Worldwide Experience

Worldwide Experience

About

Worldwide Experience strives to conserve what man is fast destroying – our very own environment and ultimately our own planet. We are the specialists when it comes to wildlife conservation and offer scholars, students and the older generation the opportunity to work on some of the most incredible projects we are closely aligned with.

Our programs allow our volunteers the opportunity to work alongside wild animals and the interesting people that help ensure their survival. Working with very willing disadvantaged communities also forms part of the make-up of these incredible life enhancing programs. If properly educated and informed these communities can play an integral part in the overall well being of the environment.
 
Make your GAP YEAR, CAREER BREAK, and SUMMER CAMP or HOLIDAY a life-changing one for yourself and for those that you will ultimately be helping on the ground.

£150 off limited volunteer courses

Get £150.00 off limited volunteer courses for qualifying dates in 2020/1
Vets Go Wild excluded
Founded
2002
Headquarters

260 Walmer Boulevard
South End
Port Elizabeth
6070
South Africa

Reviews

Default avatar
Malin
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I had the best time of my life! It was such an amazing experience and it was a pleasure to work with everyone involved. The projects that we were part of are all so important and it’s so inspiring to meet these people, who has devoted their time and money to conservation.
We really got to learn from the basics on every subject, which gave me a bigger understanding of what our work contributed with.
I will never forget this incredible adventure, and I will just try to put all my new knowledge into use once I get back home. With love, Malin.

Default avatar
LAURA
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I'm beyond proud to be one of the first Kestrel Valley volunteers. This new project is a truly unique, hands-on land and sea experience, where volunteers enjoy a huge range of activities from coral planting to Hawksbill Turtle observation, Mauritius Kestrel and Fruit Bat monitoring, alien vegetation removal, reforestation and deer counts. I really enjoyed the very-informative presentations by researchers, ecologists and marine biologists too. The site is a spectacular blend of volcanic mountain and tropical vegetation, where hiking promises never-ending discoveries without dangers – no snakes! The accommodation in wood huts is frankly awesome: this is a place where you go to sleep to the sound of giant bats flying overhead and monkeys calling in the distance. Kestrel Valley is a very ambitious and exciting new project where everything remains to be done and volunteers can resolutely make a difference. The staff are friendly and welcoming and our coordinator was briliant. This is definitely a do-able project for mature volunteers with a good level of fitness. I'm delighted to have discovered this incredible new conservation experience after my placements in South Africa.

Default avatar
Daniel
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A unique experience to go behind the scenes of island conservation. The diversity of the island is translated across in to the diversity of the programme with a holistic approach to conservation. The focus of the programme is protecting biodiversity both in the local forests as well as marine wildlife. The programme not only gives you a unique opportunity to see birdlife, marine ecosystems and native woodland but to have a hands on impact on its preservation and restoration. No day is the same from working on the coral reef minutes from your jungle hideaway to trekking through the forests of Mauritius the programmes enthusiastic staff guide you through the whole process. Not only do you leave with a unique experience but you leave with knowledge of this environment and it’s many inhabitants.

What would you improve about this program?
Would be great to have a small shop nearby however it’s remoteness is what makes it so special.
Default avatar
Lottie
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My first time heading out on a volunteer project and what an authentic experience!
Had a fantastic time and returning to the UK with knowledge that I wouldn't have even gained from Google...!
Every moment of the week on the trip had a new experience to partake in. From visiting an island that showcases success in conservation to working with local Eco-Sud organisation to farm coral and monitor local turtles.
I felt the whole time I couldn't take my eyes off trees in the Valley, seeking the Mauritian Kestrels, Fruit Bats and various birds.
The staff are super friendly and knowledgeable, hard working they go above and beyond to support volunteers.
Highly recommend!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Keep looking! You'll see so much - the rare kestral, the fruit bat, so many birds and other floral and fauna.
Default avatar
Michaela
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My trip to Mauritius to help the biodiversity has been amazing. Prior to arriving, world wide experience were brilliant in making sure I had all the information I needed and making sure my arrival was perfect. Once arriving, they met us at the airport swiftly and took us to kestrel valley were we had a tour of the land and taken to our rooms. The rooms/bungalows were so beautiful and comfortable (the beds were perfect which meant I was able to have good night sleeps). The Activities planned were amazing. Some of my highlights included seeing a wild bat for the first time (and then seeing them every day while I ate meals on the decks), swimming with wild turtles during the monitoring sessions, and the top was going to Île Aux Aigrettes were I saw my first wild GIANT Aldabra tortoise and got to give it a chin and neck scratch which has always been a dream of mine (yes I did cry). This whole trip was amazing and I can’t wait to come back and see the development of the place. This trip really has made a lot of my dreams come true. Thank you so much world wide experience and Kestrel valley!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Bring plenty of mosquito after bites as the mosquitos seem resistant to repellent! But also be confident in yourself and go for it!

Programs

Displaying 1 - 4 of 4
Worldwide Experience
Vets Go Wild Program in South Africa
South Africa
9.9 •10 reviews

If you are looking for a hands-on Africa vet experience that is...

Worldwide Experience
Worldwide Experience: Conserving Biodiversity in Mauritius
Mauritius
9.6 •5 reviews

If you have a special interest in the conservation of rare species and...

Worldwide Experience
Black Rhino Conservation in Zimbabwe, Victoria Falls
Zimbabwe
9.5 •4 reviews

The Nakavango Conservation & Community program is based at the...

Worldwide Experience
Worldwide Experience: Conserving Wildlife in Namibia
Namibia
10 •1 review

Take up this opportunity to contribute to conservation, rehabilitation...

Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Hannah Clarke

Hannah is a Veterinary student at the University of Bristol in the UK. She loves to see the world, and working with animals is a bonus!

Why did you choose this program?

As part of our studies, we must undertake a certain number of weeks of placement. I am at an age where I am itching to travel, but my financial situation sadly doesn't agree. I thought a program abroad, working with animals (so it counted towards my total weeks of placement) sounded great!

I had attended a couple of talks by Will Fowlds previously and had seen the same course a couple of years ago on TV (Safari Vet School), so I began some research into it. This program was so highly recommended by other Vet students who all claimed that it was the best experience of their lives. I thought it would be silly to pass up this truly once in a lifetime opportunity.

What did your program provider assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

The program provider, Vets Go Wild and Worldwide Experience, provided a structured two-week experience. I just had to get my own kit together (they provided a couple of clothing items), sort my flights (they organized transport to and from the airport on their side), get suitable insurance, and organize the appropriate vaccinations.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

It was much colder than I expected! The team did warn us before we went out, but I thought, “how cold can Africa really be?” Turns out, quite cold! There were lots of early mornings when you'll need to layer up, but it does heat up during the day, especially if you're running around after animals. Just make sure you have layers you can put on/take off.

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

The first thing to note is that we were kept very busy pretty much every day! Most days we had a procedure, either in the morning or afternoon, with lectures (don't worry, they were some of the most engaging lectures I've sat in!), or a game drive for the other half of the day.

As indicated in the itinerary, a couple of excursions are planned. In my case, this included trips to Born Free, a big cat rescue center, Bayworld for lectures and marine mammal dissections, and into the local town, Paterson, to meet the children.

There is time most evenings to chill out and catch some necessary sleep for the early starts!

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?

I didn't really have a “fear” before I arrived in South Africa. My problem became clear the first day we had a procedure. I quickly realized that the vet work out there is very different to that in the UK.

The nature of the work with wild animals means that you have to work incredibly efficiently, which I found quite difficult at first. You're put with a team of people you've known for, probably, less than 24 hours, given drugs and doses you aren't familiar with, and these need to go into an animal you've probably never learnt about!

Between that first procedure and my last, where I was in charge of the whole thing, I had lectures on the drugs, plenty of practice, lots of opportunities to ask questions, and I got to know the girls in my team really well. You learn quickly, and the Vets Go Wild team are very supportive and patient.

How did the experience change your life?

Be prepared for your life to change, not only when you are out in the bush, but when you return home. You'll suddenly have your eyes opened! I've always admired the African wildlife, but seeing the beautiful animals with your own eyes, touching them (albeit when they're unconscious), being in that amazing position where you can help them thrive... It really is magical!

It isn't all so rosy out there, though. One of the hardest lectures I had to sit through was about rhino poaching. I thought I had a quite good grasp of the situation out there, but I really had no idea. It's so much more barbaric and unfair than I could ever know. You will leave South Africa with a responsibility to protect those special animals as best as you can.

Be prepared to leave a little bit of your heart in the bush.

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Bianca Jade Eke

Job Title
Conservation Experience Consultant
Bianca grew up in Africa and is crazy about all things travel, Africa and animals. She studied travel and tourism along with marketing and a conservation-related qualification. She travelled a lot during this time and now heads up our individual travel division, helping to place people in the experience of their dreams as well as helping with marketing on the side.

What is your favorite travel memory?

My favorite travel memory would have to be a family trip to Southern Africa. We spent a week in the Okavango Delta with a night on an island, separated from wildlife by a piece of canvas. This was surreal! Thereafter we headed to the Chobe National Park for a few days and ended off the trip at my favorite destination in the world.... Victoria Falls.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

I have grown significantly since working for Worldwide Experience. I have grown in skill but most importantly in awareness. Aware of what I buy and what industry I support. My team is passionate conservationists who are vegetarian and vegan and well aware of how their actions affect those around them and the environment.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

I love hearing about students returning from experiences that have literally been life-changing. My favorite story would have to be a volunteer who went to Conserving Desert Elephants and sent me an e-mail on return to say that she had such an unbelievable experience that she decided to sign up for Environmental Studies.

We also have a Vets Go Wild participant who has become an amazing ambassador for us after traveling with us to two different projects and runs a marathon each year in support of a charity in our home province, the Eastern Cape.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

If I could only choose one, It would have to be Conserving Desert Elephants. Our Conserving Desert Elephants project reduces conflict between elephants and humans by working on the ground, providing practical and realistic solutions. I love the idea of sleeping under the stars while tracking elephants in the Namibian desert, what more could you ask for. Making a difference and having fun while doing it!

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

Our company is unique as we are a small team who have worked in the field and all have different conservation-related qualifications and experience. Our Director has started and continues to start projects from scratch and my colleague was a volunteer coordinator herself. I believe that this makes us unique as a team!

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

I believe that passion lies at the core of successful companies. Thereafter, I believe that you need to have your mission, vision, and goals in place and your whole team needs to be aware of them. You need to work as a team to achieve these whilst ensuring your work is aligned with your core values.