Please note. The Kevin Richardson program is a VOLUNTEER program which everyone can join to gain knowledge on conservation and African wildlife
Are you glued to your TV screen when your favorite program "The LION WHISPERER" is on?
Instead of being at home in front of the TV why not fly to South Africa and assist the world-renowned lion behaviorist and conservationist, Kevin Richardson, at his wildlife sanctuary in South Africa? You can participate in the Kevin Richardson Wildlife Sanctuary program for a minimum of 7 nights. During your stay you will be involved in the restoration and maintenance of the 1200 ha Big Five Game Reserve and maintain and care for the animals, among others the lions, that live at the sanctuary.
This animal lover’s project attracts those wanting to get some experience caring for wildlife and others just wanting to spend time around some of the predators they have grown to love and want to play a role in helping. Others come to meet Kevin after seeing some of his work. One of the things Kevin prides himself on is providing the animals with the best living conditions while in captive circumstances, and he is always looking for ways of ensuring that the animals’ lives are enriched as he aspires for them to receive the best care and love possible. Being a small team, your valuable time and effort helps them to achieve this.
In turn they hope to impart some of our knowledge on you about the amazing species that reside here at the sanctuary and in the greater reserve. They wish to inspire you to take up the baton and continue the race to educate the world on the plight of this iconic species that will soon be lost forever if drastic steps are not taken to ensure their survival.
Work hours are from 07h30 to 16h30 excluding the travel time to and from work each day. Being a game reserve and working with animals, we do have unexpected events which can occur and may require longer work hours. Work hours may vary to avoid mid-day heat during our hottest summer days
General cleaning and maintenance on the farm includes the Volunteer Camp, roads, fences, water holes, vehicles and Predator enclosures.
Greater farm work
• Camera trap monitoring for research being done on the reserve.
• Work activities covered in the greater farm section focus around reserve management and
• Installation and monitoring of Bird of Prey nesting boxes.
• Road and river crossing maintenance to allow continued access to all areas of the greater reserve
• Removal of invader plant species.
• When out on bush walks keeping a look out for snares.
• The creation and maintenance of fire breaks
• Vulture restaurant
• Work activities covered in the sanctuary section focus around animal health, husbandry and enrichment and will leave you with a pretty good idea as to what it takes to run a wildlife sanctuary.
• Bush cutting.
• Cleaning and filing of water holes.
• Cleaning of fly traps
• Food preparation including cutting of meat for feeding and storage of excess meat for the next feed (Optional)of excess meat for the next feed. Kindly note that the meat they feed the lions
comes in from donations in the form of whole carcasses which saves them a lot of money. Food preparation will require the skinning and cutting of meat which can be difficult for sensitive people. They appreciate that this activity may not be for all people and it is therefore not a compulsory task. One can still participate in the feeding without actually needing to prepare the meat.
• Bone and Faeces removal from enclosures (while the animals are locked away of course).
• Fence checks and where necessary erecting of new fences or repairs to existing fences
• For the handy men/ladies occasional building, painting or repair work for the animal night enclosures.
• Weeding along fence lines to ensure the fence remains in good working order.
• De-ticking and de-worming of predators.
• Assistance on filming jobs for commercial or documentary work when they are taking place during your stay.
• Animal enrichment including walking of adult lions where Kevin walks the lions and the volunteers follow in the game viewer from a safe distance
While they appreciate that many people would like to interact with the predators as they see Kevin doing. The facility does not allow hands on interacting with the lions. The relationships Kevin has with the animals has been built up over many years. Kevin also does not believe in the mass breeding of cubs to ensure a constant supply of young animals for the tourism and volunteering industry as he believes there is a link between this practice and the sordid canned lion hunting industry.
For more information on this visit www.cannedlion.org Which we believe will help enlighten you and help you make an ethical decision when choosing your volunteer stays.
Your role in the successful running of the sanctuary and spreading the plight of lions in the wild and captivity is very important and it is through education that Kevin believes we can make a difference.
While there is a lot of hard work at our program, there is also a lot of fun and laughs. Like swimming in the dam on the farm or going for afternoon sundowners and a game drive.
18 years old
near Pretoria, South Africa
Animals at the project
lions, hyena’s and some other big cats
Camera trap monitoring, reserve management and maintenance, road and river crossing, removal of invader plant species, snares, animal enrichment, bush cutting, food preparation, enrichment walks with Kevin.
Monday before 12 noon
Includes accommodation, 3 meals a day, airport pick up and drop of from Johannesburg, one excursion a week, in country support and assistance
1 week 1015 GBP
2 weeks 1455 GBP
4 weeks 2585 GBP