What is a social impact internship?
A social impact internship is an opportunity for individuals to work within organizations or communities aiming to address social or environmental challenges. Get involved in social impact work at an education center, in a small community near Livingstone. It’s a vibrant hub for all ages to learn, connect, and grow together.
Your role will be tailored to your skills, but you can expect to take on varied tasks and responsibilities and become an integral part of this program. The scenic surroundings are breathtaking; your workplace, situated atop a hill near town, offers views of the Victoria Falls’ mist. Weekends offer thrilling safaris, Zambezi boat trips, and adventurous experiences in Livingstone. Sounds good? Find out what to expect from a social impact internship in Zambia – and what two recent interns said about their experience.
Here’s what to expect from your internship:
1. Learning about the organization
One of the nonprofit organizations you can intern with in Zambia is The Baobuyu Learning Center. Founded in 2016, this center is based in Mwandi, a community just outside of Livingstone. It serves as a pre-school during mornings for children aged two to six, and during afternoons and weekends, workshops are available to adults in the community on a range of topics, including female empowerment and skill development.
“Each workshop was filled with life and a deep curiosity, excitement and motivation to learn that could not be fabricated. The team here is incredible and I feel so lucky I was
able to be a part of this school which acts as a guiding light for so many people in Mwandi and Zambia,” says Megan , who joined the center as a Sustainable Development Intern from the US.
2. Your role as an intern
While the cause you’ll contribute to as an intern is education, your individual focus can vary. You can work on communications, marketing, or fundraising, or you can focus on developing educational materials and designing and running workshops. It depends on your interests, skills, and academic background. Though since you’ll be part of a small team, there’s a good chance that roles overlap, and there’s flexibility for roles to be fluid.
“During my 4 short weeks I spent in Zambia, I was quick to jump into the activities going on at Baobuyu,” says Shelby, a recent intern (also from the US) who focused on education and female empowerment during her internship in Zambia. “I loved working with our Girl Power group and did everything from teaching them how to make friendship bracelets and banana pancakes to diving into conversations about peer pressure, healthy relationships, and pregnancy. I also led workshops with our teachers where we discussed creating meaningful and memorable lesson plans, the art of teaching and student advocacy, and navigating Microsoft PowerPoint. I really enjoyed engaging in some of the administrative duties as well such as program management, scheduling, creating components of an active business plan, and grant writing.”
Whatever your role, you can expect to get an immersive experience that will give you a great understanding of the day to day running of a small nonprofit organization. “Baobuyu is such a light in this community and now in my life,” explains Shelby. “I am so grateful for the opportunities I have had and the wonderful friends I have made here. I can’t wait to come back soon. I’m excited to see the girls, teachers, and her new friends continue to empower themselves and their communities in the future.”
3. Time off as an intern in Livingstone
During these internships, you’ll have plenty of time to explore your stunning surroundings. And stunning they are! To start, there’s the Victoria Falls; a natural phenomenon that, when you visit it up-close, leaves you in awe, inspired, and usually pretty soaked. Evenings can be spent watching the sunset on the Zambezi River, while hippos pop up around you and elephants roam on the river bank. And then there’s a wealth of safaris and water-based activities you can embark on.
Megan made good use of these opportunities. “On my weekends, I spent my time doing a variety of different things,” she says. “Livingstone is a very social town and we had braais (cookouts), watched the sunset in different stunning locations, visited the falls, hiked, visited local markets, relaxed (very occasionally), went water rafting (which was especially amazing) and on a safari to Botswana, which I consider some of the best days of my life.”
“Each time I went to Victoria Falls I was reminded of the sheer power and strength our Earth holds, but I do not believe the falls were placed here by accident; they are a direct resemblance of the people who inhabit the land which surrounds them. I learned so much about Zambia and the people who live here and feel incredibly inspired by the resilience and kindness every person here holds in their heart.”
Other internship opportunities in Zambia
Apart from our education-focused internships in Livingstone, we also offer internships with an animal welfare charity that deals with stray or neglected dogs and cats that roam the streets in this town. Within this small but dedicated nonprofit, you can focus on nonprofit management or fundraising and communications.
How to find an internship in Zambia?
Interested to apply for a social impact internship? Here’s what to do:
- Browse through all our internship opportunities in Zambia and find the program that suits you best.
- Fill out our online application form and send your CV and motivation letter to firstname.lastname@example.org
- We’ll be in touch to schedule an interview, so that we can find out a bit more about you and what type of work experience you’re looking for. It’s also an opportunity for you to ask questions.
- If we find a good match, we’ll put you forward to the person who would be your internship supervisor in Zambia, and you’ll have a second interview.
- If everyone’s happy, we’ll confirm your internship, and help you prepare for this exciting experience.