This heartfelt project's mission is to relieve the suffering of overworked and abused cart-horse donkeys by providing them with a forever home. It is a sanctuary dedicated to the wellbeing of all rural animals, rescued from farms and a life of hardship.
|Location||Plettenberg Bay, South Africa|
|Duration||From 2 - 12 weeks|
|Dates||February – November (Anyone wishing to stay over December MUST commence by mid- November)|
|Documents required||Enrolment form, curriculum vitae, letter of motivation, passport copy, proof of medical insurance, COvid-19 Travel Compliance papaerwork|
|Day of arrival||Sunday|
|Day of departure||Sunday|
This project was initially founded in 2017 to provide a safe & secure ‘forever-home’ for donkeys actively rescued from the then recently exposed, horrendously abusive, treatment inflicted on donkeys to supply the illegal underworld trade in donkey-skins used in the primarily Oriental ‘traditional medicines’ market, and furthermore to expose and press for the prosecution of those involved in these activities.
The spheres of reference have since expanded to include:
It currently provides a secure home, with routine feeding and veterinary care, to a rescued mix of +/- 140 donkeys, 40 horses & a solitary zebra; 20 indigenous Nguni cattle; numerous sheep, goats and pigs of varied breeds, plus a collection of ostriches, geese, ducks, chickens etc.
The project continues to highlight the abuse and maltreatment of animals in by promoting paid-for guided tours of their operation together with personal interaction with their animals as well as the integration of their horses – some of which are wild and feral when first rescued – into the herd via feeding, grooming, lunging and training for eventual use on paid-for, guided horseback outrides through some stunningly scenic open rural areas against an imposing mountain backdrop.
The routine working day runs from between 8:00/8:30 to 16:30/17:00, seven days a week. Volunteers are generally required to be on duty Mondays to Fridays, leaving weekends open to local touring & leisure pursuits.
The daily animal care routine will include the following:
Volunteers will have the opportunity to train initially as assistant and then operate as independent guides to conduct public tours through the facility, while those with specific equine qualifications & experience will be involved in horse grooming, lunging & training of outride horses and similarly progress from assistant to qualified outride guides. These activities will take place on an “as-needed” basis.
It is important to note that this description serves as an example only. The daily tasks and challenges depend on the volunteer, the time of year and the work that needs to be done. The final job description can therefore vary substantially from the above.
The accommodation is set in a 5-hectare small-holding amidst indigenous forest and open grazing pastures in The Crags and about 25 minutes from the main town of Plettenberg Bay.
You are accommodated in fully equipped, shared two-bed rooms, with bedding & towel provided, so might be sharing with another volunteer of the same gender. There are numerous bathrooms for communal access and use. Volunteers have full use of the well-equipped kitchen plus the two verandah areas - with large fire-places. It is here that guests and hosts gather for social interaction and where evening meals are served for all to enjoy.
A large group entertainment area complete with an under-cover combination plunge-pool/hot tub, a bar facility plus an outdoor braai (BBQ) area are provided. Friday is officially declared as “Braai day” with local residents visiting for sundowners and a braai to mark the end of the week with the team and guests. The property also provides a golf practice putting green and a proper boule/petanque track.
Free WiFi is available at the main homestead and entertainment areas only.
Three daily meals are provided. You will make your own breakfast and lunch. Both vegetarian & vegan options, as well as any special dietary requirements, are available.