Duration: from 4 weeks
Start Dates: There are start dates on the first Monday of each month
Cost: from £1,389 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
- Setup and implement a micro finance initiative to address issues of poverty
- Bring knowledge and expertise to the project, whilst taking away hands-on experience
- Collaborate with our 6 Neighbourhood Care Points to help vulnerable and orphaned children
The Kingdom of Swaziland has the world’s highest HIV/AIDS prevalence rate which has taken its toll on the population leaving many children orphaned or vulnerable. It also has an unemployment rate of about 30% which rises to over 50% among the youth. These factors combine leading to approximately 63% of the population living below the poverty line. Social enterprise and small businesses are vital to help the economy and to bring income into families.
The project you will working with is setting up a micro finance initiative to address some of the issues mentioned above, and we need interns to set up, develop and implement the project. Whether you are looking for experience to further your career or looking to make a difference in a much needed part of the world, this internship is designed to be beneficial for all involved. Therefore if you have any special interests, skills or goals, let us know and we will do whatever we can to integrate them into the programme.
As an intern, your role with us is to bring knowledge and expertise to the project, whilst taking away hands-on experience and adding to your achievements. You will be working on a strategic level to develop local capacity so that the project can continue long after you have left. You will be expected to take on responsibility and to create goals that you will be involved in or lead. You will also have a mentor assigned to you to guide you throughout the internship.
Upon arrival, our team will assist you with getting started, meeting project partners, and advising you on next steps. You will then have the flexibility to create your own schedule with partners, and together create a plan of action of goals to achieve whilst working together. For this reason, it is important that the word “partner” remain key throughout the experience. Our interns have a world of expertise to offer, however all goals should be created together with the in-country partner so the outcomes are sustainable even after the intern returns home. We do not expect our interns to take on a job position, but rather take on the role of advisor; offering advice, suggestions and assistance in creating strategies that will make long term impacts.
The focus of the Micro Finance Pilot and Development project will be to work in collaboration with our 6 Neighborhood Care Points (NCP’s), which operate in rural areas of Swaziland and cater to vulnerable and orphaned children. These NCP’s were set up by the All Out Africa Foundation, in and effort to keep children stay in school longer, do better in school and hopefully influence their lives as adults. These NCP’s are community based facilities and include assistance from local volunteers in the form of cooking staff, teachers and assistance who often work towards our common goals with little to no incentive. The Micro Finance project offers these local volunteers a way to earn an income. This internship would assist the NCP and Sponsorship Coordinator in designing a marketing workshop/ educational to interested parties, and develop of system of evaluation to award a new micro finance loan to a new community group. Interns would also provide additional support and continued learning after the loan was awarded to increase success of the business en devour.
Some of the activities you may get involved in may include:
- Assisting with the development of guidelines for the project
- Facilitate educational trainings about basic marketing techniques such as bookkeeping, profit analysis, product development, branding etc
- Support the NCP Coordinator in conducting basic data analysis
- Prepare periodic evaluation reports for AOA Swazi office
Your daily schedule will look like this;
7:00 Wake up and have your breakfast on the deck!
7:30 Travel to your placement and get ready to begin your day
8:00 Participate in your chosen project
12:30 Time to either return to the Backpackers for lunch or to eat the packed lunch you made that morning!
14:00 Begin your afternoon’s work with a full stomach and enthusiasm
16:00 Return back to your accommodation and share your day’s adventures with other interns, maybe even a quick swim in the sea!
18:30 Enjoy a delicious evening meal and relax……
You can expect your first few days to look like this;
Day 1: Fly into Tambo Airport, Johannesburg (for Swaziland placements) where you will be met by staff members who will transfer you by road to your accommodation.
Day 2: The second day begins with an informative presentation that will brief you on all you need to know about the culture and country, how to effectively contribute during your intern experience.
Day 3: Day three will involve meeting the project and people you will be working with. Our staff will escort you to your placement to for a smooth start to the process and to help you settle in. The outcomes of the internship should also be discussed and agreed on this day, so you feel clear and focused about your placement.
Day 4: After your first partner meeting, it will be up to you to plan your week! Find out which days are best to meet with your partner, and which are best for you to work in the office to do some planning or research. Sometimes it may also be helpful to do some field research in the area. Weekends are free for you to relax or to see more of the scenery and activities!
Travel & Accommodation
During your stay you will be accommodated in the award-winning Lidwala Lodge located in Ezulwini valley (the Valley of Heaven) in central Swaziland only 15 minutes away by car from the capital town Mbabane. Within a few kilometers are the Lobamba, Ezulwini and Mahlanya communities. The cultural heart of Swaziland is where you can find most tourist activities and sites such as the Royal Palace, houses of parliament, the national sports stadium and the national museum.
The Lodge is conveniently located on the main Ezulwini road, less than 2 km away from many of the area’s main facilities and attractions (craft markets, the Gables shopping centre, hotels, restaurants).
The rooms where you will stay are dorm-style with bunk beds and shared bathrooms. You will be provided with sheets and pillows. If you are planning on going on tours on home stays during your time in Swaziland, please bring your own sleeping bag.
The lodge is surrounded by a spacious garden with plenty of trees and boulders. You are likely to see monkeys roaming around the garden and a wide variety of birds attracted by the many plants. You can enjoy the large deck area, the campfire area, outdoor pool, TV lounge, communal barbecue and communal kitchen where the meals are prepared.
During the project you will be provided with three meals a day – some on a self-serve basis and others will be cooked for you. The meals are eaten together on the communal decking area. Breakfast and lunch are self-service and you can choose from a selection of cereals, bread, fruit, yogurt, eggs and spreads in the morning and bread, ham, cheese, salad and fruit for lunch. Dinner is a cooked meal and you can participate in its preparation on a rotational basis. The dishes include pasta, stir-fry, braai and stew. If you are a vegetarian or have food allergies this will be taken into consideration.
- Minimum age 18
- Minimum 4 weeks commitment
- 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
- Good mental and physical health – an appropriate level of fitness
- Necessary flights & visas
- Full travel & medical insurance – full assistance will be providing in arranging everything should you choose our Placement Support Package
* Currency is in GBP, check xe.com for the latest currency conversion rates
** All payments incur a 5% bank transfer fee.
*** Places are confirmed with a 4 week deposit
Project Fee includes food, accommodation, airport pickup, orientation, in-country support and project activities.
What’s not included:
Flights, insurance, visas (if applicable) and vaccinations. Full assistance will be provided in getting all these arranged if you choose our Premium Support.
Placement Support Package
For your trip, we will help you organise and plan everything you will need from start to finish. Our coordinators know each project & country like the back of their hand, and will be able to offer personalised advice to ensure your trip is well-planned & executed to perfection.
This includes one-to-one assistance planning and booking;
- Pre-departure Support – Flights, Visas, Vaccinations, Insurance, Essential Items and anything else you will need before you set off.
- Ongoing In-country Support – whilst you are on the project you can Contact us at any time with any questions or concerns and we will do whatever we can to help.
- 24/7 Emergency Support – a phone number that you or your family can ring at any time, night or day in case of emergency.
Our Placement Support Package costs £349 / $449 / €425 per person, and can be purchased once you are ready to confirm your place.
Note: Map coordinates are approximate