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SOS Children's Village in Zanzibar

Internship and Volunteering
Volunteering and internships are possible in the areas of Education at the pre-school/Kindergarten, Social Work, Medicine/Care and PR/Communication at the SOS Children's Village, Zanzibar.

Project Details

The Zanzibar branch of the worldwide SOS Children's Villages is a leading organization in Zanzibar for social, educational and medical services. At the village 10-12 children who don't have a family live in a family-like situation along with a foster mother. The villages comprise of 10 such families; thus a total of around 100-120 children and youth are living at the village. Furthermore, the SOS Children's Village's high-standard educational facilities are open for other children: The kindergarten is attended by around 220 children, the primary and secondary school has a total of around 900 students. The social outreach program "FSP" (Family-strengthening program) reaches out to more than 1400 needy families all over Zanzibar. The SOS Children Village's Medical Centre provides general medical services to the surrounding areas of Zanzibar city and also specialises in Maternity and Family Planning.
Volunteer and internship placements are possible at the pre-school/kindergarten, with the family-strengthening program, at the medical centre, and supporting SOS Children's Village Zanzibar with PR, communication and marketing.
The SOS Children's Village of Zanzibar operates a pre-school/kindergarten of very high standard at attractive and well-equipped facilities within the spacious, green and safe campus of the SOS Children's Village. It is attended by around 220 Children aged 4-6, in two shifts (morning and afternoon shift). From the children, around 80 are orphans or vulnerable children staying at the children's village and the others are the children of families from Zanzibar Town.
The children learn how to read and write and they learn English, making use of the innovative "Jolly Phonics" technique, which has the 42 phonics as the starting point to create words and sentences. For this program, there are around 150 computer work spaces available for the kids.
As a volunteer or intern, you support the educators with their activities with the children. Placements are possible throughout the year.
In the field of Social Work, Volunteers and Interns will participate in the "Family Strengthening Program" (FSP). This program has existed for over 20 years, giving holistic support to more than 1400 needy families on the whole island to improve their living conditions. This includes, among other things, an advisory on financial planning, children's education, assistance in employment opportunities for parents, health care and family planning.
Volunteers and interns from the field of social work can support the professionals of SOS with their work, whereby the work includes to identify more families eligible for the program, to analyze their needs and to create a customised plan for the support of the relevant families. It comes in very handy when volunteers have knowledge of Swahili.
The SOS Children's Village also operates a Medical Centre, which is one of the facilities of highest standard in Zanzibar.  It offers general medical services and is open 7 days per week from 8am to 9pm. The permanent general practicioner sees around 30 patients per day who are typically from the neighbouring parts of Zanzibar Town. On Thursdays, a gynaecologist and on Fridays a pediatrician are on duty. An eye clinic is currently being installed where an ophthalmologist will be available once per week. Most treatments are performed on an outpatient basis, but there are also three beds for short-term inpatient observation and treatment.
In addition to the general medical ward, there is a focus on pregnant women, newborns and family planning. Women due for delivery are examined, including ultrasound (pre-natal), and mother and child are provided after-birth-care (post-natal) such as vaccinations. The clinic is attended by around 50-60 pregnant woman and women with newborns per day. Deliveries are not carried out at SOS' Medical Centre, but Fatima, a midwife comes to assist delivery in the private homes of mothers, or accompanies the women to give birth at bigger hospitals such as the state hospital Mnazi Mmoja. The newborns and infants are vaccinated at the centre, weighed and examined. In addition, advice on hygiene and family planning is given.
The centre's team includes a general practicioner, the specialists who are available once per week, two nurses, one midwife, one laboratory technician, one pharmacist and two administrative staff.
The SOS Medical Centre facilitates volunteer placements for healthcare professionals (doctors, nurses, midwifes). If they want to work independently without the supervision of a local professional, an accreditation from the Zanzibar Health Ministry is necessary that we will arrange as part of the service package. The cost for the accreditation is around 90 USD. Pre-medical, pre-nursing and pre-midwife placements as well as student internships of the same subject areas are possible. 
In Marketing, Communication and PR, the task for interns and volunteers is to support the Head of Public Relations.
Basically, there are two areas of activity: Firstly, the communication between the children and their sponsors, who fund the care and education of the orphan and ensure improved living, and live mostly abroad. The development of the child must be documented by texts and photos; direct contact between the child and foster parents are encouraged. On the other hand, the task is to promote the organization and its goals to the local population and to achieve donations and sponsorships for orphans closer to home.
Helpful for this activity are computer skills, particularly, the use of the Internet, knowledge of desktop publishing and layout, and digital photography to make the reports, flyers and brochures described above. Basic technology for this is available, but it is better if volunteers/interns bring their own laptop with appropriate software for media production.

Our volunteer Marco has done a very professional video about the SOS Children's Village in Zanzibar; you can watch in the tab "Video".
In the Children's Villages, 10-12 children live in a family-like situation along with a foster mother. The villages comprise of about 10 such families; about 100-120 children and young people from various backgrounds live with foster mothers who educate them. In a "family", children and young people of different ages and sexes are mixed, in order to make it as close as possible to the actual composition of a natural family. The task of these women is to prepare the children for life, in gaining independence as young adults and give them emotional stability. The women live with the children at the orphanage for about 15-20 years, and are aged around 35-55 years. The School of SOS in Zanzibar is attended by approximately 900 students.
Info Box
Location: Zanzibar Town, Zanzibar
Availability: All year, Start date flexible
Minimum Duration: 1 week
Maximum Duration: 12 months
Language Requirements: English
Further Languages Of Advantage: Swahili
Accommodation at SOS, Shared House, Host Family, Hotel
Supervision Possible: Yes
Qualification Of Supervisor: Social Worker, Nurse
Minimum Qualification Of Intern:
No formal qualification required
Further Contribution To Project: 200 USD one-time contribution
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Volunteering Possible: Yes
Required Qualification For Volunteer: None
Further Contribution To Project: 200 USD one-time contribution
Professional Conduct, Do you have the "right" attitude?

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