Volunteering Cape Town

A gap year volunteering in Cape Town is an opportunity to get outside of your comfort zone, to learn more about the world around you, and to see how different communities are working toward solutions for our shared global challenges.

Take Action Lab: Volunteering in Cape Town

A gap year is a great time to get outside of your comfort zone, to learn more about the world around you, and to see how different communities are working toward solutions for our shared global challenges. If you are interested in opportunities to make a meaningful impact, consider volunteering in Cape Town, South Africa. 

Volunteering in South Africa with Take Action Lab can help provide crucial clarity during your gap year or gap semester by offering opportunities to learn about human rights directly from experienced  human rights leaders. Get real-world experience driving positive change with other like-minded students. Tilting Futures offers an immersive gap semester in Cape Town called Take Action Lab where students gain lifelong skills while apprenticing with human rights professionals addressing global challenges. If you are interested in expanding your awareness of both global issues and your own sense of purpose, volunteer in Cape Town.

Unlike voluntourism and programs that encourage white saviorism, Take Action Lab focuses on cultural immersion that respects and celebrates diverse cultural backgrounds. Voluntourism typically means inexperienced volunteers that do not spend enough time in the areas they visit to gain a deeper understanding of the culture or make a sustainable impact. White saviorism comes from a place of supposed superiority and can have negative impacts on communities. However, our Take Action Lab opportunities prepares students to make meaningful connections and responsible contributions to local solutions for global challenges.

When you volunteer with Take Action Lab, you can expect opportunities that center around understanding and working together with the communities you visit. Use your gap year or semester to learn about and understand the local culture of Cape Town, South Africa. Build impactful skills and create memories that will last a lifetime, all while contributing to meaningful projects!

Students working on a computer at Tilting Futures gap year apprenticeship program

Volunteer in Cape Town, South Africa

See how Take Action Lab could align with your goals.

About Cape Town

If you are looking for ways to make the most of your gap year or semester, volunteering overseas is the perfect way to participate in and advance meaningful projects. Take Action Lab offers a variety of Cape Town volunteer placements that will have you actively engaged in meaningful projects that actually make a difference. As you contribute to these projects in exciting fields like economic development and youth empowerment, you can utilize your skills and interests — you may even find your passion.

Our apprenticeship placements aim to match students’ skills and interests with the organization’s needs. A detailed questionnaire about student preferences helps match them with opportunities where each student can make the most impact as they experience cultural immersion centered around learning to make a responsible and sustainable impact.

Beyond the meaningful projects you can participate in, volunteer in South Africa to explore the local history, culture, and nature when you wander along the cobblestone streets or hike the beautiful trails of Cape Town’s National Parks to enjoy the natural beauty. Cape Town, South Africa offers a variety of incredible views, from the extensive coastline to the rugged mountain ranges, including Table Mountain, the dramatic backdrop to the city. Enjoy the warm, Mediterranean climate while immersing yourself in the rich culture of Cape Town and learning about its significant cultural history.

As the first permanent European settlement in South Africa, Cape Town was founded as a supply station for Dutch ships in 1652. It is the oldest city and the legislative capital of South Africa. Since the end of apartheid in 1994, it has been a leader in the human rights space.

Cape Town offers a great environment to learn about human rights due to its historical connections to many inspiring human rights leaders, including anti-apartheid leaders like Nelson Mandela, F.W. de Klerk, Desmond Tutu, and Albert Luthuli. Prior to the mid-twentieth century, Cape Town was one of the most racially segregated cities, but it now has one of the most progressive constitutions in the world. If you want to contribute to the work of advancing human rights initiatives, this is a great location to get out of your comfort zone and participate in projects that focus on promoting and protecting human rights across a number of important fronts.


Volunteer Projects in Cape Town

You can have a positive impact with the volunteer and apprenticeship opportunities in Cape Town through Take Action Lab and other organizations. Get involved in projects that range from early childhood education, refugee rights, women’s empowerment, food security, and more! Take Action Lab’s volunteering in Cape Town opportunities  include a wide variety of apprenticeships focused on advancing human rights. For example, you can work in the after-school programs and workshops that address educational inequalities for early childhood education. These programs help support literacy and numeracy, as well as social development. 

Advancing opportunities for refugees and immigrants is another meaningful way you can volunteer in South Africa. With one of the highest populations of refugees in the world, it is especially important to help support vulnerable populations of migrants and refugees in South Africa. Take Action Lab offers opportunities to work with refugees and immigrants to improve their digital literacy and English language skills and to help them overcome barriers to employment by supporting them with resumes and job applications.. Volunteering or apprenticing in this area is a great way to celebrate the cultural diversity of Cape Town. 

Other opportunities to volunteer in Cape Town include increasing food security through urban farms that grow food and generate income for local communities. Whether you help by tending at one of the farms or connecting farmers with markets, your efforts will advance access to economic development as well as nutritious food. 

Youth empowerment is another focus of apprenticeships in Cape Town through Take Action Lab. Youth empowerment volunteer opportunities can take many forms, including assistant-coaching soccer teams, providing homework support, or offering arts enrichment. All of these projects build a sense of community and foster self-esteem in local youth. You can use your existing skills and develop new ones as you work with experienced mentors to support youth empowerment.

Use your gap year or semester to learn how to drive meaningful change through South Africa volunteer opportunities. Our programs are designed to drive curiosity, celebrate diversity, and immerse in the communities where you volunteer. When you join Take Action Lab to volunteer in Cape Town, you’ll expand your global perspective and sense of purpose with our apprenticeships, cultural immersion experiences, and dynamic curriculum. If you are interested in cultural immersion and apprenticeship opportunities through Take Action Lab, request more information today.



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Global Citizen Year is moving forward as part of our new, larger brand: Tilting Futures. New name, same mission, expanded programs and impact.