Raleigh International - Volunteering in 2013
Wednesday 5th December 2012
On International Volunteering Day (5th December 2012) Raleigh International is encouraging everyone considering voluntary work to make their New Year’s Resolution early and commit to a programme.
People can make 2013 their year to volunteer by looking for placements now, especially as application deadlines for some exciting and worthwhile opportunities close before Christmas.
Spring 2013 will see Raleigh’s first expedition to Tanzania and applications are open until 21st December. Although it’s one of the most politically stable African countries, more than half of the population live below the poverty line. Raleigh is working with local partners to devise innovative projects which can help solve development issues faced by local communities. Volunteers from all over the world, including Tanzania, will work alongside one another on a number of sustainableprojects, including:
- Helping bees to save elephants. The migration paths of elephants can place them in danger of conflict with farmers whose crops they often destroy. To protect their livelihoods, farmers can resort to attacking the elephants or giving poachers details of their location. Raleigh works with the local communities to install beehives and chilli plants, which are hated by elephants, to redirect their migration routes. It also brings additional income to the area through sales of honey.
- Putting a rocket into sustainable living. Most areas of vegetation around human settlements have been cleared of available firewood and people have to travel further, sometimes into protected areas, to collect fuel. Projects include installation and awareness-raising of ‘rocket’ stoves built with locally available materials, which are cheap and reduce the amount of firewood required by two thirds, freeing up valuable time for families and reducing harmful emissions.
- Being clean with a latrine. Only 33% of people in Tanzania have access to improved sanitation, falling to 7% in rural areas. There is a belief in some parts of Tanzania, that good sanitation remains the privilege of the wealthy. Through constructing demonstration latrines with local builders and tradesmen, volunteers will share building techniques as well as take part in education programmes explaining the affordability and importance of sanitation and waste management.
“Tanzania is well known for its natural beauty, safaris and Mount Kilimanjaro. However, it’s less known that fewer than half the population have access to sustainable drinking water,” said Jim Clements, Country Director for Raleigh Tanzania. “Young people volunteering overseas often act as a catalyst for local communities to join in and help themselves. There’s a real sense of excitement here for the volunteers arriving next year and local applicants to the programme have been overwhelming. When people come together around a shared goal, they can be a powerful force. Joining a Raleigh expedition makes you part of an active global community addressing the challenges together.