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Learn French in Senegal


Although the tribal language of Wolof is the mother tongue of most Senegalese people in Saint Louis, French is the main language of daily communication in Senegal. Volunteers living and working in Senegal will find that French is a necessity when it comes to buying items in a shop, chatting with your placement supervisor, or joking with your host family.

A man wearing traditional clothing plays an instrument in Senegal

If you are not confident in starting a placement before improving your French, a four-week long intensive language course is a sensible and worthwhile plan. We provide 60 hours of one-on-one classes over a four-week period with fully qualified French language teachers. During your first lesson your teacher will assess your ability, and from then on the classes will be tailored to your level.

Most of the lessons take place at the French Cultural Center, on Saint Louis Island. You will receive free membership to the library and gain free admission to concerts and film nights, which are regularly held at the center.

To supplement your studies you will live with a local host family, where you can put your new vocabulary into practice. Once you have completed a month's study, you could go on to spend some time on a Teaching or Care project. If you are looking for a different volunteer or internship placement, we have a variety of projects available in Senegal.

You can also choose to study French while participating in a volunteer placement. Our 5-hour, 14-hour, or 30-hour French language courses can be done alongside your volunteer placement in Senegal to improve your language skills. If you are planning on volunteering abroad for twelve weeks or more, you could also complete a 60-hour course alongside your placement. For more information please visit our Language Add-ons page.

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