Individuals – Additional Info
We highly recommend that you contact us before finalising your flights so that we can ensure adequate timing for land transfers.
All flights from main centres in Southern Africa should be organised to Walvis Bay or Windhoek, Namibia. The volunteer programme will begin from the town of Swakopmund, which is a 30-minute road transfer from Walvis Bay and 4-hours from Windhoek.
For volunteers arriving from outside of Africa, flights to Windhoek in Namibia are recommended, with either a connecting domestic flight to Walvis Bay, or a 4-hour road transfer to the town of Swakopmund. More information on airport transfers will be provided at the time of booking.
Please note that volunteers will need to arrive to the town of Swakopmund by midday the Sunday before the start of their Monday programme for an evening briefing! An overnight stay in Swakopmund will be followed by a morning road transfer to Base Camp (4-5 hours).
All participants will require a passport that is valid for at least six months from date of entry. Anyone under the age of 18 requires an Unabridged Birth Certificate and Parent Consent Form. Y4C will provide assistance with the required documentation. Those with a foreign passport will also need to investigate visa requirements.
Average day temperatures in summer (Nov – March) range from 25°C to 35°C, sometimes rising above 40°C in the desert. This is also the rainy season, with occasional afternoon thunderstorms. In winter (May – Oct), temperatures during the day can range from 20°C to 30°C, but during the night it can get as low as 5°C. Winter is the dry season.
This will be provided at the time of booking to assist with the dilemma of what to bring. Clothes are climate dependent but the general rule is to layer, as it can be very hot during the day and cool at night (especially in winter). In addition, neutral clothes are important, especially during tracking and patrols, so you blend in with your surroundings. Other recommendations will be given to you on your packing list.
Special diets are catered for whenever possible, so please contact us for special requests. There are no shops while on the programme so please bring any snacks or extras with you. For individual volunteers that arrive on the Sunday, you will have an opportunity purchase items at the many shops located in Swakopmund before departure.
A typical volunteer programme will include a two-part itinerary. The focus of the first half of the programme is on working with local communities to build protective walls around their water sources, or to build new water holes for elephants away from people. This is physical work but with an average level of fitness, it is also very rewarding! The second half of the programme focusses on tracking and monitoring the desert elephants. While on elephant patrol, you will be wild-camping, cooking over the fire and sleeping under the stars!
HEALTH & MEDICAL
All participants should obtain their own medical advice prior to arrival and are required to have medical insurance in the case of an emergency. All medical coverage must include air evacuation, due to the remoteness of the Camp. The project site is considered malaria-free, but please consult a physician.
There is no wifi at Base Camp and solar electricity is limited but there is a small power station to charge the essentials. During the patrol week, you will be without electricity and we recommend a power bank for charging important items.