About Volunteering

Calabash’s carefully crafted volunteering programme has been successfully running since 2006 as a result of the strong partnership of Calabash Tours and Trust. We create volunteering opportunities for individuals,  school, universities, and special interest groups. 

The volunteer programmes form a vital part of our commitment to make tourism work for local communities by facilitating skills transfer and knowledge share, which often involves hands-on support. Through our trusted partnerships with local communities, schools and NGOs we identified community needs and match them with skilled volunteers from all over the world. Our placements range from home based HIV/AIDS care to primary school education, as well as community development placements in the townships of Nelson Mandela Bay.

We are committed to responsible volunteering, making sure that your placement produces community benefits whilst it is also an enriching and rewarding experience for our volunteers.

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Our programmes are responsible because:

  • We are transparent about where your money goes, so you can see exactly how much is spend on community development.
  • We monitor and evaluate our volunteering programmes closely and document the progress, so we make sure we are working towards a clearly defined goal. It’s a continual approach where volunteers follow up on previous volunteers’ work.
  • Before we place a volunteer we get community consent.
  • We don’t replace local jobs but ensure skills transfer.
  • All programmes have sustainability as the goal. Your work will continue after you left and the aim is to build up local skills and knowledge to strengthen local capacity, which eventually makes external support unnecessary.
  • Volunteers can expect a detailed outline about what they will do and receive background information about the project they’ll be working on.
  • We provide 24/7 support for our volunteers and are well connected to local hospitals, embassies and can arrange any help needed.   

Calabash will visit you on placement every week to ensure things are going OK – Paul and his staff are social entrepreneurs with a high level of integrity and a clear sense of direction – they are interesting and interested and are always there for you. All I can say is that every day of the month exceeded expectations” Volunteer Eileen Flinter 2010