Field Report From the National Park in South Africa

"My Volunteer Work in the National Park Project"

Maria K.

I spent 7 weeks at the National Park Project in South Africa during Oct to Dec. It was just unforgettable and I enjoyed every second of it.

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The work in the national park

During my time in the National Park, I went out on two game drives each day. My role was to document and photograph the animals we spotted which could be used to observe and monitor the population of various species. Some other tasks I carried out included wrapping trees with wire to protect against elephants stripping their bark. This helps towards increasing the survival rates of individual trees. Another task would be to remove non-native plants which can sometimes be harmful to the wildlife and we would also evaluate data from camera traps. In the wildlife project, the tasks vary and you have the opportunity to spend the whole day in the fresh air in one of the most beautiful national parks in South Africa. You live with the entire team and up to 11 other volunteers of all ages in a house on the site. The house is located in a peripheral area of the national park. The team were very helpful, friendly and you can have fun with everyone. The park and the wildlife on site is just amazing. I've seen everything, from the most colorful birds to turtles and porcupines I’ve seen giraffes, cheetahs and the Big 5. The fact that you see different things every day and no game drive runs the same, it is never boring. Even after 7 weeks I did not want to miss a drive and was not ready to go home for a long time.

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My conclusion in my time in National Park

Most volunteers spend around 3 weeks working on the project, which is a good amount of time to see lots of wildlife. I was fortunate enough to stay for 7 weeks which was amazing. I built great relationships with the team during this time and felt like I learned a lot due to spending a longer period of time there. I highly recommend any animal and wildlife lover to do this project and experience how breathtaking it is. This project is unforgettable and I can say that I will definitely return.

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Report from the National Park project in South Africa, by Maria K. January 2018

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