Help preserve part of the last remaining Saint Luce coastal forest in south east Madagascar, where endangered lemur, reptile and amphibian populations are dwindling fast. Get directly involved with the community who depend greatly on the land for sustenance.
AS A VOLUNTEER, YOU'LL GET TO:
- Take part in hands-on conservation research with the Madagascar Conservation Project in Saint Luce on endangered fauna and flora, including the lemurs, helping to alleviate the problem of deforestation through community initiatives and environmental education.
- Gain important work experience assisting international and Malagasy specialists.
- Educate children in local villages, build fuel-efficient stoves and plant and evaluate the critically endangered palm, Dypsis Saintelucei.
- Set-up and tend to tree nurseries on a seasonal basis, where you’ll plant saplings and enjoy different arbour activities for reforestation purposes.
- Help communicate conservation information to help educate local communities about critical environmental issues.
About the Destination
You’ll be living and working in the community of Saint Luce during your volunteer placement, 50 kilometres from Madagascar’s shipping hub Fort Dauphin. You’ll camp in some of the most beautiful and remote parts of the island, within rural, isolated communities. Camping facilities are provided but you will need to bring your own tent. At times you will camp at the lakeside site of Lanirano, which is fully equipped with flush toilets and showers as well as electricity.
In very rural areas, facilities will be more basic. Water is primarily collected as rainwater and will be treated for drinking. A resident cook travels with the team and is responsible for preparing meals for you each day. In Fort Dauphin, try some of the excellent restaurants that serve interesting Western and Malagasy dishes!
Although you will be expected to work hard, the lush forests and stunning beaches make it an experience you will cherish forever. This volunteer and work experience will open your eyes to a new way of life as you learn about this amazing location and its people.
Fun & Travel
Dates & Rates
- Airport pick-up and drop-off, and all scheduled transport during your stay
- All accommodation and meals
- Full orientation and training in the required conservation field techniques
- Language classes
- A dedicated team to guide and support you
- Medical and travel insurance
- Flights to your chosen destination
- Any visa-related costs
- Weekend trips and other non-project activities
- Alcohol and spending money
- Personal equipment (including tent and sleeping mat)
How your volunteer fee is used:
Volunteer tourism, or ‘voluntourism’ as it is popularly known, is loosely defined as a holiday in which you give back to the land you are visiting; contributing to either community development or conservation. But it’s so much more than that. Voluntourism encompasses a new trend of responsible tourism, where travelers are making informed and responsible choices and planning trips which don’t negatively affect the country or communities they are visiting. When volunteering, it is critical that travelers choose a volunteer organisation or charity with a proven ethos and philosophy around sustainable and responsible tourism practices. This applies both to their work with local communities, wildlife and our volunteers themselves.
African Impact is proud to have a 10 year track record of facilitating responsible volunteer programs in Africa, providing 24 hour support and guidance for volunteers and offering on-going support to communities in need. Understandably, these operations cost money to run and this is where the volunteer fee comes in.
“The forest of south eastern Madagascar is a forest full of surprises, of the positive kind that is. You stay in Sainte Luce, which you can say includes a number of hamlets of which all are close to or by the shoreline. In these you will find friendly locals, who know why you are there and are grateful for it. You might even get the chance to take part in a bush party, which means socialize and try out native dances. That is a ”don’t miss”!
During your stay you will carry out research together with the others, mainly focusing on lemurs, herps (frogs and lizards) as well as a few endangered plants. This means that you will be out in the forest during both daylight and after dark. The latter is a special experience and there is nothing quite like an ”evening lemur transect” or ”evening herp sweep”. You will certainly make a difference if you join the program, not only for the locals but also for yourself.”