Volunteering & Internships

COVID-19 Info: Please note that the Corona Situation is relaxed and under control. Tanzania has been hit by the economical consequences of the Pandemic far more than by the medical. All our projects are open and ready to receive volunteers and interns. There are no travel restrictions to enter Tanzania. Please follow our blog and social media channels for more news and updates!
By volunteering you show active social commitment and make an important contribution to international understanding! In Tanzania you will learn at least as much about yourself as you can support your projects. As a German-Tanzanian-led organization, we at STEP Africa have been helping our participants to fulfill their dream of volunteering in Africa since the beginning of 2014. Our entire team works in Arusha, a beautiful city in northern Tanzania where your volunteer work will take place, and is always there for you!

  • Min. Age: 17 years
  • Duration: 2  weeks – 6 months
  • Program Start: Anytime
  • Affordable Fees: Initial 150 € (then 110 €/week) detailed fee structure
  • Accommodation and Meals in our comfortable volunteer house
  • Our whole team is based in Tanzania and always there for you!
  • Please also read our information brochure with the 25 most frequently asked questions regarding voluntary work with STEP Africa!

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Your advantages with STEP Africa

Your stay in Tanzania should be beneficial and meaningful for yourself as well as for your project. We will therefore provide you with intensive support right from the start. With the help of our volunteer guidebook you will be able to prepare for your assignment step by step. We are always there for you and can provide you with advice and hands-on support in case of any questions or unexpected problems. Our team is in regular and personal contact with all of our projects. This is the only way we can ensure tha sustainable work is done and that you as a volunteer are in best hands.

A lasting Experience

With STEP Africa you have the opportunity to find a project in Tanzania that exactly matches your interests. Regardless of your field of work you will receive a detailed certificate of attendance at the end of your assignment. You can also have your voluntary work recognized as an internship (field internship, teaching or social internship, nursing internship etc.) for your studies.

Volunteering in Tanzania will be an unforgettable experience for you and will strengthen your intercultural skills. Its of course a positive side effect that you can score with your abroad experience with future employers. Even if you haven’t received a professional training yet (e.g. high school graduate) or are unsure about your future professional career, your time in Tanzania and the work in your project can consolidate your desired career or give you new impulses for your decision-making. Volunteering can also be a great chance for professionals to enhance their skills and gain valuable experiences in a developing country. You will get to know aid work in Africa with all its challenges first hand and will be able to form your own opinion! At STEP Africa we do not make a conceptual difference between voluntary work and internships abroad because we believe that you are always both: A helper and a learner.

We only offer flexible volunteer programs from two weeks up to six months. This enables us to give our participants from a wide variety of backgrounds the chance for a meaningful break in Africa.

Our Partner Projects

We aim at placing each of our volunteers into a project that best suits their skills and interests. We have a variety of partner projects in different stages of development. We make sure that we only choose those institutions that are trustworthy and eager to contribute to society in a meaningful way.
Social Work (Pre-Schools, Daycare Centers, Baby Home)

Gily’s Daycare

Gily’s Daycare is a kindergarten / preschool founded in 2019 for children aged 9 months to 6 years. The aim of the facility is to offer age-appropriate care for children who live in difficult economic and personal circumstances. The parents or guardians of the children pay a minimal monthly contribution to the facility to ensure childcare and meals, so children whose families cannot afford the contributions at all can come for free. While their children are being looked after, parents have the opportunity to work or study. There are no public childcare facilities in Tanzania for children under the age of 6. Many parents are therefore forced to leave their children alone or with neighbors while they are working or trying to find work. In the worst case, children run the risk of being brought to orphanages by their desperate families for lack of other perspectives, which the family hopes will improve the future prospects for the children. However, such a separation should be avoided at all costs, since it can result in long-term damage for the children such as attachment and anxiety issues.

Day care facilities such as Gily’s offer a safe and family-friendly alternative where children learn how to socialize with others, are taught English, letters and numbers and receive regular meals that are not always guaranteed at their homes.

Twiga Vision Foundation

Twiga Vision Tanzania is a Non-Government Organisation supporting young women, youth and children from vulnerable backgrounds. The project supports women with children by integrating them into the community and helping them to become independent without having to neglect their children for the sake of finding a job. While the women are given supervision on work and business issues, the children are given the opportunity to go to school in a safe environment.

Twiga Vision was started in 2016 and has been growing rapidly thanks to the overwhelming support of volunteers and friends. There is currently one main Center for the youth programs, a separate daycare building for the young kids and pre-schoolers and an office for the women sewing program, all located in walking distance from each other in the lively neighbourhood of Mianzini, Arusha. The Daycare is a bit off the busy hussle and bussle of Mianzini and thus a beautiful and quiet environment for the children to learn and play.

Volunteers can support the Twiga Vision Foundation in various ways by supporting the employees with teaching the preschool children (from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.) and in tutoring older children and young adults in the afternoon and evening, renovating and improving the premises, expanding the sponsorship program, doing fundraisers and general child care and administration tasks. Creative minds also find their place in this project. The homepage and the social media channels need to be regularly revised in order to keep sponsors up to date and to gain future supporters.

Mwanga Children’s Foundation

DSCN0633The Mwanga Children’s Foundation was founded in 2014 by a British and a Tanzanian and is now exclusively under Tanzanian leadership. The aim of the NGO is to support children from disadvantaged families who cannot pay school fees or regular meals for their children. The center started as a one-room school in Kijenge Juu, Arusha in 2015 and has since steadily grown to a number of currently 90 children between the age of 1 and 6 who are being taught and cared for in a total of four classes. All children receive porridge and a warm meal during their time at the center. At the Mwanga Foundation the children are being prepared to enter primary school at the age of 6 which is funded with the help of international school sponsors.

The Mwanga Children’s Foundation is a young project in the development phase that welcomes volunteers from all walks of life who want to work in the areas of teaching and childcare or in the areas of administration and public relations. The long-term goal of the director is to set up an independent school, with a special needs class and sleeping facilities for the children who cannot live in their own families.

Cradle of Love Baby Home

The Cradle of Love Baby Home is a children’s home founded in 2004, which exclusively cares for babies and toddlers aged 0 – 3 years. Around 30 children are currently being looked after in the children’s home. Most of the children living there were either abandoned by their biological family or lost their mothers due to complications during childbirth.

Cradle of Love is a temporary place to stay for the kids. The aim of the children’s home is to either reunite the children with living family members or to find responsible adoptive families for those children who don’t have family members. The children are divided into a total of three age groups, the nursery (0-6 months), the crawlers (6-12 months) and the toddlers (1-3 years). Volunteers can help in all groups, usually specializing in one group and spending a lot of time there. The main tasks of volunteers include helping with the care of babies and toddlers as well as meaningful and age-appropriate play activities. The core working time is between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., with a longer lunch break usually taking place while the children are taking their afternoon nap. In general, volunteers can organize their working hours very flexibly. Helping hands are always needed, especially on weekends and for night shifts.


The Joyhub Center is a small day care facility in Njiro, Arusha that specializes in the care and therapy of children with special needs. Children with various physical or intellectual disabilities visit the facility, which was founded in 2020 by Grace, an experienced occupational therapist. The aim of the facility is to offer every child individual therapy and education and to prepare them towards a life fully integrated into their community.

People with disabilities in Tanzania are exposed to many prejudices, superstitions and stigmata, which is why institutions like Joyhub not only make a major contribution to the lives of individual children, but also create a new awareness of inclusion and equality in the public through their work.

Regular excursions and activities with the children are organized. Some of the children who are cared for in Joyhub also attend regular kindergartens and schools or are being prepared for entry into such a school.

Grace and her team are warmly welcoming the support of volunteers and interns who come from the fields of special education, occupational and physiotherapy and related fields. However, specialist knowledge is not a must. Much more important is a high level of motivation and commitment, as well as empathy, in order to be able to respond individually to the children and their very different needs. As a new facility, the center is still in the beginning stage so volunteers can also participate in the construction of play equipment and the planning and purchase of new therapy equipment.

Sport- and Holiday Programs

Volunteers who want to get involved in sports programs should show a high level of initiative and be able to plan and carry out their projects independently. For this, it is necessary to plan a schedule in advance of the trip and to bring any equipment that may be required along to Tanzania. 

Especially during the school holidays (April, August and December), volunteers can organize holiday activities and sports programs aimed at the children of our partner projects. But even during the year, volunteers at schools and day care centers are more than welcome to fill in the afternoon childcare with clubs and courses. The children are usually very happy about such offers, which are not only fun, but also promote fitness and team spirit.

Women and Children's Rights

HEalth Integrated Multisectoral Development (HIMD)

HIMD was founded in 2003 by Mackrine Rumanyika with the vision of providing health-based education for people of all walks of life, beliefs and tribes in Tanzania. The focus of the organization is on prevention and advice in the field of HIV / AIDS, contraception (teenage pregnancies) and FGM (Female Genital Mutilation), the mutilation of female genital organs that is prohibited by law in Tanzania, but is still practiced in many rural areas of northern Tanzania by the Maasai tribe. For this purpose, the team from HIMD visits Maasai women’s initiatives and village communities and provides information about the health consequences of genital mutilation. Treatments are also offered in their own clinic in Ngaramtoni, Arusha and within other specialist hospitals. The organization also operates a dropping center for young Maasai women who have escaped the procedure or a forced marriage and helps them to communicate with authorities and educational institutions as well as supporting them with plans for the future. The work of HIMD is extremely diverse and of great social importance. Volunteers can get involved in all areas of the NGO, accompany the team on village visits and days of action, work in the clinic and become active in the important area of public relations and fundraising.

WOmen and Child Vision (WOCHIVI)

WOCHIVI is an NGO founded in 2002 in Njiro, Arusha, which fights for the rights of women and children in various communities and villages in Arusha. The organization is funded by a larger Swedish charity and other project sponsors such as the US Embassy. The focus is on the prevention of domestic violence in families caused by alcohol abuse, which mainly affects women and children. The WOCHIVI employees and local volunteers organize information and action events in villages, existing women’s groups and schools. In the latter, the students should gain knowledge and awareness of their basic rights through dance and theater groups. The NGO is also involved in many other related fields of work and supports individual projects such as the construction of sanitary facilities in schools, education about female menstruation and the granting of micro loans to widows and women in difficult living circumstances. Volunteers who are interested in supporting the organization can accompany the WOCHIVI team in all their daily activities. In addition, helpers in the area of fundraising and report writing as well as in the field of public relations are urgently needed. An assignment therefore always consists of a combination of administrative activities and face-to-face activities with the target groups.

Teaching at Primary Schools

Ikirwa Pre- and Primary School

The Ikirwa School is an English-language, non-profit private school teaching children from pre-school age (3 years) to 7th grade (approx. 14 years). A boarding school is connected to the school in which many of the students live during school times. The students mainly come from farmers families, many children at Ikirwa come from very poor backgrounds and are supported by international school sponsors. The school was founded in 2013 and has since been able to provide many children in the Ngulelo area with a better education.

Private schools in Tanzania cannot be compared to the rather elitist character of European private schools. Since over 100 children are usually taught in one class in public schools and teacher training is very poor, families try to place their children in a private school whereever possible so that they can learn and grow in a more quiet environment. The Ikirwa School is a non-profit school, so no profits are made from the school fees of parents and sponsors, but these are only used to cover running costs and the further development of the school.

Teaching at a Secondary School

Working at a local secondary school is particularly exciting for prospective secondary school teachers. The language of instruction from year 8 (Form 1) is English in both public and private schools. However, the level of education of the teachers and the language level differ significantly. Public schools are increasingly confronted with large numbers of pupils, poorly trained teachers and poor equipment, whereas many private schools teach at a very high level and offer numerous extra-curricular activities. In the secondary school area, we do not work with fixed partner schools, but try to find a suitable school according to your interests and respective subjects. The teaching methods in public schools in particular rarely correspond to our Western ideas of pedagogically valuable teaching. Most of the time there is frontal teaching (“chalk and talk”). Nevertheless, many teachers are interested in new methods and a mutual exchange can be very exciting and enriching.

An internship in a Tanzanian secondary school is only possible for teaching students or trained teachers. A TEFL certificate (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) is also required for teaching at most private schools.

Healthcare / Medical

Meru District Hospital (TEngeru)

Meru District Hospital is a public hospital in Tengeru and a branch of the public Mount Meru Hospital in Arusha City. The specialties and stations at Tengeru Hospital include a general medical ambulance, emergency room, maternity ward and gynecological clinic, tuberculosis and malaria testing and treatment, HIV / AIDS counseling as well as diagnosis and therapy. There is also a wide-ranging surgical clinic. Dental and eye treatments, physiotherapy and psychotherapeutic support are also offered. The hospital further manages another small medical dispensary in Leganga, Usa River, where volunteers can also work.

The hospital is publicly funded, and numerous treatments and preventive examinations are free. Many other services are free of charge for patients who are voluntarily insured in the very affordable statutory health insurance or through their employer. The clinic is also supported by numerous local and international donors. The hospital has 110 beds, although these often have to be occupied by two patients at the same time due to lack of space. Around 1000 operations are performed each year and an average of 200 patients are treated each day.

Prior experience in the medical field should be proven in order to work at Tengeru Hospital. Medical students, trainees in the medical field as well as trained doctors of all disciplines, nurses, physiotherapists and people from related professions in the medical field are very welcome at Tengeru Hospital.

HIMD Dispensary

Further Information will follow shortly.

Olorien Community Clinic / New Hope Initiative

K640_Dr ByembaOpened in 2009, the Olorien Community Clinic is the first clinic in Arusha that is largely funded by donations and offers a wide range of medical treatments. This includes general medical services, operations, laboratory tests, X-rays and ultrasound, and there is also a pharmacy in the clinic. Although it is a private clinic, patients pay minimal treatment fees. In this way, many people can be reached who otherwise could not afford professional medical treatment. The clinic is supported by several parishes in Tanzania and the USA.

The medical director of the clinic, Dr. Robert Byemba, is originally from the D.R. of Congo, where he gained many years of experience in the field of medical care in developing countries. Dr. Byemba is also the mentor for international volunteers and is happy to pass on his knowledge and experience. An assignment in the Olorien Community Clinic is particularly suitable for volunteers who are already studying medicine, have professional training or already have some previous experience in the medical field. Upon request, volunteering in the Olorien Community Clinic can also be recognized as a nursing internship. In the clinic, volunteers get an intensive insight into Tanzania’s health care system, get practice and instruction, but can also actively contribute in many areas.

Animal Welfare / Veterinary Care

Mbwa wa Africa Animal Rescue

Mbwa wa Africa (“Dog of Africa”) is a small animal shelter on the edge of the Arusha National Park, which was founded in 2012 by two Germans (Sandra and Jens). The shelter takes in injured and abused street dogs and cats, treats them and then finds responsible homes for them. Mbwa wa Africa is also carrying out systematic spay and neuter and vaccination campaigns to put an end to the government’s previous practice of regularly shooting street dogs to control the population.

Many of the dogs are traumatized and require special attention and care. All dogs are taken on walks daily and helping hands are always needed here. The care of sick and injured dogs, as well as the training of basic commands is also one of the tasks of volunteers.

Since the shelter is a bit outside of town and you can only reach it with a Piki Piki (motorcycle taxi), you should plan around 15 euros per person per week as travel costs from our STEP House to the shelter.

Our Volunteer Program – Explained Step by Step

You can sign up for the STEP volunteer program online using our application form. Before you register you should think about your desired field of work and specify your expectations and wishes for your stay in Tanzania. This way we will get an idea of which project(s) will best suit you.

Please note that at the time of your registration we will only need your approximate travel dates, you should however provide us with your exact dates as soon as you have booked your flights so we can plan our schedule accordingly.

Apply now

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA trip to Africa is always a great adventure and experience shows that anticipation and excitement increase as the day of departure approaches. But you can go about your preparations very relaxed, because in Tanzania you can expect an unforgettable time with an infinite number of new experiences. The less expectations you have of your time in Tanzania, the more open-minded you will be.

With our STEP Africa guidebook you’ll have all To-Dos at a glance, such as flight booking, vaccinations, visa formalities and more. This way you can organize everything well in advance and without pressure. The content of our volunteer guide book also prepares you for your upcoming tasks in the projects. Read everything carefully and conscientiously, but also learn to take it easy and enjoy the anticipation, too!

The project is the centerpiece of your stay in Tanzania. The following basic principle applies to your project: volunteering is what you make of it! Your motivation, your dedication and your joy, which you will bring into your work, determine your experiences. Think positive, you are committed to a great cause and you have the courage for something that many others do not dare! Your project work will shape you for the rest of your life and enrich you in so many ways. So you have every reason to look forward to your project.

When you arrive at Kilimanjaro Airport our driver will already be waiting for you to take you to the volunteer house. In many ways daily life in Africa is very different from life in a western country. So a certain culture shock is quite normal in the beginning but will certainly wear off soon the more you get to know your new home away from home. 

On the first day after your arrival, you will receive a detailed orientation. We will show you around Arusha town, explain how to use public transport and where banks and the most important shops are found. Soon you will feel confident enough to explore everything on your own. On your first work day, we will accompany you to your project and discuss your tasks and working hours together with the project management.

Most of the volunteers get used to life in Africa very quickly and it is usually much more difficult for them to leave Tanzania in the end than it was to get used to everything. You can rest assured that we are always there for you, especially during your settling-in period, to give you the best possible start in Tanzania. You will also meet other volunteers and like-minded people with whom you can share your experiences.

Weekly work hours in your project will usually be between 20 to 40 hours, depending on whether you want to work part- or full-time. You will usually have the weekends off, you can however choose to support your projects during the weekends due, should the need arise. In either case, you are entitled to 2 off-days per week. Your tasks vary depending on the project you work at. You should be ready to work independently and pro-actively as tasks aren’t always following a fixed schedule. Always remember that you act as an assistant trying to support and take work from your local colleagues. 

Besides of your project work you will have plenty of opportunities to explore Arusha and the surrounding area during your leisure time. Everyday life in Tanzania is full of adventures. One of them being the daily trips with the Daladala, the local minibus that takes you to every corner of town. It will not be long before you master your first sentences in Swahili, the extended greetings, numbers and other basics. Its a great feeling being able to negotiate the prices on the market in Swahili for the first time! As a “Mzungu”, meaning a European or white person, it is inevitably that you will often stand out and attract attention. But it’s something you will soon get used too as well. Especially children are very curious and -walking through the street – you will certainly more than once hear greetings such as: “Good morning Mzungu. How are you?”.

Arusha is a traditional yet modern city that has adapted to tourists and international visitors and expatriates from all over the world. In the city center there are great bars, restaurants, museums, markets and swimming pools that you can visit in your free time. As soon as you drive a few kilometres out of the city, you will find yourself in the midst of beautiful African nature, savanna lands to the west and tropical forests towards the slopes of majestic Mount Meru. Walking, cycling or a day trip to Maasai land, you have endless opportunities to get to know the diversity of Tanzania’s nature and traditions. The STEP Africa House will be you home away from home where you will be able to rest and relax from your exciting daily work and adventures.

You are not alone in Tanzania! You will quickly gain new friends among locals and fellow volunteers. A friendly and supportive atmosphere is very important to us at STEP Africa. Our volunteers form a community that supports each other through any challenges and problems. Always keep in mind that volunteering is never one-sided, but will give you the opportunity to learn a lot about yourself and life in Tanzania, while at the same time supporting and contributing to your project.

Still unanswered questions? Get in touch with us!

Our Philosophy

We select our partner projects based on criteria of sustainability and their efforts towards education and, above all, based on their credibility and transparency. We do not support Orphanage Tourism in any form. We are critically aware that not every aid project is a good project! We build on mutual acceptance and tolerance. All of our projects welcome volunteers regardless of their backgrounds or believes. Volunteers are expected to be open-minded and creative because the areas of responsibility are not always precisely defined. With a little initiative and flexibility the integration into the project is usually very smooth. Volunteering in Tanzania always means learning to understand everyday life in a local aid project. We do not want our volunteers to replace local workers but rather want them to see themselves as supplementary workers who, through their assistance, contribute towards joyful day to day life in the projects and support intercultural exchange. We firmly believe that volunteers can make a long-term and positive contribution to their projects. But volunteering doesn’t just mean: “Hi, I’m here to help!” but rather: “Hi, I’m here to learn from you how I can help – now or in the future!”.