Use your photography skills for a good cause during this humanitarian photography project in Livingstone or Nkhata Bay! It’s an exciting opportunity to learn new skills, document the work of grassroots charities, and enjoy spending time in one of these stunning places.

You’ll start your program with a one-week workshop by humanitarian photographer Anna Lusty. This workshop will teach you all you need to know about nonprofit photography in an African context. From the second week, you’ll take on one-week photography assignments at nonprofit organizations, and document their work. The projects you’re photographing could, for instance, be focused on education, early childhood development, female empowerment, sports education, food security, or animal welfare. After each week, you’ll have the opportunity to review your project with Anna, and to prepare for the next. Weekends are time off, and a chance to explore your wonderful surroundings in either Malawi or Zambia. You can join this photography volunteer program for 2 to 4 weeks, and there are regular start dates.


As a photographer on this humanitarian photography program, you’ll be part of Penda Trust, an organisation that uses photography as a tool to drive positive change. Based in Cape Town, Penda Trust offers free photography to grassroots nonprofits, so that they have the right visual tools for their communication and fundraising programs. These images are donated to the nonprofits, and they are regularly used for exhibitions or online campaigns to help raise awareness for their causes. The nonprofits Penda Trust supports have a wide range of focus areas; from environmental and animal welfare, to social development and female empowerment.



This humanitarian photography project will kick off with a one-week workshop by humanitarian photographer Anna Lusty. She’ll teach you all about nonprofit photography; how to approach it in the most effective way, how to document the essence of a cause, and how to be culturally sensitive in an African context. The workshop will be partly theoretical, and partly practical; Anna will take you to a number of nearby charities so that you can start photographing and put any new skills into practice. It will also give you a good sense of cultural nuances, and an understanding of the issues that the communities are facing.

You’ll have the weekend to relax or explore your surroundings, and from week two, you’ll embark on individual photography assignments. Each week, we’ll pair you with a nonprofit organization that’s doing important work, and that could benefit from having some quality photography. You’ll have time to learn about the organization’s mission, get a good feel for its projects, and document it as you go along. You’ll be working in a small group of 2 or 3 photographers, and you’ll spend about half of your time photographing, and the other half on editing your work.

After each week, Anna will sit down with you to assess your project, review your work, and prepare you for the next assignment.


  • To qualify for this humanitarian photography program, you need to have basic photography skills to join this program. (You don’t have to be a seasoned pro, but you do need to have a good camera, decent technical skills, and some experience.) We will adapt your projects to your photography level
  • An ability to work fairly independently
  • A passion for using photography as a tool for positive change
  • Bring your own DSLR or mirror-less camera. Nice to have: range of lenses (but not a must)

You’ll stay at a popular backpackers in the northern town of Nkhata Bay. Located on Lake Malawi, with views of palm trees and green-blue water, this lodge has an idyllic location and a relaxed vibe. You’ll enjoy a private beach, beautiful gardens, a lakeside bar, and communal spaces. The rooms are comfortable 6 bed dormitories, although there are options of upgrading to single chalets (at an extra fee). The lodge is a hub for people who are volunteering their time at different communities and environmental projects in the area, so you can expect to share this space with like-minded people.

Safety & Support

Safety & Support

Malawi is considered to be safe for tourists, however, being a developing country with poverty, there is petty crime. Keep your belongings securely stored and close to you, don’t walk alone in the dark, and report any suspicious behavior that you may see to the accommodation/host organization.



You’ll be able to use your phone in Malawi with roaming data turned on or a local SIM card if your phone is unlocked. Visit Airtel or TNM stands for a SIM and purchase 1000MK ‘Airtime’ (for calls), and a data bundle. Wi-Fi is not an amenity offered in Malawi, so you will need to buy data bundles from a provider for work and personal use.



A meal package is included for the first month that suffices for two meals per day (breakfast and lunch/dinner). For the next months you can either book a meal package or eat locally. There is also a small kitchen available for basic cooking. Meals are prepared through Mkana Cafe, the restaurant on-site. The menu includes many international dishes and is also vegetarian-friendly. Make sure to notify us in advance of any allergies/dietary needs.

Location details

Location details

Nkhata Bay is a lively ferry port on the shores of Lake Malawi with a bustling market which is one of the biggest cultural influences on the area. It offers many activities, such as snorkeling, boat/kayak trips, energetic football matches, and beach ventures. Explore Malawi via coach buses and boats, especially the iconic Ilala Ferry, which has been active since 1951.


Fee Breakdown

You’ll arrive on a Sunday, to start your workshop on the Monday. You can join us for 2 to 4 weeks.

Start dates

Malawi: May 19, 2024

Livingstone: TBC (July / August 2024)

What you\'ll pay (2024 rates)

Livingstone (2024)

2 WEEKS USD 2,750

3 WEEKS USD 3,200

4 WEEKS USD 3,750

Nkhata Bay (2024)

2 WEEKS USD 2,950

3 WEEKS USD 3,550

4 WEEKS USD 4,150


  • Accommodation
  • Meals (the amount of meals a day that are included varies per location)
  • Airport transfers upon arrival and departure
  • Workshops and mentorship by Anna Lusty
  • All transport as per your program itinerary
  • Assistance with your visa arrangement & other preparations
  • Supervision and support during your stay
  • Troubleshooting if needed


  • Flights
  • Visa and medical/travel insurance costs for the duration of your placement – must include cover for repatriation
  • Drinks, snacks, and items of personal nature (f.e. curios, gifts, clothing)
  • Meals during the weekend
  • Costs for additional excursions or activities


Some of our most commonly asked questions for programs in Malawi.

What can I expect from an internship in Malawi?

You can expect to foster a unique connection with the local community, as well as having many opportunities to explore various projects during your internship. If you wish to know more about what to expect, make sure to read our blog from a previous intern who traveled to Malawi!

How long can I do an internship in Malawi?

The minimum length of our internships in Malawi is two months, but the ideal length is closer to four months, if possible. This ensures you have an adequate amount of time to make a tangible impact. Luckily, the length of our programs is customizable so you can apply for a summer, remote, hybrid, or gap-year internship!

Can I get university credit for an internship in Malawi?

Yes, but you must ensure with your supervisor that your university approves this. You can also purchase transfer credits to add onto your internship experience.

How can I prepare for an internship in Malawi?

Personally, you can prepare by learning about the history and culture of Malawi and reflecting on your internship goals, and we’ll be here to help you with the rest! Ask us any questions you may have about placement logistics, matchmaking, check-ins, advice on visa/insurance, or anything else you may think of. If you wish to know more about preparing for your internship, you can check out our ultimate guide to NGO internships in Africa!

Will I receive a stipend during my Roots internship?

Unfortunately, it is not possible to receive any kind of stipend while interning for a nonprofit organization. Your internship will be unpaid so we’ve put together a few tips on how to fund your internship. There will be opportunities for professional and personal growth and you’ll leave with a wealth of knowledge that is invaluable!


LOCATION: Malawi & Zambia
PROJECT FOCUS: Photography
TASK FOCUS: Humanitarian Photography
LENGTH: 2-4 weeks
COST: From USD 2150


“At first I didn't know what to expect so I just convinced myself that it will be all work and no fun, but secretly I had hoped that it will be an adventure of learning and experiences. Which in the end it was more than I could have imagined. It has opened my eyes and mind to a whole new photography direction, as well as social skills with people and organizations It is something unexplainable, that has to be experienced to understand. As well as the support and communication from Roots really calmed my nerves.”

Loume, South AfricaHumanitarian Photography Program

“I think this program will really help my photography career, and the whole experience has also made me step out of my comfort zone and has helped me become a new person. It definitely surpassed my expectations because I thought it was just going to be a quick little class and a few days out in the field but it was so much more than that. Every day we were shooting somewhere new and learning something. Meeting new people everyday and just having the most fun ever.”

Maxx, USAHumanitarian Photography Program


  • Learn how to approach nonprofit photography, and about the role visual media can play in the nonprofit sector
  • Document the work of nonprofit organisations doing important work in areas such as poverty relief, education, skill development, gender equality, and animal welfare
  • Build a unique and extensive portfolio of images
  • Make an impact by donating a selection of your images to each organisation, so that they can use them to raise awareness (and funds) for their cause
  • Spend time in Cape Town, Livingstone, or Nkhata Bay, all stunning destinations for different reasons
  • Enjoy exploring your stunning African surroundings in your time off


If you’re ready to apply for this internship, here’s what to do:


Fill in the application form (it will show in a new screen) which includes sharing your CV to us.



We’ll set up a call with you to go through your application.


If we feel it’s a good match, we’ll set up a call between you and the supervisor for this internship.


If everyone’s happy, we’ll provisionally confirm your placement! We’ll then send you the invoice for the deposit, getting started with the booking process and all the info you need.


Only once we receive payment of the deposit your placement will be confirmed.


Or if you’d just like to ask us some questions about this internship first, just fill in the contact form below. We’ll be happy to assist!


nonprofit photography internship

Open for applications

Nonprofit Photography Internship

  • Min. 3 weeks
  • Cape Town, South Africa
Sharpen your photography skills and contribute to vital nonprofit initatives, capturing compelling visuals that amplify their impactful stories.
Find out more


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