GVA Foundation – Africa recruits volunteers for locally-run community, conservation, teaching, health care, building and sports projects around Uganda. Volunteers are an integral part of everything that happens at GFA. We couldn’t do it without them! Depending on the season, we always have a list of much needed services which can be provided by volunteers within our projects around Uganda.
Our Volunteer Program is an immersion program customized for individual travelers, students, professionals, families, groups, or anyone with the desire to serve in rural villages in Uganda.
COMMUNITY OUTREACHES & IMPROVEMENT OF LIVING STANDARDS:
RURAL HEALTH PROJECTS:
GVA Foundation – Africa reaches out to the rural villages with a team of volunteers for 2-5 days a week to organize health workshops. GVA Foundation- Africa aims to fight diseases by educating the communities in and around Mukono district about awareness and prevention. Drawing from the education seminars and resources from the Uganda Ministry of Health training programs, this objective is achieved through the exchange of knowledge in seminars, working together in organized camps, and Voluntary Counseling and Testing (VCT) programs. Topics discussed in the seminars range from Malaria control, family planning, to HIV/AIDS and Epilepsy
Our volunteers with medical health background also work with the local community health centre, which is in a walk able distance from the volunteers’ home. Knowledgeable volunteers as well as those certified to carry out medical tasks are in great demand. They help assist doctors with several health-related activities.
COMMUNITY SANITATION PROJECTS:
GVA Foundation- Africa team engages into programs and projects which improve the sanitation of rural people. This includes clearing of drinking wells, building of dry racks and the digging of latrines as well as education on a healthy life style. Join the team and help in improving the poor conditions of sanitation in Uganda’s rural villages.
Education is the key to a child’s success in Uganda. GVA Foundation – Africa Education Program focuses on English language classes, international cultural exchanges and educational murals. These initiatives are aimed at a wide range of audiences, from school children to local villagers.
The main focus is providing education to hundreds of children in poor communities in Uganda. Village schools provide English, Math, health lessons to children aged 3yrs-12yrs. The schools provide not only education but also opportunities for sports and play, health talks, a nutrition center and a meeting place for the community.
Kasaala Child Care Center
The Center provides at-risk children a safe environment in which they participate in any number of extra-curricular activities. These activities are designed to provide kids from 3 to 10 years old with creative outlets and opportunities to make constructive use of their time. The center is managed by local teachers with the support and involvement of volunteers from SunTrack Adventures. Volunteers help children to practice reading, writing, arithmetic, and English while making time for various games and recreational activities. GVA Foundation – Africa also helps coordinate important educational workshops in areas lacking emphasis in general school curricula such as recycling, nutrition, hygiene, and self-esteem. This is a fun project for anyone who loves working with children. The kids are very enthusiastic and always keen to learn, play, and interact with volunteers.
The community has shown great interest in learning English from our international volunteers, most of whom speak English as a first or second language.
We teach English to a wide variety of ages, ability levels, and professional orientations. Yet one of the most unique aspects of our Saturday/Weekly Evening classes is the incorporation of a cultural exchange element, which allows locals to learn about the diverse cultural backgrounds and customs of our volunteers while enriching volunteers’ own understanding of the local culture.
We are always looking for people with TEFL certification qualifications or previous teaching experience to manage our English programs by coordinating with local counterparts regarding new and existing courses, preparing appropriate lesson plans, teaching classes, and training other volunteers who are interested in supporting this initiative.
We are helping to make schools brighter, more interesting and more colorful places for kids to study by painting murals that engage students in important themes concerning general youth development and healthy lifestyles. Depending on the needs and desires of the schools, themes range from recycling and proper hand-washing techniques to promoting school spirit. These projects are a fun way for volunteers to engage the community and leave behind an image that has a lasting impact.
The murals we paint are directed towards local schools to help raise awareness on key issues such as personal hygiene, recycling and environmental preservation. Improved knowledge of English provides locals with a crucial skill in seeking further education and can unlock new job opportunities.
Teaching experience is not required. You can begin as a teaching assistant and then work in small groups with children in need of extra attention. The objective of this program is to contribute to the academic development of the school and the children in order to provide the best opportunity for the orphans to receive quality education. Volunteers support the local teachers; encourage students to learn and play and instill pride in their schooling.
COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS:
Volunteers wishing to get involved in one of our Community Development Initiatives (CDI) will work as part of a team dedicated to a particular project pertaining to one of our three main program areas: Women Empowerment, Youth Development, and Social services. These volunteers have the chance to interact directly with the community by preparing and coordinating workshops and activities with local counterpart organizations, community groups, government agencies, and NGOs whose goals are closely related to those of GVA Foundation – Africa. They are also actively involved in the execution of educational training workshops and project monitoring and evaluation. GFA’s Community Development Initiatives provide volunteers the unique opportunity to continuously improve program parameters and best practices. Our programs are constantly enriched by the participation and insight of volunteers with a wide range of experience and educational backgrounds.
Volunteers have the opportunity to try different roles and projects, dependent on your interests and skills. These volunteer opportunities do not require specialized skills (although these would be an advantage!). We accept volunteers for both short and long-term placements, all year round. On arrival, most volunteers see all the projects before selecting the tasks that fit them best.
As a volunteer you perform a variety of much-needed work such as caring, helping children with their homework, preparing meals for the children and lots of other activities needed at the home.
MDD, SPORTS & RECREATION:
GFA’s MDD, Sports & Recreation Program collaborates with local communities to promote healthy lifestyles amongst local children/youth through teaching basic skills and tactics of football (soccer) and volleyball, teaching music, dance moves and drama. Given the lack of adequate recreational opportunities available to kids in the villages, our programs seek to provide at-risk children and youth with a safe environment where they can practice these activities in order to make productive use of free time. In addition, we emphasize important core values like mutual respect, trust, fair-play and self-esteem as well as sportsmanship, teamwork, and leadership. Volunteers contributing to this program will plan and lead practices of understanding the activity.
Volunteers who indicate their desire to work in construction enjoy a wide variety of projects to choose from every week. This is the most flexible branch of GVA Foundation – Africa operations, as volunteers may choose to work on different projects every week or, alternatively, work on various stages of one project through to completion (assuming they are able to stay throughout the duration of the project).
Although certain projects often present unique needs and challenges, there are several core areas (and corresponding activities) volunteers will likely find themselves contributing to at some point during their service as a GFA Construction Volunteer: Site Preparation (demolition, digging foundations, clearing rubble, etc.), Building (Mixing and pouring concrete, bricklaying, carpentry, plumbing, etc.), or Community Beautification (planting trees, landscaping, community cleanups, painting murals, etc.). Whatever the interest, rest assured you’ll get your hands dirty from the start!
GVA Foundation-Africa’s Environmental Conservation Program aims to develop initiatives that support locals in the improvement of their neighborhoods as well as providing them with basic sanitation. We are currently engaged in fruit tree planting initiatives at schools and homes that give volunteers the opportunity to contribute to environmentally friendly projects that are made sustainable through education and inclusion.
GVA Foundation- Africa Volunteers enjoy an extremely unique experience not only in the work they do but also in the atmosphere they live in. The GFA’s Headquarters are housed at Nomads Home in Kalagi town and this serves as our center for logistics, administration and daily meetings. Volunteers are housed here as well and this allows volunteers to get to know each other better outside the work-site and forge friendships that will last a lifetime.
The hard work volunteers put in during the week undoubtedly warrants some fun and relaxation during evening free time and on the weekends. During the week we organize a variety of activities for volunteers in the evenings. We often play football (soccer), cards and board games or chill out around the bar or go out for a dance getting to know fellow volunteers from around the world. Musical ballads are known to break out from time to time as well as the always entertaining pub-quiz nights.
Yet one of the biggest perks of volunteering in Mukono lies in the plethora of weekend outings we organize through SunTrack Adventures. Nomads Home is located just 60 minutes from either Jinja or Kampala where day tours can be organized to visit the source of the mighty river Nile, white water rafting and Mabira forest which showcase incredible biodiversity, including hundreds of birds and nature walks. No matter what your interests, there is always something for everyone to enjoy!
Volunteers staying at this home are assigned a bed based on capacity, arrival time and length of stay. All beds have good mosquito nets and you don’t need to bring your own sheets etc. Part of the income from this facility is used to support the projects of GFA and other humanitarian projects.
Accommodation at this home is in private and dorm rooms, accommodating up to 10 people when full. There are between 1-4 beds per room depending on the size of the room and the time of year you come (off-season there will commonly be 1-2 per room). The emphasis at the home is placed on a relaxed friendly family like atmosphere.
Most people who stay here are travelling alone and so it gives an opportunity for people to live with and make friends with other travelers and volunteers.
All the details that you need to plan your break, a holiday or volunteering in Uganda are on the pages of our site – please feel free to have a good look around.
Before you do, though, there is just one more thing we’d like to say. “Whenever you choose to come, you’re assured of a very warm welcome.”
Whenever you choose to stay at Nomads Home, even if you are not directly volunteering with any of our projects you are supporting one of our projects and programs, because proceeds from the facility go to train the vulnerable, support education for orphans and so many of our humanitarian development work.
We have flush toilets, hot water showers, standby fridge, fully equipped kitchen, and small nice vegetable filled garden. The home has electricity and a solar system is available for use when the electricity fails. Wireless internet is available in the house to check your emails, social media updates, of course not for video streaming. The overall consensus of the internet speed is “Not too bad”.
Note: Couples can request their own room if they give us a “Volunteers advance notice”.