Starting daysStarting days are Monday to Friday all year around except December and Ramadan
Minimum Requirements3 weeks and longer subject to visa requirements. A minimum age of 18 years old and older.
Cost£1000 for 3 weeks and £280 for each additional week
What is includedMeeting you at the airport in Zanzibar on arrival, airport transfers to and from the airport, shared accommodation at the volunteer house, registration and application of visa if needed, pre-departure admin and support, orientation and induction, in-country staff with 24/7 support, three meals a day (Monday to Friday), drinking water at the volunteer house, WIFI at the volunteer house, transfer to and from the school you are placed and any additional running costs.
What is not includedFlights, visas costs, comprehensive travel insurance, spending money, weekend transport, recreational activities, vaccinations if needed, laundry and additional food when not at the volunteer house.
Best forGap students, career breakers, families, couples, student teachers, qualified teachers.
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Project Description

When on our Teach at Creches and Schools in Zanzibar project, it is important to be aware that the mother tongue of the school learners is Swahili (Kiswahili), so the learners learn English as a second and sometimes third language. Children start as young as four years old to learn English.

The school that volunteers assist at has around 200 learners with around 30 learners per class. The ages of the learners are roughly 5 to 7 years old for the nursery school, 7 to 14 years old for the primary school and 15 to 18 years old for the high school classes.

Assembly takes place in the morning and the school starts roughly at 7.30 am and finishes at 2pm.

The volunteers will be guided by host teachers based on the school and state’s syllabus and curriculum. 

Volunteers normally are given textbooks that contain the syllabus and/or topics to cover. Classes can be English, Arabic, French, Mathematics, Geography, Biology, Sciences and even on hygiene. Please let us know if you have a special interest in a particular subject so we can try and accommodate you. Children start learning English at 4 years old in nursery school and due to Zanzibar having such a strong tourism industry, learning languages is a priority.

Initially the teachers always helps but as the time goes, volunteers will work alone, plan and provide lessons for classes.

Volunteer duties:

·       Educational Support: Provide instruction and support to students in various subjects, following established curricula or educational programs.

·       Classroom Management: Manage the classroom environment, including maintaining order, discipline, and a positive learning atmosphere.

·       Lesson Planning: Prepare lesson plans, instructional materials, and assessments to effectively deliver educational content.

·       Individualised Assistance: Offer one-on-one or small group tutoring and assistance to students who require additional help.

·       Progress Monitoring: Assess student progress and performance and maintain records of their academic development.

·       Communication: Collaborate with other teachers, school staff, and parents to discuss student progress and address any concerns.

·       Mentoring: Serve as a mentor and positive role model for students, promoting their personal growth and development.

·       Cultural Exchange: Promote cultural exchange and understanding by sharing your own experiences and learning from the local community.

·       Adherence to Policies: Abide by the school’s or organisation’s rules, guidelines, and codes of conduct.

·       Commitment: Maintain a consistent volunteering schedule and fulfil the agreed-upon time commitment.

·       Continuing Education: Stay updated on educational practices and trends to enhance teaching effectiveness.

So, if you love helping with children, believe that education is key to a great future and would love to experience the laidback tropical lifestyle of our favourite African island, then this project is for you!

Typical School Day

06h00 Wake up nice and early to start the day. Have a quick shower and eat a good breakfast to give you energy for the classroom with eager pupils.

07h00 Catch the school bus with teachers and pupils.

7h30 School starts and normally assembly first thing in the morning.

08h00 to 14h00 Assist your assigned teacher/s in the classroom with planned lessons around the syllabus. Classes are roughly 40 minutes each with small breaks.

14h00 Catch the bus back to the volunteer house and have lunch.

15h00 Enjoy the afternoon at the beach, exploring Stone Town, prepare for the next day at the schools, relax or have a power nap.

19h00 to 21h00 Dinner time and a chance to watch a little TV and catch up with the other volunteers and coordinators how their day was.

Please be aware though as you are in Africa, things might run at a slight slower pace than what you are used too.

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  • volunteer accommodation
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  • Stone Town

Accommodation

The Teach at Creches and Schools in Zanzibar volunteer accommodation is in a house in Malindi on the outskirts of Stone Town. It has free Wi-Fi that volunteers are able to use, and the office of the local team is also located within the same building. It is well situated allowing easy access to all the various project sites- and not too far from the beach. Travel time from the volunteer house to project sites is therefore a maximum of 30 minutes’ drive.

The volunteer house can accommodate up to 15 volunteers at one time with a kitchen, living area and several bedrooms and bathrooms shared with other volunteers.

Bedrooms are shared with two to three other volunteers of the same gender. Married couples can be accommodated too, and single bedrooms are possibly with an upgrade charge. Bed linen and mosquito nets are provided and electric fans for the heat.

Bathrooms are equipped with western style toilets and showers. Volunteers will need to bring their own towels and toiletries. There is a washing machine to do laundry, but you will need to bring your own laundry detergent. Or you can do handwashing.

As the accommodation is a shared living space, all volunteers are expected to help keep the accommodation tidy. To assist with the cooking and cleaning there is a local “mama” who works several days a week. The accommodation also has a sitting room (common room) where volunteers can relax, socialise with other volunteers and the local team as well as watching TV, Netflix or just relaxing on the sofa with a good book. There is a curfew if volunteers go out in the evening to be back before midnight.

As volunteers become familiar with the project site, they are encouraged to use public transport (buses – dala dala) to experience local life.

Food

Volunteers are provided with three local meals per day during weekdays (breakfast, lunch and dinner). Breakfast is self-serve at the accommodation and includes tea, coffee, fruits, bread (with Nutella and jam), eggs, etc. Lunch and dinner are prepared in the volunteer house. Drinking water is provided.

Your stay will typically include daily breakfast and dinner (although self-catering may be arranged in some instances). Depending on your schedule and the location of your placement, self-served (“raid the refrigerator”) lunches will be available at home or you may want to take a packed lunch. You will eat traditional Zanzibari/Swahili cuisine (simple but healthful foods including fresh fish and chicken, rice-based dishes, chapati and bread, fresh vegetables and fruits and juices). We can accommodate vegetarians if you let us know in advance.

During weekend, volunteers are free to use the kitchen if they wish to cook but they can also go out with or without volunteer coordinators for meals.

Location

We simply love Zanzibar! It has so much to offer from nature, beaches, great food, culture and history! Added to the fact the weather is great and even in rainy season, you get a downpour and then the sun comes out again!

Your arrival and departure airport for the Teach at Creches and Schools in Zanzibar project, is Abeid Amani Karume International Airport in Zanzibar. You will be met warmly by our representative and taken to the volunteer house during daylight hours. Please wait at the arrivals entrance to be collected by them and do not leave the airport area. 

The airport is approximately a 17-minute drive (8km) from the volunteer house in the Malindi region outside of Stone Town. Airport collection and drop-off days are Monday to Friday with your arrival flight landing any time before 17h00 and your departure flight leaving any time after 10h00. 

If you would like flights outside of these guidelines, please confirm with us so we can make suitable arrangements for your airport transfers if possible.

Most of our Teach at Creches and Schools in Zanzibar volunteers can enjoy the opportunity to swim every day and/or take part in the nightly community football games on the beach. Watching the sunset in the evenings (we have some spectacular ones) and visiting the beach at daybreak to watch the fishermen bring in their catch are special pleasures.

Weekends are the perfect time to take in some day trips to visit the turtle sanctuary in the northern parts of the island, take a boat trip to  see the giant Aldabra tortoises on Prison Island, hike Jozani National park to view endangered Red Colobus monkeys, visit the butterfly farm, tour the fragrant spice farms, take a boat trips, visit the Freddy Mercury Museum at Mercury House, snorkel one of the hot spots like Mnemba Atoll, visit heritage sites like the old Slave market or House of Wonder or buy spices and other goods at Darajani market. 

Stone Town has been named a UNESCO World Heritage site -for good reason- and wandering through its maze of narrow alleyways, visiting its museums, marketplaces, gardens, coffee and tea houses and wharf is another pleasure and takes you back in time. Not to mention some of the best seafood and traditional local curries can be sampled in the various eating establishments doted around the town or at the night food market at Forodhani Gardens.

There are frequent outdoor musical events in the Old Fort and at various venues in the city and at the local dance clubs. Once a year there is the well-known Dhow Festival that takes place. 

Zanzibar has a wealth of beautiful beaches, world class snorkelling, diving, and fishing, spice farms and numerous other interesting places to visit while you are volunteering…a true African island paradise. 

“Volunteering through Volunteer International Adventures has given me the opportunity to get a real glimpse into the school life of Zanzibari teachers and pupils. Being able to spend time in a school system that is quite different from the one I am familiar with, has enriched me. I have learned first hand what it is like to work and live in Zanzibar. The children were excited to learn new things and generally just really appreciative. The country is stunningly beautiful, so I was able to take fantastic trips. Do not pass on Jambiani or Mtende beach, they are both gorgeous. That said, the country also has to deal with social and economic challenges. I appreciate the opportunity to immerse myself in such a different and culture and learn from it.  At school, the teachers tried to make me feel very welcome and I worked closely together with a very kind English teacher, with whom I discussed classes and lesson plans. This was very helpful.

The support was very invaluable. I have loved getting to know them and they were very supportive whenever I had a question or was looking for a great day trip.

All in all, volunteering is the best way to get to know a place. And with any luck, you will make friends and memories to last you a lifetime!”

-Annemarie Sweeris, Dutch (January 2024)

For more information or to book, either fill in the contact form or please email info@volunteerinternationaladventures.com. You might also be interested in our Teaching project in South Africa