Conservation Project - Madagascar
from £6 GBP
to £265 GBP
Join multi award-winning charity, Azafady, for the opportunity to contribute to vital, on-going conservation work in the critically endangered coastal forests of southeast Madagascar. This innovative new programme combines practical, hands-on conservation research on endangered flora and fauna – in particular lemurs, reptiles and amphibians – with community initiatives and environmental education, building the community’s understanding of the complex habitats of which they are the stewards.
Set in the Indian Ocean off the east coast of Africa, Madagascar is the world's fourth largest island and is recognised as one of the world’s top conservation priorities. 80% of the island's plant and animal species (including 71 species of lemur) are found nowhere else on earth. Volunteers will be assisting Azafady in their work around Sainte Luce, in the Fort Dauphin region, an area which has been substantially deforested but retains fragments of some of the most important tropical forests in the world. These fragments of littoral (coastal) forest are home to multiple endangered and endemic species of flora and fauna, making this area a global conservation priority.
Volunteers can choose from two core modules, in Lemur & Biodiversity Research, or Community Conservation, which can be taken individually, or combined, so your programme can be between 2 to 10 weeks long. The first module, Lemur and Biodiversity Research, investigates the impact of forest fragmentation on lemur, reptile and amphibian populations by collecting data in the littoral forests in Sainte Luce.
Working with Azafady’s specialist team, the data collected is hugely important, and is used nationally and internationally to highlight the plight of the endangered and endemic species surviving in Sainte Luce. Our other module, Community Conservation, encompasses the human dimension of conservation, where work might involve the environmental education of children in local villages, building fuel efficient stoves or planting and evaluating the critically endangered palm, Dypsis saintelucei. Whilst we allow you to specialise through the module system, you can expect to do elements of both modules during your time in Madagascar.
This project offers a fantastic opportunity to help conserve Madagascar’s unique and endangered environment. Be prepared for adventurous journeys, long walks in remote forests and beautiful project sites. The work may be tough at times but rest assured the work is incomparably rewarding – we invite you to be more than just a tourist!
£600 for the first two week module, £550 for the second and £500 for all subsequent modules / Min: £600, Max: £2650.
The donation for the programme covers you for all in-country travel costs (excluding flights), project costs, training, meals and plenty of safe water, use of basic campsite facilities, orientation and language classes upon arrival and a dedicated team to guide you in Madagascar. It does not include flights and pre-departure costs such as visa fees, insurance and medical expenses.
What support do I receive?
A dedicated team based in London is on hand to help with all your problems and queries prior to departure. Once out in Madagascar, Azafady staff travel and work with volunteers at all times on the project, primarily to ensure that the group is safe, but also as co-workers and to offer advice on Malagasy culture, facilitating communication and positive interaction with the local communities. Also travelling and working with the group is an English-speaking coordinator.
This placement would suit:
This project is perfect for anyone wishing to gain experience in conservation projects, working on-the-ground in a developing country. Volunteers will gain practical skills and vocational experience, which are invaluable for anyone studying biology or conservation or looking to pursue a career in these areas. It is also ideal for anyone simply looking for a change of pace as part of a gap year, sabbatical or career break.
Do you accept non UK citizens?
Do you accept applicants with disabilities?
“It was the first time I’d travelled alone and my first time overseas and it couldn’t have been more enjoyable or gone more smoothly. From the time I arrived in Fort Dauphin to departure I never felt scared or homesick or uncomfortable. The staff and volunteers were lovely, and we all became great friends – in fact, I didn’t anticipate how sad I’d be to say goodbye when it was all over. The mountains, beaches and forests were breathtaking and so different from what I’m used to. It’s cliché to say, but I’ll remember the experience forever!”
July 2010, Australia
by Sarah Randell
accommodation, food, airport pickup
Azafady is an award-winning UK charity and Malagasy NGO, dedicated to supporting the people and ecosystems of Madagascar, one of the most biologically rich but economically poor countries in the world. At the heart of its work is an integrated approach to supporting the Malagasy people and their unique environment, built around locally expressed needs and community participation. Voted “Best Volunteering Organization” by Responsible Tourism in 2007, what makes us different is that all our volunteer programmes are not-for-profit schemes. This means over 90% of the funds generated from the programmes are spent in direct fulfillment of our aims and invested right back into our projects in Madagascar, rather than into a private company. By volunteering with Azafady, we can promise you a genuine, worthwhile volunteering experience.