Since its inception, iKhaya LikaBaba has thrived through the efforts of local and international volunteers. Volunteers  have assisted with building everything on the property from the homes to the sand pit in the back yard. They have helped erect jungle gyms, fitted bookshelves, painted homes and added decals to kids’ bedroom walls, run errands, collected groceries and entertained kids. 

They have held the smallest, newest infants in their arms and communicated safety and love through their touch. There is no limit to the creative and loving ways volunteers have served, and will continue to serve iKhaya LikaBaba.

Volunteer placements are near the town of Empangeni, KwaZulu Natal. The surrounding areas are Richards Bay (20km), Mtunzini (30km) Eshowe (100km), Durban (200km), Hluhluwe (home of Hluhluwe – Umfolozi Game Reserve – 150km), Greater St Lucia Wetland Park Natural Heritage Site (200km), Sodwana (rated as one of the top 7 diving destinations in the world – 200km).

You will be provided with accommodation at the volunteer house. You will need to budget for your own food, which is approximately about $50 US/week, depending on how much you eat. You will need to have additional money for bottled water if you prefer (although our water is fine). Extra food for days off, and any personal shopping you may do. Also any travel expenses and excursions will need to be covered by the volunteers.

Yes, your phone should work in South Africa, provided you purchase a South African SIM card when you arrive. The simplest method is to purchase a SIM card and then go pay-as-you go. Check with your service provider to see if your phone will work in South Africa.

Yes. Volunteers are able to arrange their own sight seeing during their time off on weekends. Our local staff can give you suggestions for places to visit, or you can create your own agenda.

The recommended course of action would be to bring all the medicines you need on a regular basis with you. However, a similar medication may be available under a different name in South Africa, which you can discover after consulting a local doctor. If you have a chronic condition, you should plan ahead and either bring a large amount of medication or consult your doctor about drugs that can be supplemented.

Yes, of course you can. We recommend that you tell as many people as possible about your plans to volunteer. This is important because it raises awareness, gathers interest, and gets those around you excited about what you are going to be involved in. It may also lead to financial support.

Here are some estimates on what things cost in South African Rands. If you need to know how much this translates to your currency, there are many sites online that easily calculate currency exchanges.



  • R450.00 per night at a guesthouse at a relatively economic establishment

  • R60.00 (burger and chips at a take-away)

  • R15 (a coke or other soft drink)

  • R40.00 (sandwich at a take-away)

  • R50.00 (cinema)

  • R65.00 (salad in a restaurant)

We do not make this as a pre-requisite for volunteering. We will appreciate any previous experience and skills that you offer, and we will attempt to train you in areas where you are unfamiliar. The most important qualification is a willing, servant minded attitude and the ability to serve where needed

Yes. However, there are two things to consider

  1. The shape of the plug

    The shape of the plug: Most plug adaptor kits do NOT include the adaptor for SA, however if you can purchase a European 2-prong adaptor, you can easily purchase an additional adaptor in Empangeni that converts the plug from the European to the large 3-prong plug that South Africa uses.

  2. The electrical specs of the device you want to power.

The electrical specs of the device you want to power: The electricity standard in North America, for example, is 110 volts and 60 Hertz. In South Africa it is 220 volts and 50 Hertz. You cannot plug a device rated for 110 volts/60 Hertz into an outlet in South Africa without doing damage to the device. However, most chargers for portable devices like iPods, digital cameras, camcorders, razors, etc. will work with both standards.

    You can check the charger for the device and it will say something like 110-220V 50/60 Hz. All such devices will work with the electricity available both in your home country and South Africa (SA). If you want to take a device that accepts only 110 Volts and 60 Hertz, then you need a transformer and they can be big and heavy and, therefore, are not recommended. Items like hair dryers and curling irons are best borrowed or purchased in South Africa.

Yes, you need to speak English. This is especially important when it comes to issues of safety and instructions. However, English does not need to be your first language.

You are required to purchase a comprehensive travel and medical insurance policy to volunteer with iKhaya LikaBaba. Search around for the best coverage and rates possible and make sure to mention that you will be doing volunteer work. Most travel agents will offer you insurance options when you purchase your flight.

Yes. During the first weeks of volunteering, you will receive training on child management, rules and procedures, and various responsibilities you will have while volunteering.

South Africa has a high crime rate, however, if you follow the same rules that you would in any large city around the world, the chance of something happening to you is very small. For example: don’t walk alone at night, don’t go into areas that are known to have a lot of problems with crime, be aware of your surroundings, etc. If you are careful and sensible, the chance of something happening is very small and there is no reason to be scared. Listen to the advice given to you during your orientation at iKhaya LikaBaba.

Yes, you certainly can! We are a small charity and can always use help. Please contact us. Send us your CV and let us know why you want to help us. We will then contact you to determine how you can help us. Marketing support, graphic design, event planning, research, and logistical support are some of the main areas that are useful to us and able to be done remotely.

There is one volunteer house located on the same property as the orphanage. There are three bedrooms able to host two individuals each.

International Volunteers need to be at least 18 years old or older. All that is required is a reasonable level of health and fitness.

Volunteers are encouraged to bring comfortable clothes that are able to withstand getting dirty. Remember, for very young children, the greatest fun is making a mess! If you will be involved in manual labor, bring clothes for gardening, painting, or other chores that often destroy clothing. If you will be in Empangeni from October to March, bring clothes for a hot climate. If you will be in Empangeni from April to September, bring clothes for a chilly climate. Finally, remember to dress modestly as volunteers represent iKhaya LikaBaba while they are here.

You’re under no obligation to stay as a volunteer when you’re unhappy. To see if your issues can be addressed, talk to us first. If we are unable to resolve your difficulties, please give an appropriate amount of notice of your departure so that plans can be made.

A schedule is set up for each volunteer that best meets the needs of the home and the needs of the individual volunteering. Full-time, live in volunteers usually work a 40 hour week.

  • DTP (Diptheria, tetanus and polio): Essential

Hepatitis A and B: Recommended

iKhaya LikaBaba is not within a malaria area. However, if you are planning to travel to the northeast area of the country, you should consult a professional for the best and latest advice concerning anti-malarial medication. Malaria is endemic in the lowveld area of Mpumalanga and Limpopo, and on the Maputaland coast of KwaZulu-Natal. Kruger National Park, a very popular destination, is within a malaria area as well. 


We strongly urge you to visit your general physician to discuss the areas you want to visit and a gain a comprehensive list of recommended vaccines. If you intend traveling beyond South Africa, you must consult additional, reliable sources. 

The iKhaya coordinator will be your main point of support. She will give you your orientation when you arrive, will answer your questions and offer guidance. The coordinator will also check with you throughout the program to ensure your needs are taken care of. You are strongly encouraged to become actively involved in Solid Ground Church where you will find a strong support base.

Please contact the Co-ordinator for details on this.

Yes and we encourage you to share your experiences with them as much as possible! You would need to purchase your own data and a local sim card, this way you can send messages to your friends back home and use apps like skype, zoom or whatsapp calling.

Yes. The quality of private medical care in South Africa is very good. Once you arrive we will assist in referring you to the best hospital or clinic in the area. This may not be covered by your travel insurance in which case you will be required to pay for the service.

Yes. iKhaya Likababa has two cars which are used to fetch the children from school or to pick up donations. It can be used to buy your own groceries if it’s en route. Otherwise it may be used, for local errands or social gatherings, at a small cost per kilometre.

Would you like to volunteer to assist us in caring for our kids?

Please email us at office@ikhayalikababa.co.za to introduce yourself and tell us what motivates you  to want to volunteer at iKhaya LikaBaba. Include your age, whether you have a driver’s license, your skills, strengths, interests and any training/ qualifications you have achieved. We look forward to chatting with you.

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Roles & Responsibilities

The benefits volunteers give to iKhaya are innumerable. The benefits volunteers gain are also limitless. The children give the greatest blessings. A smile. A hug. A little hand wrapped around an adult-sized finger. Perhaps it is because children need so much that they are able to give back so much.


Often volunteers arrive with very little experience doing the jobs they sign up for. In those cases, they receive invaluable on-the-job training that they take with them into life. Volunteers also have the opportunity to make friendships that stretch around the globe, gain personal confidence, and strengthen their interpersonal skills.


International volunteers also have the unique opportunity to be immersed in a foreign culture, to travel within South Africa and see exotic sites, and to be involved in a dynamic, life-changing experience.


A list of potential service jobs volunteers may be involved in includes, but is not limited to: gardening, construction, electrical maintenance, plumbing, administration, food preparation, laundry, fund raising, and grant writing. Work involving the children includes, but is not limited to: child care, holding and feeding babies, sports, arts and crafts, educational exercises, musical activities, and other interactions to broaden social, language, and motor skills.