Psychology Internship in Cape Town
Gain practical work experience and assist important mental health programs
During this psychology internship in Cape Town, South Africa, you’ll spend your time assisting with counseling sessions and shadowing qualified professionals in the field. Depending on your experience and interests, you’ll be working at children’s centers, safe houses, rehab centers, or facilities that support abuse victims. You’ll get a wealth of exposure to the various elements of counseling, and you’ll be given mentorship throughout the internship. It’s a great way to gain practical work experience, assist important mental health programs, and spend some time in Cape Town, a hugely vibrant and interesting city.
- Destination Cape Town, South Africa
- Type of Organization Nonprofit, community projects
- Work focus Psychology, Social Work
- Length of Internship 8-26 weeks
- Accommodation Dorm room
- Fee As from USD 2,407 (8 weeks)
During this psychology internship in Cape Town, you’ll divide your time between the Ubuntu Center, a community center for children, and various counseling facilities.
Based in Masiphumelele, a township on the Southern Peninsula of Cape Town, the Ubuntu Center is a community center that offers a safe and stimulating for between 60 and 100 children on a daily basis. The children are from families that lack the resources to provide them with daycare, and many of them have experienced traumas. At the center, the kids are provided with healthy meals, educational activities, as well as the emotional support they require.
The other half of the time, you’ll be placed at mental health facilities that best match your skill set, passion, and academic focus area. These could include safe houses, female empowerment programs, children’s centers, family counseling services, trauma counseling services, or rehab centers. You’ll be mentored by a local mental health professional, who will guide you through your work and offer regular one-on-one sessions that will allow reflection and assessment.
At the Ubuntu Center, you’ll assist with the day to day running of the center and, depending on your knowledge and experience, with offering counseling sessions to the children dealing with traumas. During your time at mental health facilities, your tasks will vary, depending on your experience and the situation. Either way, you can expect to gain practical work experience and valuable insights into the day to day running of these facilities. You’ll be exposed to different levels of trauma or other mental health conditions, and you’ll gain a good understanding of how group sessions are run, how assessments are done, and how progress is made. Throughout your internship, you will be supervised and managed, and you will never be asked to take on tasks that are beyond your comfort or skill level.
This psychology internship could serve as a great tool for deciding which path of specialization to follow, whilst giving back to people who need it and assisting nonprofit organisations.
Your tasks can involve the following;
- Offering individual or group counseling sessions with children at the Ubuntu Center in order to support them with traumatic events they have been through
- Helping create stimulating, educative and fun activities for the children in the after care program
- Assisting with the day to day management of the center
- Shadowing mental health professionals in different settings, ranging from rehab and trauma centers to female empowerment programs
- Assisting psychologists in preparing and running group sessions and doing assessments
Throughout your internship, you’ll be guided by a registered local therapist, who will do an initial training session with you, followed by a session every two weeks and one at the end of your program. These sessions will allow you to learn about the local mental health field, prepare for the different elements of your work, and reflect on your experiences. They will also help you place the experience of your internships in the context of your degree and future career.
Where you’ll stay
You’ll be staying at a volunteer house called Yoga Shala, a house in Capri, on Cape Town’s Southern Peninsula, where people from around the world stay while volunteering in the surrounding communities. Everyone at the house plays a role and assists in the general day to day operation of yoga shala, from the kitchen to gardening and cleaning, creating a great community in the house. There is free WiFi and the nearest shopping center is a 10-minute drive away.
- Some knowledge of / experience in the mental health field; this internship is ideal for students of sociology, psychology, pedagogy, or similar fields
- Strong social skills
- Good level of English
- A flexible attitude
- Interest in assisting social development projects
The Application Process
If you’re keen on this work placement and feel that you could make a good contribution, we’d love to hear from you! Here’s what to do:
- Fill in the Application form (it will show in a slider pop-up!) and send us your CV.
- If we might have a placement available for you, we’ll chat with you on the phone or Skype to go through your application and make sure it’s a good match.
- We’ll set up a call between you and the person who would be your supervisor during the work placement.
- If everyone’s happy, we’ll provisionally confirm your placement! We’ll then send you the invoice for the deposit, get started with a detailed booking form, and we’ll give you all the information you need to prepare for your upcoming adventure.
- 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 shoot us an email, or fill in the contact form. We’ll be happy to assist!
You can start your internship every week, so your final starting date is based on what suits you and the organization the best.
At Roots, we do everything we can to make your internship experience smooth and hassle-free. We offer an all-inclusive service, which means we will help you find the right internship (we believe we are great matchmakers!), help you with visa arrangements, book accommodation for you in Cape Town, give you all the pre-departure information you need before arriving, pick you up from the airport and check in with you while on your work placement to ensure you feel supported. Your exact fee depends on the duration of your stay, so if you tell us how long you would like to stay, we can give you an exact quote.
8 weeks – USD 2,407
12 weeks – USD 3,216
16 weeks – USD 3,578
What is included in the fee?
- Full accommodation rental fees including breakfast and dinner
- Transfer from Cape Town International airport to your accommodation and back on arrival and departure day
- Transport to and from the project when you’re working at the Ubuntu Center
- Training and assessment sessions with a local qualified therapist (an initial session at the start of your internship, a session every two weeks, and session at the end of your stay)
- Assistance with finding the perfect work placement
- Assistance with your visa arrangement & other preparations
- On the ground support during your stay
- A discount on weekend activities, exclusive to Roots interns
What is not included in the fee?
- Flights to Cape Town
- Visa, medical and travel insurance
- Lunch Costs for additional excursions or activities
- Uber fee to the mental health facilities you’ll be placed at, once or twice a week (this will likely cost between $20 and $50 a week, depending on where you’ll be placed)