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SEYCHELLES

DESTINATION GUIDE


Your Volunteer Location: Life at home base will be simple, island living, sleeping in basic dormitory style accommodation with shared bathrooms as well as shared cooking and cleaning duties. Facilities will be more basic than you are accustomed to so please travel with an open mind and a willingness to adapt to local conditions. Meals are prepared by volunteers on a rotational basis. The weekends are yours to explore and there is plenty to see and do, making this a guaranteed trip of a lifetime. Food is basic but nutritious, and primarily vegetarian with optional fish or meat available no more than once or twice a week. Breakfast could be porridge with fresh fruit, or occasionally pancakes or cereal, lunch and evening meals may include pasta, beans, rice, fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, etc. Please let us know in advance if you have any food allergies or specific dietary requirements. We will do everything we can to accommodate you, but we may have to ask you to bring some things with you if what you need is not available locally. You will have limited access to long-distance communications whilst on the program, so make sure friends and family know how often they can expect to hear from you. Participants typically use internet cafes to keep in touch, with access to phone / internet about once a week. Communication facilities within the area we are based are extremely limited. Local SIM cards and pay-as-yougo credit can be bought affordably in the Seychelles but signal reception is limited. Contact your mobile/cell phone provider for more information before travelling.


Immediate Surrounding Area You will be located within a protected national park on Curieuse Island, managed by our incountry partner, the Seychelles National Parks Authority. Our beach-front camp is located on the white sand beach of Anse St Jose and overlooks Seychelles' second largest island, just a short boat ride away. Access to and from the Curieuse is only by boat so travel to other islands is limited to weekends. In your down time you will be free to travel in the local area and can expect one or two free days per week, usually at weekends.

Country – The Seychelles is an archipelago of 115 islands in the Indian Ocean, off East Africa. It's home to stunning beaches, coral reef, rare eco systems and endangered species. MahÊ, a hub for visiting the other islands, and has ferry access to visit the other islands. and after your program you could spend a little more time in the Seychelles on the close-by islands of Praslin and La Digue, or join a charter to sail even further afield. Please allow several days if you hope to travel between islands, as some of the transfers take time, but there is so much beauty to explore!


Steps for planning your trip Make note of the start dates! You can join for 2 weeks on the Terrestrial Expedition & Conservation Program , with 4 / 6 / 8 or 12 weeks on the Marine Expedition Volunteer Program. STARTS DATES AS FOLLOWS: 11 January | 8 February | 7 March | 4 April | 2 May | 27 June | 25 July | 22 August | 19 September | 17 October | 14 November

ARRIVAL TO THE SEYCHELLES You can fly into the Seychelle's main International Airport on Mahé Island. Airport pick up is at 7:30AM the Friday before your program starts which drops off at Beau Vallon. It is highly recommended you arrive at least a day or two before your program starts to recover from jetlag and acclimatise. Note for 12-week volunteers – you may only stay for 3 months so you must not arrive too early in advance. You will need to arrange your own accommodation for the Friday night in Beau Vallon or any other night if arriving before the Friday. The following are convenient options that participants and staff have used in the past: Georgina’s Cottage (€45-€60 per night) Beau Vallon Tel: (+248) 4247016 Email: georgina@seychelles.net Beau Vallon Bungalows (€70-€95 per night) Beau Vallon Tel: (+248) 4247382 Email: bvbung@seychelles.net Lemongrass Lodge Tel: (+248) 2578025 Email: lemongrassresa@yahoo.com On the morning of your Expedition start date, the pick - up point will be at the car park next to the Pearl Noire restaurant in Beau Vallon at 9:30AM. MARINE VOLUNTEERS will be collected at 11:30AM. on the morning of your start date. It is essential that you are on time as the ferry leaves for Praslin at 11:30AM and luggage will need to be checked in prior to boarding.

FOR YOUR DEPARTURE We will drop you back at the airport the Saturday your project ends. Please make sure you book a flight that departs after 4 pm on the Saturday. If you need to leave early, please let us know beforehand. We would need to add an extra USD for private taxis in Praslin and Mahe to take you to the airport and re arrange your ferry times.

Contact Numbers – please carry with you while travelling Chris Mason-Parker: +248 2575770 chris.mason-parker@gviworld.com GVI 24-hr Emergency Contact: Tel: +44 20 80 90 30 80 UK Tel: 02080 903 080 USA/Canada Tel: (888) 965-3358 or (617) 674 2097


Our Flight Partner GYT is a specialist team of travel consultants who understand what volunteer and intern travel and gap years are all about. Operated by Round The World Experts (part of Flight Centre UK), GYT is all over the best flight routes and tickets and can answer most travel related questions for you along the way! GYT offer a bespoke service from your first point of contact until you are safely back home, including a 24-hour emergency assistance helpline, a ‘Travel Butler’ service, 100% independent advice, unrivalled product knowledge and of course a strong passion for travel! Please contact: african.impact@rtwexperts.co.uk or 0844 560 9853 (UK) or 0203 056 1146 (international). If calling, please state that you are volunteering with African Impact.

VISAS Don’t let this be stressful. Obtaining visas is your responsibility and the extended information provided on our Visa Guidance is to serve as a guideline only. We advise that you confirm this information with the embassy / consulate of the country that you will be visiting in your home country before departure. Please request the Visa Guidance if you are unable to allocate it on your Online Portal and feel free to email your Placement Manager as well for assistance.

TRAVEL INSURANCE Prior to your trip you will need to arrange medical insurance which will give you full coverage for any medical requirements which may arise during your trip, including cover for full air evacuation in the unlikely event that this is necessary. Your medical cover also needs to include repatriation. Please ensure that you arrange adequate cover and send your insurance details to your Volunteer/ Internship Placement Manager before departing for the project. Please be sure to check your policy carefully to ensure that it does cover activities which you are hoping / likely to participate in, as cover does vary from one country of residence to another and from one volunteer project-type to another. Our preferred travel insurance partners are World Nomads (https://www.worldnomads.com/Turnstile/AffiliateLink?partnerCode=afrimp&source=link&utm_source=afrim p&utm_content=link&path=https://www.worldnomads.com/travel-insurance/) but you are welcome to use whichever provider you find suitable.

Money (where available) The local currency is the Seychellois Rupee, although Euros and US Dollars are accepted for larger purchases. Participants typically spend approximately US$100-150 per week for off-base meals, transportation, drinks, internet use, excursions, etc. We recommend that you travel with cash as your main source of funds, although having a credit/debit card as a backup is wise. ATMs are available in major towns. In your down time you will be free to travel in the local area and can expect one or two free days per week, usually at weekends. In this time you could you could explore the islands of Praslin or La Digue, visit the capital of Mahé (Victoria), enjoy the beautiful beaches, snorkel, or simply relax on base. Before and after your program you could spend a little more time in the Seychelles on the outer islands of Praslin and La Digue, or join a charter to sail even further afield. Please allow several days if you hope to travel between islands, there are over 100 in the archipelago but getting around takes time – the possibilities are endless!


What Else?

POLICE CLEARANCE/ BACKGROUND CHECK CERTIFICATE (In respect to Working with Children and Vulnerable Communities). You must please get a police clearance/ criminal record check certificate PLEASE NOTE: WITHOUT A POLICE CLEARANCE, (in respect to Working with Children and Vulnerable Communities). YOU WILL NOT BE ALLOWED TO JOIN THE PROJECT. It is MANDATORY for every Volunteer to complete Police Checks prior to joining any one of our projects. As a Volunteer, regardless of project selection, you will come into contact with minors and/or vulnerable adults during your stay. We therefore feel that it is our responsibility to obtain a check on every Volunteer with us in order to ensure the safety of the people and communities we work with. Depending on your nationality and the regulations in your home country, there may be a small charge, payable to your local authority. Please note that your Police/ Criminal Record Check cannot be more than 6 months old when you start your volunteer program, so if you are booking more than 6 months in advance of your Project start date, please wait to obtain this check closer to the time. Some countries may not allow for an Advanced Check/ Vulnerable Sector check. If this is the case, we will require a Basic check accompanied by two professional character references. If you are from the United States of America, we can assist you with the process for a minimal fee payable to African Impact. In addition, African Impact insists that Volunteers and Interns avoid any contact with drugs and/or any inappropriate activities relating to alcohol.

Vaccinations Please consult your General Practitioner with regards to immunizations/vaccinations. Please ensure that you are in good health before your arrival. A consultation with your personal physician before departing is advisable. In addition, you must be fit to dive. Please make sure you let us know of any health issues in our medical questionnaire, sent previously. You will need an adequate supply of sunscreen cream for the hot African sun - SPF 30 and above. Also, please bring a hat and a water bottle with you, as you will be in the sun for a good portion of the day. Even if the sky is overcast, the sun is strong enough to cause burning. Many volunteers and interns get dehydrated during their time with us despite repeated assertions to drink lots of water – or face some unpleasant symptoms. We do not want you to have to miss out on any of your experience here because you got sick as a result of dehydration, so please, please, drinks lots of water!


Checklist to help you with your packing. Please note that this kit list is intended to help you pack for your trip but should not be taken as a comprehensive or compulsory list of items to take. The equipment listed under our Essential Equipment list is compulsory for all volunteers to bring to the field.

Essential Equipment

cts: e j o r p l l for a Required ·

es/trunks At least 2 swimming costum protection) & hat Towels, Sunglasses (100% UV single sheets and Bedding: 1 set is essential. 2 a pillowcase. rking shirts, long Shorts, working trousers, wo dirty, bringing sleeved shirts (these will all get two of each is recommended) T-shirts/tops and Casual clothing – lightweight: shorts for those hot days h to go out to a Smart clothing in case you wis ning on your hotel or restaurant in the eve weekends rm jumper or Warm clothing: a fleece or wa sweater is ideal for when it rains Waterproof jacket / poncho washing clothes Toiletries, detergent/soap for LE), basic first aid (PREFERABLY BIODEGRADAB kit, Sun cream (high factor) Any prescribed medication you need during your trip. Ensure it bears your name and description of reason

· al son per & n atio firm con · nce · Passport, insura ies cop d documentation - including certifie · stored separately any of ies · Certification cards: Cop may be relevant, certification/qualifications that ing, radio · e.g. Driving license, first aid, div operator, vaccination, etc ry cards and · · Camera with enough memo l AA ma nor e hav (we y sta ire ent r batteries for you rs require special & AAA available but bring if you · sizes) + 000 s/4 litre + (65 ck kpa · 1 Large Rucksack / bac k of your gear to · cubic inches) for carrying the bul tion edi · base/ for use throughout your exp ic cub + 500 s/1 litre · 1 daypack/ backpack (25+ e as well as inches) for trips/weekends off bas · when on satellite camp – s item oof rpr ate · Dry bag for important/non-w useful for when on boat y your part in the · Reusable water bottle – to pla and dosage. deduction of plastic waste r ake sne / rs · 1 pair of walking boots/ traine s flop and 1 pair of sandals/flip · M o squ ito net: B ring a fin mesh mo esquito ne t t o fit a 3ft wide bed · Head t orch for early morning /evening survey w when wa o rk lking in t he dark · Electric al adapto r to conv both soc ert ket style and volta if necess ge a ry

NB: packing list for Marine Volunteers the next page


Checklist for Marine Volunteers. temperature in the q Wetsuit. The water ains between 26 and Seychelles usually rem th most participants 30 Degrees Celsius, wi a full-length 3mm feeling comfortable in wetsuit. trainers – useful to q Wetsuit boot or old walking along rocky protect your feet when areas of the shore. d – a mask with tempere q Mask and Snorkel e who wear glasses glass is essential, thos lenses and/or a mask should bring contact with corrective lens. llt fins with straps or fu q Fins- either half-foo . foot fins will be suitable or Dive Computer – all q Waterproof watch the RDP tables, but dives are planned using will require a dive at the dive centre you your bottom time and computer to manage depth.

Optional Equi pment q Tank B

anger – it is hard to attention get the of other divers. T are inexp ank bang ensive bu ers q Vitam t very us eful in tablets q Mone y belt (bu m bag / fa c a rry m o nny pack ney and ) to p a s s p o rt q Pen k discreetl nife / Lea y therman C a rd s /Travel g ames / q Earplu gs for nig ht time a sharing a s you wil d o rm ro o l be m with o voluntee ther rs q Snac ks-town trips are limited m weekend ostly to s

rker Buoy q Inflatable Delayed Surface Ma important (dSMB) with spool reel – this is an Ideally you piece of dive safety equipment. ortant that will not have to use it but is imp . Please you have it with you on every dive bring one don’t bring the permanent one; ety stop and which will inflate during the saf not can be stowed in your BCD when t 30m of line inflated. You should have at leas on your spool reel. s q Wrist-mounted diving compas ential for q A4-sized dive slate – this is ess survey work planner is q eRDPML – the electronic dive rse. needed for your dive-master cou q Passport Photos – two copies of a passport photo for use on dive certifications, etc.

Highly Recommended Equipment

q Plastic and re-sealable bags to keep thing dry in those humid conditions q Raincover for daypack q Camera: bring the best camera you own with a good camera case & dry box or bag fille d with lots of silica gel to keep dry overnight q Rash vest for sun protection during snorkeling / beach and boat work. q Pillow: we have pillows for each volu nteer on base, however they quickly deteriorate in the humid environment. q Notebook and stationery, e.g. pens/pencils/eraser – useful for taking notes, especially during training period. Som e people may wish to keep a travel journal

Hints on Buying Kit Old clothes are often best when working in a tropical environment - clothing will get sweaty every day and may get discoloured due to insect repellent or mould (even clothes that you do not wear but fail to keep dry when stored). Avoid this by storing clean, dry clothes in airtight bags/sacks. The humidity is always high, and it will rain! Waterproof clothing is of limited value as you will get wet anyway, at least from sweating! Accept that you are going to the tropics and therefore you will get wet. A waterproof poncho/jacket is useful for downpours. Quickdrying clothes are always recommended since it can be difficult to dry clothes when it is raining. Denim jeans are terrible for this! Before setting off in search of your essential kit, compile a list of everything that you need. When buying your kit, you may find that by mentioning to the store assistants (or ideally the manager) that you are joining a volunteer project enables you to negotiate a discount on your purchases. Often stores are authorised to offer a discount (typically 10-15%) at their discretion, so it is always worth mentioning that the kit is required in aid of a good cause. Shop around for kit. If you are never going to use items again then it is not worth going for the top brands! Cheap lightweight clothing is sometimes just as good if not better.


Your Expectations and our Requirements on Project You will need to remain flexible, understandable and good – humored. “African time” can be difficult and frustrating for those who are used to a very structured life, so it is something to keep in mind! Once you arrive in Africa, your care is the responsibility of African Impact and our trained Project Managers. We always aim to provide you with all of your daily needs to keep you out of harm’s way and to support you in your Volunteer and Intern work. In exchange, we ask you to attend work punctually and to behave consistently in ways that reflect well upon African Impact and our Project Managers. We ask that you dress according to local norms while in the public eye and to treat people on the work site with kindness and respect. In addition, African Impact insists that Volunteers and Interns avoid any contact with Drugs and any culturally inappropriate activities relating to Alcohol. The African Impact projects rely on networks of people, and those networks are held together by good relationships. If a case should arise in which our staff feels that Volunteers or Interns have repeatedly behaved in ways that contradict the basic spirit of this agreement, we reserve the right to remove you from the Program.

Upholding the good name of African Impact and its partner organizations We ask that you do not bring yourself or African Impact into disrepute nor involve any other Employee, Volunteer or Intern in any behaviour that might amount to disrepute. If your behaviour is found to be detrimental to the program that you are involved with, you may be asked to leave immediately without compensation

Child Protection Our Child Protection Policy and Guidelines are there to help Volunteers, Interns and Staff be clear on our role in safeguarding children (anyone under the age of 18). It’s important to be aware of what good practice is and who to talk to if you have any concerns. You will get more information when you start your Volunteering or Internship placement. Any evidence of poor practice towards children will be acted on immediately and the relevant steps taken based on our policy and code of conduct

Drugs If you use or even come into contact with drugs, drug users, drug pushers or anyone remotely connected with drugs, illegal or otherwise, other than for medical reasons, your placement will be terminated immediately. If you are taking drugs for Medical reasons and have not informed us of your medical condition the same rules and conditions apply

Discrimination on Any Grounds If you see, hear or encounter any discrimination of any kind, do not challenge that person or intervene. If you feel that you need to express your views, please tell your Project Manager and they will take the necessary actions. African Impact is strongly against any form of Discrimination and any information given to us is taken very seriously.

Relationships Whilst on your placement we do NOT encourage any sexual relations. In addition, the program neither allows nor encourages Volunteers and Interns to develop intimate personal relationships with general staff and partners. This would not promote a good working environment and could result in the dismissal of the staff member and your termination from the program


HIV and AIDS The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a virus that infects cells of the immune system, destroying or impairing their function. As the infection progresses, the immune system becomes weaker and the person becomes more susceptible to infections. The most advanced stage of HIV infection is Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS). It can take 10 – 15 years for an HIV –infected person to develop AIDS. Antiretroviral Drugs can slow down the process even further (WHO). We highly recommend that you do some research before arriving at your project as HIV is widespread across Africa with an estimated 24.7 million people living with the virus on the continent (UNAIDS) . A good source of information is “28 stories of AIDS Africa” by Stephanie Nolan. The book is available on Amazon

Termination of Placement In the event that your placement is terminated due to your failure to abide by the code of conduct laid out below, you will be required to pay for any costs incurred for your return home from the placement.

Safety – what to do in an emergency We take your safety very seriously and on arrival, we will give you a comprehensive talk on the do’s and don’ts around the Islands. We pride ourselves on our record and give all our volunteers 24 hours support. We also live on the premises of the Volunteer House with you so we have the best knowledge of the local area and how to have the best experience. Please respect this advice. Some safety guidelines you should be aware of:

· Avoid travelling alone, especially at night. ALWAYS use a taxi and always travel in groups. · Find out where the unsafe areas are and avoid them. · When travelling, keep all important documents and valuables in a safe place like a hidden pocket or money belt. · Carry only as much cash and personal items as you think you will need for that day. · Don’t wear expensive jewellery or watches. · Be wary of people who seem too friendly too fast. · Keep cameras out of sight and always keep bags and purses in your sight. · Before swimming, ask how safe the area is. We would advise not sharing your personal contact details with anyone under any circumstances. In addition, you will be working outdoors, in an unfamiliar community and environment. Listen to your Project Manager and respect the local rules and customs at all times! Know the emergency numbers of the Project Team. Make sure we have a copy of your emergency contact person at home


Volunteer Code of Conduct 1st Offence

2nd Offence

3rd Offence

General Bad Conduct

Verbal Warning

Written Warning

Termination

Poor Punctuality

Verbal Warning

Written Warning

Termination

Laziness

Verbal Warning

Written Warning

Termination

Minor Breach of Safety Rule

Verbal Warning

Written Warning

Termination

Minor Damage or misuse of company property

Verbal Warning

Written Warning

Termination

Failure to follow instructions from African Impact Staff members

Verbal Warning

Written Warning

Termination

Conservation Projects: Failure to follow Game Drive Rules

Verbal Warning

Written Warning

Termination

Failure to attend an Activity without just reason

Written Warning

Termination

Staying out all night without prior notification to staff

Written Warning

Termination

Failure to use taxis as form of transport after dark Being rude, unfriendly or disrespecting local customs (language, clothing, etc)

Written Warning

Termination

Written Warning

Termination

Discrimination in any form

Written Warning

Termination

Minor Offences

Breach of our Child Protection Policy

Written Warning

Termination

Not upholding the Reputable Name of African Impact on and off site

Written Warning

Termination

Failure to keep the PAAZAB code of ethics

Written Warning

Termination

Disrespecting or potentially harming any animals (domestic or wild)

Written Warning

Termination

Wildlife Projects only - ethical standards in the good treatment & management of animals in captivity

Written Warning

Termination

Serious Offences

1st Offence

Theft

Termination

Drinking on Duty (or between activities) where you could endanger yourself or someone else as a result

Termination

Drinking under the age of 18

Termination

Malicious damage to Company Property

Termination

Breach of accommodation establishment rules

Termination

Relationships between African Impact Staff and Volunteer/Interns

Termination

Assault

Termination

Negligent performance of duties with serious consequences to property or life

Termination

Serious breach of the safety rules (especially at night)

Termination

Under the influence of drugs and/or in possession of illegal drugs

Termination

Major breach of our Child Protection Policy

Termination

Family Volunteering - African Impact considers all minors/children

1st Offence

2nd Offence

3rd Offence

Your child is your sole responsibility at all times, on project or during free time, including weekends

Verbal Warning

Written Warning

Termination

Your child is no one else's responsibility including African Impact staff. Parents are responsible for disruptive/bad/rude/ culturally insensitive behaviour of their children, and all other aspects of the code of conduct

Verbal Warning

Written Warning

Termination

to be anyone under the age of 18

If any family member breaches the code of conduct, the whole family's placement will be terminated

Termination


During your stay During your stay you will have the opportunity to enjoy some of the incredible attractions Seychelles has to offer. With 115 islands in the Seychelles group stretching over 800 miles, the possibilities of exploring this tropical paradise are endless. These excursions are also a great time for volunteers to interact and get to know each other better.

Popular Outings: Beau Vallon Bay On the weekends many volunteers head to Beau Vallon Bay for a well-earned break. The bay is the main tourist area of Mahe with a lovely long beach, hotels and guest houses, shops and restaurants to suit all tastes

Coral Strand Hotel Most people would agree that sitting at The Coral Strand Hotel bar with a cool drink and watching the sun set behind Silhouette Island is an experience not to be missed.

Vallee De Mai Visit the islands of Praslin, home to the Vallee de Mai (a world heritage site) thought by early explorers to be the original “Garden of Eden”, that is home of the famous Coco de Mer palm tree that produces the huge double nut famous for its provocative shape

La Digue Visit the Island of La Digue, a perfect tropical island, small and intimate with quaint guest houses and arguably the most beautiful beach in the world - Anse Source d’Argent

Victoria Victoria is the capital city of the Seychelles, the smallest capital city in the world. Volunteers often visit to catch up at internet cafes, do a little shopping, or visit the market to soak up the local atmosphere


WHO IS AFRICAN IMPACT? WHY VOLUNTEER WITH US? At African Impact, we create the most Transformative and Impactful Volunteer experiences on the planet for communities, wildlife and volunteers. Volunteering in Africa is what we do, it’s in our DNA and what we are awarded for year after year. We’ve built, grown and developed our very own projects, hand-in-hand with local African communities. We work with the most incredible people to make this happen and surround ourselves with inspiring human beings from every corner of the world. Every year is a chance to grow, learn and better our offering – both for host communities and for volunteers themselves. We’re constantly pushing the boundaries of excellence and know that volunteering can achieve even more. What do we believe in?

ü ·Providing an extraordinary experience to our volunteers ü Making tangible, measurable impacts for our communities and wildlife initiatives ü Transforming the lives and perspectives of everyone who is part of our journey So, welcome to what good volunteering looks like. Join us and go #BeyondVolunteering to a place that connects cultures, mindset and ideas. A place that leaves you awed and inspired, able to do more, discover more and to make a real impact.

Destination Guide: Seychelles Expeditions  

Destination Guide: Seychelles Expeditions  

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