrival at the project
  • On-going support from volunteer co-ordinator based on Bovu Island
  • Island leisure activities during time off, e.g. paddling a makoro, drumming, bird-watching, nature walks, fishing (there is a small charge for fishing gear hire) and sunset cruises.

Volunteer activities

 PROJECT DONATION / FUND-RAISING

It would be much appreciated if volunteers could bring a cash donation to help purchase cement, fuel for transporting local materials and wood for the children’s furniture. They may contribute whatever they can afford or fund-raise before they arrive at the project.

A suggested amount is US$100 per week*

*Contact us to confirm current prices.

The project Fee excludes

  • Flights / bus tickets to Livingstone, where volunteers are met and taken to the project
  • Personal insurance (remember to include extra cover for adventure activities, if required)
  • Visas (check on current prices before arrival in Zambia)
  • All items of a personal nature (clothing, toiletries, regular medication, etc.)
  • Telephone calls (mobile phone signal is mostly good in the area)
  • Drinks and snacks other than the 3 meals a day provided by Jungle Junction
  • Excursions, regional activities and travel outside of the project

 

Evelyn doing botanyVOLUNTEER SUPPORT AND CO-ORDINATION

The co-ordinator, Evelyn Roe, comes from the Highlands of Scotland and has been living and working in Zambia as a volunteer since 2002. She was a secondary school teacher in Botswana for 10 years and has taught biology up to A-Level in Britain. Currently, she is working on several botanical research projects in the area through the North-West Naturalists' Society of Zambia (a local NGO), as well as facilitating the development of Nandavu Community School.

Volunteers receive full orientation on arrival at the project to make them feel at home and to give them details of the weekly programme. Throughout their stay on Bovu Island, they receive support from Evelyn or another member of the team.

Arriving by MokoloGETTING HERE

Volunteers are picked up at their accommodation in Livingstone or at Livingstone International Airport if coming straight to the project. The journey takes about an hour in the back of a pick-up truck and then there’s a short river crossing in a makoro to Bovu Island, where volunteers stay during their participation in the project.

 

WHAT TO BRING

In addition to all the usual things (passport, visa, tickets, money, insurance, mobile phone, personal items, etc.):

  • Sunset from the barCash for the project fee and donation to the programme. ATMs take VISA cards in Livingstone; banks and bureaux de change take all the usual credit cards, but payment on the island is NOT possible by credit card.
  • Torch and batteries
  • Insect repellent
  • Sunscreen, sunglasses, sun-hat (and a hat for the bar!)
  • Clothing suitable for building work, including protective gloves
  • Walking shoes or other tough footwear
  • A towel
  • Spare batteries for camera, mp3 player, etc.

Contact us for a more detailed list of clothing suitable for different times of the year and for a description of what Livingstone has to offer, in terms of shops and facilities.

Livingstone has very good private medical facilities and a fully-equipped ambulance that can reach the project within an hour from the time of an emergency call. Volunteers should inform the co-ordinator of any allergies or medical conditions when applying for a place on the programme, and they should bring an adequate supply of any medication required regularly.

Apply for a place on the programme or find out more information through the volunteer co-ordinator,

Evelyn Roe communityschool@junglejunction.info