Location: Mahajanga, Madagascar
Duration: 2-10 weeks
Start Dates: Project is on-going, we have volunteering schemes (1o weeks long) each year, starting in January, April, July and October. Enquire about exact dates when applying.
Cost: from £795 GBP – see Costs section for more details
Includes: all food, accommodation, airport pickup, orientation and all project related activities
Does not Include: flights, travel insurance, visas and vaccinations
- Work on various environmental conservation projects, such as lemur protection, beach cleanups and awareness campaigns
- Experience the rich biodiversity of Madagascar
- Get to know the amazing people and be immersed culture of the island
Our conservation programme is based in the beautiful coastal region of Sainte Luce, surrounded by extremely rare and threatened fragments of littoral (coastal) forest. This progromme combines hands-on conservation fieldwork on endangered species including lemurs, reptiles and amphibians, with community initiatives and environmental education. Volunteers can run regular environmental education classes for local children, and assist with English teaching. You will gain experience in a wide range of practical skills within community development and conservation biology, whilst working alongside a team of lcoal conservation experts. The programme is a refreshing, challenging, and rewarding experience for anyone looking for a change of pace as part of a sabbatical, career break, or gap year.
You will receive a project orientation which includes information about Madagascar, local customs and an introduction to the work you will be doing. Your schedule will be varied depending on study activity and location. A typical day (following 7am breakfast) begins with a 3-4 hour forest expedition conducting research. After a 2-hour lunch break -which includes evaluating the morning’s progress or a Malagasy language lesson- the afternoon work session lasts until about 5pm. Evenings are very sociable; generally volunteers discuss their days whilst having supper together, and preparing for the next day. Typical activities include:
- Walking a lemur transect through a fragment of littoral forest – once spotted, with a local guide’s help, you will be recording critical data i.e. the number and sex of lemurs/observing their behaviour.
- Identifying reptile and amphibian species by “sweeping” through the forest floor.
- Nocturnal research: walking through the littoral forests searching for nocturnal species of lemurs or reptiles typically from 7pm to 11pm.
- Work within the community involving helping with the environmental education classes and the opportunity for volunteers to host english classes.
Travel and Accommodation
All international flights to Madagascar fly into Antananarivo (the capital). You will also need to book a return flight from Antananarivo to Fort Dauphin (also called Tolagnaro). Advice will be provided on how and when to book these flights. You will travel from Fort Dauphin to the campsite by 4×4.
For the majority of the Conservation Programme you will be camping and working in the bush. The campsite is situated in the beautiful, coastal area of St. Luce. Facilities at campsites are basic; bucket showers and long-drop toilets. There is campsite chef who prepares simple, nutritious meals for all the team and there is always drinking water available. During each 10 week programme there will be at least one long weekend break back in the nearest town, Fort Dauphin. Electricity, western style toilets, and cold water showers are available here and there is also a variety of shops and restaurants. Whilst you are in Fort Dauphin volunteers stay in a homestay, or they can book at hotel.
- Necessary flights & visas
- Full travel & medical insurance
- Medications (a World Health Organisation recognised malaria prophylaxis)
- Vaccinations (including full vaccination against COVID-19)
- Be able to communicate in English
- Be open minded, patient, adaptable and willing to embrace the challenges of the project
- Have a positive attitude towards living in a rural setting and working in a team
Be in good mental and physical health- an appropriate level of fitness (able to walk up to 10 km a day on uneven ground in hot humid conditions), physical capability and mobility is needed for the project.
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** All payments incur a 5% bank transfer fee
*** Placements are confirmed with a £200 deposit
Project Fee includes
- All food and accommodation
- Malagasy language lessons
- Airport pickup
- Detailed orientation covering Malagasy culture and background information
- In-country support and all project activities.
What’s not included:
- Travel & Medical insurance
- Visas (if applicable) and vaccinations.
Full assistance will be provided in getting all these arranged if you choose our Premium Support.
Premium Support Upgrade
We understand there’s a great deal to plan and organise for your trip. When booking a Placement, many of our participants choose to purchase our Premium Support Upgrade to benefit from the expertise, knowledge and experience of our Project Coordinators.
We can provide the personal advice you need to ensure your trip is organised with excellence and planned with efficiency; ensuring the very best experience possible. Read more about how we can help you.
Note: Map coordinates are approximate