Volunteer In Africa And Enrich Your World

Volunteer In Africa

Africa is a vast continent but most of it lies in the shadow of poverty, malnutrition, drought, lack of education and civil wars. From the famines of Ethiopia to the poaching of wild animals in Kenya, Africa has seen it all. Volunteering in Africa has been a major consideration of Non-profit organizations worldwide.

Different people have different reasons to opt for volunteer work and it can vary from the desire to learn new things about new cultures and societies to travel and gratification through social work and helping mankind. Some people are so devoted to the cause that they have spent their entire lifetime in Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda, Nairobi etc, while others do as much they can. Volunteering abroad and in continents like Africa, South America and Asia can be an enriching experience with a satisfaction or gratification that is almost incomparable.

There are different organizations requiring volunteers overseas and especially in Africa. Some of the organizations and projects involving volunteering in Africa are:

The Cheetah Recoil Program: This program is being organized at the Marsabit National Park, Kenya as a part of providing opportunities for volunteering in Africa. The Cheetah is the fastest animal on land but off late, due to extensive poaching, the population of Cheetah is almost near extinction. This Cheetah program has been designed specifically for volunteers who have an interest in wildlife conservation and are willing to travel overseas to Kenya. The requirement is for volunteers in groups of 20 who will work in a specific area along with some senior research co-coordinators, game wardens and scientists.

The Azafady Project: The project is being run by an U.K. charity organization and they need volunteering in Africa to effectively alleviate poverty, and at the same time improve and protect the unique and beautiful environment and wildlife. Their overseas volunteer program is two fold. One program is called the Pioneer Madagascar and it offers opportunity for volunteers to work at the grass-root level and create a system through which environmental degradation and poverty can be fought. The second project is called the Lemur Venture which is a lemur conservation project focused on protecting the already threatened population of lemur.

Global Service Corps (GSC): They are an organization who offers overseas volunteering opportunities and this includes projects in Tanzania, Africa. Their volunteering in Africa program involves participants to stay with Tanzanian people in their homes and learn about their life and culture. Volunteers share their own experiences and culture and through daily interaction educate the people of Tanzania. The project areas for volunteers include HIV/AIDS prevention, health, creating sustainable agriculture to prevent hunger, working with hospitals, farms, schools to impart information and create a social community.

There are many more organizations who offer opportunities to volunteers to get a trip to South Africa and make a difference. You can also take up volunteering in Africa and the benefits are:

1.    You will be able to give something back. There are many people who feel the need to give back to the society and are passionate about their cause. If you are such a person then volunteering in Africa programs can provide you with a great opportunity to pursue such a cause.

2.    If you are looking for a unique opportunity: There are many projects focusing on people, poverty, social issues, disease or health etc., but there are not as many projects on wildlife and ecosystem conservation. If you are interested in a wildlife conservation project and want to become a volunteer and pursue a related program, then it will be a unique opportunity that will ultimately provide satisfaction.

3.    If you are looking for experience: There are many people who take part in overseas volunteering projects to gather experience required for their career goals or to start their own non profit organization. Either way, volunteering in Africa will provide the necessary experience and much more.

Chinese Visa – 144-Hour Visa-Free Transit

Since January 30th, 2016, the 144-hour visa-free transit policy has been carried out in Shanghai, Jiangsu, and Zhejiang in east China to facilitate international travelers. The policy, aimed at boosting tourism and business in the Yangtze River Delta Region, allows passengers from 51 countries or regions to transit in Shanghai, Jiangsu and Zhejiang for no more than 144 hours (six days) without holding a visa. During the layover period, passengers can move around the three places but not permitted to visit other cities of China.

Qualified Countries

Countries having access to this policy are the same as those enjoying 72-hour free transit policy, including:

24 Schengen Agreement Countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland

13 Other European Countries: Russia, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia (FYROM), Albania

6 American Countries: the United States, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile

2 Oceania Countries: Australia, New Zealand

6 Asian Countries: Korea, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, United Arab Emirates, Qatar

Eligible Transit Ports

The 144-hour visa-free transit program has been implemented in Nanjing Lukou Airport of Jiangsu, Hangzhou Xiaoshan Airport of Zhejiang, and all air, sea and railway ports of Shanghai, including Pudong Airport, Hongqiao Airport, Shanghai Port International Cruise Terminal, Wusong Passenger Transport Center and all railway stations in Shanghai.

Conditions for Application

1. Passengers should hold an onward ticket with a confirmed seat and date as well as a valid visa to a third country or region (if required).
2. Passengers are required to enter and leave from the eligible transit ports only.
3. During the layover period, they can travel within the administrative regions of Shanghai, Jiangsu and Zhejiang, but can’t leave for other cities.
4. The layover time should be limited to 144 hours. However, the 144-hour free stay period does not start until 00:00 of the day following passengers’ arrival. So actually, the allowed time to stay is a little bit longer than 144 hours.

Documents Needed for Application

 Valid passport
 Confirmed onward ticket
 Visa for a third country/region (if needed)
 A fully completed Arrival/Departure Card

Application Procedures

Inform the carrier when boarding – Fill an Arrival/Departure Card – Apply the 144-hour stay permit upon arrival – Claim the luggage (if needed) – Go through the custom – Leave airport

Tips:
1. It is necessary to inform the carrier before you arrive, so that they can declare your request to the immigration office for processing.

2. There is a counter/lane dedicated for the 144-hour free transit at the immigration inspection, so passengers can go there directly by following the signs.

3. After your request to enjoy the 144-hour free transit is approved, the officer will stamp a stay permit on your passport, which shows your allowed stay duration.

4. If you have a valid visa for China, but you don’t want to use it this time, remember to tell the officer that you need to use the 144-hour free transit.

5. After leaving the airport, remember to register at local police station within 24 hours after arrival. If you live in a hotel, you don’t need to do that because the hotel will do it for you. Otherwise, you should go to the police station in person to register your stay.

6. If passengers have to go to other cities or they can’t leave within 144 hours, they should go to the local Public Security Bureau and apply for a normal visa. Otherwise, they may be faced with a fine.

For more information, please contact Shanghai General Station of Immigration Inspection at 0086-21-5110510, Nanjing Lukou Airport at 0086-25-968890, and Hangzhou Xiaoshan Airport at 0086-571-96299.