Volunteer Updates from Damaraland

Volunteer Updates from Damaraland

Posted by Sam Hopkins on 5th Jun 2015

Here at The Great Projects, we love to receive regular video and photo updates from the projects which we work with. Week on week we receive some fantastic updates from one - the 'Desert Elephants in Namibia' project in Swakopmund, Namibia.

This project is fantastic as it allows volunteers to get up close and personal with Namibia's stunning desert elephants in the Kalahari Desert and help with vital project work to try and counteract the problems that arise between elephants and local communities. What's more, the regular patrolling of desert elephant herds throughout the week is vital for their conservation, as tracking helps to not only assess elephant numbers in the area but also helps to monitor the health of their populations on a larger scale.

Have a read of the most recent volunteer testimonials and have a browse through the fantastic photos below!

"One of the most striking things about being out here is the change in my perception of time. Coming from the never ending hustle and bustle of Londo, where every minute has infinite possibilities to be crammed with chores, activities and motion –the quietude and solace that I've encountered here has been like a breath of fresh air. What amazes most is that although each day here is far from dull – between shovelling mountains of sand, heaving ever – heavier rocks with macho determination, gazing through binoculars, intent on spotting the moving rock on the horizon, of practising mental trickery through a tense game of cards, the itinerary is endless – the seconds, minutes, hours seem to flow by in an unhurried steam. Never stressful, never ever – crammed, simply a fluid blur of moments and experiences that seem to converge into one calm continuum. And just like that, in a blink, the two weeks are over…

This is something that I have definitely begun to feel most keenly as the days trickle through my last cycle on the project after 8 weeks. No matter how hard I try, time overtakes me, and I know that these two weeks will end before they've really begun. However, despite the inevitable a sadness I will feel when leaving this happy 'cocoon', I will leave with the warming sense of comfort that this short flash of time on the project has not been insignificant but one of the most important periods of my life so far. The people I've met, the incredible things I've seen, the amazing work and dedication of everyone here has affirmed my own certainty that I would love to work within the field of conservation.

 

Now I know that time should be valued not by quantity, but by every moment, every memory that goes by. It's been such an opportunity and I feel privileged to be here. 2 months can be just as valuable as 12 – it is just what you make of it that makes the difference".

Volunteer Makeda Krish 24/05/2015

"We woke up at a nice sizzling sunrise - there is nothing more awesome then a nice sunrise and a hot cup of coffee in bed! It was a nice morning - not too chilly and not too hot. We drove from Doros and made our way to Twyfelfontein where we made a stop at the stunning 'Burnt Mountain'. Chris led us down to see the Organ Pipes which is one of the most natural attractions in Twyfelfontein. We had our stop at Twyfelfontein lodge, where we had some cake and coffee and looked around the area. I was really proud at the moment that we have such a beautiful country full of natural attractions and not overly populated by man-made attractions. I was also proud to see that the cultural heritage within the area is so well conserved.

We carried on with our journey to track elephants and make another ID Photo book for the elephant database. We spotted ostrich, springbok and elephants in a group – very cool I must say! Everyone took as many pictures as they could and it was really great because I am certain that all the volunteers felt involved and an integral part of the EHRA team. I have learned something today, as I saw these elephants so close to the vehicle, really close and they walked away without harming us despite the fact that they knew we were around. This taught me that this elephants aren't as dangerous as we picture them to be as long as we don't show them any sign of us being a threat to them. They won't do anything to us humans! They are really awesome and we as humans really need to care for them and protect their livelihood. My three weeks of being here has really taught me a lot and I have completely fallen in love with these magnificent animals. We must do all we can to help protect them".

Volunteer Sylvia Andreas –March 2015.

If you're wanting to join this fantastic elephant volunteer conservation project in Namibia, one of 2015's top "must see" destinations, then please don't hesitate to 'Enquire or Book Now' via our website page or get in contact with us via email ([email protected]). We'd love to hear from you! Have a fantastic weekend everyone - TGP Team.


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