Rural Teaching Volunteer Program in Zambia - Livingstone
Excited to be a volunteer Teacher in rural Zambia? International Volunteer HQ’s Rural Teaching project is an immersive experience where volunteers live in a remote Zambian village and help teach at the nearby school. Volunteers will stay with a local family and help them with their day-to-day activities, gaining a uniquely authentic insight into their lives. The school is understaffed and has a high need for volunteers who can assist with a range of lessons and tutor students.
- Programs start every first and third Monday of the month
- Affordable fees from $470 for 1 week
- Includes accommodation, meals, airport pick up, orientation and 24/7 support
Teach at a local school with a real need for more staff
Have an immersive experience of Zambian village life
Get to know the friendly local people of Makumba
Who is this program suited to?
What to expect and how you'll make an impact
If you’re looking for a teaching project in Africa that goes beyond the ordinary, then the Rural Teaching project in Zambia is it. This is an immersive volunteer experience where you’ll be based in a Zambian village, getting a unique insight into African life while making a real difference in the education of children.
Volunteers are based in the village of Makumba, 40 miles from Livingstone. You’ll live as a member of the community, experiencing an authentic lifestyle and volunteering to support teachers in local schools.
You’ll assist local teachers in a school of around 200 students, who range in age from 4-18 years old. Aside from volunteers, international visitors are rare in Makumba, so your perspective and English language skills are particularly valuable. Due to the high demand for support staff and teachers in Zambia, you can expect to be volunteering for full days on a variety of different tasks and subjects. You’ll be primarily helping with:
- One-on-one tuition
- Assisting local teachers
- Occasionally leading lessons
- Helping with English, math, science, geography, history, art and physical education
- Marking work
- Helping with homework
- Playing games
- Supervising students during breaks and exams
You’ll also get a unique cultural experience outside of your volunteer hours. You’ll stay in a homestay with a local family, living in a basic house with dirt floors, no electricity, bucket showers and an outdoor toilet. Your homestay will be based around three miles from the school, and you’ll need to walk there each day. Volunteers can also expect to help out around the homestay with tasks such as the general running of the home, including:
- Molding bricks
- Milking cattle
- Collecting firewood
- Collecting water from the well
- Feeding chickens
- Collecting eggs
- Harvesting crops.
Why do Rural Teaching volunteering in Livingstone with IVHQ?
When you volunteer to teach in rural Zambia you’ll be adding value to the local community, while also developing personally and professionally by:
- Improving educational outcomes for disadvantaged students
- Helping communities maintain their lifestyle
- Developing your communication skills
- Gaining teaching experience
- Immersing yourself in Zambia’s culture
- Discovering Africa’s incredible wildlife
- Volunteers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to participate in this program
- All volunteers aged 13+ are required to provide a criminal background check to IVHQ prior to departure. Those aged 13-17, if unable to obtain a criminal background check, can provide two character reference letters instead
- All volunteers are required to have adequate volunteer travel insurance
- All volunteers must speak fluent English.
Zambia photo gallery
Recommended online TEFL course
We encourage volunteers on IVHQ’s Teaching and Childcare projects to come prepared by completing some relevant training, such as a Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) course. Although formal teaching qualifications are not required on these projects as volunteers are supported by local staff, taking a TEFL course enables you to gain more from the experience. Visit our Online TEFL Course page to learn how to gain an internationally recognized TEFL certification at a discounted rate.Get TEFL certified online
”I had an amazing experience on the rural teaching programme. I am already planning on going back. The family are amazing and would do anything for you, but be prepared for a 5 1/2 km walk to school! I couldn't recommend this project enough. It will really change your outlook on life.”
Read reviews from Rural Teaching volunteers in LivingstoneSee more reviews
The Rural Teaching project in Zambia is set in a small village called Makumba. The village is around 2 miles from the school and a 1 hour in a car from Livingstone.
Arrival and orientation
The program orientation begins on the first and third Monday of each month, and volunteers need to arrive in Livingstone on the Sunday before orientation. After you have registered for the program, please book your flights to arrive at Harry Mwanga Nkumbula International Airport (LVI) in Livingstone. Your airport pick-up is included in your Program Fee.
When you arrive, you will be greeted at the airport by a member of the local team and transported to the volunteer accommodation in Livingstone. Your accommodation is covered by your Program Fee and includes the night before your program orientation.
If you are traveling in Zambia prior to your volunteer program, we can arrange for you to be picked up in Livingstone on the day before your program orientation.
Orientation is hosted by our Zambia team at the volunteer house in Livingstone. Orientation begins on the morning of your chosen start date and covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program in Zambia – an introduction to Zambia, culture and customs, rules and expectations, safety, travel opportunities, and an introduction to your project and placement. The orientation will also give you a chance to meet other volunteers and swap contact details for weekend travel and socializing.
Volunteer schedule example
On your first day of volunteering (the day after your orientation), you will be escorted to your placement by a local coordinator and introduced to the placement staff you will be working with.
Weekdays - A typical volunteer day is as follows:
|7:00 AM||Breakfast at the volunteer house|
|8:00 AM||Volunteers travel to their placements to join local placement staff and begin work on their project.|
|1:00 PM||Work at the placement usually breaks for lunch. Most volunteers will receive a packed lunch. After lunch, volunteers continue with their volunteer work.|
|3:00/4:00 PM||Work at the placement usually ends and volunteers return to the volunteer house or spend their free time as they wish.|
|7:00 PM||Dinner at the volunteer house.|
During the weekend, volunteers in Zambia have an endless list of activities to join. The area’s major attraction, Victoria Falls, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is one of the largest waterfalls in the world. In addition to the wealth of nearby national parks, nature lovers have the opportunity to experience a range of safaris and tours in Zambia, as well as in other neighboring countries, such as Botswana, Zimbabwe and Namibia. Thrill seekers are also well catered to in Zambia, with an abundance of activities, such as bungee jumping, devil’s pool, white water rafting, abseiling, gorge swinging, zip-lining and microlight flights. Within Livingstone itself, a range of restaurants, curio markets and various cultural activities offer a lot to take in for those wish to stay around town.
Accommodation and WiFi
Volunteers who choose to join the Rural Teaching placement are accommodated in a basic homestay with dirt floors, bucket showers, an outdoor toilet and no access to electricity or running water in the village.
Volunteers will help with the general running of the homestay, including gardening, moulding bricks, milking cattle, collecting firewood, collecting water from the well, feeding chickens and collecting eggs, harvesting crops, cooking and cleaning.
Volunteers are served three meals per day, prepared by an on-site local cook. All meals will be a mix of western and traditional Zambian food.
Breakfast may include fruit, toast, spreads and cereal with tea, coffee and juice. Lunch is usually provided in the volunteer accommodation, although packed lunches of sandwiches and fruit are provided if requested for those who choose to remain at their placement. Dinners will commonly be a combination of meat, starches and vegetables.
The local staff are happy to accommodate special dietary requests (vegetarian, vegan, dairy free, gluten free etc). Please let an IVHQ staff member know of any special dietary requirements in advance, so we can ensure the local staff are prepared for you.
Due 30 days before you start, or within 48 hours if you register inside of 30 days. Covers the cost of hosting you.
|1 week||$470 Equivalent to $68/day|
|2 weeks||$630 Equivalent to $45/day|
|3 weeks||$760 Equivalent to $37/day|
|4 weeks||$890 Equivalent to $32/day|
|5 weeks||$1,020 Equivalent to $30/day|
|6 weeks||$1,150 Equivalent to $28/day|
|8 weeks||$1,410 Equivalent to $26/day|
- 24/7 in-country support
- In-country program orientation
- Pre-departure support from your Program Manager
- Airport pick-up
- Personalized preparation tools, guides and check lists
- Access to IVHQ’s preferred insurance and flights partners
- Certificate of International Volunteering
- All programs attract a Registration Fee of $299 in addition to the Program Fee. This covers all pre-departure support services.
- A 5% international banking fee is added at point of payment.
- Additional things to budget for include: Visa, flights, travel insurance (mandatory), vaccinations, criminal background check and return to the airport when your program finishes.
- Please note: Volunteers staying for longer than 4 weeks will need to budget an extra US$400 (subject to exchange rate) to obtain a temporary work permit from Zambian Immigration in order to stay up to 90 days.
- Recommended spending money: Volunteers in Zambia generally find US$50-75 per week to be sufficient for expenses.
Check what's required to visit Zambia
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Safety and support
IVHQ follows best practice and industry-leading health and safety procedures, which are regularly reviewed and optimized as part of the B Corporation recertification.
- All volunteers encouraged to complete our interactive pre-departure training.
- All local teams trained on best practice volunteer management & First Aid.
- All IVHQ programs are required to adhere to IVHQ's Risk Management Policy.
- All volunteers have access to 24/7 in-country support from our local team.
Protecting against COVID-19:
Volunteers tested for COVID-19 within 72 hours of travel
Health & safety information provided during orientation
Strict disinfecting standards for programs & accomodation
Greater physical distance between volunteers
Essential country information
|Languages||English, Nyanja, Lozi, Tonga|
|Currency||Zambian Kwacha (ZMW)|
Weather and climate
There are three seasons in Zambia: the dry season (mid-April to August), when temperatures drop at night, but the landscape is green and lush; the hot season (September to mid-November), when the best time to see wildlife as flora is sparse; and, the wet season (mid-November to mid-April), which is ideal for bird-watching.