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Overview

Volunteering as an English Teacher in Zanzibar will not only help you to shape the future of these kids, but it'll also sharpen your skills and abilities. The Teaching English Volunteer Program is a great opportunity for volunteers looking for international work experience in the education sector.

Under this project, volunteers are usually placed in different schools - nursery, primary or secondary, to teach basic English lessons to the local students. Zanzibar, being a part of Tanzania, isn't a much-developed region and derives most of its income from tourism. Hence, the knowledge of English is essential.

The schools, under this project, lack the basic infrastructure and inappropriate curriculum. Due to administrative issues like short staffing, proper education is not imparted to the students. All these schools are in need of good educators who can also take care of them and guide them for a better future. English and Maths are the two main subjects that need to be taught. The teachers themselves need help with English speaking and mostly converse in the local language. The classrooms are big and the facilities are extremely basic.

You can make a difference here by supporting the schools, the teachers and the principals, not only by offering assistance in teaching English but also by adding bigger goals to their lives. And this will help you to learn a lot about life as well!

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Program Requirements

Volunteers must be 18 years or older at the time of joining the project. Participants should have an open mind and flexible attitude for working in a new and different environment. Volunteers need to be flexible, open-minded and have a passion for working with children. You should also be proactive and have an ability to take initiative  All volunteers must provide a clean criminal background check report prior to joining the program.

Volunteer Roles & Responsibilities

  • Being a volunteer, you'll get to work alongside the English teachers and current staff in leading the classes in improving the pronunciation and conversational skills.
  • Make daily plans and keep the class engaged. Apart from English, also teach the basics of Maths to the kids.
  • Focus on the weaker kids, and see how you can help them out. Keep a tab on the growth of your students.
  • Help in improving the vocabulary of the students. Prepare test sheets for regular assessments.
  • The best would be to focus on interactive sessions and activity-based learning methods.
  • Involve the students in 'out-of-the-class' activities, so that they can gain more practical knowledge.
  • Ask the teachers/principals, in case they need any sort of assistance.

Volunteer Work Schedule

As a volunteer for the English Teaching Program in Zanzibar, Tanzania, your general schedule would be:

  • Sunday - Arrival at the destination (Zanzibar)
  • Monday - An orientation session will be conducted by the local coordinator, covering the major topics such as safety, culture, language, places to visit, behavior, food, and other suggestions for things to do in Zanzibar.
  • Tuesday to Friday - Volunteer work at the placement.
  • Weekends - Free to explore the city.
  • Breakfast - 07:00 am onwards.
  • Working hours at the placement - 08:30 am to 01:00 pm. 
  • Lunch - 01:00 pm to 02:45 pm (volunteer work post-lunch depends on the requirement)
  • Dinner - 07:00 pm onwards.

The same work schedule continues from the second week onwards (Monday - Friday).

Note: Please note, the schedule may vary depending on the project the volunteer is participating on.  Zanzibar is predominantly Muslim and can have a significant impact on any participant who happens to volunteer during the time of Ramadan. The participant schedule shall vary during this time of the year.

Living

Find a beautiful abode away from home in Zanzibar. Volunteering Solutions ensures that our volunteers get the “at home” atmosphere while volunteering.

Airport Transfer

As Zanzibar is semi-autonomous and part of Tanzania you can fly straight to Zanzibar (over Nairobi, Kilimanjaro or other international airports) or fly to Dar es Salaam. If you fly to Dar es Salaam you need to take a cab to the ferry to Zanzibar, where you can buy a ticket for the relaxing 40-minute boat ride to the island.  It is very important that we know about your travel arrangements so the coordinators can be ready for you to arrive. Upon arrival at either the airport or ferry terminus, you will be welcomed by the coordinator who will show you around and take you to your accommodation. 

Daily Transport

Most volunteers use the daladalas, which have specific routes from your accommodation to Stone Town and onto other destinations. It can be time-consuming but also a great start of the day to experience transport the local way; life stock and big mamas all squeezed into a small minibus. In the first two days, the coordinator will take you to your project and pick you up, but after that, you will need to do it by yourself. 
The daladala is very cheap and runs often so fit in and do things like a local!

Orientation

All volunteers are given an orientation about their project and the location by the local coordinator. 

Accommodation

Accommodation is offered with host families in the safe area of Mbwemi just outside Stone Town and close to the airport. You can expect to share a room with other volunteers. We typically use 3-4 host families in the area for our volunteers to stay.

Two of the host families are located next to each other with a local bar within walking distance.

When we receive larger groups of volunteers they are accommodated in our volunteer house. The volunteer house is a fairly large Zanzibar home with a living room/dining room, as well as the kitchen. It accommodates up to 8 volunteers in 2 different rooms and 2 bathrooms. The house has a garden with a secure wall and gate to make sure you are as safe as possible.

Bedding is provided in the form of sheets, but bring a towel for personal use. Mosquito nets are not provided so you can bring one if you choose to. If you don’t have enough space in your suitcase; it is cheap to buy things locally.

The accommodation can be basic, standards are very different in Zanzibar then back home most probably, and showers do not have hot water, but the weather is hot enough to shower cold!

Within easy reach, you will find the main road with food stalls to buy fresh juices, Mandazi (local doughnuts) and any other basic needs. Zanzibar has the most amazing fruit selection and you will find yourself spoiled with the availability and affordability of fruit on the island. Within 20 minutes walk you can find 2 popular bars with fast internet and supermarket with some imported (and expensive) goodies to treat yourself every now and then.

Meals

Meals are provided 3 times a day by your host. Meals are based on local ingredients and will include meat, chicken, seafood and vegetarian dishes, as well as the favorite ‘chipsi’ (fries) and pancakes. Breakfast will generally consist of tea and coffee, toast, jam and peanut butter with some fruit while lunches and dinners are cooked meals which you can eat after work and at your own preferred time.

During your Free Time

Volunteers will have a lot of free time during the weekend. During weekdays too, your evenings would be free. Some of the activities that you can get involved in during your free time in Zanzibar.

  • Visit the old forts, museums and beautiful streets of Stone Town
  • Eat all the seafood you can at Forodhani Gardens in the evening
  • Go on a spice tour to see how cloves, nutmeg and much more are grown
  • Go swimming in crystal clear water
  • Snorkel or dive to some of the most beautiful reefs of the world.
  • Relax and live the island lifestyle!
All free time activities are at the participant’s own expense.

Program Cost

Please Note: -An application fee of $199 is charged over and above the program fee as an application payment. (A 4% international banking fee is charged at the time of payment)

What are you Paying for?

  • 24 hrs Assistance and support from Staff
  • Personal collection upon arrival at airport or ferry.
  • First day introduction at the project and surroundings.
  • Accommodation (shared rooms)
  • Meals (3 meals a day)
  • Guidance and supervision during your stay
  • Offer of tours and outings in the weekends (extra costs can apply) 
  • Travel & Medical Insurance (Available at an extra cost)
  • Certificate Of Completion (Upon Request)

What's NOT included?

  • Air tickets
  • Insurances
  • Own drinks and luxury items
  • Transport on the island with local taxis, bicycle or private transport 

Program Dates

Months 2021 2022
February 07142128 06132027
March 07142128 06132027
July 04111825 0310172431
August 0108152229 07142128
October 10172431 0209162330
November 071421 06132027

Available Filling Fast Not Available Past Date

 

 

FAQ's

FAQ's Application and Program Details
As we have limited spots available in our programs and we serve on first come first basis, it is recommended that potential volunteers book their programs well in advance to get confirmed placements. You can book your slot by filling the application form online and pay the application fee of $250. You can pay your program fee later and also, in installments, however,  the complete payment should be made 45 days prior the start of the program.  If you are volunteering in a group, you can also fill a group application form.
After you complete your application, your personalized ‘My Account’ will be active.You will need to upload your CV/Resume along with your photo in the same. Our backend team and the placement site takes around 10-12 days to review your application. After we review your CV and documents, your booking is confirmed and booking confirmation is updated in your ‘My Account’. Some projects need a mandatory criminal background check and the same is mentioned in the project info of your program. Approval of your application depends on your qualification and eligibility criteria for each project.
The program requirements for the program in Zanzibar are as follows: 
The minimum age requirement for the programs in Zanzibar is 18 years. 
Volunteers joining the medical volunteer project must be either Pre-Medical, Medical or Nursing students or possess other qualifications related to medical and nursing field such as CNA or EMT. Medical professionals such as doctors and nurses are also welcome to join this program.
Volunteers need to have an open mind and flexible attitude for working in a new and different environment. 
The volunteer should bring energy and enthusiasm to make a difference.
The participant must be in good health.

We encourage our participants to volunteer in a group. We take special care in providing you a placement and also customize your itinerary to make sure you get exactly what you are looking for. Also, we can design special group programs for groups of 5 or more. Our programs are designed to be safe, affordable and offer a great group volunteering experience to the volunteers.
 
In our experience of more than 12+ years we have enabled and facilitated volunteer program placements for student groups- college groups, university groups, high school groups, group of families, group of couples as well as groups of colleagues.

Yes, we will provide you with the Certificate after successful completion of your program. The certificate is provided on request.

 

If you are planning to come for multiple programs in your trip, you will have to pay the application fees just once. Your application fee is valid for a year's time (from the date of application). You will not have to pay the application fees again if you come within the mentioned time frame.

For our returning volunteers, $50 discount is provided for the application fee for their next Vol Sol program. 
Volunteers are picked up from the Abeid Amani Karume International Airport located in the Unguja Island by the in-country coordinator or representative. Those coming via the sea route would be picked up from their docking station. Upon arrival at either the airport or ferry terminus, you will be welcomed by one of the coordinators who will show you around and take you to your accommodation. After freshening up and getting to know the staff, you will be given an introduction and go through some rules and regulations.
Flights and Visa
Visa in Zanzibar can be attained upon arrival for $50 as the Visa fee. Volunteers also have to attain a volunteering permit of 250 USD upon arrival. You can also write to [email protected] for your visa queries.
There are very few direct flights to Zanzibar and there are mostly charter planes from the UK. For commercial airline users, you will have to fly via Tanzania or Kenya. 
From the UK, the recommended flights are:
KLM
Kenya Airways
British Airways

Connecting flight to Zanzibar is Air Tanzania. You can also catch a ferry from Dar.
Ethiopian Airlines fly from London via Addis Ababa and Dar to Zanzibar.

From the USA, there are no direct flights to Tanzania. The best option is to fly from London or Amsterdam.
The in-country coordinator will be there at the airport to receive you and will ensure that you safely reach the accommodation.
Health and Safety
Zanzibar thrives on tourism. The stone town attracts many tourists from around the world. The beach area is crowded with tourists and is safe. However, during the evening avoid going out alone. Consult your in-country coordinator for information on nightlife and where all to go in the evening. Since Zanzibar is a Muslim country, it is advisable for all to dress decently and wear full trousers and full sleeved casual shirts. Beachwear can be worn when on the beaches.

Some pointers for the project:
Ensure that you are modestly dressed. 
If you are diving or snorkeling, you may be tempted to collect some shells from Zanzibar's many coral reefs. Please do not, as this kills entire reefs, the devastating effects of which can be seen in the well-trodden areas of the East African coast. Although there are shell sellers, you are asked not to buy shells from them, as it simply encourages this harmful industry.
Zanzibar is an amazingly photogenic place but if you want to take photographs of people, please ask for their permission first, out of respect for them.
If you are not Muslim, do not enter any of Zanzibar's mosques.
Keep in mind that your safety comes with your own behavior and looking for your personal items. Lock your room if possible, give valuables to the coordinators to keep for you and be aware of your surroundings.
Zanzibar is alluring to many different tourists and many women from the west will find their African lovers here. Be aware of the smooth talking beach boys that you will encounter and can organize everything for ‘free’ for you or very cheap, there usually is a price to pay somewhere down the line.
Volunteers should carry general medicines along with them on their travel. Medicines like antacid, aspirin and basic painkillers should be carried. You are recommended to take advice from your general physician before you embark on your journey. 

We recommend these basic vaccinations for your safety:
Hepatitis A and B
Typhoid
Yes, for all participants it is mandatory to have a travel medical insurance. To provide the best option to our participants, we offer comprehensive insurance coverage in collaboration with a leading insurance provider.
Accommodation and Living
Your program coordinator will take you to your placement and introduce you to everyone after giving you a basic orientation about the program, city, culture etc.You will be briefed about the local transportation and also about your transfers to the project every day from the accommodation. 
Your accommodation would be in the Stone Town area. Volunteers stay at the volunteer’s house on sharing basis with other volunteers. The rooms are provided on same gender sharing basis. The volunteer house is very spacious and is equipped with a fully functional kitchen. Meals are provided 3 times a day by the cook who is present at the volunteer house. Your meal will include meat, chicken, seafood, and vegetarian dishes. Within walking distance, you will find the white beaches and clear blue sea of the Indian Ocean where you can swim safely, enjoy sunbathing and watch mind-boggling sunsets.
Depending on your project VolSol volunteers are required to put around 5-6 hours of volunteer work for 5 days in a week. Evenings and Weekends are free for you to explore in and around the city and indulge in your personal work or activity. You can:
Visit the old forts, museums and beautiful streets of Stone Town.
Eat the seafood you can at Forodhani Gardens in the evening.
Go on a spice tour to see how cloves, nutmeg and much more are grown.
Go swimming in crystal clear water.
Snorkel or dive in some of the beautiful reefs of the world.
Relax and enjoy the island!
Your program fee covers your accommodation, airport pick-up, orientation, pre-departure information, and in-country staff support. You will need to cover your personal expenses, such as traveling, telephone, the internet, shopping, sightseeing, return airport drop, weekend tours etc. However, you should carry around $50 - $60 per week for your basic personal expenses, such as water, local transport, phone etc.
For an additional extra cost of $50, we can arrange for your airport drop as well.
VolSol volunteers usually work for 5 to 6 hours a day for 5 days a week. The working hours can vary and is dependent on your program type. You will have the weekend off so you can go to travel on weekends.
There is one Bureau De change at Airport and an ATM point. Also, there is another Barclays ATM point on the way to Pongwe at Mwanakwerekwe Barclays branch, just 10 minutes from Airport. Stone Town also has one Bureau De Change. Most shops in the Stone Town accept Dollars, Pounds, and Euros.
Connect with Past Volunteers
We encourage volunteers to get in touch with former Volunteering Solutions participants and also other program participants joining our projects. You are recommended to join the Volunteering Solutions Facebook Page or Facebook Group to connect with other participants and our team.

To read alumni interviews from past participants, visit the Meet a Volunteer section on our website.

Other Programs in Tanzania

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