by Sally Fry, Australia I first went to Antelope Park in April 2012 for 2 weeks as a volunteer on the Lion Rehabilitation Project. I was 56 and a little hesitant about what I was getting myself into - sharing a room with strangers, walking with lions and travelling to Africa on my own. But I had an amazing time. I fell in love with Africa, the lions, elephants and the people. I worked and walked with lions, I herded elephants, I got close to zebra, giraffe and wildebeest whilst riding a horse in the African bush and I met an amazing bunch of people from all over the world. What an experience! I left determined to return, someday, and with a whole new group of FB friends. Many of us kept in touch, we shared photos, we started a group called “Keep the Dream Alive”, and we talked about going back one day. As a teacher I was keen to return to work as a volunteer in the community in the schools and orphanages, and I missed the lions. One of the friends I made, Heath from Melbourne then said he was planning a return visit in April 2013. Dzamila from Slovakia and Gina from Norway also mentioned their desire to return, so we made a plan for an April 2013 reunion! April 2013 I was back at Antelope Park for 3 weeks catching up with Heath, Dzamila and Gina. Four people so different in many ways in terms of age, nationality and lives but we all had a common purpose and goal; a desire to help save the African lion and to give back to the people of Zimbabwe who had so warmly welcomed us on our first visit. We made more friends, worked hard and played hard! I worked with orphans and street kids during the week and with lions on the weekends (African Impact Combo Project). We felt we were making a difference (however small) and doing something worthwhile. We said goodbye, not knowing if or when we would ever see each other again. Some months later we made another plan! December 2013/January 2014 we were back - Heath, Dzamila, Sonja from Germany whom we had met in April and me. We were indeed keeping the dream alive. Volunteering at Antelope Park means working towards creating a gene pool of healthy lions that may one day be released into the wild. Volunteers work together with staff to ensure the lions are fed and cared for which can mean preparing the meat, cleaning out their cages, snare sweep, border patrol or providing behaviour enrichment sessions. Walking with the lions helps to develop essential hunting and survival skills. You can also split your time by working in the community as a medical volunteer or as a teacher or with orphaned and abused children. Every little bit helps. Volunteering at Antelope Park can be a life changing experience. It offers the opportunity to contribute to wildlife conservation and to work within a community where your efforts can help to create a more sustainable future for the people and children of Zimbabwe. At the same time you will be warmly welcomed, well looked after, appreciated and given opportunities to experience other activities such as an overnight horse safari, game drives, night encounters and even have a try at polo cross! To volunteer at Antelope Park is to challenge yourself to take the plunge and start doing the things that you thought you would never do. It is an opportunity to make a difference and to be a part of a group of like-minded people who believe that change can happen when each of us is prepared to take action towards doing what we believe in. I have no idea when I will return to Antelope Park. I do know, however, that I more than likely will and that next time more of us will join in in another Antelope Park Reunion. We just need to make a plan!