Rhino & Elephant Conservation

founded in 2012
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Coordinator | Jane
Coordinator | Jane
Book with Flex Option! Choose new departure dates or change to a different volunteer program at no extra costs.


Experience black and white rhinos, elephants, cheetah and a range of other wildlife
Work alongside anti-poaching rangers to help secure the future of endangered animals
Learn to track cheetah and rhinos using telemetry
Have a once-in-lifetime opportunity to get behind the scenes and experience day-to-day life on a private conservancy
Monitor and observe a variety of large and small animals in a unique environment
Volunteer in Africa and help secure the future of the endangered black rhino, cheetah and elephant. Experience daily life on a 10,000 acre family-run private conservancy. This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Age 17+

Rhino Conservation in Zimbabwe

The project is home to an internationally renowned Black Rhino Breeding and Release Programme which has supported Zimbabwe’s rhino population since the mid 1980s. To date, 20 rhinos have been born at the conservancy, with 12 rhinos successfully released back into the wild. Volunteers play a role in securing the future of this once-again endangered animal, working alongside anti-poaching rangers, working on rhino research projects and getting involved in the daily care of both black and white rhino.

Cheetah Conservation

In 2021, two captive-born male cheetah were introduced to the conservancy as part of an international rewilding programme. The cheetah are now free-roaming in the reserve, and volunteers play an important role in monitoring and observing their behaviour, tracking their movements and recording their hunting rate.

Our Rhino and Elephant Conservation Programme is a unique hands-on opportunity to get behind the scenes and experience day-to-day life on a private conservancy, and be involved with the protection and conservation of Zimbabwe’s endangered black rhino.

The programme focuses on the conservation of eight black and four white rhino, three elephants, two cheetah and a wealth of plains game including giraffe, zebra, buffalo, wildebeest, impala, kudu, crocodile and the rare sable antelope. 

The aim of the programme is to assist the reserve's established black rhino breeding and release programme; collect meaningful data and information relating to rhino and wildlife conservation and animal behaviour, and engage with the local community about wildlife conservation.

Volunteer Work

Volunteers contribute to a long term conservation project and get involved with a variety of conservation activities: 

  • Work alongside rhinos, cheetahs and elephants
  • Conservancy management
  • Wildlife monitoring
  • Anti-poaching patrols and snare sweeps 
  • Educate school-children about conservation, wildlife and the environment
  • Learn about what is involved in running a conservancy

Community engagement

Successful wildlife conservation goes hand in hand with community education and engagement. Volunteers work with community leaders and schools to share their passion for conservation and the environment. 

Volunteering is a unique opportunity to completely immerse yourself in a new country and culture, experiencing day-to-day life in Africa first hand – all while giving back to an important conservation cause. We guarantee your experiences on the programme will be life-changing!

Typical day

There is no such thing as a typical day on the project, but these are activities which you will almost certainly be involved with during your stay

Rhino conservation

  • Observe and record rhino behaviour to identify patterns and understand relationships
  • Track the rhinos using telemetry, record locations, behaviour and social interactions
  • Monitor the three baby rhino on the reserve, watching their development and recording their feeding habits and development
  • Learn all about these amazing animals from experienced rangers
  • White rhino tracking: join the white rhino scouts on morning patrol; learn how to use the telemetry set, look for the tracks and signs of rhino movement and identify spoor. Upon locating the rhino, volunteers monitor and observe their behaviour and feeding patterns with the scouts.

Cheetah conservation

  • Track the cheetah on foot and using telemetry
  • Observe and record their behaviour, movements, hunting rate and feeding habits

Work with elephants

  • Observe and record elephant behaviour to identify patterns and understand relationships
  • Clean out the elephant beds and put in fresh hay
  • Maintain and repair enclosures and elephant damage

Anti-poaching and security

  • Undertake snare patrols and anti-poaching monitoring - check for evidence of poaching and collect snares and traps. This minimises the poaching of small and large animals on the reserve and provides support to the dedicated anti-poaching team.
  • Fence and boundary monitoring on horseback and on foot
  • Horseback riding patrols: carry out herd monitoring and anti-poaching off the beaten track
  • Meet and learn from Murwi, the project's K9 Anti-Poaching dog

Conservancy Management

  • Undertake deliveries of hay bales and game cubes around the game park to supplement the natural browse and grazing for all animals
  • Help maintain fences, roads, fireguards and park equipment
  • Indigenous tree planting and removal of alien species
  • Litter sweeps within the game park and surrounding areas
  • Cattle dipping: help the cattle section on dip days to control the population of parasites and other diseases which can affect the wildlife
  • Monitor the condition and health of herd animals
  • Game counts by foot, vehicle and on horseback
  • Carnivore feeding: volunteers are responsible for feeding the lion, hyenas, crocodile and the periodic dosing of the lion to prevent ticks

Community, teaching and cultural activities

  • Assist with English literacy to improve primary school English
  • Help in the vegetable gardens and work with the Conservation Club
  • Take conservation lessons and school groups into the game park for practical conservation lessons
  • Home visits: visit the home of a local community member to experience rural Zimbabwean life
  • Play sports and games with the younger children

Free-time activities

Weekend activities and excursions:
During your leisure time you may go on walks and hikes around the reserve or to local places of interest; volunteers can also go fishing or canoeing on one of the many dams. 

We highly recommend a weekend excursion to Victoria Falls (a one hour flight), which should be organised prior to your arrival.

Water Sports


In order to join the program you need to be at least 17 years old on the program start date.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (basic level)
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
A moderate level of fitness and a passion for wildlife and conservation. Family groups are very welcome!
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 06:30 - 17:00

What's Included

Services by Imire Rhino Conservation

Included in your programme fee:

  • Return transfers from Harare on a Monday
  • Accommodation
  • 3 meals per day plus, water, tea and coffee
  • Laundry and housekeeping
  • Activities and equipment on the programme
  • Full supervision and orientation

What is not included:

  • Flights to Harare
  • Visa fees
  • Travel insurance (compulsory)
  • Drinks from the bar
  • Any extra activities or excursions outside of the volunteer programme
  • $40 admin fee per booking

Airport Pickup at Harare International Airport

We will collect you from Harare International Airport before 1500 on a Monday. Departure flights must be booked from midday onwards, as the return transfer will arrive at the airport around 1000.

The volunteer programme at Imire is unique for its personal nature, and you will be comfortably accommodated in groups of no more than 12 volunteers. Our accommodation is beautifully situated in the heart of the conservancy.

Rooms are shared (same sex sharing) in comfortable single beds with all bedding provided (duvets, pillows and extra blankets in winter). Couples will always be accommodated together in a private room. Showers and toilet facilities are shared, and hot water is supplied for showers and washing. Power sockets for electrical items are available in communal areas.

All bedrooms and communal areas will be cleaned every day and the housekeeping staff will also do your laundry when required. An outhouse laundry is available for washing smalls or should you wish to do an extra load of your own.

Food & Beverages

Three home cooked meals are provided daily on a self-serve basis. Vegetarian and vegan options are available upon request, but should you have any dietary requirements or food allergies, it is important you let us know before you arrive. We are able to cater for very specific dietary needs (for example gluten, dairy or wheat intolerance), but you should bring any specialist foods along with you. If you bring these foods, our chefs will be able to prepare these for you alongside other volunteer’s standard meals.

Drinking water is pumped from a borehole and is safe and clean for drinking.

Internet Access
Limited access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Harare International Airport (HRE) in Harare. We assist you to find cheap flights to Zimbabwe.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Zimbabwe provides security and is a plus to have.
If you are intending to volunteer in Zimbabwe you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Zimbabwe.

Dates & Fees


Details on arrival

The project runs every Monday throughout the year. Please arrive on a Monday before 1500 and depart on a Monday after midday.

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
1 - 12 weeks

Program fees

Costs: Prices in USD
1 week (min. stay)
2 weeks
3 weeks
4 weeks
5 weeks
6 weeks
8 weeks
10 weeks
12 weeks (max. stay)
Average fees
$900 /week

Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated. Imire Rhino Conservation will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Deposit (15%)
The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.
Final Payment (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with Imire Rhino Conservation during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.

Why book with Volunteer World

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We refund your fees if Imire Rhino Conservation cancels your trip
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All program fees are charged directly by Imire Rhino Conservation.

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Rhino & Elephant Conservation

Volunteer in Africa and help secure the future of the endangered black rhino, cheetah and elephant. Experience daily life on a 10,000 acre family-run private conservancy.


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