VACorps - Cape Town Engineering, Arts, and more Internships

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About

The Volunteer Adventure Corps is a unique organization that has transformed the lives of countless young adventurers through careful program design and a sincere passion for what we do. We at VACorps steadfastly continue our time-honored tradition of creating legends; bold African adventurers who will speak about their experiences in Cape Town, South Africa and its neighboring countries for the rest of their lives.

We create customized internship placements in Cape Town, South Africa for students and young professionals in all fields of interest. Our diverse and extensive list of companies and organizations will give you the opportunity to intern within the field of your choice! Whatever your interests, we will aid you in achieving your goals while you explore one of the world's most vibrant cities.

We're a full-service program dedicated to providing our participants with a life-changing experience in the Mother City, both personally and professionally.

Highlights
  • Tailor-made internship placements in all fields of interest.
  • 24/7 Support. We're your safety net throughout your time in Cape Town and here for you every step of the way.
  • Weekly Friday Excursions that are included in your program cost.
  • Program Housing: all our interns live together in program neighborhood of 'Obz'.
  • Program extras: from Xhosa-language lessons, meal plans, to 10-day VAC Travel trips, we have your African adventure covered!

Questions & Answers

A 6-month internship is $3250, or $300 for each additional month after 3 months.
I worked for a fashion based video production company called Big Sky Productions in Cape Town. I would scout locations, photograph casting calls, help out on set, shadow the producers in pitch meetings, general maintenance of the office, as well as shoot my own projects for the company using their gear. I would work some days until the wee hours of the night, and other days I was in before the sun...

Reviews

96%
based on 44 reviews
  • Growth 9.4
  • Support 9.4
  • Fun 9.7
  • Housing 8.8
  • Safety 8.6
Showing 31 - 44 of 44
Amy
10/10

Your guide through Cape Town

I still remember the moment I told my mom I wanted to have an internship in Cape Town. She was terrified something might happen - and scared. I had never traveled by myself and hadn't been away from home for more than three weeks, so you might understand the worries of my mother.

Luckily, there was VACorps. I didn't receive a lot of support from my University so I had to go through everything myself. Except, that's what I thought. I don't know what would have become of me during my time in Cape Town without the support of VACorps!

I arrived on a Wednesday but only started my internship on the Monday after. I didn't know what to do since I was all by myself and VAC immediately invited me to join their hike on Friday. This was a nice opportunity to get to know new people! And that is exactly what happened, I met so many beautiful people through VAC who became more like a family to me, including the VAC staff. VAC is located in Observatory, a trendy and young area in Cape Town where there are plenty of bars and restaurants. Most of the students I knew through VAC were living in this area as well and after a few weeks we had our weekly dinners together, went to the pool bar together and played trivia and beerpong at Forex!

Next to meeting all these nice people, VAC was a huge support when it came to my internship. It didn't matter what was on my mind or where I needed help, they were always there for me! VAC helps you get a placement and supports you on your first day, brings you there, shows you around, how to get there by using public transportation and where there are nice restaurants to have lunch for example. This was very helpful!

I was also very, very happy VAC introduced me to Cape Town by giving orientations. These are very informative sessions where they tell you all the in's and out's, the do's and don'ts, cultural differences and how to prevent yourself from getting pick pocketed, because that it something that happens too often - unfortunately.

Because of VAC I saw so many different sides of Cape Town. There are weekly activities which are not mandatory - but I bet you will participate in every single one of them just because it is so much fun! The best weekly activity was on my birthday, when we went sailing all together! We were enjoying the sun and the views while having a drink! Another highlight was our visit to Cape Point, something you wouldn't easily do yourself if you don't have a car for example. Besides these weekly activities, VAC also organizes travels! I was lucky enough I could join the Cederberg trip, three days of goofing around, having a braai, hiking for an entire day, swimming and jumping off of cliffs and camping under the brightest stars I've ever seen. This was definitely the best weekend during my stay!

Even though I've been home for a few months now, it still feels like yesterday. And if you're reading this review because you are preparing to go to Cape Town, just know that I am extremely jealous of you. People told me it is hard to say goodbye when you have to leave. I thought it would be okay, but I have never been more wrong. Cape Town will steal your heart. Be careful and enjoy every - single - minute!

Yes, I recommend
Dana
10/10

VACorps Internship with Heart Capital in Cape Town!

I have participated in three service trips, participated in an internship program in London, and studied abroad and absolutely nothing compares to my internship experience in Cape Town. VACorps provides the perfect experience for young adults. All of the housing is located in a trendy, young part of the city and the houses are within walking distance of one another. The Foreign Exchange bar is also owned by the VACorps owner and you can even opt for catered, healthy dinners served at Forex to those in the program. Every Friday there is an activity - or vactivity - like going surfing, wine tasting, or to the Cape of Good Hope, and Xhosa classes are offered as well! There is a ton of freedom, but also plenty of guidance on fun local things to do and assistance when you need it. I had a bad allergic reaction and a VAC staff member guided me through getting to the hospital and the ENTIRE VAC team came to visit me that morning. The staff is so fun and always gives great suggestions! Almost all of my sixteen roommates loved their internships, and for those who didn't a back up plan was created efficiently and they were able to switch. My internship at Heart Capital was incredibly cool. If anyone is interested in social entrepreneurship, there is no better place to intern than Heart! I would encourage everyone to apply, South Africa is a beautiful country and Cape Town is an amazing city (mountains, beach, vineyards, trendy markets..what more could you want?!). VACorps was the best program I ever did and I would recommend it to all!

How can this program be improved?
I wish there were more opportunities to travel outside of Cape Town through VACorps. I could not go on the trip to Mozambique because the dates did not work with my work schedule and was bummed to miss out! However, as far as Cape Town is concerned, VACorps was fantastic.
Yes, I recommend
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Brian
9/10

Loving life in Cape Town

Cape Town was incredible. I have been to Europe and Asia but Cape Town stands far above them. The mix of culture and history and the placement of the city in such a beautiful spot is unparalleled. My internship allowed me to gain a lot of insight into how an up and coming business operates and because I worked right downtown, I was able to absorb everything the city had to offer and expand my horizons.

Yes, I recommend
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Greg
10/10

Volunteer Adventure Corps- Africa's Best Internship Company

Via Volunteer Adventure Corps (VAC), I was able to gain access to an established social development company called Heart Capital, which built entrepreneurial businesses in the townships of South Africa. Working on the finance team for Heart Capital, I was able to learn a significant amount about the business side of impact investing as well as the social work that is required on the ground. It was a challenging experience, but one that I benefited from greatly.

As for VAC's program assistance, I couldn't have asked for anything more from an internship program. Unlike many other internship programs, which simply contact you with employer, VAC is there every step of the way. Their program assistants there are accessible 24/7, and they plan fun trips every Friday afternoon. In addition, they plan fun trips to other parts of Africa, often 2 weeks in length, that proved to be experiences! VAC also provided me with convenient and comfortable housing within Cape Town. I truly do no know of another internship company operating at VAC's level...

How can this program be improved?
If there were any negatives to VAC's program, it was that I was unable to make many of their fun, unique Friday afternoon activities due to work obligations.
Yes, I recommend
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Elspeth
10/10

VAC Intern Experience

Interning with VAC changed my life. After graduating from Brown University, I was unsure about what job I wanted, where I wanted to live and what I would do. Interning with VAC not only confirmed by decision to not become a lawyer, but also made me realize that I wanted to live outside of the US for awhile and discover myself more. Two years later and I am now happily living in South Africa, going to the University of Cape Town to study International Relations and teach Politics and I have the best support system I could ever have asked for, living so far away from home. I am extremely lucky and feel like VAC happened to me for a reason.

Yes, I recommend
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Evan
10/10

Where Life is Lekker

The much anticipated trip to South Africa came to an end very quickly. Arriving an anxious and scared intern, leaving as if I left a part of myself in Cape Town. There are absolutely no words to describe the experience that I had in Cape Town. From the diversified culture, the amazing food, the countless adventures, and the unforgettable people, my time in Cape Town will never be forgotten. None of this would have been possible without VAC. The cool, (not much) older brothers and sisters that see you through the entire process. It is evident that they have a passion for what they do; and what better way to get to know the city and the country, than to have the locals lead you through it? A very special thank you to Vanessa Randon of VAC – without her, none of this would have been possible. From the very first skype session to unforgettable adventures in Botswana and Zimbabwe.

VAC set up my internship at EROS School for the Cerebral Palsied. I absolutely fell in love with the site. The staff was more than welcoming. The children touched my hearts in more ways than they can imagine. Although the physical therapy education is different in South Africa compared to the United States, there is no better way to test the limits of your skill set than in a different country, working with a completely new population. The internship site gave me enough freedom to grow professionally as a physical therapist, as well as a person. I was forced out of my comfort zone multiple times, however, I left that much more confident in my skills. I am more confident in my skills as a physical therapist, a role model, and a teacher, but little did I know that the children would end up teaching me more. The smiles on their faces is a snapshot forever engrained in my heart.

Aside from my unbelievable internship, my experience was completed by all the new “framily” members that I gained and the adventures we all went through together. If I took away all (maybe not all, but most) of the adventures that I had: all the beautiful hikes, shark cage diving, paragliding off Lion’s Head, bungee jumping off Bloukran’s Bridge, my amazing adventure in Botswana which includes walking across the Zambia-Zimbabwe border to go swim in Devil’s Pool on top of Victoria Falls, rafting and getting beat up by the Mighty Zambezi River, watching a pride of lions feasting on an elephant, sleeping under the moon and stars in the Makgadikgadi Salt Pan in the Kalahari Desert (the list goes on), if I took most of that away and simply reminisce on each framily member, my time would have been more than worth it. The friendships that you build are forever lasting. I can confidently say that I have at least 30 couches I can sleep on all over the world, from Michigan, Alaska, Chicago, New Jersey, to Denmark, Germany, Norway, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland, and many more (obviously Cape Town is a given).

This in all of its entirety, has awakened the adventure seeking traveler and has left behind a part of the OCD-comfort seeking individual in me. As I said before, VAC is there for you from the beginning to the end. There is only one guaranteed regret, time. Arriving thinking three months would be forever and leaving Cape Town trying to extend my stay. I could go on and write about this for a while, but I will end it with my motto throughout my time in Cape Town and the famous slogan that everyone knows: just.do.it.

How can this program be improved?
Prepping the incoming interns about the true culture of Cape Town and all of its beauty, as opposed to what its made out to be on media.
Yes, I recommend
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Emma
10/10

Cape Town, South Africa is funny

Cape Town is funny. You fly there knowing absolutely no one, only that you have a place to stay and an internship. You know nothing of the wonderful experience you are about to embark on and I think that is what makes it so special. You go there practically blind and end up leaving a new family and piece of yourself in South Africa.

It's not just the experiences of shark cage diving, hiking table mountain, watching the sunset over Camps Bay or watching whales breach off of Cape Point. Your time there is spent sharing that with people you had no idea existed until maybe a few weeks ago. These people become more than your friends, housemates or co-workers. They become a part of you, and you them. The greatest moment is when you can turn to someone speechless of everything and have them smiling back at you, with no words needed.

My time in Cape Town was the most wonderful experience. I had done things I never would have imagines. I met some of the most extraordinary people. Never have I laughed so hard over a three month period or enjoyed the company of so many friends. There was never a moment I would've wished I was anywhere else. Having a place like there and people like that are what changes you. Thats what makes Cape Town so funny. You go there thinking you know exactly who you are and what you want and discover so much more.

People warn you that leaving is hard. You just only can smile and think, 'Sure, I have all the time in the world'. Time is an illusion, and my time in Cape Town was over before I even arrived. It flew by and I left wishing I had only a few more days. I left a different person than when I arrived. I had a greater sense of self, of the world, and the person I was supposed to be. For a place and group of people to make that change in you is special, and words can never express my love and gratitude for everything. That is why Cape Town is funny, it gives you all of this and expects nothing in return. So to Cape Town and my South African family thank you. Thank you for everything.

How can this program be improved?
Housing and most all travel plans to and from were arranged with the help of the amazing staff. Budgets to eat and easy transportation was also made available. Using that list I felt completely prepared. However, there are awesome travel opportunities to other countries that are run through this program and I was not prepared for all the travel expenses. I know the plans come up with maybe a months notice, but a note explaining that is an option and estimates about the varying prices might have helped me better manage before leaving.
Yes, I recommend
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Caleb
10/10

An Excellent Jumping Off Point To Begin Traveling The World

Having never been over seas before, VAC was a godsend in helping me become acclimated to Cape Town, South Africa. Thanks to VAC, I was able to go to Cape Town immediately part of a community of people where I could go hiking with, scuba diving with, dining with, and ultimately push myself to find new inner strengths. Through the program, I was able to take some Xhosa speaking classes, become a certified scuba diver, and intern for Black Media where I filmed/edited numerous events (surfing competitions, DJ conventions, music festivals, soccer tournaments, etc.)

Sure you could probably find many programs that provide similar services, but I guarantee you will not find people as inspiring and fun as the VAC staff. They are always looking to have a good time, and are willing to share that with everyone. On the other hand, When I had to go to the hospital for health concerns, VAC also made me feel comfortable and secure as they constantly checked in to see how I was doing. I went to Cape Town to gain an internship experience (which VAC also helped me locate and secure), but thanks to the VAC staff I gained so much more. When you are looking to join an internship program of any kind you should be looking for the ones that are going to cultivate your skills in all aspects of life. At its core, this is what Volunteer Adventure Corps strives for. I definitely recommend the program to anyone looking for an adventure.

How can this program be improved?
Better communication before arriving in Cape Town as well as communication between the companies providing the internships.
Yes, I recommend
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Rob
10/10

Volunteer Adventure Corps is THE South Africa internship program.

My time in Cape Town sadly had to come to an end. Luckily, I left with all intentions of returning in the future. I am extremely grateful for finding a company like VAC to establish such an amazing experience for me. My routine of getting up at 8 o'clock every morning, making a pot of coffee, and heading into the Mother City on my scooter never got old. Some days I would head to Big Sky Productions where I was interning and other days I would travel to set and work on a photo or video shoot. My time in Cape Town has inspired me to finish school and venture back into the working world.

How can this program be improved?
I would of loved to have better communication before I arrived. Once I got to Cape Town, everything was amazing but it was a little scary before I showed up.
Yes, I recommend
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Kyler
10/10

Work hard, play hard

- Hand pick internship sites
- Beneficial work experience
- Beautiful city
- Amazing people
- VACtivities
- Solo travel
- Global network connections
- The choice between structure and freedom

Yes, I recommend
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rachael
10/10

ABSOLUTELY AMAZING - VAC ARE THE BOMB DIGGITY

I spent 3 months working with Treatment Action Campaign in CPT and had the most incredible and life changing experience, all thanks to an amazing team who are with you every step of the way. VAC is so much fun and the guys so amazing at organising events and team bonding sessions to make sure everyone gets the most out of their internship, and out of their time spent in Cape Town! The experience i gained through the opportunity given to me by VAC to work with such an incredible and active NGO such as TAC was absolutely invaluable to me, and has secured a decision to now pursue something similar as my career choice in the future.

How can this program be improved?
Perhaps more internships available, but everything else is awesome, especially the extra effort vAC go to to ensure all people are having a great and productive time! It is wonderful as well that they provide transport to and from townships to ensure safety.
Yes, I recommend
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Kbenedict
10/10

Live changer

My decision to intern abroad in South Africa with VAC was by far one of the best decisions of my life. This program pushed my comfort zone and forced me to constantly challenge myself. The staff was amazing and were all willing to help me during my time there. The friday activities allowed us to see other parts of the city and region that otherwise I may of not known about. Overall, I wouldn't trade my experience in Cape Town for anything. I loved my internship and being a part of the VAC family. I can't wait for the day when I can go back!

How can this program be improved?
I wish the housing was all vac interns
Yes, I recommend
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Joshua
10/10

VACorps

An amazing program. Opened my eyes to the world and helped introduce me to lifelong friends and my wife. As an attorney, my time at the SA Human Rights Commission set the foundation for a continued effort to help others through my pro bono projects.

Yes, I recommend
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Joe
9/10

VAC Testimonial

After watching the 2010 World Cup, seeing pictures and videos, and learning about the culture of the country and its people I knew that South Africa was a place I needed to visit at some point in my life. When \i learned that my program at school offered an internship in Cape Town through VAC \i realized I would finally have my chance. Thanks to their hard work and willingness to answer all of my ridiculous questions, everything from the application process to getting settled in my house to helping us plan trips went very smoothly.

My experience in Cape Town was one I will never forget. Working as a PT at a school district in Gugulethu was an experience unlike anything I've done prior, and both my workers and the kids I worked with definitely left an imprint on me. Every day, regardless of how tired I was from the non-stop sightseeing and activities, the kids helped keep me going with their fun attitude toward 'physio' and the looks on their faces when I walked into the classroom. I was also lucky enough to be placed at Maitland Cottage for the second half of my internship, which was also incredible. The happiness that some of my kids showed when they found out they could return home from the hospital really made me feel like my work made a difference, and that was a pretty incredible feeling.

On top of the amazing internship experience, all of the 'VACtivities,' our Garden Route trip to bungee jump, ride elephants, and do a horseback safari, and paragliding over the city were the icing on the cake. Cape Town and my time with VAC was truly an unforgettable experience and I would recommend it to anyone with an interest in travel and working abroad. Thanks VAC Team!

How can this program be improved?
Providing a little information to incoming interns regarding the history and culture of South Africa would be helpful. Especially to those interns working in a township, just to better prepare them for what the townships actually are and what life there is like.
Yes, I recommend

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About VACorps

The VACorps internship program creates custom placements in Cape Town, South Africa. We consistently receive rave reviews from program participants, parents and university administrators alike because we devote all our energy to one purpose --...