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Childcare Volunteer Program in Zambia - Livingstone

Childcare Volunteer Program in Zambia - Livingstone

Eager to be a Childcare volunteer in Zambia? International Volunteer HQ’s Childcare project is a wonderful opportunity for volunteers to assist at early childhood facilities that cater to a large number of children who live below the poverty line. Volunteers gain childcare experience while helping provide essential care, individual attention, education and development support that are crucial to helping these children build better futures for themselves and their families.

Highlights:
  • Programs start every first and third Monday of the month
  • Affordable fees from £319 for 1 week
  • Includes accommodation, meals, airport pick up, orientation and 24/7 support
  • Help with lessons and activities, using your creativity to encourage fun and learning

  • Discover Zambia’s amazing natural environment and wildlife

  • Stay with other volunteers near the buzzing town of Livingstone

'Who is going' users image
Who is going?
Group video calls

Once you have secured your place, join regular video calls to meet your Program Manager and other volunteers before your trip.

Key information

Provide a safe space for children to learn
Based in kindergartens and daycare centres
Dormitory-style volunteer​ ​house
Volunteers aged 18+ and families
Fully hosted experience from £319 for 1 week
Durations from 1 - 16 weeks
Discover the breathtaking Victoria Falls
Up to 5 hours volunteering a day

This program is ideal for:

Energetic volunteers who enjoy working with younger children and want to make a meaningful difference to their futures. You’ll be volunteering with the support of local staff, so don’t need to have prior childcare experience.
Who is this program suited to?

What to expect and how you'll make an impact

A large number of children in Zambia suffer from poor hygiene, inadequate education, insufficient food and little healthcare. Individual attention and a focus on early development and education are considered crucial to breaking the cycle of poverty. The help of international volunteers is vital to ensuring it happens.

As a volunteer in kindergartens in Zambia, you’ll provide extra assistance to local staff, for children aged between 2 and 6 years old. You can expect to teach​ ​basic English and math​, helping to develop children’s confidence which encourages their future education. ​

In addition to teaching, ​you can also help with:

  • Mentoring
  • Homework
  • Preparing ​meals
  • Arranging activities
  • Cleaning
  • The general running of the centre

You are also encouraged to bring your creativity to the classroom to help stimulate the children’s learning.

Please note that there are three official school holidays in Zambia which are usually in April, August and December. During this time, volunteers still have the opportunity to work with children within the kindergarten, however there will be fewer children in attendance.

Contributes to United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal #4: Quality Education

Contributes to United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal #4: Quality Education

More than half of all children and teens do not meet minimum proficiency standards in reading and mathematics. Quality education provides an opportunity to learn and grow in a safe environment and is key to preventing poverty, securing long-term employment and improving quality of life.

Why do Childcare volunteering in Livingstone with IVHQ?

When you volunteer with children in Zambia you’ll be adding value to the local community, while also developing personally and professionally by:

  • Improving early childhood education for vulnerable children
  • Helping students develop life skills in a safe place
  • Developing your communication skills
  • Gaining childcare experience
  • Immersing yourself in Zambia’s culture
  • Discovering Africa’s incredible wildlife

Volunteer requirements

  • 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.
Are you eligible to volunteer?

Submit a free application so we can confirm your eligibility and check availability for your preferred dates.

Apply For Free

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'Who is going' users image
Who is going?
Group video calls

Once you have secured your place, join regular video calls to meet your Program Manager and other volunteers before your trip.

What recent volunteers said about their IVHQ experience

NW
Nicole Watt
24 Apr 2024

I have loved every moment of it. I cannot wait to start looking to plan the next trip. I have no words that can explain how thankful I am to the IVHQ team, the local hosts, the children we met along the way, and the school staff. Not forgetting the amazing locals and other volunteers we met and became friends with along the way. I have gained an insight into how others live and it’s made me more appreciative of what I have at home. I am so glad I have had this experience to help change others lives, and I hope to stay in contact with some of those I have met on my journey. Thank you all so much for making this possible for me. You are all amazing.

...
AT
Alisha Thompsett
19 Jul 2023

I’ve now completed 3 volunteer trips with IVHQ this year and after each one I leave with a sense of pride knowing not only have I enjoyed a new culture and experience but I have done so making a difference to those in the local community.

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MR
Mihrab Randhawa
16 Jul 2023

Everything was so well organized and the IVHQ team was so helpful with any questions that I had. The local team was absolutely amazing! They made us feel so comfortable and safe. They helped us every step of the way throughout my stay. I loved my time at school, spending time with the children. I was so inspired being around a group of people that all left their lives behind to volunteer in Africa.

...
PM
Paris Martin
04 Jul 2023

I felt very prepared before coming to Zambia as the information provided by IVHQ was very informative and accurate. The support by the local team was amazing and they did so much for us. Whenever we had a question, we went straight to their office and they were always there to help guide us. They provided tour recommendations, made us feel self and helped us to manage our donations at the end. I can't thank them enough for the time and effort they provided to us.

I always felt safe and accommodated by them and everyone else involved with IVHQ in Zambia. The way volunteering made me feel was so special, and a feeling I wasn't prepared for. Although I found it challenging at times, the children and program have had a major impact on me and my life, and are things I will cherish forever. It helped me grow as a person and experience something that is a once in a lifetime opportunity. I loved meeting all the volunteers who I shared my experience with. Doing numerous activities in the afternoons and having fun with them made the experience so much more special, beyond the amazing volunteering each day. We were there for each other, supported each other and felt safe together. I definitely had personal and emotional growth. I wanted to join an IVHQ volunteer program to get out of my comfort zone and travel, and do something for the community.

Seeing the children and teachers faces light up everyday we walked through the school gates is a memory I will cherish forever and when things get hard at home, I will remeber to always ground myself back to these wonderful people and the experience I had. Just do it! You will meet so many like-minded people and have an experience of a lifetime - guaranteed!!

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KT
Katie Togher
22 Mar 2023

My Program Manager was very helpful and always replied quickly to any questions that I had. I felt quite well prepared after reading the program guide. Everyone from the local team was very nice and friendly and always stopped to talk to us when they saw us. I had an amazing time volunteering at the school and was very sad to leave. The accommodation was very nice and I felt comfortable there for 3 weeks. Food was all very tasty and there was plenty of it. Hard to choose only one best moment as there were so many but I always looked forward to walking into my class in the morning as all the children would run up and give me a big hug which was so cute. Getting to experience a new culture and make friendships with people from all around the world was priceless. Just go for it, it’ll be the best thing you do and you won’t regret it!

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RC
Renelle Cancilla-Martin
18 Jan 2023

I'm so grateful for all the attentiveness to detail, the tips, language help, emails and quick replies! IVHQ IS THE BEST! I've traveled with other organizations before, and none were as thorough and caring as IVHQ.

I also cannot say enough good about all of the local team! They cared for all of us, accepted us from all of our many countries, treated us like family, made sure we had what we needed daily, gave us cultural teaching and overall completely enhanced the entire week just by being so gracious! They're my friends now and I'm so very grateful. I ate better in Zambia than I do at home. The staff are amazing cooks and eager to share the cultural food and spices of Zambia. They also cooked traditional American and other countries' meals to make us visitors feel more comfortable. So much food - more than I could ever eat!

Favorite moments were with the children, villages and in the streets and shops of Zambia. Truly, everywhere in Zambia, including animals! If you want to be up-close-and-personal with true wild nature, go to Zambia. Where else does a Zebra walk up to you when you're at the pool? Or walk alongside you as you're swimming? Only in Zambia! Walked with Lions! Saw hippos so close from a boat, I could count his teeth! I had seen wildlife in Kenya, but in Zambia, they are so much closer in distance. The impact of Zambians living a life of gratefulness. No matter what they have, no matter how hot it is, or how hard their day is going, they smile and are full of kindness. I can't wait to go back in 4 months!

To those hesitant to go, there is nothing to be afraid of, when booking with IVHQ. They truly take care of you from the beginning, to the end. The local staff are very protective and make safety priority #1. If you have any concerns, you can easily address them beforehand. I truly believe there is no problem that IVHQ cannot solve.

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To read all reviews, visit our reviews page.

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Volunteer Abroad in Zambia with IVHQ

Location

The IVHQ Zambia volunteer program is based in the laid-back tourist town of Livingstone, named after the famous colonial explorer who was thought to be the first European to see and name the nearby Victoria Falls. Set in the southern edge of Zambia, Livingstone borders Zimbabwe and Victoria Falls - the world’s biggest and most breathtaking waterfall. The area is lush with national parks, abundant wildlife and the Zambezi River which provides an exciting array of outdoor activities for adventurous volunteers.

Volunteer placements are located in Livingstone and surrounding rural areas. On the Rural Teaching project, volunteers are placed and accommodated in the Makumba village, which is located 40 miles 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 travelling 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 socialising.

Volunteer schedule example

First Day

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.
12:30 PM Work at the placement usually ends for the day and volunteers return to the volunteer house for lunch.
1:30 PM After lunch, volunteers may spend their free time as they wish or if they are looking for extra volunteering hours, there are alternatives available such as working at a homework club.
7:00 PM Dinner at the volunteer house.

Weekends

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 are accommodated in a dormitory-style volunteer​ ​house, approximately 10 minutes from Livingstone town centre.​ You can expect to share a bedroom and bathroom​ ​with 2 to 5 other volunteers of the same gender. The volunteer house has electricity, running water, western bathrooms, and a​ ​​communal lounge and garden area for relaxing and socializing.​ ​It is important to note that power cuts are common in Zambia ​in times of drought, which in turn affects the running water supply.

If you would like to keep connected during your stay, we recommend bringing an unlocked mobile phone and purchasing a local SIM card when you arrive in Zambia. The local team can assist you with purchasing a SIM card during your program orientation. You can also access WiFi from cafes and restaurants located within walking distance of the volunteer house.

Private rooms can​ ​be arranged at an additional cost (see upgrade options below) and are subject to availability. This can be​ ​arranged directly through ​​the local team once you have registered for the program. Bed linens are provided and during the hot months, a sheet​ ​should be adequate cover in the evenings. During the cooler​ ​months, you may wish to bring a sleeping bag for an​ ​extra layer of warmth.

Volunteers are also asked to bring their​ ​own towels. The volunteer accommodation has a nighttime​ ​​security guard and is located in a safe area protected by​ ​an electric fence. On-site staff clean the accommodation​ ​throughout the week, however​ ​volunteers are also required​ ​to keep their rooms and common areas tidy.​

Upgrade to a private room with ensuite for the duration of your time on the program for only US$55 (approximately £45) per week. The local team have both double and twin rooms available, both with en suite bathrooms.

Extra nights of accommodation If you would like to arrive a day earlier than your recommended arrival date, or wish to spend a few extra nights after finishing your program, we can arrange extra nights of accommodation for you for US$35 (approximately £29) per person, per night, meals included, subject to availability. If you would like to arrange an upgrade or extra nights of accommodation, just contact your IVHQ Program Manager who will be happy to assist you.

Meals

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.

Pricing

  • USD
Duration
Program Fee
Due 30 days before you start, or within 48 hours if you register inside of 30 days. Covers the cost of hosting you.
  • USD
1 week $385 Equivalent to $55/day
2 weeks $535 Equivalent to $38/day
3 weeks $715 Equivalent to $34/day
4 weeks $845 Equivalent to $30/day
5 weeks $985 Equivalent to $28/day
6 weeks $1,115 Equivalent to $27/day
8 weeks $1,375 Equivalent to $25/day
10 weeks $1,635 Equivalent to $23/day
12 weeks $1,895 Equivalent to $23/day
16 weeks $2,415 Equivalent to $22/day
  • All programs attract a Registration Fee of US$329 (approximately £272) in addition to the Program Fee. This covers all pre-departure support services.
  • A 5% international banking fee is added at point of payment.
  • Volunteers ​staying for longer than 4 weeks ​will need to budget an extra US$400​ (approximately) 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$100 per week to be sufficient for expenses.
  • Meals
  • Airport pick-up
  • Accommodation
  • 24/7 in-country support
  • In-country program orientation
  • Pre-departure support from your Program Manager
  • Personalised preparation tools, guides and check lists
  • Access to IVHQ’s preferred insurance and flights partners
  • Discounts on travel and tour add-ons
  • Certificate of International Volunteer Service

Learn more about what's included in your IVHQ Registration Fee and Program Fee.

  • Transport to and from your placement each day
  • Return airport transfer when your program finishes
  • Flights
  • Visa (if required), travel insurance (mandatory), vaccinations, criminal background check.
  • Personal spending money for snacks, laundry, public transportation, drinks and leisure activities during your free time.

Free-time experiences & tours in Livingstone

Take your volunteer experience to the next level with IVHQ's affordable activity and tour add-ons in Livingstone! Explore your options below and learn how to book them once you've been accepted onto the IVHQ Livingstone program.

Chobe Camping Safari (2 days, 1 night)
Chobe Camping Safari (2 days, 1 night)

A memorable 2 day safari experience at the Chobe National Park, Botswana, known for its huge elephant herds.

£302
Rhino Game Drive
Rhino Game Drive

Experience Mosi-Oa-Tunya guided game drives, home of most of Zambia’s white rhino population.

£107
Bungee Jump Victoria Falls
Bungee Jump Victoria Falls

Enjoy a scenic bungee jump off the Victoria Falls Bridge, located in Mosi Otunya Park.

£149

Check what's required to visit Zambia

Safety and support with IVHQ

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.
Learn more about IVHQ's safety

Essential country information

Capital Lusaka
Population 17.86 million
Languages English, Nyanja, Lozi, Tonga
Currency Zambian Kwacha (ZMW)
Time zone UTC+02:00

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.

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How to get started

Pick a destination + project and apply for free
Meet your personal volunteer travel expert
Pay the Registration Fee to secure your place and upgrade your MyIVHQ account
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