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Introduction
Do I need any special qualifications?

No special qualifications are required but you do need the enthusiasm and drive to get involved and the ability to work as part of the team. At times it will be uncomfortable; too hot, too cold, too tired. There are plenty of thorns to scratch and cut you……you will get injuries! You will work out in the heat of the African sun, sometimes on physical labour tasks. You therefore need a fair level of fitness but no special education or conservation background is required.

 

Why do I need to speak good English?

At Askari we pride ourselves on how much you will learn about the African bush and the species that live here. Learning starts with safety, and safety is our primary concern at all times. English is essential to understand all safety instructions and keep you safe. Through a combination of lectures (in the training week) and time spent in the bush, you will be continuously learning. A good understanding of English is needed to benefit from these sessions. Additionally you will need to record data for us which will involve reading and writing in English.

 

What is an average day like?

No day is ever the same in the bush so this is hard to answer….its’ also the reason why we love it 🙂 You never know what’s going to happen and what you’re going to see next! Days normally consist of a combination of reserve work and projects and wildlife monitoring. The first session begins around 6.30am, heading out for a few hours. You will be back at Askari around 10am for a half hour breakfast break. We then carry on with another session to take us to lunch. There may be an hour or two free in the afternoon before we set off for a final session taking us through to dark. Evenings are spent at the house where we join together for dinner. Some activities such as nocturnal monitoring drive, sleep out, braai, pizza and potjie nights and movie night under the stars will mean you are busy in the evening as well. Activities and plans change according to season and the time of year and what is happening on the reserve….animal sightings can also change our plans!

Do I need to cook and clean?

Yes, everyone takes it in turns to cook and clean. There is a rota system and you will be with a partner for your duty. Do not worry if you’re not a good cook; there are easy to follow ingredients lists and instructions to assist you. Washing up duty after meals is also part of the rota and will be your job a few times during the week.

 

Who do I share a room with?

You will have a maximum of 3 room-mates with whom you share a room and bathroom. As far as possible we try to make a boys room and girls room but if ratios don’t allow then rooms may be mixed. The double room is available for couples at the time of booking only.

 

Will I get time off?

Volunteers work every day of the week from Monday to Friday; Saturday morning is also spent at work & you are expected to take part in all sessions. You will have Saturday afternoon off as well as the whole of Sunday. You can choose to leave the reserve at this time and do some sightseeing in the local area; Kruger National Park and Blyde River Canyon are the most popular trips. If you choose to stay, all food is still provided but no activities are scheduled. You will have free time in the evenings, sometimes during the day and at the weekend. Bring a book, games, whatever you like to do to entertain yourself & relax.

 

Will I see lions & elephants every day?

Unfortunately not. Everyday we are out on the reserve working, travelling around and viewing wildlife. All animal sightings always take priority but it is the bush and nothing is guaranteed. All animals are completely wild and can be anywhere at any time. You will see the general game most days, by this we mean impala, warthogs, zebra, giraffe etc. The predators, rhinos and elephants exist in much smaller numbers so sightings are less frequent; that special leopard is the most rare and elusive of all. While we try to see as much as humanly possible please remember it’s the wild and there are no guarantees.

Why is there an upper age limit?

Work at Askari can be physical and tough in the heat of the African sun. The shared living conditions may also not be favourable to all, private rooms are not available. If you are above the age limit but confident Askari is for you then please feel free to contact us independently to discuss.

 

Will I get to touch animals?

We hope not! The only time you might touch an animal is when it is being treated by a vet. This will most likely mean it is injured or in some type of trouble. On rare occasions we may call for the assistance of a vet, in which case we will be involved but this is by no means guaranteed.

 

Why can’t I stay longer than 12 weeks?

Under South African immigration regulation, most nationalities are issued with a free 90 day visitor visa on arrival. Longer stays involve a complex application procedure before you leave home, requiring the sponsorship of a South African host. Due to the administration involved, we are unable to provide the sponsorship paperwork required for this. If you need a visa due to the passport you are travelling on it is YOUR RESPONSIBILITY to apply for the right visa in plenty of time. If your correct visa does not come through in time, our normal cancellation policy applies.

 

Can I travel with a friend?

Absolutely yes. Most people travel to Askari alone and you will immediately be surrounded by new friends with similar interests. You are more than welcome however, to join with friends or your partner. We just ask you to remember that Askari is a team effort and relies on everyone joining in together and not just sticking with their own group of friends or partner. You really get out as much as you put in.

 

When is the best time of year for weather?

Every month is good in the bush! Summer (October-April) is our rainy season, daytime temperatures from December to February are extremely hot! In the dry season (June-August) the bush is thin and there are less migratory animals, reptiles and insects to see. Temperatures can drop to 4°c at night.

 

To apply please read our Terms & Conditions then complete the Application Form.

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I love it when a plan comes together....left this morning in search of the Askari pride males. Didn't take long to find 'Mambana', busy doing some morning patrolling. Check our Instagram story on #askariwcp to hear him in action! ... See MoreSee Less

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Such an exciting day for our resident White-backed vultures. N14 has become the first nest of the season to hatch a chick 🐣🐣🥳🥳. We are currently monitoring 14 active vulture nests and after an approximate 56 day incubation, we are thrilled to see our first new addition. The babies can be very hard to spot in these early weeks as they stay low down in the nest, but we'll definitely be looking a little closer at each of our sites from now on #askariwcp ... See MoreSee Less

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