Work at the forefront of rainforest conservation work in Madagascar as part of this exciting volunteer project. Imagine spending your days beneath lush, green canopies, crunching along forest trails, and identifying and researching the animals you encounter.
Madagascar has one of the highest percentages of endemic species on the planet, with over 90% of its animal species and 89% of its plant species found nowhere else in the world. Through collecting data, removing rubbish, and running community initiatives that promote sustainable living, you’ll help protect unique species.
You’ll also get work experience doing things like collecting scientific data on animal and plant life. This will give you valuable insight into what a career in the conservation field could be like for you.
This project is based in the small town of Andasibe. This is the ideal location for conservation work as it’s located close to a large wildlife reserve.
Children aged 3-14 must be accompanied by at least one adult paying full price
We offer discounts for families and groups of friends travelling together. Call us on 1 212 244 7234 for more info.
When you apply you only pay $295, which comes off the total price.
Looking to do more than one project? Call us on 1 212 244 7234 to see if we can offer a discount.
Completely flexible dates
Anyone aged over 16 can join
What's included in the price?
Food (three meals a day)
Travel and medical insurance
Airport pick-up and drop-off
Full induction and orientation by an experienced staff member on arrival
Transport to and from your work placement
In-country support and 24-hour back-up from our team of full-time local staff
Emergency assistance from our international emergency response team
Project equipment and materials, including access to our database with thousands of resources
Training and workshops from our experienced local staff
Regular social events and community activities with other volunteers and interns
Access to our local office with internet connection
Certification of project completion
Access to our alumni services and discounts
Visa support and advice
Fundraising support, including your own personalized fundraising website
Pre-departure preparation by your own specialist Volunteer Advisor
Personalized MyProjectsAbroad website, with all the information you need about your project, accommodation and destination
A free cultural awareness course
Membership to our volunteer social media groups, to share information and to get in touch
A supervisor/mentor at your work placement
Support to help you complete registration or internship documents, if applicable
What's not included?
Visa costs (where applicable)
What rainforest conservation work will I do in Madagascar?
You’ll help support conservation work in an under-resourced national park. By providing manpower, you’ll help keep the park running and protect the diverse species that live there. Here are some of the tasks you’ll do:
- Conduct plant and animal surveys to monitor different species
- Build hides to camp out deep in the rainforest
- Care for and plant trees as part of a reforestation initiative
- Remove invasive alien plant species
- Collect litter during park and community clean-ups
Your work will focus on these main areas:
Plant and animal surveys
A large portion of your time will be spent conducting plant and animal surveys. This involves identifying different species, mapping their locations, and recording details about them. We’ll use this data to write reports about species distribution in the park. This research plays an important role in informing conservation policies in the reserve.
Build hides for night surveys
There are all kinds of interesting species that are out and about at night, like bright yellow Madagascan moon moths. To monitor species at night, you’ll build hides, which are high structures from which you have a 360 degree view of the forest around you.
You’ll spend some nights camped out there, taking turns sleeping and keeping watch for nocturnal creatures scurrying around in the dark.
You’ll also help out in our tree nursery, where we plant indigenous seedlings. Once seedlings are large enough to survive on their own, you can help with planting them in the park.
The national park where we work doesn’t have enough staff to carry out large scale reforestation initiatives. As a volunteer, you’ll provide a much-needed pair of helping hands to help with this work.
Manmade development and natural disasters like floods and fires threaten rainforest vegetation. Not only do trees counteract carbon emissions, but they are a habitat for many of the endemic species in Madagascar.
Remove alien plants
As part of your project work, you’ll also help remove alien plant species from the reserve. You’ll map where you find them and remove them before their seeds spread. Local guides will take you through plant identification lessons to make sure you can distinguish between indigenous and invasive vegetation.
You’ll be involved in cleaning up the national park and nearby communities. You’ll also promote proper waste management by speaking to local people about recycling and building rubbish bins to place around the communities.
Effective waste management is an important part of protecting wildlife. Rubbish can have a devastating effect for animals and it also affects the Madagascan tourism industry. You’ll play an important role in lessening this impact.
Where in Madagascar will I work?
This project is based in Andasibe, a small town in central-eastern Madagascar. The communities here are less developed than you’re used to. You’ll find plenty of rustic-looking structures connected by dirt roads. This is an ideal setting to connect with nature.
Your project work will take place in a local national park. This park is filled with lush vegetation and a variety of different animal species.
During your free time, you can relax on one of the island’s beautiful beaches or visit Tsingy de Bemaraha, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. For a chance to learn more about Madagascar, you can visit the Museum of the Gendarmerie.
We set out the aims and objectives of our projects in documents called Management Plans. We use them to properly plan the work you’ll do. They also help us measure and evaluate our achievements and impact each year.
Ultimately, our Management Plans help us make our projects better. This in turn means you get to be part of something that makes a real impact where it’s needed. Read more about our Management Plans.
Measuring Our Impact
Our projects work towards clear long-term goals, with specific annual objectives. Every volunteer and intern we send to these projects helps us work towards these goals, no matter how long they spend on our projects.
Every year we take a step back and look at how much progress we've made towards these goals. We put together a Global Impact Report, which documents our achievements. Find out more about the impact our global community of volunteers, interns and staff make, and read the latest report.
I absolutely loved my project in the rainforest. We did a bird and lemur census, planted trees, collected seedlings, picked up litter, did path restoration, built bins, and educated local villagers about recycling and waste management. It was such a wonderful experience to work with the locals, learning from them, as well as teaching them.
Rainforest Conservation Volunteering in Madagascar
Meet the team in Madagascar
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