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Why travel to the warm heart of Africa?

There’s more to internships in Malawi than just doing vital work. There are a hundred reasons why Malawi is an ideal internship destination. The country has famously hospitable people, an array of vibrant cultures, and incredible sights. It has diverse landscapes, of rainforests, mountains, and shimmering lakes, that are filled with incredible wildlife, including healthy populations of all the big five. It also has Lake Malawi, the third largest lake in Africa, which offers some of the best freshwater snorkeling and diving in the continent.

Above all else, Malawi is one of the poorest countries in the world and it faces many challenges. Therefore, NGO internships in Malawi offer incredible opportunities to join grassroots nonprofit work that makes a real difference in people’s lives. There are few places on the planet where you will see the impact of your work as much as in Malawi.

If you are looking for an internship that will give you valuable professional development, great experience, the chance to make an impact, and help you to explore new cultures, then internships in Malawi are a great option. Now let’s explore all the top reasons to intern abroad in Malawi, and some of our best current internship opportunities in Malawi!

interns holding a diy bucket with a local in Malawi

Why intern in Malawi?

The answer to the question “Why intern abroad in Malawi?”, will be different for different people. This country has so much to offer and there are so many current internship opportunities in Malawi. So that means all kinds of people are attracted to Malawi!

You might be drawn by the natural scenery of the country, the safaris, the SCUBA, the warm people, the rich history and culture, or the exciting work possibilities. As a developing country, there is a high concentration of grassroots nonprofit organizations in Malawi doing important work. You can find NGO internships in Malawi in a range of academic focuses and receive professional development in a variety of roles, all while experiencing the unique challenges of nonprofit work.

Read through our top reasons to intern abroad in this country so you can find your own answer to “Why intern in Malawi?”

1. Gain valuable experience.

If you ask someone why you should intern abroad, it’s likely he or she will say so you can gain hands-on experience in your chosen field. If this sounds like what you’re looking for, then you should definitely consider a unique country like Malawi as your internship destination.

Internships in Malawi can give you valuable experience in a choice of fields: development, education, healthcare, tourism, and more. You’ll work alongside experienced professionals, learning from their expertise as together you take on challenging projects.

More than experienced, nonprofits are staffed by passionate people who believe in what they do. Working as part of these teams, you will experience the challenges and rewards of working in the nonprofit sector whilst developing soft employable skills like resilience, adaptability, and enterprise.

interns teaching local kids in Malawi

2. Boost your CV

Regardless of what field of work or which role you fill, NGO internships in Malawi will make your CV stand out for all the right reasons. Internships abroad immediately indicate to an employer you have independence, a philanthropic mindset, and a belief in your own capacity to make a difference in the world.

Malawi is a developing country with a different culture and way of life. By working in Malawi, you will show employers that you are able to adapt to new environments and challenging situations. It also shows you have an international perspective, which can be a valuable asset in today’s globalized world. Most of all, it shows employers that you are passionate about making a difference in the world.

Find out how nonprofit internships can boost your career

3. Make an impact.

This is the first reason that comes to mind when thinking about why to intern in Malawi. On top of all the professional development and travel excitement, you get the chance to make the world a better place!

The vast majority of Malawi lives off of subsistence culture with 71% of its population living under the poverty line. With internships in Malawi, you’ll get the chance to help the country break the cycle of poverty, uplift communities, and make a real, tangible improvement in people’s lives.

For the animal lovers and eco-warriors out there, there are also amazing conservation based initiatives operating in Malawi.

4. Explore a new culture.

If you’re interested in learning about new cultures and experiencing different ways of life, Malawi has a veritable buffet for you to pick from. The country is home to a number of different ethnic groups, including: Chewa, Tumbuka, Yao, and Ngoni, just to name a few. Each has its own unique culture and traditions, but there is a common thread among the varied cultures of Malawi: they all place a high value on sense community and family. This is perhaps where the country earns its reputation for warmth and hospitality.

locals and interns holding a food smiling for a photo

5. Make valuable connections and lifelong friends.

One of the best reasons to intern abroad is to build an international professional network. Whether it’s your supervisor, a colleague, another intern, or a local, you never know who you might meet during internships in Malawi. More crucially, you never know how those contacts might come in handy later in your career. You might meet a future employer, employee, business partner, or just someone to turn to for advice.

As well as professional contacts, you’ll make great friendships. As you live and work in a foreign country, you will inevitably forge strong connections with colleagues at the organization and other interns as you support each other through the highs and lows of nonprofit work.

6. Experience the thrill of grassroots nonprofit work.

This benefit of internships is often overlooked. You won’t find a work environment anywhere in the world like that of NGO internships in Malawi.

Due to Malawi being at such a pivotal stage in its economic development, there are many grassroots organizations operating in Malawi. Working with a small grassroots organization certainly comes with its challenges, but there are great benefits too. For example, there is much more potential for vertical movement in smaller organizations than in larger corporations; this means you’ll get to take on more challenging exciting work, and perhaps even develop your own projects.

7. Have fun!

This is an important factor to consider when asking yourself “why intern in Malawi?” Malawi is a beautiful country with so much to offer visitors, so the opportunity to explore the country, go on adventures and have fun should not be dismissed.

locals and interns happy together in a beach in Malawi

Top Internship Opportunities in Malawi

Now that you’re convinced of why Malawi is such a great internship destination, you’re ready to start investigating internships in Malawi. Here are a few of the best current internship opportunities in Malawi we’re offering to get your imagination going:


Location: Lilongwe
Academic focus: Wildlife conservation
Length: 2 weeks min.
Price: Starting from £1370

This is an ideal internship in Malawi for a young veterinary student or graduate to gain hands-on experience working with the iconic wildlife of Africa. You’ll join a wildlife rescue and rehabilitation center and assist with health checks, diagnostics, care plans, and emergency operations on animals, such as baboons, wild cats, and antelope. You’ll gain incredible practical experience as a vet, whilst gaining insight into conservation issues in Malawi.


Location: Nkhata Bay
Academic focus: Accounting
Length: 8 weeks min.
Cost: Starting from £1272

Here’s a chance to join a fantastic social enterprise doing valuable work. This organization creates reusable sanitary products and runs educational outreach programs to destigmatize menstruation and promote sexual health and hygiene. This internship program places you in the organization’s finance department, where you’d play a role in donation management, creating annual reports, fundraising, and completing bookkeeping activities.

Learn more about what to expect from interning with a social enterprise

a man checking statistics in a tablet


Location: Nkhata Bay
Academic focus: Eco-Conservation and agriculture
Length: 8 weeks min.
Cost: Starting from £1424

This internship will give you the opportunity to travel to the coast of Lake Malawi and help devise, maintain, and teach permaculture strategies in the local community. You’ll play a big part in a small team getting the chance to work on all kinds of projects. You could focus your time on the educational aspects of the organization, maintenance of permaculture gardens, or assist with scientific research, data collection, and data analysis. One reason why Malawi is such an ideal internship destination is for the pristine, untouched nature, so this internship is your chance to help keep it that way!


Location: Nkhata Bay
Academic focus: Health and medicine
Length: 12 weeks min.
Cost: Starting from £1701

This is one of the most challenging, but rewarding, NGO internships in Malawi we offer. You’ll gain hands-on experience in health education and HIV support as you help develop this nonprofit initiative and measure its impact on the ground. Your duties will include coordinating and planning group meetings for people who are HIV positive, helping to develop and update educational materials, and monitoring the progress of the program.


Location: Nkhata Bay
Academic focus: Community development
Length: 8 weeks min.
Cost: Starting from £1424

You’ll have the chance to get involved with a variety of tasks and projects working as part of this hub for social impact initiatives. Serving as the center for a nonprofit network, this eco-lodge connects educational, environmental, and health support programs in the local community, enabling them to share knowledge and resources. As an intern your job would be to support the growth and development of this network, which could mean a number of things, from developing effective communications tools for the community to running digital media workshops.

Learn what to expect from a community development internship in Malawi

locals and interns smiling for a group photo in Malawi

Why Malawi is an ideal internship destination

Now do you see why Malawi is such a prime spot for internships? You’re at the start of an exciting journey! Finding, applying for, and completing internships in Malawi can take time and a lot of work, but for every challenge you face you’ll be rewarded two-fold.

If you’d like a little help with some of the legwork involved in arranging an internship in Malawi then don’t hesitate to get in touch. With Roots interns you’ll be in safe hands as we help to find you an internship that’s the perfect balance between professional development and meaningful work.

Investigate available internship opportunities in Malawi


This blog was written by Tom Rusbridge