Responsible Volunteering


Responsible volunteering

Responsible volunteering projects are based on the needs, priorities and aspirations of communities where they take place, and delivered in collaboration with the community, with sustainability in mind. They are responsibly managed to ensure the safety and wellbeing of the community as well as of volunteers.

Humanitarian Projects

SAVE aims to develop self-sufficient and thriving communities. Further to liaising with local authorities, SAVE ensures that each project goes through a rigorous assessment to identify the needs of each particular community and school, as well as how to best assist them in achieving their goals. SAVE aims to do more than provide band-aid solutions to broader issues, but instead, work alongside locals to assist with adaptable development initiatives that will continue to positively impact the community as milestones are reached.

SAVE provides responsible volunteering opportunities by ensuring that:

  • Projects are developed with the community; for the community, therefore ensuring the maximum impact on the beneficiaries of each programme. 
  • SAVE’s flagship projects are run and managed by locally employed staff as project leaders and 24 hour support for volunteers. 
  • Volunteers receive thorough training upon their arrival to prepare & equip them with the skills needed during their placement
  • Volunteers do not replace paid employment opportunities for local people, they work alongside local staff to assist with day-to-day operations
  • SAVE evaluates programs on an ongoing basis assessing both needs for improvement/assistance and areas of growth
  • Our aim is to contribute to the self-sufficiency of struggling communities by teaching valuable skills and educating the citizens to empower themselves
  • Once a program/school is successfully up and running, the local staff can be upskilled by being encouraged to run the operation on their own. New programmes in need of assistance are then identified, expanding the reach of our work. 
  • We assist schools in achieving a high standard of education in order to obtain official government registration
  • We encourage the dissemination of resources and education, rather than only donating funds and goods
  • SAVE takes a developmental approach to poverty reduction by working with communities in need at all stages of life, from education and care in preschools to empowerment through business and skills development for adults.
  • SAVE ensures the protection of children by screening each volunteer prior to joining, as well as providing 24 hour support for emergency contact and backup. 

Wildlife Projects

SAVE is committed to providing ethical volunteering opportunities that follow all regulations and guidelines to ensure the conservation and protection of wildlife in Southern Africa. Our wildlife projects focus on conservation and rehabilitation of endangered, injured, and/or abandoned animals. SAVE strives to educate volunteers, providing insight & knowledge on the conservation and protection of wildlife, as well as guidance on ethical practices, allowing them the ability to make informed decisions surrounding future wildlife endeavours.

SAVE provides responsible volunteering opportunities with wildlife by ensuring that:

  • Wildlife projects are in possession of all relevant international, national and provincial legal permits for homing wildlife.
  • All our projects have an up-to-date record of all animals in their care, including their history and destination or death. 
  • SAVE will not associate itself with any organisations involved with cub-petting or any questionable practises that could be related to illegal & unethical activities – such as canned hunting. 
  • No wildlife animal interaction (touching) with volunteers or visitors is permitted on any of our programmes
  • All projects subscribe to the Five Freedoms associated with good animal welfare: freedom from hunger and thirst, freedom from discomfort; freedom from pain, injury and disease; freedom to express normal behaviour, and freedom from fear and distress.
  • Animals are not treated as a tourist attraction; no animals are trained to perform in front of an audience
  • Breeding is only supported at projects that are designed explicitly for re-population purposes or declared conservation objectives which are verified by a recognised, independent conservation authority
  • Wildlife projects should not have obtained animals from the wild, unless for a demonstrable and justifiable conservation need, or for legitimate rescue purposes.
  • The animals at our projects receive attentive veterinary and handling care by trained professionals.
  • Supported projects have the aim of releasing all animals back into the wild, when capable of doing so.  
  • The projects act as a safe haven for orphaned, injured, and/or traumatized animals
  • Each enclosure provides adequate space for the animals to roam freely
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