Veterinary Assistance Internship, South Africa - African Impact

Veterinary Assistance Internship, South Africa

Gain hands-on veterinary and animal husbandry experience at grassroots level at reputable animal rescue organizations in Cape Town. Help abandoned, abused and neglected animals from impoverished communities, while working alongside highly qualified professionals in the center’s facility. This veterinary internship is a practical and eye-opening opportunity to immerse yourself in the veterinary-world, while gaining a wealth of knowledge to help your career.

Please note: You may volunteer on this project if you wish to stay for less than 4 weeks. Regardless of the length of your stay, the level of practical veterinary exposure you get is relative to your abilities, study, and own initiative. 


  • Work alongside established and professional South African veterinarians and gain practical experience and insight that can support your career
  • Secure clinical hours observing surgeries and treatments with resident veterinarians, who will support you and teach you along the way
  • Take a hands-on role in kennels while rehabilitating animals and enabling them to be adopted into a loving home
  • Learn about veterinary science and the scope of its impact in the context of impoverished communities in South Africa
  • Be supported by 3 professional and personal development coaches
  • Live and work in one of the most beautiful cities in the world
  • Take advantage of the once-in-a-lifetime activities this city has to offer, including cage-diving with Great white sharks, whale watching, visiting Nelson Mandela’s prison cell, or snorkeling with seals

About the Destination

Cape Town is officially one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Framed between oceans and mountains, it’s surrounded by incredible natural beauty, with Table Mountain, one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, an absolute highlight. Cape Town is also a place of huge diversity, lively cultures, and a vibrant nightlife. Living here is dynamic and interesting, and weekends will give you a huge variety of exciting activities.

You can, for instance, venture to the top of Table Mountain, go paragliding, take to the ocean by kayak, hang out on some of the many beaches, sip wine at stunning vineyards, head out on safari, enjoy some Africa’s finest restaurants and even take to the skies on a helicopter flight over the city. For those more interested in exploring South Africa’s culture, how about visiting the historic Robben Island, or taking a free walking tour through the city to learn about Apartheid?

Interns live in a shared volunteer and intern house in Muizenberg, just 3 minutes away from one of the most popular beaches in Cape Town’s South Peninsula. Aside from being one of the best surfing beaches around (ready to get suited up?), it’s an area filled with vibey bars, cafes, and amazing restaurants. Our team of international and local staff members live and work with you, so expect to see and do more than most tourists could ever dream of.

Veterinary assistance interns work with two pro-life, non-profit organizations and animal clinics to rescue, rehabilitate, re-unite and re-home lost, abandoned, abused and neglected animals, while educating disadvantaged communities in Cape Town. At both facilities, their first step is to rehabilitate the animal using the best veterinary and animal behavioral practices, before preparing them for adoption. This is a demanding setting that will give you, as an intern, huge insight into animal care under the strain of scarce resources, and offer you an enriching personal and professional work experience.

Dates & Rates

Our project fee includes:

• Accommodation throughout your entire stay at our African Impact intern home in Cape Town – a cozy, safe and lively house shared by our interns, volunteers and staff
• 3 delicious meals a day cooked by chefs from the local community (weekdays only)
• Airport pick-up and drop-off by the African Impact team
• Experienced international and local staff members who are there to support you 24/7
• Full training and mentoring within your chosen field
• Transport to and from your internship placement

Our project fee excludes:

• Flights to your chosen destination, but we can guide you on this
• Medical or travel insurance
• Visa-related costs
• Weekend trips or tours, or any other non-project activity
• Snacks, soft drinks, gifts or souvenirs
• Laundry
• WiFi – it’s pretty slow here anyway!

Why do an internship with African Impact?

You will work directly within your chosen field, side-by-side an African Impact project, most of which have been running for over a decade. This means that you get to give back something while learning new skills, and live with our team of staff, interns and volunteers. Win-win.
Provide our local community partners direct support they would otherwise not receive, while also providing valuable, practical work experience for you (if you’re asked to make a cup of coffee, a refund is heading your way). Intern support is essential for growing, developing and monitoring our projects’ impact.
Gain deeper insight into your chosen field within the context of community development or conservation in Africa. This provides a truly unique and extraordinary way to enhance your resume.
Be guided and supported 24/7 by highly professional and experienced teams on the ground, as well as from the wider African Impact team. Welcome to next-level interning, where you will receive 3 individual mentors for personal development coaching, professional development mentoring and academic training.

Volunteer Reviews

“I have experienced what feels like a whole new field of veterinary practice. The team at TEARS made me feel like family instantly and I never felt out of place. I have learnt invaluable tips and seen new procedures, all of which I will take forward with me in my future studies. I am heartbroken to leave, however also know that I will be back one day, maybe as a qualified vet myself where I would love to make more of a difference for the animals here.”

Jessica Howe, UK

“During my four weeks on the vet project, I have worked with two different welfare clinics, one in Khayelitsha (Mdzenandra) and in Noordhoek (TEARS). TEARS is a big Kennel with a lot of dogs and a small clinic with 1-2 vets. Mdzenandra is more of an animal hospital with consultation. At both places, I had hands-on experience when I was helping out in the hospital with daily treatment as well as in surgery where I would prepare the animals and hold the materials during operation, I even got to neuter my first cat! It is really a proactive internship, as you are always busy and learn so much from the clinics! If you are a vet student or would like to be one day, this program would definitely be something for you!”

Amalie, Denmark

February 18, 2019

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