Volunteer with elephants in Thailand, Surin, and join the centuries old tradition of training ‘domestic’ elephants by mahouts in Thailand.
This volunteer project offers a responsible and sustainable alternative to the fate often faced by elephants in Thailand. Because of the dissolution of the logging industry, many elephants are taken to urban areas to beg for money and are often mistreated.
This Elephant Experience financially supports the local community and the wellbeing of the elephants. Whilst volunteering with the elephants, you will epxerience the local village life and culture. This gives you the opportunity to learn about rural Thai culture and to witness the incredible challenges that elephant communities and mahouts face in Thailand. as Spend your days close and in personal touch with these magnificent elephants.
Please note; so as to maintain best practice, we do not condone the riding of elephants by visitors or tourists, and thus it is not allowed. The bond between the mahout and elephant is very special and culturally complex thus should be respected.
Meals are included whilst at the village – please budget around $10-15 USD per day when you’re not at the village.
Arrival airport: Bangkok international airport, Suvarnabhumi – BKK.
To participate in one of the Africa animal volunteer programs can be a joyful and rewarding experience. To get hands on and volunteer with these majestetic animals, like elephants or lions, is an exciting experience. However, most of us know the animals of the African Bush only from the Zoo or school books. Therefore, to come close to them and develop a deeper understanding is a unique opportunity.
Working as a volunteer on Big Five Conservation, you will help protecting lions, leopards, elephants, buffolos and rhinoceroses in the African Bush.
At the game reserve in South Africa you will carry out a spectrum of important tasks, including caring for the animals and monitoring in the African Bush. The nature of the volunteer work will vary according to the weather and season.
Join the Big Cat Conservation volunteer program in South Africa and work for a non- profit organization. Passion and love for the big cats will inspire your volunteer work to protect lions, leopards in the African Bush. The population of big cats in South Africa is being threatened by a high presence of bone trade and canned hunting, and poachers who hunt them for sport. They have also traditionally fallen victim to exploitation in captivity and face a constant and rapid loss of habitat as the land gets developed.
The best hopes for these magnificent animals are sanctuaries such as this one, providing a home to lions, tigers, panthers, caracals and jackals, which can offer them a protected home environment and which work hard to spread awareness within society of the problems that these creatures are facing, educating people on the hunting trade. We are of the opinion that all animals should be roaming the wild but, in reality, much of it has been destroyed and hunting disrupts delicate balance of the bush.
Make part of the vervet monkeys animal conservation volunteer program in South Africa. There, you can help with the integration of the foster moms of 23 little orphans back into the troops.
Join the family at this amazing primate sanctuary. The special initiative aims to give a new loving home for orphaned vervet monkeys come from near and far. Moreover, you will help to rehabilitate the young primates and care for them until they can be released back into the wild.
With over 500 cheeky monkeys in care at any one time, this sanctuary always needs an extra pair of helping hands. With your participation you can help feed them well, and care for them with love and dedication. Finally, you will help raise funds to maintain the place up to scratch for its gorgeous guests.
This summer I had an unforgettable experience in South Africa. Thank you Iko Poran for this exceptional travel! Sure, I will do it again!- Camille Claus Marietti
Camille Clauss Marietti from France has been volunteering with animal conservation in South Africa. She has been working with leopards andh elephants and at the Dawn Bird and Wildlife Sanctuary.
Paige Bird is a junior in college at Indiana University – Purdue University Fort Wayne. She is a communication major seeking a career in journalism and enjoys playing for the golf team at IPFW and spending her free time with her dog, Lucy.
I chose this program because I have always wanted to study abroad, but with being a student-athlete it is unrealistic to go away for an entire semester. I have always loved animals and travel so I decided volunteering abroad was the next best thing!
I chose Iko Poran’s Costa Rica Sea Turtle Conservation program because it is very affordable and sounded like a fun way to help animals.
What did your program provider assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?
My program advisor helped me prepare to travel to Costa Rica. Being a female and traveling abroad on my own, he helped me feel safe and comfortable to make the journey. He gave me clear and direct instructions of travel and assisting me along the way, what I would be doing in my program, and had a representative meet me at one location and bring me to my final destination.
If I could give a piece of advice to someone going to the program, I would tell them to take advantage of every opportunity they get to experience the culture.
We were allowed quite a bit of free time and my favorite memory of the trip was going away for a weekend with a group of friends and doing excursions. The volunteering was fantastic, but the friends and memories I made will always be something I hold close to my heart.
View here Paige’s video from her Costa Rica volunteer trip to save the sea turtles:
What Paige is saying about her volunteer trip to Costa Rica:
I would HIGHLY recommend this volunteer experience. I did lots of research going into this trying to find the most affordable program, and Iko Poran was definitely the most affordable. I was doing the same volunteer work as volunteers from all over the world, but I was paying much less money to do so.
I had a fantastic time in Costa Rica with the turtles and I met many people and created memories I will never forget. I definitely recommend Iko Poran and the Sea Turtle experience in Costa Rica and I cannot wait until I volunteer with them again. Pura Vida!
Paige, 19 years old, Costa Rica
Volunteer with Elephants in Thailand. Experience Thailand from a local perspective & make lifelong friends.
Join the centuries old tradition of training ‘domestic’ elephants by mahouts in Thailand.
The volunteer program aims to offer a responsible and sustainable alternative to the fate often faced by elephants in Thailand. Because of the dissolution of the logging industry, many elephants are taken to urban areas to beg for money and are often mistreated. Therefore, our elephant volunteer program continues to lead the way in Surin in helping to change attitudes towards elephant care for the better.
Since all the activities are about caring for the elephants and treating them with respect, we put our strict no riding policy. Therefore, your work schedule will include walking them to the river to bathe them, harvesting and planting food, feeding the elephants, everything is based around a new approach to elephant care that puts the elephant first.
The program will bring you in touch with the elephants. Therefore, the close and personal contact with these magnificent creatures on a daily basis will be an unforgettable beautiful experience. At the same time you will see the real Thailand, the daily life of its residents. Living in a traditional long house with other volunteers, that’s rural Thai life at it’s very best!
Volunteer with elephants and an unforgettable experience with these peaceful, intelligent and majestic animals. Volunteer programs with elephants are available in Nepal, India, Thailand or as a part of Big Five Game conservation, in South Africa.
Camille Clauss Marietti recently has sent us her review about volunteering with the elephants at the Dawn Bird and Wildlife Sanctuary in South Africa:
This summer I had an unforgettable experience in South Africa. Thank you Iko Poran for this exceptional travel! Sure, I will do it again! – Camille Clauss Marietti
Of coures, volunteering with the Big Five includes caring for leopards, lions, rhinozerozes and buffalos as well, as you can see on the bipcutre besides.
Volunteer on Elephant Care in Nepal Chitwan and have an exciting and joyful experience! Volunteers are helping with the feeding and socialization of the Elephants. While volunteering with the elephants, you will discover their gentle and befriending nature. Furthermore, you will find out about the social and cultural impact of these colossal creatures in Nepali communities. For example, you will be fascinated to watch the process of making Chitwan paper from elephant dung and then to see how these products are used around the town.
Volunteer in Thailand and join the centuries old tradition of training ‘domestic’ elephants by mahouts. Because of the dissolution of the logging industry, many elephants are taken to urban areas to beg for money and are often mistreated. Therefore, the volunteer project offers a responsible and sustainable alternative for the elephants.
This summer I had an unforgettable experience in South Africa. Thank you Iko Poran for this exceptional travel! Sure, I will do it again!
My experience at the turtles project was amazing. I had a lot of fun and met fantastic people from all over the world. The village is totally safe and local people are really kind.
The patrols at night were fine, you have to walk for four hours on the beach with guides, and if you’re on a lucky night you’ll get to see turtles coming slowly from the ocean, crossing the beach and laying eggs just in front of you. It’s something you want to live in your life, and something you want to protect.
Volunteer in South Africa with Big Five monitoring – lions, elephants, buffalos, white & black rhino, and hyenas. You will be heavily involved in important conservation work to make sure the animals are healthy and the land is well balanced.
Your days will be spent tracking, spotting, recording and observing the movements and behavior of these African animals. The data you collect will be used to create files on the animals and monthly reports which will be analyzed and monitored by the park coordinators.
This project is responsible for all the conservation work and record keeping for the National Park Section, and the volunteers it receives provide its only source of income. Your participation is so important for the long term success of this project. Like your memories, your contribution will last for a long time.
If you have always dreamt of experiencing the wilderness of the African plains and you love animals, this project is for you.
Volunteer in South Africa holding, caring for and living with African wildlife is beyond most people’s wildest dreams.
Take part in essential conservation efforts in South Africa nursing animals in need back to health. In this once in a lifetime opportunity you will be working in a unique sanctuary filled with the most amazing species of birds and animals that Africa has to offer.
You will be doing incredible and meaningful work, giving your time and love to the rehabilitation of creatures big and small. You will wake up every morning to the chorus of the African dawn, living in a nearby lodge, and spend your days working hands on with the animals.
Staying only a few miles from the beach and the bush and other tourist attractions, this placement in South Africa has it all.
This experience will develop your insight into the wildlife of South Africa and really touch your heart.
Location of project: Animal sanctuary on South Africa’s world renowned Garden Route next to Port Elizabeth
Arrival airport: Port Elizabeth (code PLZ)
Shared dormitory style room in wooden lodge at project (2-8 persons per room)
Food: All meals are included
Available from 2 to 8 weeks
Find the full information about volunteering in South Africa here, and proceed to the application form.