Volunteers

Whether you’re looking to learn new skills for your next career move or take a break and ‘give something back’, please consider volunteering with Lilongwe Wildlife Trust. Volunteers are critical to so many of our projects and we tailor the programme to each individual, meaning you get as much out of your placement as we do. 

WHO CAN APPLY

Anyone over 18 years old with a passion for wildlife and a strong work ethic! Experience is not necessary as we provide full on-the-job training, but individuals who would like to apply any specific skills e.g. zoologists, teachers, legal advocates, journalists, etc. are also very welcome. We also offer specialized placements for research students and vets, vet nurses and vet students.  

THE WORK

Most choose to focus on wildlife rescue and rehabilitation, which has the greatest demand for volunteers, but you are welcome to spent part or all of your time on other LWT projects.

1) Wildlife rehabilitation & husbandry

Volunteers are critical across all areas of the rescue and rehabilitation process, from orphan care and animal husbandry (feeding, cleaning, etc) to integrations, observations and re-introductions.

LWT’s Wildlife Centre is Malawi’s only wildlife sanctuary, with 126 rescues and 220 animals under rehabilitation last year. A total of 45 animals were released. The Wildlife Centre is accredited by the world’s top welfare and conservation organisations and is now one of the most respected sanctuaries in Africa.  That means you can have confidence that you will be learning ‘best practice’ during your time with us.  As our goal is to release as many animals as possible back into the wild, we operate a strict hands-off policy.

That said, some orphans need special attention and round the clock care to ensure that they have the best possible chance of survival and rehabilitation, so you may well be stepping in with surrogacy work and providing all aspects of care in those early days.  It can be an incredibly rewarding experience to see animals progress and know that you have played a vital part in their journey back to the wild.

We would also highly recommend combining a placement with our wildlife rehabilitation course, which run in March, July and August each year.

2) Education & community outreach

Volunteers can support the team delivering our education programmes both at the Wildlife Centre and in the classrooms out in the community. You can also get involved in any specific projects that are in need at the time, such as developing education materials or helping out at events like our Wildlife Quiz Championships. The community outreach team welcome assistance on their programmes working on the adult literacy, fuel briquette and tree planting.

3) Communications & campaigns

One of LWT’s remits is to raise awareness about conservation within Malawi, and draw attention to Malawi’s conservation efforts internationally. You can read about our award winning campaigns here. Anyone with PR, copywriting, film making, campaigns or advocacy experience would be very welcome.

4) Research

Lilongwe Wildlife Trust is committed to expanding Malawi’s very limited body of wildlife research in an effort to inform conservation management practices, both for our own projects and that of the government and other NGO’s.  This includes animal behaviour, captive care, conservation medicine and biodiversity, the latter being operated out of our new Vwaza research station which offers the chance to split your time between the sanctuary and bush.  Find out more here.

LOCATION & LIVING ARRANGEMENTS

Volunteers stay at the Wildlife Centre in Lilongwe, living right in the middle of the sanctuary but still close to the ‘luxuries’ of town. Research volunteers are based out of our new Vwaza Research Camp in the Northern Region and (depending on the time of year and the active projects at the time) some volunteers may be based at Kuti Wildlife Reserve in the Central Region.  Read more  here

TRAVEL & FREE TIME

Malawi is known as the Warm Heart of Africa for its friendly people and lush landscapes, and it’s generally viewed as the ‘safest’ country to travel in Africa. We highly recommend that you spend weekends off at the ‘lake of stars’, or perhaps a safari in Zambia’s South Luangwa National Park. We can help you with your booking and show you the best deals.  

REVIEWS & FILMS

These volunteer reviews a useful insight into life as a volunteer with us, as are these short videos which include a lovely appeal from our ambassador and soul singing legend, Joss Stone. 

COSTS

No. weeks 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
GBP 2017
 £1,306  £1,691   £2,130  £2,453  £2,745  £3,028  £3,283  £3,529  £3,744  £3,951  £4,144
USD 2017
 $1,695  $2,195  $2,765  $3,184  $3,563  $3,931  $4,262  $4581  $4,860  $5,129  $5,380
GBP 2018 £1,370 £1,775 £2,235 £2,575 £2,885 £3,180 £3,450 £3,705 £3,930 £4,150 £4,350

Please read here for more useful information  regarding what’s included, arrival dates, upgrades etc.  

HOW TO APPLY

If you’re interested in joining us please email lilongwewildlife@gmail.com or send us an enquiry below and we’ll email you an enquiry pack and application form.  We look forward to hearing from you!

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