Frequently Asked Questions.
Here are some commonly asked questions and their answers.
How do I apply to become a CAFG Volunteer?
You can fill the application form here!
How do I choose a project?
Click ‘Find a Project’ then choose a country of your preference e.g. Uganda, select volunteer program e.g. teaching in Kenya. You will find program descriptions, requirements, accommodation details, country information, and the associated costs. Once you have decided on a program you can click on ‘Apply Now’ to start the application process. We will get in touch with you within 12-24 hours and let you know if your application has been accepted. Further instructions will be shared with you through emails.
Why should I pay to volunteer?
Good question! A lot of people are initially surprised when they realize they have to pay to volunteer. However, the cost of volunteering includes program funding, accommodation, food, airport pickup, volunteer program related transport on ground and in country support – basically everything you need to support you while you give your time and effort to a worthy project. When you consider the costs you might incur at a hotel or eating at restaurants, the costs are minimal.
Once I pay the Registration Fee, what happens next?
As soon as your Registration Fee has been received, we send your application details to our local nonprofit for confirmation. Within 12-24 hours we share an email to arrange a 3 way call between CAFG volunteer, coordinator and your host organization contact person for the interview. Once you are matched to your project, we give you information you’ll need about your chosen destination, general program details and most importantly, a step-by-step guide to help you get everything sorted for the trip. You will then be able to start preparing for your trip.
What does it cost?
Volunteers cover their Program and Registration fees, Flights, Insurance, Visas and Vaccination and Spending Money. Program fees are specific to each placement and are directly the cost of hosting a volunteer. They are displayed under the ‘Fees’ section for each program on the website. The registration fee is US$299 for new volunteers and discount is given per individual basis for volunteers already registered with us.
How far in advance do I need to apply?
We suggest that volunteer registers as early as possible to allow ample time for preparations. 2-3 weeks in advance is ideal to adequately prepare for this type of trip.
What skills and qualifications do I need to volunteer?
This is totally dependent on the program you choose, and specific requirements are detailed on each program description. We have specialized programs such as Healthcare, Medical, Teaching, Business, etc. that require you hold relevant qualifications and experience within that field. You will need to provide an updated CV/Resume. We require a Volunteer to be open-minded and have a true and honest desire to help. Creativity and the ability to adapt are preferable skills that will be considered in your volunteer evaluation process.
Can I participate in multiple programs?
Yes! Volunteers are welcome to join as many programs as they wish, consecutively or otherwise as long as they meet the minimum requirements for each program.
How old do I need to be?
Our minimum age requirement is 22 – old enough to have completed an undergraduate degree. We feel students and young adults above this age have some experience with volunteer assignments and are also mature enough to handle cultural shocks which have proved to be major roadblocks in the successful completion of such programs.
What are the benefits in volunteering with CAFG?
CAFG will help you use your skills to help others and make a real lasting difference to communities in developing countries by matching you with the right non-profit organisation. Our strategy is we understand the REAL needs of non-profits and facilitate a REAL partnership with them to ensure REAL impact at the end of your volunteer program.
Will I be safe?
Safety of our volunteers is number one priority. The fact that CAFG is based in East Africa and our decade experience in volunteering sector makes us truly understand the working environment, we are better positioned to handle all safety issues.
You can refer to Links to embassies’ guidance for Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, and Rwanda to be reassured on the political situation and public safety.
We also work closely with our partner organizations to understand the local security and safety arrangements and only provide programs where we have carried out a thorough safety assessment.
However, traveling in developing countries may pose security risks. Any security threats are explained in great detail during orientation and in the volunteer handbook that will be given to you at the beginning of the volunteer program. A CAFG staff member will be your point of contact during your assignment, so if at any time you need assistance, we will be available to guide you.
What happens if I get sick/ill while I’m volunteering?
Getting sick whilst volunteering in a developing country, especially for long periods of time, is almost guaranteed and comes hand-in-hand with exposure to new foods and the ‘relaxed’ food hygiene practices that you will inevitably notice when volunteering abroad.
You need to alert your immediate supervisor at the host organization for any symptoms however small it may be. You’re country coordinator will arrange with your host organization for the best medical care in any of the specialized health facilities proved to handle international travelers. In the volunteer handbook and during orientation all these safety issues are described extensively.
We recommend that you contact your doctor for medical advice and check on the emergency medical kit equipment that you should carry and have with you at all times.
What about Malaria?
Malaria is a serious and sometimes fatal disease caused by a parasite that can infect a certain type of mosquito which feeds on humans. East African countries are among the most with breeding centers for malaria. Be aware that volunteering with CAFG could expose you to the risk of malaria.
How Can I Prevent Malaria?
Take an anti-malaria drug.
Anti-Malaria Drugs: It is important that you visit your health-care provider 4–6 weeks before travel for a prescription for an ant malarial drug based on your travel itinerary and medical history. Anti-malarial drugs are available by prescription only. Some anti-malarial drugs can be started the day before travel and so last-minute travelers can still benefit from a visit to their Travel Doctor before traveling. Obtain your prescription before you travel rather than at your destination.
Prevent Mosquito Bites: Mosquitoes that transmit malaria bite between dusk and dawn. Staying indoors during these times. If outdoors, wear a long-sleeved shirt, long pants, and a hat. Apply insect repellent to exposed skin only; do not use under clothing.
Are there any Language requirements?
English is an official language for all East African Countries, but don’t worry if you do not speak it perfectly. Keep in mind that locals appreciate and like it very much when foreigners try to learn and speak some words or phrases of their native language.
What type of volunteer work can I do?
Examples of volunteer projects under Health you will participate in:
- Planning and implementing community health programs:
- Informing about sanitation and hygiene, reproductive health, HIV testing and counseling
- Disease awareness and prevention programs
- Improving access to healthcare
- Resources mobilization and capacity building:
- Organization, process, people, skills, and financing to sustain and amplify impact in communities over time.
- Access to safe water in Uganda
- HIV education
- Testing and counseling in Tanzania
- Building capabilities of healthcare organizations and health workers to prevent and treat non-communicable diseases (NCDs)
Examples of volunteer projects under Education:
- Motivational and performance improvement in primary and secondary schools
- Lesson planning and preparation, checking pupils’ work
- Visiting parents for discussion on children performance
- Extracurricular activities and undertaking professional development.
Examples of volunteer projects under Social Economic Development:
- Empowering people in communities to start income generating grassroots initiatives and support them to identify opportunities, evaluate feasibility and develop business plans.
What are the basic prerequisites to volunteer with CAFG?
Volunteer requirements vary from project to project. The majority of projects only requirement an ability to speak English, a clean criminal background, and a willingness to use your skills to help others.
For our Medical and Healthcare projects, volunteers must be qualified or training in a relevant medical field and documentation to confirm this must be presented to our local team on arrival at orientation and a license to work must be obtained from the local Health authorities in each country of East Africa at an additional cost. You will be guided after your registration.
Can I volunteer with a friend(s) or a partner?
Yes, friends and couples are welcome to volunteer together and our local team can ensure that you are placed in the same accommodation. However if your professions are different, you may not be able to work on the same project.
Can I volunteer with a group of students, colleagues or friends?
CAFG hosts corporate volunteering. Schools and youth groups can also apply but will be considered on a case to case basis. We recommend that school and youth groups be accompanied by a qualified and experienced supervisor from their college/university/group.
Do I require a visa to travel to the country I wish to volunteer in?
Every volunteer traveling to East Africa must have a Visa. Please contact your nearest embassy for the country you are traveling to for further guidance.
How do I obtain a criminal background check?
To participate in any of our volunteer programs, all volunteers are required to provide criminal background check documentation to our local team during their program orientation. As a first step in obtaining a criminal background check, you should contact your local police station to inquire what the process is in your country. To ensure that the BG check you obtain meets your CAFG Program requirements, you can contact CAFG volunteer coordinator in the respective country of your preference.
Do I need travel insurance?
Travel insurance is mandatory in order to volunteer with CAFG. We do not include travel insurance in our fees. While CAFG does everything it can to ensure your trip to East Africa goes smoothly, it is imperative to ensure you have adequate travel insurance in case you fall sick, your bags go missing, or something is stolen. CAFG will help you to find the best insurance cover for medical emergencies, emergency evacuation, trip cancellation, personal belongings and personal liability.
Which vaccinations will I require?
The vaccinations you require will depend on the vaccinations you have taken previously and also based on your doctor’s advice. Vaccination for Yellow Fever is mandatory to travel to any East African Country. A full list of recommended and required vaccinations is provided in your Program Guide, which you will receive once you register for your volunteer program.
What is the accommodation and meals like?
The type of accommodation and meals provided on CAFG programs vary from country to country and from area to area. Once you register you will receive details for each volunteer program.
Will I be working with other volunteers?
Sometimes you may work with groups of both local and international volunteer. In other cases you will work independently based on the volunteer program you choose.
Can I go traveling and sightseeing on the weekends during my volunteer program?
Volunteers are like any other staffs at our organization. You will have your free time and weekends available to explore more of your host country and our local team will be happy to provide recommendations for tours or trips that you can take. We understand that many of our volunteers wish to visit and experience sites like regular travelers.
Do you offer certificate after completing my volunteer program?
Yes. CAFG offers a Certificate of Volunteering after completing the program. This certificate can be a valuable addition to your resume as many employers recognize that volunteering is beneficial for personal and professional development, as well as cross cultural competence.