“You have to take the good with the bad ...
...but then an elephant walks past your office window.”
What can I expect?
Project Management is looking at the project as a whole; our managers are responsible for the complete overview of the project they are based at. In other words they are responsible for the lights turning on, making sure the water runs and many other areas vital to the smooth running of the organisation, including staffing, training, stock-control and book-keeping. It is their job to ensure that the resources they are provided with are utilised to their full potential.
Volunteer programs also operate at project locations and you could assist co-coordinating those volunteers to ensure that the daily tasks required by the operation are completed. This is where you will not only require great organisational skills, but you will also need to have excellent people skills too to work with our many volunteers from all walks of life from around the world.
The days are long, but don’t worry about being bored – you won’t have time! Of course, the perks are obvious! You're in a beautiful bush environment, your life is about conservation and furthering the program - and there's no better cure for a hard day than to catch up with the cubs and know you're actually working for them and their future.
What will I be doing?
What your day-to-day role will be will depend a lot on your particular interests and experience. Before arrival we will discuss with you how best to fit your skills with the project's needs to ensure both parties benefit from your time at the project.
What are we looking for?
As a Project Management intern you will have specific qualifications and practical experience in the field of project management that you are applying for. You will obviously have excellent communication skills, be computer-literate and organised.
On a personal level, you will need to be self-motivated and disciplined, but still flexible in your approach. The ability to keep calm and think on your feet is also essential – in Project Management, you never know what’s round the corner. Anyone considering this internship needs to be able to “make a plan” as they say in Africa. Plus - you need to like people! Managing projects means managing people and your ability to interact with others will determine how successful you are in this often challenging role.
Click on these links for more information on the locations currently available:
Debbie Smail was also based in Livingstone.
“I am a 40 something year old IT Project Manager who lives in London. I decided to take a career break and wanted to do something worthwhile and completely different to my usual day job. Africa came calling and I was fortunate enough to discover the ALERT Internship Program which allowed me to fulfil my desire to spend some time on a conservation or community project – in fact it allowed me to do both. I spent three fabulous months in Livingstone working as a Volunteer Co-ordinator which involved organising the volunteers' day-to-day activities and being involved in some of the community activities too. I was very impressed with how organised and committed the team were and found it easy to get involved straight away.
My time at Livingstone not only gave me the opportunity to do something totally different and rewarding, but also allowed me to live in a National Park, walk with the lions, meet a lot of great volunteers, work with the local Zambian staff and simply to enjoy Africa! One of my favourite experiences was being involved in the conservation education program at a local school, which involved teaching the children about various conservation topics and taking them on a field trip into the National Park. It was humbling to see such a polite bunch of kids really appreciate what they were seeing in the park and just being so keen to learn!
All in all, I had a fabulous experience and most of all it was a privilege to spend time with all the lions, and to just watch and learn from these extraordinary creatures.”