Is Volunteer tourism one answer to purposeful travel?
Everyone is looking to make an impact in the world; and so for those of us that enjoy doing something a little off the cuff, a volunteering and travel program can satisfy this need and the love for seeing new destinations while making an impact.
Volunteer tourism is widely viewed as a new phenomenon that offers this superb opportunity for animal lovers, and so when we heard that Zimbabwe-based Umba Africa Volunteer Travel and Tours were offering programs that combine travel packages with amazing volunteer work opportunities, we had to find out more.
One of our signature experiences is to take part in the annual game counts that take place at Zimbabwe’s National Parks. In layman’s terms, it is much like conducting an animal census. The up-close encounter with the animals is priceless, volunteers get to count and study all the animals in Hwange and Mana Pools National Parks for over a period of 24 hours and in support of ongoing conservation efforts.
Shumi Rushwaya, Founder of Umba Africa Volunteer Travel and Tours.
Mana Pools National Park has a collection of incredible islands, channels, sandbanks, and oxbow lakes resulting in a wildlife-rich experience, so participants can be guaranteed that there is never a dull moment at the Park. The Hwange National Park is also home to over a hundred mammal species, including the lion, leopard, and the rhino, and is known for its large population of elephants. Just to give you an indication of how many of the largest land mammal you can find in Africa’s savanna plains, just last year at the Luvingi Pan, a volunteer counted more than three hundred elephants. Such an encounter is truly unparalleled to any camping or safari experience.
“When on the road to either Mana Pools or Hwange there is an opportunity to visit the mighty Victoria Falls, the underrated Matobo Hills, the exciting Kariba Dam, and the mystic Chinhoyi caves. To some extent, being a part of one of our volunteer excursions, you would never think you are actually doing any work,” Shumi chimes in.
So if you and your friends are looking for an immersive, yet educational trip to Zimbabwe’s great outdoors, you can enjoy this unique opportunity to volunteering your time in providing assistance to the attainment of long-term community goals in Zimbabwe, while aiding wildlife conservation and environmental efforts.
When asked what Umba Africa Volunteer Africa Travels and Tours would like travellers to know about the programs they offer, Shumi adds, “ These types of programs aim to assure the international community to be aware of how safe, easy, and fulfilling it is to travel to Sub-saharan Africa. Everyone wins as we help heighten Zimbabwe’s tourism appeal. It’s an life-changing way in which volunteers can attain that ‘grassroots’ cultural experience while creates unforgettable memories.”
To learn more about how you can get involved with wildlife conversation and environmental volunteerism in Zimbabwe, visit www.umbaafricavolunteers.com