We need you

Volunteering is a great way to give back to your community, meet new friends and learn new skills!

Volunteers are always very welcome here at C.R.O.W., regardless of if you’re looking to volunteer with us regularly or as part of a once-off work experience placement or event.

Local Volunteers

(Based in Durban and surrounds)

When to Sign Up

Throughout the whole year C.R.O.W. needs the help of volunteers, but especially during peak period which falls between spring and summer months (September – March) when we are inundated with babies and busy with releases.


All volunteers must be age 16 or older (due to the nature of our work and for your own safety).

Volunteering at C.R.O.W. involves mainly physical activities, so we need strong, energetic people who don’t shy away from physical, hands-on tasks.

What to expect

Volunteers assist staff with the day to day running of the centre.

Main activities include feeding and caring for the animals, cleaning enclosures and helping with maintenance around the grounds.

Wherever possible, volunteers are also given the opportunity to assist staff on wildlife rescues and releases.

CROW-Release of an Antilope

International Volunteers

About the Programme

C.R.O.W. provides and exciting, once-in-a-lifetime volunteering experience where volunteers can not only learn about local wildlife rehabilitation and conservation (with all its challenges and complexities), but also work alongside our team on a daily basis assisting with wildlife rescues and releases.

You can have the chance to take care of 300-400 injured, orphaned or displaced wild animals that are housed at our centre at any given time.

C.R.O.W. can accommodate up to 10 international volunteers at a time with accommodation provided on property ( the clinic is a mere 200 metres away !)

About Durban

Durban is Africa’s largest and busiest port and is a melting pot of African, Indian and European cultures.

Durban is ideally situated as a departure point to many of the province’s finest tourist attractions including the majestic Drakensberg mountains, the Big 5 Game Reserves of Zululand, the world-famous Midlands Meander Route (to mention but a few).

The beaches of Durban are legendary, with golden sea sand and warm Indian ocean waters stretching both sides of the coastline. This makes it possible to go for swim in the sea all year round! 

C.R.O.W. is located in the southern part of Durban, in a safe, lush suburb called Yellowwood Park. We are only 15 minutes drive away from the nearest beach!


C.R.O.W. is a rescue and rehabilitation centre for wildlife and these are wild animals. To ensure their successful release back into the wild they must stay wild. Volunteers are not allowed to touch or interact with any animal or bird. C.R.O.W. is not a sanctuary and releases all animals and birds back into the wild.  Touching and engaging with them would make them tame and likely to be poached, captured or further harmed should they have no fear of humans.

Daily Activities

International Volunteers at C.R.O.W. will be helping staff to take care for the animals and birds. The work is can be hard and dirty and a lot of the tasks will be repeated. Example activities include: cleaning enclosures, preparing food for animals and birds, ensuring the work areas are clean and tidy, cleaning towels and carpets that are used in animal and bird cages, cutting branches and greenery, making enrichment activities for the animals and other jobs where relevant.You may also assist in animal rescues and releases where possible.


The working day is from 7.00am until 3pm most days with an hour for lunch and other short rest breaks. After you have finished work for the day your time is your own – unless you are on :after hours rescue duty: which means you need to be on stand-by until 8pm. You will also get two days off per week. (Should you need a specific date or day off this can usually be accommodated too with enough notice.)

Sample daily schedule:

  • 07am: Work starts with a daily volunteer meeting.
  • 07am – 09am: it’s onto cleaning cages and preparing the morning feeds.
  • 09am – 12pm: Once the animals have been fed, there are various other jobs to do before lunch like prepping enrichment, cutting greenery and sunning the tortoises.
  • 12pm – 01pm: BREAK FOR LUNCH
  • 01pm – 03pm: Cages get cleaned and lunch food is prepared and delivered to all the animals.
  • 03pm: The day finishes at 3pm and unless you are on rescue duty (until 8pm) that evening the rest of the day is yours.


Volunteers are in a single level house on the C.R.O.W. property. There are shared bedrooms, with a mix of single beds and bunk beds. There are two bathrooms with showers, bath, a kitchen, dining area and lounge with a TV. The house has wi-fi, a small garden and patio with barbecue facilities. There is a maximum of 10 volunteers at any one time.

What your fee covers

Your accommodation, meals and non-alcoholic drinks, training, your volunteer t-shirt, internet/wifi access and a donation towards CROW’s work.


The food is varied and will depend on what is in season. All the food will be supplied, but you will have to do the cooking. Each week a grocery list will be prepared and given to your coordinator. We cater for vegetarians and can work with many dietary requirements. Please let us know your dietary requirements and any allergies on your application form.

Breakfast and lunch is what you might expect in many western countries with toast and cereal for breakfast and sandwiches for lunch. As a dinner many dishes you will be familiar with from pasta dishes to burgers to stews. You will also be able to try some local specialities, like a famous Durban curry for the complete South African experience.

Animals you will work with

As a rescue and rehabilitation centre C.R.O.W. sees a wide variety of injured and orphaned wildlife. There is no guarantee of what wildlife will be in the centre when you are volunteering or how many animals or birds will be here. We do have species that are regularly at C.R.O.W. such as birds, grey and blue duiker, vervet monkeys, baboons, tortoises, banded mongoose, genets and bushbuck. However, you won’t necessarily work with all these animals. If you have a particular interest in any animal or bird please note this on your application.


You will need a visa to enter South Africa. Please check the South African embassy in your country for full information.


In South Africa, you need to pay for any doctors visit or medical assistance. Therefore, we require that all our volunteer MUST have medical aid or traveller’s insurance.


C.R.O.W. is not legally allowed to provide medical advice so please consult with your own doctor in regards to medications required.


A full list is given when your booking is confirmed, but a torch, phone and/or laptop, wet weather gear, mosquito repellent, spare glasses/contact lenses are useful. There is a small supermarket nearby, but please note your favourite brands may not be available so stock up if they are a must have.


C.R.O.W. is located in Durban, South Africa. You will need to book your flight to Durban and arrange your own transport to our centre. We can assist with arranging airport transfers but it will be at your cost. Please note that, although Durban is an international airport, many flights will go to Johannesburg and you may need to book a connecting flight from Johannesburg to Durban.

RATES (1st March 2023 to the 28th February 2024)

  1. R600 per person, per day for the first months stay.
  2. R522 per person, per day for the second months stay.
  3. R456 per person, per day each month thereafter.

As an example, for a three month stay* (March, April and May):

  • March: 31 days x R600 = R18 600
  • April: 30 days x R522 = R15 600
  • May: 31 days x R456 = R14 136
  • Total:  R48 336

The minimum stay for international volunteers is 2 weeks

This fee covers accommodation, food and non-alcoholic drinks, training, your volunteer t-shirt, internet/wifi access as well as donation towards C.R.O.W.’s work.
The minimum stay for international volunteers is 2 weeks.
Please inform us via email if transfers to and from the airport are required as this is not included.

Please note:
All volunteers must have medical aid in order to volunteer at our centre.
We are looking forward to having you join our volunteer family!

A 50% deposit will be required to secure your place. Full payment is required 4 weeks before you arrive. For any questions on your application, simply email us on volunteer@crowkzn.co.za

Sign Up Now

    Incredible organisation!

    C.R.O.W. is an incredible organisation, it truly gives animals a second chance by keeping the animals as wild as possible. I have learnt SO much in my time here and can not wait to come back. #authentic

    Jason Alexander / USA

    Wonderful experience.

    I had the most wonderful experience here, it was a lot harder than I anticipated but with the guidance from the C.R.O.W. team and the other volunteers, it was an experience that I will never forget and I have memories to cherish!

    Ashleigh Postlethwaite / ENG


    The team from the warm and ever smilling ground staff to the management are very awesome, welcoming and always helpful. Every minute is worth it and it does not go unappreciated, the most rewarding and memorable experience I have had.

    Khaye / RSA

    Frequently Asked Questions

    The fee you pay covers the costs and a donation to the project. The fee goes towards the costs of accommodation, food, your C.R.O.W. tee shirt, transport, internet as well as volunteer training, preparation and supervision. As a charity C.R.O.W. relies on donations from volunteers and other donors to keep its doors open. By volunteering at C.R.O.W. you’re helping to give orphaned and injured wildlife another chance at life in the wild.

    C.R.O.W. has been running for over 36 years as a rescue and rehabilitation centre for South African wildlife. We are members of IWRC (International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council) and a registered charity number 046-898-NPO. C.R.O.W. is legally registered as a trust and is, therefore, governed by a Board of Trustees who are elected on an annual basis. C.R.O.W. also has an Executive Committee who meet monthly and are responsible for managing the organisation. You’ll also find our annual reports on our website. Hundreds of volunteers have come through our doors – should you want to verify any information we do have contact details of past volunteers who are happy to answer questions. Please let us know if you would like further information.

    At the end of your stay you will be presented a certificate acknowledging your participation in the program. While you don’t receive any formal qualifications from your stay at C.R.O.W. you do gain valuable experience and skills in animal care.

    As mentioned the work can be dirty and you are likely to get your clothes dirty too. Bring old clothes to work in that you don’t mind getting ruined. The days are hot and humid in Durban so shorts, t-shirts or vest tops are the best bet. You may want to bring something nice in case you go out to dinner or attend a C.R.O.W. event, otherwise bring what is comfortable to wear and easy to clean. A pair of closed shoes is also a requirement for volunteering although a full list will be given when your booking is confirmed.

    While experience with animal care is looked upon favorably, no experience is required. you will receive training upon your arrival. No qualifications are required to volunteer.

    Volunteers need to be over 16 but as long as you are fit, healthy and can work there is no upper age limit. The age of our volunteers ranges from 18 to people in their fifties and older. As long as you are physically fit and able to work you’re welcome to volunteer at C.R.O.W.

    Yes you can. Travel before or after you volunteer is a great way to see more of South Africa or other countries in Africa.

    It is possible to volunteer with friends or as a couple but please note that couples will be in separate bedrooms.

    As your fee covers your food and accommodation at C.R.O.W. the only thing you will need to pay for is snacks, any personal items, personal travel and entertainment. ATMs or cash machines are located just a fifteen minute walk away in our local shopping centre.

    Firstly thank you – we do appreciate all donations. We have a list of items that we do need at any given time. Please check our website or Facebook page for the latest wish list. Alternatively contact us and we will gladly let you know what we need.

    It’s great to have a vet or vet nurse volunteer at C.R.O.W. Unfortunately due to South African law you won’t be able to practice at C.R.O.W. However, vets from overseas who ha

    Any animal care experience is great when you come to volunteer at C.R.O.W. Please note that you may not be able to do everything you do in your home country due to our legislation and the different species that you will be working with. Please make a note of your experience on your application form.

    Being a charity C.R.O.W. is always fundraising and marketing our work to the wider public. If you have any experience and/or skills in this area you could volunteer with our marketing and fundraising team which is quite small. Any extra help in this area would be greatly appreciated. Please make a note of your experience on your application form.

    Skills like these are in great demand at C.R.O.W. Being a charity we try to keep our costs as low as possible by getting work sponsored. If you are a trained plumber, electrician or carpenter C.R.O.W. definitely needs your help with our large property. Please make a note of your experience on your application form.