You have gone to a country and cannot find the words to describe it, this has happened to many volunteers in Kenya. Not because the experience has been bad, if not the opposite, they have found a country full of customs, traditions and humble people that makes each day different. In addition to entering its streets, its houses and those typical places where people receive you with their best smile, if you have not experienced those feelings, we recommend you to live even if this volunteer experience is once.
There is much to learn in Kenya, although it may not seem like it, the warmth of its people, the smile that children give you is incomparable and very valuable, so we tell you what you can expect or live in a volunteer in Kenya supporting communities of scarce resources.
WHAT YOU SHOULD THINK BEFORE STARTING YOUR VOLUNTEER ADVENTURE IN KENYA
Once you have confirmed your place in the volunteer project and have your plane tickets, start organizing your suitcase, volunteer guide, organize activities and things that Would you like to do in your volunteering. Ask your friends and family for ideas of educational activities to do with the children. Get in touch with the organization you are traveling and clarify all the doubts you have about the project.
HOW WILL THE ACCOMMODATION AND MY DAY TO DAY IN KENYA?
Living in Nairobi is an incomparable experience. You live with a host family selected by the organization, located in the neighborhood where the project is developed. You will be close enough to walk to the project, most of the time you will be accompanied by your local coordinator or a family member.
In the house you share a room with 1 or 2 more volunteers. All host houses have electricity (but there may be occasional power outages), however, water is scarce and usually very precious. But do not worry! You will have at your disposal the showers with cubes, they are usually very common in these communities.
Therefore, one of the things that matter most to us when you apply to volunteer, is your ability to adapt quickly to new changes and places.
WILL I LIKE FOOD IN KENYA?
The food in your volunteer in Kenya is prepared by the mother of the host house and shared with family members and other volunteers.
At breakfast, they usually give you mandazi (which is a small triangle (donut) of kneaded and fried flour), with tea or milk, sometimes fruits, toasts or vegetables.
While lunches and dinners vary, some days it can be rigid porridge made with cornmeal and spinach, chapati that is flat pancake made with wheat flour and baked on an iron, accompanied by vegetable stews, beans or potatoes .
WHAT CAN I DO IN MY FREE TIME IN NAIROBI?
You do not have to travel so far while in Nairobi, the city offers you a variety of activities such as: visiting the National Museum, going to the elephant orphanage and knowing a little more about the situation of elephants in Kenya, knowing the house where it was recorded the movie Memories of Africa, go through the center of giraffes and taste the authentic Kenyan food at Mama Oliech’s.
WHERE CAN I TRAVEL WEEKENDS?
Kenya is usually a very popular destination for all trips, due to its nature and impressive landscapes. You can take advantage of weekends to make a safari.
You can experience all this by doing a weekend safari in the Masai Mara National Park. You can also take the train and go to the beaches of the Mombasa coast.
WHAT SHOULD I TAKE INTO ACCOUNT WHEN I AM A VOLUNTEER IN KENYA?
You can listenadvice about Kenya, about volunteering, excursions, interviews, listener questions on the podcast “The journey of the volunteer ‘also available iniVoox, iTunes, Spotify and Google podcast .
MONEY AND AUTOMATIC POCKETS
The official currency in Kenya is the Kenyan Shilling. It is recommended that when you arrive at the airport take out only a little for those first days. You will not spend much, since you have everything included (meals, accommodation and pick up at the airport).
You find ATMs in all banks and shopping centers in Kenya. In case you need dollars to pay for an excursion, you can use ATMs or just go to a exchange house.
The weather in Nairobi is usually sunny and not too hot, but at night it is usually cool. The rainy season starts in March to May and continues a bit during October and November. Its summer months are between December to March.
In the host houses you do not have Wi-Fi, but you can access WiFi by buying a SIM card and get a plan for 15 days that is going very well for you to have facebook, instagram, check emails and be connected.
What you carry in your suitcase will depend on the excursions or places you visit. What you can not miss is a jacket for those cool afternoons, a pair of long pants and non-tank tops for the project.
What is necessary to bring for your day to day is:
- Comfortable shoes (sneakers) for your day to day
- Comfortable clothes
- Universal adapter
- Energy battery
- Wet wipes
- Positive attitude and an open mind