Work at a South African wildlife refuge!

Looking to conserve and protect wildlife in a direct way? SanWild’s volunteer program is your chance to spend two weeks or more participating in the daily operations and research projects of a wildlife sanctuary. Comfortable tented lodge accommodation is standard, or upgrade to a deluxe tent for two!

Join one of the oldest volunteer programs in South Africa. Accompany our experienced game rangers out in the field on our 3,000 hectare reserve. Work on conservation and research projects, and assist our staff in the Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre. Anyone 18 or older can sign up for this paid life experience, but places are limited.

The Work
  • The standard volunteer period is a minimum of two weeks
  • Your days will be varied – and completely unpredictable.
  • Living alongside lions, leopards, elephants, buffalo, and rhinos, you’ll be part of an international wildlife conservation team with a 20-year track record in rescuing and releasing animals back into the wild.
  • You might be supporting research into one of the Big Five, understanding poacher prevention, or helping restore the landscape to wild savannah conditions.

Helping to give wild animals a second chance will be life-changing – and have a lasting impact.

Volunteer Accommodation
Communal Pool
Comfort tent
Deluxe tent
  • You’ll enjoy comfortable shared accommodation in a standard two-bedded Comfort tent at SanWild Lodge, with a toilet, shower, and a cleaning service once a day.
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner prepared by our Lodge staff are also included.
  • For an additional charge, two people can upgrade to a Deluxe tent with an open-plan bath.
Volunteer Program Fees

The charge for a two-week (14-night) Scout Ranger volunteer program is € 2,240 per person. Additional weeks can be reserved for € 1,120 per person. This fee includes:

  • Shared accommodation in a two-person Comfort tent with toilet, shower and daily cleaning service (Upgrade to a Deluxe tent or a single occupancy at an additional fee – enquire directly)
  • Scout Rangers will be provided with three meals per day, which will be prepared by Lodge staff. It is important to note that beverages are not included in the rate, but they can be purchased at the bar.
  • Complimentary Wifi & laundry service.
  • Access to the SanWild Lodge common area, dining room and swimming pool
  • Participation in daily SanWild Sanctuary operations which includes the animal rehab centre and predator enclosures.
  • Participation in ongoing conservation and research programs. These will vary by season and the current situation, and may change at very short notice.
  • Complimentary pick-up and drop-off services at Hoedspruit airport (Eastgate Airport) are available exclusively on Mondays. Any other day of the week will require special arrangements. Alternatively, volunteers are welcome to utilize self-drive options to reach Sanwild.

The fee does not include transportation to and from the SanWild Sanctuary site, located in Limpopo Province in northern South Africa, except on Mondays when complimentary transportation to and from Hoedspruit airport will be provided.

PLEASE NOTE: Younger participants under 18 can participate if accompanied by a responsible adult. For special requests, please contact us.

How to book your spot?
  • Please complete the online enrollment form for your desired two-week period, starting on a Monday and we will be in contact.
  • The SanWild Volunteer program starts on a Monday and lasts for a minimum of two weeks, ending on a Monday morning. 
  • We reserve the right to turn down participants with conditions that could affect your own safety on site or that of the animals.
  • A 20% non-refundable deposit is due with reservation.
  • The remaining 80% is due 20 days prior to arrival.
Please take note
  • Volunteers will receive a participation certificate and can request a letter of recommendation.
  • Translation apps can be used for those who do not speak English.
  • All volunteers and guests are required to have travel insurance with medical coverage, and a copy of the insurance and emergency contact details must be forwarded to us before arrival.
  • All guests and volunteers must sign an indemnity form.
See you soon!