Volunteering in Africa is a great way to spend a holiday or career break.
Not only are you doing your bit, you'll also get a chance to interact with the local community in ways that tourists never do. It's not just about you helping others either - you'll find you'll learn from local staff, plus you'll develop a raft of new skills through your volunteering work.
Volunteering placements are available all over Africa and can be from as little as 2 weeks to as long as 2 years!
Here are some of the more unusual ones:
Business consultant for a yoghurt co-operative
Working in yoghurt? As a consultant? Sounds a far cry from the usual gap year volunteer jobs - but this is why it's perfect for someone with business development experience who fancies a change. Yoghurt can be digested by HIV sufferers, which is why it's so important in this part of the world.
Collecting elephant poo
Elephant dung needs to be collected in a nature reserve, to help monitor the elephants' health. If that doesn't sound appealing, and the knowledge that you're helping save an endangered animal doesn't help, know that this project also involves bottle-feeding baby elephants. Awww!
Human rights lawyer
Another one for volunteers who have professional qualifications and experience. South Africa still has a lot of inequality and your help could mean a poor person getting access to free legal help in a human rights violation case.
Doesn't sound very worthy, does it? But it is - the underprivileged kids that the volunteers teach don't have any other access to music, dance and drama, and if you've ever enjoyed any of these, you'll know what a difference they can make to your life. You even get to put on shows for the kids' families!
Monkeys lead a troubled life in South Africa - they are shot by farmers, fall victim to road accidents, and get killed by predators. So what happens to their kids? Volunteers! They take on the role of monkey mothers, with the baby monkeys clinging to them as they go about their day!