Madagascar Construction

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1. In Brief

Madagascar's dramatic forest landscape is home to a fascinating diversity of life, with baobab and aloe trees, lemurs, chameleons and a whole host of other species that are found nowhere else on Earth! Its fantastically beautiful coastline boasts coral reefs rich in marine species, perfect for diving and snorkelling, and silky sanded beaches ideal for soaking up the bountiful sunshine. Madagascar's culture is vibrant and diverse; you will find bustling markets full of multicoloured produce and hospitable locals shouting their wares.

Overall schools in Madagascar are basic and teachers are in high demand; therefore your contribution will be extremely valuable. This project represents a real opportunity to improve their livelihoods and standard of educational facilities, and improve the future prospects of the next generation. The experience of being involved in such a worthwhile and wonderful project will surely have an enduring effect on your outlook on life.

  

  

PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS

  • Awaken your creativity & initiative as you immerse yourself in local culture and learn new skills
  • Discover strange and beautiful Madagascar
  • Live in the Volunteer House located in central Hellville
  • Make lifelong friends with your team mates and co-workers
     

FAST FACTS

Location Madagascar
Activities

Contribute towards village community project
Build better lives for local Madagascans
Daily manual construction work
Community educations & development
Improving schools infrastructure and facilities
Painting classrooms

Transport Airport pickup weekly on a Monday. Alternative start dates possible, additional £20GBP applies for pickup, please speak to an adviser
Internal ground transfers (weekly on a Monday)
Accommodation  Shared communal accommodation in the volunteer house in Hellville

WHAT'S INCLUDED

Before you go Pre-departure support
Travel & medical advice & documentation
Equipment advice
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt
UK TEFL training day and certification
In-country

Food
Accommodation

Airport pickup weekly on a Monday. Alternative start date possible, additional US$42GBP applies for pickup, please speak to an adviser
Internal ground transfers (weekly on a Monday)
Local orientation and training

In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ back-up
 

QUALIFICATIONS

A variety of qualifications are available on many of our projects. For example, BTEC certificates and diplomas on our Group conservation projects and TEFL certificates and BTECs on most of our teaching projects. You may also be able to gain a CoPE to support your university application. For more information on these qualifications, please see the qualifications section of our website or ask your volunteer advisor.

PADI DIVE TRAINING

On the Frontier Marine Conservation Group Projects, we will train you to PADI Advanced Open Water before you begin undertaking important biological surveys. Depending on how long you spend on the project, you may also have the option to take further courses up to Divemaster!

Please see the "Dates and Costs" tab for dive qualification prices or ask your volunteer advisor for more information.

Find out more about PADI qualifications.

2. The project

WHAT DOES THE PROJECT DO?

The majority of primary school-age children and 36% of secondary school-age children attend school. However, schools are severely under-funded and there is an unequal distribution of educational resources across the country. Poor and rural communities can only attend seriously disadvantaged public schools.

Some of the most important work that needs to be done in local Malagasy communities is setting up basic infrastructure. The project will help to improve the infrastructure and quality of educational facilities in Madagascar. Brighter classrooms, up-cycled classroom facilities and wall displays help to promote a positive, inspiring and pleasant working environment for the school children and teachers.

This project often helps with improvements that are needed in our partner institutions, and exact tasks and work at any given time is always led by the school staff and students.

WHAT WILL I BE DOING?

You don’t need any previous building experience, though you should be physically fit and willing to work hard in order to take part in this project.

Whilst on your placement, you will contribute to a number of on-going projects aimed at improving the local educational infrastructure. Such projects may include the painting of walls or murals, improving classrooms and playground facilities or sanitation and waste management facilities.

You will be working from Monday to Thursday as a small team of like-minded individuals. The day-to-day work programme will vary according to the time of your visit and the stage of the improvement work. Whatever your contribution, you are sure to find this project incredibly rewarding when you see the progress the project has made. The programme also gives you the opportunity to meet the communities you are working in during your free time, exploring the country whilst getting to know the people.

The people you are helping will be hard working and appreciative of your contribution to their community, and will be incredibly responsive to your presence on the project. Although the work may occasionally be arduous, it will be rewarding and fulfilling, giving you an unforgettable experience and the opportunity to make a real difference!

Whatever you decide, you are sure to gain huge satisfaction from inspiring these communities, whilst significantly enhancing your own skills and experience.

Volunteer Itinerary* – Madagascar Community Projects


Frontier Madagascar currently delivers a range of different projects working with local partners around the island of Nosy Be. All of our projects are based in the town of Hell-Ville and the villages that surround our field research camp in Ambalahonko. If you’re on a Community Project you’ll be based at our Volunteer House in Hell-Ville during the week but you’ll transfer to the camp on Friday to enjoy some free time with the rest of the Frontier team and explore the area where our research projects operate. We come back on Saturday morning, and then have Sunday as our day off when we can go and relax on the beach, have a dunk at the waterfalls or enjoy any number of other beautiful spots around the island.

Whether you’re a volunteer on our Construction, Teaching or Physiotherapy Programme you’ll always be a member of Team Unity, and as such you might well find yourself getting involved in some aspects of other concurrent projects. The times in the schedule are likely to change, and will differ depending on the phase of the project cycle upon your arrival, but to give you a little taste of life on with Frontier Community you can see a standard timetable for a day in the life of a community volunteer below.

06:15 to 07:15 - Up and out, school and other project activities start at 7:30! After a leisurely scrum for the shower we have a communal breakfast and get ourselves prepared for the day.

07:30 to 11:20 - Morning activities, which could entail teaching at our partner primary school, doing menial tasks with our other partners or looking after handicapped children.

11:20 to 14:30 - Lunch time! During the heat of the day Madagascar shuts down for lunch. If you’re in town we’ll eat together at the Volunteer House, but if you’re away at an out-of-town location lunch will be provided at your workplace.

1430 to 1630 - Afternoon sessions of lessons - teaching, building etc.

1630 to 1800 - Break time when we can plan our activities for the week or just kick back with a book.

1800 to 2000 - In our evening classes we teach English, deliver health awareness sessions and share some games with the folks at the local Youth Club.

2030 to 2200 - Dinner and a movie at the Volunteer House as we unwind after the day.

2200 to 2230 - Scrum for an evening shower, brushing the gnashers and off to bed! Zao dia kajo (I’m tired)…

*This itinerary should only be considered as an example of the kind of activities and timescales to expect.  Actual itineraries may vary depending on the season and the requirements of the project.

3. What to expect

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I ARRIVE?

Volunteers arriving weekly on a Monday will be welcomed by a Frontier representative at Nosy Be airport. From here it's a short taxi or minibus ride from the airport to the centre of this vibrant town at to your accommodation at the Community House.

Independent travellers arriving on dates other than weekly on a Monday can arrange a separate airport collection (extra cost; US$42GBP) by contacting the project staff in Nosy Be.

WHERE WILL I BE STAYING?

During the project you'll live in a wonderfully located Volunteer House in the centre of Hell-Ville. You will enjoy a unique and memorable living experience. The house is approximately a ten minute walk from the local primary school where we base the majority of our work and has all of the principal amenities one would expect from such a setup – equipped kitchen, flushing toilet and running water shower! House life is however very simple, unsophisticated and fun and will give you as much as you are prepared to put into it. The ‘community’ feel of the house is excellent and you will be made to feel right at home.

WHAT WILL I BE EATING?

You will be provided with 3 simple and nutritious meals a day which will consists largely of locally sourced fresh fruit and vegetables, meat, rice, beans and noodles, most of which is purchased from the nearby market and thereby helps to support the local economy. Luxuries such as chocolate, peanut butter and Nutella are available in the town, so can be accessed if you wish to treat yourself every once in a while!

Part of your role in the volunteer house will be to help with the cooking. Creating spectacular meals over our marvellous gas stoves will become second nature: so get your cookbooks out now and start thinking up recipes!

4. The reviews

NOSY BE IS A DICTIONARY DEFINITION OF PARADISE  | 8 Apr 2014
I have been working with Frontier in Madagascar for a month now, and so far my experience has bee...

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A HIGHLY REWARDING AND ENJOYABLE EXPERIENCE!  | 13 Mar 2014
If you love travelling, experiencing exotic locations while meeting the people and working hand-i...

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6. Extras

ADDITIONAL OPPORTUNITIES


A range of adventure and cultural activities like visits to remote villages, snorkelling, mountain treks and wildlife tours are available. You can arrange these in country which helps contribute to the local economy.

Scuba diving courses may be available (subject to availability of spaces and time constraints).

dive courses run monthly commencing on the first monday of the month

  • Single Day snorkelling off the boats US$21/$16
  • Single Day Dive US$63/$48
  • Double Dive US$105/$80
  • 4-dive package US$210/$160
  • 10-dive package US$420/$320
  • Diving weekend package US$63/$48 per person per night plus dive course cost (subject to staff availability)

courses*

  • Discover Scuba Diving US$136/$100
  • Open Water Dive Course US$525/$390
  • Advanced Open Water US$483/$360
  • Emergency First Responder US$210/$155
  • Rescue Diver US$630/$470
  • Dive Master US$1,050/$775

*Medical certificate is mandatory for participation in dive courses
 

Modern conveniences

Hellville

  • Attractions e.g. Lemurland, Donia Festival
  • Banks / ATMs; Bank of Africa (BOA), BFV-Société Générale, BNI-CL
  • Bars / cafes
  • Boats to the mainland & Boat Hire
  • Hostels and hotels
  • Internet cafe
  • Medical clinic
  • Nightclub
  • Pharmacy
  • Post office
  • Street food
  • Supermarket
  • Taxis to the rest of the island
  • Telecom office
  • Traditional markets
  • Western style restaurants
  • Western Union

7. Dates and Costs

COSTS

1 week US$1,145

2 weeks US$1,495

3 weeks US$1,795

4 weeks US$2,095

5 weeks US$2,445

6 weeks US$2,745

7 weeks US$3,045

8 weeks US$3,395

9 weeks US$3,645

10 weeks US$3,895

20 weeks US$6,545

Extra week US$345

DEPARTURE DATES

Every Monday throughout the year.

Ideally flights to Madagascar and connections to Nosy Be (Fascene) should be arranged for this arrival date

School holidays dates 2015/2016

19 December 2015 - 4 January 2016

17 February - 19 February 

19 March - 3rd April 

School ends on 5th July 2016

During school holidays a modified program will run with one to one coaching, educational workshops and extracurricular activities.

DURATION

1 week and longer

This project is available throughout the Christmas period and throughout school holidays

WHAT'S INCLUDED

Before you go

  • Pre-departure support
  • Travel & medical advice & documentation
  • Equipment advice
  • Discounted medical kit
  • Free Frontier t-shirt

In-country

    • UK TEFL training & certification
    • Food
    • Accommodation
    • Airport pick-up weekly on a Monday
    • Internal ground transfers (for volunteers arriving weekly on a Monday)
    • Local orientation
    • Project training
    • In-country emergency support
    • 24-hour international HQ back-up

AIRPORT INFORMATION

Nearest airport(s): Nossi-Be (NOS)

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

Flights

Flights are not included in our trip costs. However, we have partnered with an experienced and professional team of travel experts to help our volunteers find the best flight deals for their trips with us. This travel specialist operates in the tailor-made, long haul multi-stop travel market, arranging complex airfares and transfers for independent travellers. They provide expertise, security and a vast product range along with a Travel Butler service which is a single point of contact and support whilst you are overseas.

We recommend that you obtain a quote using the following contact details rather than book online, as our partner will offer you the most competitive fares. To receive your quote or to seek any advice for your flights, please contact our dedicated team of travel experts on 0800 082 9994 (or +44 800 082 9994 outside the UK) or email frontier@flightcentre.co.uk .

Visas

For fast, efficient and up-to-date visa advice please contact our recommended visa consultancy partner:

Depending on your destination country and your country of origin, you might require a visa. Please see the appropriate country consular website for details or contact our affiliate visa consultancy service. Please note that your visa will usually start on the date that you enter the destination country regardless of when it was issued. Please check with the relevant embassy or high commission. If you are purchasing your visa or paying entry/exit fees in-country you will probably need to pay in US Dollars. If you have any questions please consult the relevant embassy or high commission. Please check the visa information regularly, as changes often happen without warning.

Insurance

You'll need to buy appropriate travel insurance covering your participation on the project. You won't be able to go without the right travel insurance so double check to avoid disappointment. Please make sure that you're covered for the whole duration of your trip – from the day you leave the UK to the day you return. It's also best to get your travel insurance at the same time as paying the deposit for your project. Depending on your policy, this will cover you for any unexpected cancellations.

Your insurance should include the following:

  • Medical cover, including medical emergencies and medical evacuations (up to USD$3,000,000 / GBP£2,000,000);
  • Personal liability (up to USD$1,500,000 / GBP£1,000,000);
  • Cancellation and curtailment of your trip (up to the value of your project contribution).

If you are going to be scuba diving you should get coverage for scuba diving up to 30m, including hyperbaric therapy treatment (unlimited). You should consider obtaining insurance to cover you for any additional activities which you plan to do during, before, or after your Frontier project. We recommend that you obtain cover for your baggage and personal effects.


LEGAL STATEMENT
Frontier Partner Projects and Frontier group projects are run in partnership with in-country NGOs, small community based organisations, local research institutes, academic organisations and conservation agencies. Project descriptions and information are supplied directly by our partners or field staff and are accurate at time of publishing.

We aim to keep information up to date and accurate, however, the nature of our projects and in particular the fact that they are constantly evolving and developing in response to changing needs means that project activities, travel schedules, tour itineraries and daily timetables can change overnight and without notice.

8. How to apply

To apply for this placement, click on "Apply Now" below. Fill in the short application form and one of our advisers will then call you back to answer any questions and make sure this is the perfect placement for you. Applying doesn't cost a penny and you won't pay anything until you're completely happy and you're ready to reserve your place.


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