• South Africa
    • Durban
2 to 12 weeks

Program Details

Age Min.
Year Round
Host Family
Small Group (1-15)
Travel Type
Budget Family Older Travelers Solo Women


Starting Price
Price Details
The cost includes: 3 vegan meals a day, accommodation, meeting you at King Shaka International Airport in Durban, airport collection and drop-off, pre-departure support, in-country staff, 24- emergency help and more. The cost does not include flights, visas (if needed), travel insurance, spending money for days off.
What's Included
Accommodation Airport Transfers Equipment Meals Wifi
What's Not Included
Some Activities Airfare Domestic Airfare SIM cards Travel Insurance Visa
Dec 31, 2023
Jan 15, 2024
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About Program

Volunteer at a permitted Monkey Rescue and Rehabilitation centre in the lush province of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. There are two aspects to this monkey rescue and rehabilitation volunteer project. Through the year, continuous assistance is needed with monkey rescues and releases, veterinary visits, caring for the troops going through rehabilitation in large enclosures and those with special needs. Vervet Monkeys-although not endangered- have a very challenging time in South Africa. They are often illegally hunted, hit by cars, attacked by dogs, killed by humans for bushmeat or just pure animal cruelty. The other aspect is baby season (mid-October to early March) when volunteers are needed to act as surrogate mothers caring for rescued orphaned and often sick, baby monkeys. Volunteers in baby season will have carer duties for the first 3 months of the babies lives until they start the long process of rehabilitation with others as a troop, so they can eventually be released safely.

Video and Photos


Ethical Impact

Volunteer International Adventures focus is on ethical youth and animal projects which we feel very strongly about. We see the need for assistance from international volunteers in developing countries and have seen the difference extra hands-on help can make to communities and conservation if done responsibly.

Program Highlights

  • Assist on wild monkey rescues, take part in veterinary visits and reporting animal cruelty at the local police station.
  • In monkey breeding season in South Africa, help feed, wash and care for rescued baby Vervet monkeys. Many are traumatised from losing their mothers so young, injured and sick so need extra help, kindness and attention.
  • Use your imagination to think of animal enrichment projects for the rescued monkeys for mental and physical stimulation while in captivity to reduce boredom. This can be with the adult troops undergoing rehabilitation, the juveniles or the babies.
  • In baby season, help prepare formula for the newborns and assist with their nightly feeds. Often volunteers take babies with them to their bedroom to feed throughout the night as often as every two hours.
  • Free time can be spent visiting Big 5 Wildlife reserves, beach horse rides, shark diving, experiencing Zulu culture, whale watching, flying over the beautiful coastline or even driving 4 x 4 up the Sani Pass to Africa's highest pass in Lesotho.

Program Impact

The Monkey Rescue and Rehabilitation volunteer project stands as a beacon of hope and compassion, striving to protect and rehabilitate Vervet Monkeys, one rescue at a time. The dedication and care provided by the project team exemplify the profound impact volunteers can make in the lives of these precious animals.

The Monkey Rescue and Rehabilitation volunteer project carries out rescues 24-hours a day, 365 days a year. On a busy day several rescues and releases can take place. During baby season many babies are rescued but some sadly are too young, sick and injured to make it but over 50+ do survive for which our volunteers care for.

There are roughly around 150 monkeys in various troops undergoing rehabilitation in the larger enclosures at any given time unless a troop release has taken place recently.

Given the nature of working with wildlife, the daily schedule may vary depending on the number of Vervet monkeys being rescued or released. Our work revolves around the needs of these precious animals, making it an unpredictable yet highly rewarding experience.

Program Reviews

5.00 Rating
based on 2 reviews
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  • Impact 5
  • Support 5
  • Fun 5
  • Value 5
  • Safety 5
Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews
Default avatar
Ovejero González
Yes, I recommend this program

A Remarkable Journey: Volunteering with Monkeys in South Africa

I recently had the incredible opportunity to volunteer in South Africa, and I can confidently say that it has been a truly extraordinary experience. Working closely with monkeys, these remarkable creatures have left an indelible mark on my heart, creating bonds that I will cherish forever.

South Africa itself is a country of breathtaking beauty, boasting an overwhelming natural richness that captivated me from the moment I arrived. The landscapes, teeming with diverse flora and fauna, provided a stunning backdrop to my volunteer work. The chance to witness the wild beauty of this country has been nothing short of awe-inspiring.

The heart of my experience, however, lies in the interactions with the monkeys. These incredible animals, with their unique personalities and behaviors, have taught me so much about resilience, adaptability, and the importance of preserving their natural habitats. The bond I formed with these monkeys is something I will carry with me always, a connection that transcends words.

Equally memorable has been the people I've had the pleasure of meeting during this journey. The camaraderie among fellow volunteers and the warmth of the local community made my time in South Africa even more special. The friendships forged are ones I hope to nurture and maintain, transcending geographical boundaries.

I wholeheartedly recommend this enriching experience to everyone. Not only does it provide a profound sense of fulfillment for the soul, but it also plays a crucial role in the survival of orphaned baby monkeys who have lost their mothers. Participating in this volunteer program not only allows you to contribute to a meaningful cause but also exposes you to the beauty of South Africa and its incredible wildlife. It's an adventure that goes beyond the ordinary, leaving an impact that lasts a lifetime.

What was your funniest moment?
I can´t choose one. But many of them were watching little monkeys playing, or just being themselves.
  • What you learn
  • People I met
  • Landscapes and safaris
  • Saying goodbye to the little monkeys...
10 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Vervet Monkey Rescue & Rehabilitation

I had such an amazing 8-week experience volunteering with Vervet Monkey Rescue & Rehabilitation. The moment you enter the place and see such a precious baby monkey is breathtaking. Taking care of these babies is just incredible and so rewarding; you get to feed them, cuddle them, bath them, and play with them, which just really makes your heart jump of joy. I fell totally in love with these baby monkeys...The place where we got to stay was also insanely beautiful! The place is clean, the area is nice and calm, and the view is just incredible. Steve and Carol are amazing people and I am so lucky that I got to meet them. They take amazing care of you, and you can learn so much from them about rescuing and taking care of the monkeys, and about South Africa in general. The passion and dedication they put into their organization is just incredible to see and experience. They also give you the opportunity to go on trips with fellow volunteers, with whom you can gain some lovable memories which you will never forget. I could not have wished for a more rewarding, lovable and wonderful experience than this!

16 people found this review helpful.

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