The Western Cape, where this surf and sports youth development volunteer program is based, is a very culturally diverse area of South Africa. There is a large integration of the underprivileged with the wealthy. The main cultures that you will be working with are Xhosa or Afrikaans South Africans. Most of these children can speak English, yet their home language may be Afrikaans or Xhosa. The homes they live in are often built from scrap metal and second-hand wood, usually they do not have running water in their homes. Forty percent of the families in these areas lack a male head of household and the children often have no one to monitor their educational progress or after-school activities. The children we work with live in the nearby township or settlement in Cape Town, known as Du Noon and Wolwerivier.
Due to lack of funding there is very little physical education provided to the children in the pre-schools and primary schools, this can create physical and mental developmental issues. Children living in impoverished communities have a huge need for youth development projects which serve to teach them valuable life skills such as teamwork, structure, and discipline which uplifts their self-esteem through the realization of talent. Mornings are spent developing fine and gross motor skills through activities with children in the Educare centres. In the afternoons we host various sports programs with the children. These include; soccer, boxing, netball, rugby, swimming, surfing and skating. This is a very important part of the program as alcohol and drug abuse is common in the townships where they live, and at this age they are especially susceptible to recruitment by local gangs.

Volunteer in South Africa Gallery

What is involved

There are 2 options to choose from when joining this project:

Option 1
Participating in the existing sports programs as they are (skate, soccer, dance, boxing, swim, surf and other ball sports)
Option 2
Run a sports clinic to teach the children a sport that they do not currently know of or participate in. This could mean running a short clinic for the duration of your time to expose the children to different sports from around the world. If the children show interest and we have the capabilities to continue with the project once you have left, we will do so. In this option if there are any special equipment needs you will be required to either bring said equipment with you or fund-raise for the equipment to be purchased once here. For example, we had a volunteer bring over boxing equipment and run a clinic to teach the children non-contact boxing fitness. It was a huge success and now we are currently still running the project with the children.
Please keep in mind that location for all sports varies according to needs and logistics. Soccer, for example, mostly
happens in the township at the community center but sometimes we take the children to Table View to do sports with them
Volunteer Tasks could include:
1. Teaching kids sports
2. Helping with classroom activities in preschool
3. Running gross motor development lessons and activities for preschool children
4. Being a positive role model through behaviour on the project

Some basic building projects such as fixing soccer posts or building new sport facilities
Volunteers will work 5 days a week with the children. Some days volunteers will work a full 8 hours and other days 4 to 5
hours, depending on the needs of the project. The volunteers’ mornings are spent assisting in one of the schools and the
afternoons are spent with the kids teaching them sport – this could be (but not limited to) soccer, netball, rugby or athletics, surfing, swimming, and skating.

Some details

Any Saturday arrival.

Project dates & Holiday Club
This project runs all year round except over the season break when we are closed from the 23rd December to the 2nd
January. During this time volunteers may still use the accommodation and will be provided food.

Holiday club
During the school holidays, our projects run differently and according to our holiday club schedule. The activities are
dependant upon the weather, length of holiday and number of attendees.
The aim of the holiday club program is for the kids to have fun and to keep them off the streets. The activities during this
time are less structured and more focused on the enjoyment of the children.
Please note: If a holiday club activity requires the payment of an entrance fee, volunteers will have to pay for themselves.
The programme fee is used to cover the entrance for the children only, however, we do try to plan as many free events as
School Holiday dates may differ year to year but generally run as follows:
First Term: 25 March - 5 April
Second Term: 24 June - 19 July
Third Term: 30 September - 11 October
Fourth Term: 14 December - 23 December
2024 Terms
First Term: 20 March - 3 April
Second Term: 14 June - 09 July
Third Term: 20 September - 01 October
Fourth Term: 11 December - 23 December

Potential Start dates

2024 2025
Jan 20,27 Jan 4,11, 18, 25
Feb 3,10,17,24 Feb 1, 8, 15, 22
Mar 2,9, 16, 23, 30 Mar 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
Apr 6,13, 20, 27 Apr 5, 12, 19, 26
May 4,11,18, 25 May 3, 10, 17, 24, 31
Jun 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 Jun 7, 14, 21, 28
Jul 6,13, 20, 27 Jul 5, 12, 19, 26
Aug 3,10, 17, 24 Aug 2, 9, 16, 23, 30
Sep 21, 28 Sep 6, 13, 20, 27
Oct 5,12,19,26 Oct 4, 11, 18, 25
Nov 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 Nov 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
Dec 7, 14 Dec 6, 13, 20

What your first three days looks like

Day One: Arrival day

Pool area- South Africa House
You are collected from the airport and taken to your accommodation. You will be shown around and given a map of the area. You have the day at your own leisure so you can explore the beach, shops, bars and restaurants. In the evening you are served a welcome meal with staff and other volunteers.

Day Two - Area Orientation

South Africa Volunteers on table mountain
Start the day with breakfast at the accommodation. Your friendly staff member will teach you about the bus system before you head out to Cape Town City Center. Do a walking tour visiting historical sites like the Castle of Good Hope and the Grand Parade. Alternatively you can take the cable car up Table Mountain and enjoy breath-taking views of the city. In the evening head back on the local bus to Table View where you can join the staff, guests and the locals at one of the restaurants or bars along the beachfront in Table View – all within rolling distance from the hostel where you will be staying the night

Day Three- Start Project Work

Surf and Sports South Africa
New volunteers will receive their training and additional information on our projects and the areas where you will be working. Our team will take you to the projects as well.

Weekend activities


Surf and sport - South Africa volunteer
Take surfing lessons at the sandy white beaches of Blouberg or Muizenburg (weather permitting of course!)

Cape Town Walking Tour

best volunteer abroad program 2024
Take a guided walk through the city to learn the history from the days of Dutch settlement though the Apartheid years.

Wine Country

South Africa Stellenbosch
Meander through stunning landscapes and wine farms of Stellenbosch. Stop at wine estates for tastings.

Cape Point

cape-point-South Africa
Follow the scenic coastal roads of the Cape Peninsula to Cape Point where the two oceans meet.

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