+44 (0)207 193 5775
Contact Us Search our World
Search Our Trips
Got a Question?

Teaching Volunteer Project

South Africa Flag
Port Elizabeth, South Africa
Teach SA
Choose your currency
Trip Code: ZAVTC1
Duration: 5 Weeks - 12 Weeks
From £995 for 5 Weeks + £175 per Week
  • Trip Details
  • Trip Summary
  • Extra Info
  • Add-ons
  • Destination
  • Included
  • Getting There
  • Next Steps
  • Testimonials
  • FAQ
  • Gallery
  • Travel Shop
  • Book Now
Teaching in South AfricaTeaching in South Africanull

Interested in working with kids? Join United Through Sport on our teaching placement and help provide extra lessons to children from the Port Elizabeth area.

Did you know that you can fundraise for your trip project price? For more information check out the Extra Info tab

Teaching in South Africa
Many of the schools in townships in South Africa are still extremely underfunded and understaffed, despite the fact that the country is often considered to be the most developed of the African nations. The unique history and resultant institutional inequality which shapes the South Africa that exists today, continue to contribute to the clear imbalance that exists in the education system in South Africa. Township schools, which were actively underfunded by the Apartheid regime, continue to have severe staffing and financial issues. The project that United through Sport help to run in the schools around Port Elizabeth are making a significant difference to the standard of education in such schools.

Your Placement
Based in Port Elizabeth, on your placement you will be provided with an array of teaching opportunities, and will be able to teach students from a range of ages. You will be exposed to a wide range of methods and standards depending on the school and which age children you teach. With younger children, your help will often be more like teaching English as a foreign language to help children develop fluency and confidence in their conversational skills. With the older children, their English skills are often a lot stronger, and, as a result, you will have the opportunity to teach a range of subjects such as English Language, Literature, Science, IT, Maths, RE, French, and DT. There might also be opportunities to get involved with sports coaching, drama, and journalism.

Although the thought of teaching in schools may at first appear daunting, the English and numeracy skills that you have will make your potential help and contribution invaluable to your pupils, and make a positive impact on their lives.

Your Role
We will link you to one of the under-resources schools in the Port Elizabeth area, most likely in one of the townships. Your role from here will be to organise and deliver exciting and relevant lessons to help improve the numeracy, literacy, and communication skills of your class.

At first you will support local teachers and assist in lessons and in the organisation of extracurricular activities, in order to help you build close relationships with pupils and teachers. After this you will start to have a bit more independence in your teaching and will start to plan and teach your own lessons. Help with issues such as lesson planning, discipline, and cultural differences will always be available to you through either the teachers, other staff, or the United through Sport staff, so there is no reason to feel abandoned. We can assure you that your confidence will grow rapidly as you learn how to engage your students and you will soon have developed your own exciting teaching style.

Even though we are here to help you, your role is also to be independent. By letting you plan your own lessons, even without experience, you are to an extent pushed in the deep end, allowing you to come up with your own ideas and really get immersed in the teaching experience. We also encourage you to get involved in after school activities like art and design, drama, music, or the production of a school newspaper. Wherever your teaching skills can come in handy, we encourage you to put them to use. Above all, we want your trip to be as flexible as it can, and to let you decide how you think you will best be able to contribute to education and the schools you will be working with in South Africa.

Teaching in South Africa can also often be an enlightening experience. After all, there is no way to truly learn about another culture, society, or country without actually experiencing it for yourself. We would highly recommend this placement to anyone who is interested in the educational system in South Africa, who wants to get some experience in teaching, wants to make a difference to the children we teach or simply wants to spend a few weeks doing something completely different to what they are used to!

CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) Check
To take part in this project we advise participants to complete a CRB/ DBS (Criminal Records Bureau). United Through Sport can provide this service for you at an additional cost of £30. For more information on the application process please take a look at the relevant Add On Tab.

Quick Facts

Trip Name
Teaching Volunteer Project
Trip Code
South Africa
Port Elizabeth (airport code PLZ)
Minimum Duration
5 Weeks
Maximum Duration
12 Weeks
Minimum Age
Trip Type
Volunteering, Internships & Work Experience
From £995 for 5 Weeks + £175 per Week
£ 200.00
Preferred Duration
At least 5 weeks but if you can come for the full 12 weeks it will make a massive impact on our projects
Having experience working with children would be useful and a willingness to support the challenges faced in South African schools
Ideal for
Students, gap years, people who want to work with kids, people who want to become a teacher.
• • •

Arrival Dates

Programme Dates 2019

12th Jan - 5 weeks, 6 weeks, 7 weeks, 8 weeks, 9 weeks, 10 weeks, 11 weeks

16th Feb - 5 weeks, 6 weeks

30th Mar* - 5 weeks, 6 weeks, 7 weeks, 8 weeks, 9 weeks, 10 weeks, 11 weeks, 12 weeks

04th May - 5 weeks, 6 weeks, 7 weeks

06th July - 5 weeks

17th Aug* - 5 weeks, 6 weeks, 7 weeks, 8 weeks, 9 weeks, 10 weeks, 11 weeks, 12 weeks

21st Sep - 5 weeks, 6 weeks, 7 weeks

Programme Dates 2020

11th Jan - 5 weeks, 6 weeks, 7 weeks, 8 weeks, 9 weeks, 10 weeks, 11 weeks

15th Feb - 5 weeks, 6 weeks

04th Apr - 5 weeks, 6 weeks, 7 weeks, 8 weeks, 9 weeks, 10 weeks, 11 weeks

09th May - 5 weeks, 6 weeks

04th July - 5 weeks

15th Aug* - 5 weeks, 6 weeks, 7 weeks, 8 weeks, 9 weeks, 10 weeks, 11 weeks, 12 weeks

19th Sep - 5 weeks, 6 weeks, 7 weeks

* indicates you can come on this date for a full 12 week trip (maximum duration).

Our swimming programme only runs in Jan, Feb and Sep each year due to using outside pools.

Note 1: 5 weeks = 35 nights, 6 weeks = 42 nights, 7 weeks = 49 nights, 8 weeks = 56 nights, 9 weeks = 63 nights, 10 weeks = 70 nights, 11 weeks = 77 nights, 12 weeks = 84 nights

Note 2: dates are based on school holidays and are subject to change.

Note 3:  All programmes run from Saturday to Saturday

SA Experience Dates 2019

22nd - 29th March 2019 (7 nights)

14th - 21st June 2019  (7 nights)

09th - 16th August 2019  (7 nights)

01st - 08th November 2019  (7 nights)

SA Experience Dates 2020

20th - 27th March 2020 (7 nights)

12th - 19th June 2020  (7 nights)

07th - 14th August 2020  (7 nights)

30th - 06th November 2020  (7 nights)


British Nationals only require a visa to enter South Africa is they intend on staying over 90 days. Click here to check your eligibility or to get a tourist visa for visit over 90 days. 
• • •


Accommodation is at our volunteer lodge, sharing a room (four to ten people per room). Simple yet comfortable. Shared toilet, shower facilities, and communal areas for socialising. Single and double rooms may be available, ask one of our staff for more information.
Three daily meals will be provided.
Airport Transfers
Collection and drop off at Port Elizabeth International Airport for your flight.
On arrival you will be given a two day induction.
On the premises of the volunteer accommodation we have our office where 8 of our local staff members work. We provide 24 hour support as there are two staff members on site at all times.
70% of your fee is a donation to go towards running the charity such as equipment purchase and supporting local staff.
• • •

Not Included

Flights, Travel Insurance, Visas, Vaccinations, Spending Money, Travel in country, Laundry service, Extra activities not on itinerary.
• • •

The accommodation consists of separate sex dormitory style rooms each with their own shower and toilet facilities. Volunteers all have access to multiple communal areas, with WiFi and televisions available, including the South African equivalent of Sky. A gym is also available for volunteers to use. Located within the grounds is a swimming pool, games area, fully stocked shop/bar, BBQ area and a small playing field. Laundry facilities are available for a minimal cost.

The site is in a safe area, with electronic gates. Security guards also work every evening from 6pm to 6am. Located in every dormitory there are lockers available for volunteers to store their valuables, therefore it is advised that volunteers bring their own small padlock. United Through Sport also has a link with a local taxi company to aid volunteers in travelling around safely in their free time.

In addition to security guards, volunteers work closely with one of the volunteer coordinators. The coordinators assist in the day to day running of the coaching program. The coordinators assist volunteers in arranging various excursions and trips out of the centre. A residential chef provides breakfast and lunches as well as a home cooked hot meal every day. Staff drive volunteers to the schools as well as to various evening and weekend activities.

All this contributes to a lot of staff support and a very structured programme.

Volunteers are able to choose how they spend any time outside of coaching hours, particularly in the evenings and at weekends. The United Through Sport base is ideal for socialising with fellow volunteers throughout free time. Local sports clubs are willing to accommodate volunteers whilst they are in South Africa for both training and matches. Additionally, there are alternative attractions within Port Elizabeth including a shopping mall, bars and restaurants, cinema and much more.

It is a common choice among volunteers to extend their stay in South Africa to see more of the beauty that the country has to offer. One addition to your trip that United Through Sport can help with is the South Africa Experience: 10 day trip along the world famous Garden Route, stopping only at the Nation's finest sights and activities.

Fundraise for your trip
We encourage all of our volunteers to fundraise in order to make up the trip project price, making it much easier for you to manage financially and most importantly to help spread the word about the amazing work you are doing! We will be here every step of the way to give you tips and advice on fundraising ideas and provide you with any marketing material you need, and you'll be surprised how quickly you can raise the money with the help of your family and friends.

By setting up a fundraising page through 'Total Giving' the charity can also claim an additional 25% on donations made if the Gift Aid box is ticked. This means 25% more funds to help support our worthwhile projects overseas!

Please note this additional 25% Gift Aid will be treated as a donation to United Through Sport and will not count towards your project price.

South Africa

The 'Rainbow Nation' as it is often referred to is a true reflection of such diversity of cultures, landscapes and people.  From the blue flag beaches of the South Cost, to the Desert of the Karoo and Mountain Kingdoms of the Drakensburg, South Africa has something that appeals to everyone.

The recent history of South Africa is well known throughout the world and icons such as Desmond Tutu and Nelson Mandela have contributed to South Africa's global status as one of the worlds most remarkable democracies.  As a result, it is now firmly on the map for many international visitors who wish to discover it's heritage but also take advantage of some of the best safari viewing in the world, the most breathtaking landscapes and the perfect water sport environment.

Believed to be the birth place of humanity, South Africa has a richness of spirit that once experienced you will never forget it.

Quick Facts
Republic of South Africa
Bordering Countries
Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Swaziland
Capital City
Pretoria (official); Bloemfontein (judicial) and Cape Town (legislative)
Democratic Republic
50 million
11 official languages; English, Afrikaans, Sesotho, Setswana, Xhosa and Zulu
Rand (ZAR)
Republic of South Africa
50% of population below poverty line
Main Exports
Gold, diamonds, metals and minerals, cars, machinery
Temperate year round
Time Zone
GMT + 2
South Africa Flag

Table Mountain - one of the 7 natural wonders of the world
Big Five Safari - see Lion, Leopard, Rhino, Elephant and Buffalo
Magnificent beaches - from un-spoilt beaches to water sports havens all along the South Coast
Adventure Activities Galore - Bungee Jumping, Shark Cage Diving, Sky Diving, White Water Rafting

Fun Facts
Hosted the Fifa World Cup in 2010
Birth place to Nelson Mandela - the biggest modern day global icon
Has 11 official languages

Leopard Cub Tribal Warriors

History of South Africa
South Africa has an extremely interesting history that has lead to the wonderful diversity of its present day cultures and people. The original indigenous people of South Africa were known as the Khoi and San. They were simple nomadic tribes who moved in small communities following the game animals that they hunted to survive.

After the 5th century tribes of the Bantu nations began to migrate south from the equatorial regions and settle in South Africa. These larger tribes of darker skinned Africans dominated the original inhabitants and either moved them on or mixed with them to form combined more settled communities. This then established some of the newer more interesting languages of the current South Africa, such as Xhosa (which basically evolved from a mix of Nguni and the indigenous Inqua language) which is full of clicks typically inherited from the Khoi and San languages.

Not long after the migration of people from the central African regions south came the arrival of European settlers from the sea in the South. First the Portuguese and then the Dutch in 1652 began settling and moving further inland to the fertile soils where they could make permanent farming settlements.  As the majority of Dutch settlers became farmers the colloquial name for them was developed Boer (meaning farmer in Dutch). English settlers began arriving in their droves after 1820 after which followed a period of unrest and conflict between the English and Boers (Dutch) which generally lead to the Boers moving further inland and the British making settlements along the coast, however it eventually culminated in the Anglo-Boer war between 1899 and 1902.  After the British won the war South Africa was broadly split in two with the British colony spanning the Eastern and Southern side of the country and the Afrikaans State spanning the North and East.  However in 1910 the two parties formed a union government and South Africa fought as an allied force of Great Britain in the First World War.

Throughout the colonisation of South Africa, slaves had been brought to the land from Madagascar, East Indies and Indonesia. The Coloured race as it is know in South Africa today was broadly formed from a mixture of the indigenous Khoisan, Bantu, imported slaves and European settlers – mostly speaking the language known as Afrikaans (similar to old style Dutch).

From 1948 after a string of successive Afrikaans governments the then National Party formalised and extended the systematic laws of racial discrimination into the legal system of apartheid. During this period until 1991 black people were denied their basic human rights and were subjected to an endless list of discriminatory laws.

Apartheid officially ended in 1991 and the first fully democratic election (where black people were allowed to vote) took place in 1994 when Nelson Mandela was elected as the first black president of a free and democratic South Africa.

Nelson Mandela has been subsequently hailed as the ‘Father of the Nation’ and is lauded for his handling of the transition of power from apartheid state to democracy and leading South Africa towards the ‘Rainbow Nation’ that exists today.

Travelling in South Africa
Being roughly 8 times the size of the UK, South Africa is vast and has huge diversity in it’s landscapes and activities.  Although many parts are remote, so when going ‘off the beaten track’ hiring a car is your best method of getting around.

Between the major cities the various bus and rail networks are good and reliable. The ‘Baz Bus’ is also a great way of travelling between various backpacker hostels as if offers a hop-on and hop-off service taking you door to door.

The stretch between Cape Town and Port Elizabeth, known as the garden route is one of the most popular and widely travelled parts of South Africa and offers a stunning coastal route full of wildlife, flora and fauna and adventure activities.

Flying is still the quickest a most convenient mode of transport with regular flights and easy access to airports at all of the major towns and cities.

Gap Years and Career Breaks
South Africa is a fantastic option for people wanting to take a gap year or career break.  With an endless list of activities available you can easily get your fix of wildlife, culture, community projects and social activities.  With great food and plenty of tourist activities yet still a high level of poverty and important community work to get involved with South Africa provides the perfect environment to spend some meaningful time combining travel and volunteer work.

Safety Assurance
Before you even book your volunteer experience with us a lot of time and effort has gone into safety and risk assessments and standards to make sure that all of the placement we offer are fully safe, secure and provide maximum support to ensure the best quality placements possible.

Help Choosing the right Placement
Our staff know our programmes inside out so you can be assured that by getting to know you and your needs they will be able help you select the best possible placement for you based on their extensive knowledge of our programmes

Pre-departure Advice and Support
Once you have booked your trip you will be assigned to one of our travel advisers to help you plan and prepare everything you need for your trip including any information about visa’s, vaccinations or kit to take with you. They will be on hand right up to your day of departure to answer any last minute questions you might have.

Help with Flights and Insurance
Although we do not offer flights and insurance directly (to allow you maximum flexibility in choosing these options) we do have partnerships with industry leading organisations who can provide both services for you and ensure you are paying the most affordable rates and are offered tailor made packages to suit your travelling requirements. 
South African Airways beach

After you have booked you placement with us you will need to organise your flights and insurance.

Flights and travel insurance are not included in your trip but are essential to your travel, which means you will have to arrange them before you leave. But don't panic! To make life easier for you, we offer a free, personal booking service through our chosen flights partner – StudentUniverse. They will guide you every step of the way.

Please do not go into a store/branch as we have a specific team based in London who can deal with your requirements and are also familiar with how we operate to make sure you get the best service possible and end up where you are meant to!

Please click here to use the flight search engine or call the StudentUniverse team.

Talk To Us
We have a team of friendly Travel Advisors working round the clock to answer any questions you may have. So if you need any advice, or are wondering what volunteering for United Through Sport is like, just drop us a line, email us, or ask for a call back and we would be more than happy to have a chat!

Book Your Place
When you are ready to book your place, simply get in touch with us and we will guide you through the simple application process. We do ask that to secure your place, you provide us with a small deposit so that we can plan our projects effectively. The rest of the fee can be paid in manageable installments.

Welcome Pack
Once you have booked and paid your deposit, we will be in touch to confirm your place and provide you with the login details for our online Travel Centre, which is full of all the information you need before heading out to volunteer with us.

Flights and Insurance
After you have booked your flights and arranged travel insurance, make sure you let us know these details so we know when you are arriving! These are not added into the project fee so that you can avoid any unnecessary administrative costs, and to give you more flexibility, but our partners will be able to help you find the best options.

Visas and Vaccinations
You will also have to make sure you have all the vaccinations and visas for your project. We can provide you with lots of information to help you obtain your visa, and your GP or travel clinic will be able to tell you exactly which vaccinations you need.

Once you get here, look forward to a warm welcome from our team at the airport to take you to your accommodation. They will make sure you are fully settled in and understand your new surroundings. 

Teaching in Argentina was better than I ever expected it to be. It was very emotional saying goodbye and I will miss the buzz of excitement we used to get before arriving at the schools and the incredible welcome the kids would always give us."

Sam Edwards

"I loved it, just loved it! Hope to get involved with United Through Sport again in the future!!"

Max Vigor
1. How much spending money will I need?
It varies depending on the amount of excursions. For a 5 week stay volunteers usually bring from £400 - £1000 (€500 - €1,200) depending on how many excursions and how sociable they intend to be.

2. Are there ATM’s nearby.
The nearest ATM is just a 2 minute walk from the United Through Sport base.

3. How should I manage my money?
It is recommended that volunteers bring a small amount of cash, and carry the majority of their spending money on a cash card/cash passport. The Post Office provides a card that avoids any charges for withdrawing cash.

4. Can I speak to the other volunteers that will be coming?
United Through Sport will provide means of communicating with other volunteers prior to arriving in South Africa. This may be via social media or via e-mails.

5. What can I do to support the charity in advance?
United Through Sport appreciates any extra help from volunteers. It is recommended that volunteers who wish to make donations either bring items with them to South Africa, or bring enough money to purchase extra equipment in South Africa, rather than donating items to our UK office, as the costs of transporting items tends to be too expensive. Some volunteers bring other items (e.g. Small toys, sports shirts, etc.) to give to the children during their stay. Normal coaching equipment is provided for every sport as part of your placement fee.

6. How much time is spent on placement?
You'll work Monday – Friday during normal school hours. Expect to be out working for approximately 6 hours per day.

7. How much free time is there?
You are free to do what you wish in the evenings after coaching and at the weekends. Much of the time is taken up by excursions and other organised events. Volunteers still have plenty of time to relax, unwind and explore the local area.

Nomad Travel Store

Nomad Travel Store & Clinic


Use code 'UTS1001' to get your discount.


Make an Enquiry
Female Male






Quick Question

Female Male

Charity Website

  • Words cannot describe the feeling that volunteering in this way gave me. Watching the kids improve and begin to work together was incredibly rewarding. Thanks United Through Sport."
    Jamie Beagley , Basketball, South Africa
  • "The standard of Basketball amongst these kids was a lot higher than expected and their behaviour was almost perfect. Gonna miss them and the volunteers, made some great mates here."
    Danny Nicholas , Basketball, South Africa
  • "We always think of Baseball as being exclusive to America and as a lover of the sport, I cannot express the joy it brought me to see another nation's youngsters embrace it as I have witnessed in Argentina. More work like this needs to be done. Good job United Through Sport."
    Alex Charlesworth , Baseball, Argentina
  • "I love hockey and I had no idea that the kids in the Townships of Port Elizabeth would share my passion. Their behaviour was a impeccable and it was so easy to unwind after a days coaching because the accommodation and the staff were all so wonderful."
    Jj Burrows , Hockey, South Africa
  • Loved the setup at United Through Sport. Comfy accommodation. Plenty of support from the staff who are all excellent. Our base was close to all the shops and restaurants and an ATM. Loved getting up in the morning to coach too, so much fun working in a team and having fun coaching the kids!"
    James Rogers , Hockey, South Africa
  • "I had the most amazing 5 months ever. Working with the charity and seeing the impact they have on some many lives was just incredible. Thanks to all involved."
    Ruben Baarda (NL) , Hockey, South Africa
  • Tennis is so important to me that I'm glad I was able to use it to help the young children in Port Elizabeth. I had a blast!"
    Dimitri Le Vourch , Tennis, South Africa
  • I am really thankful to the guys of United Through Sport which gave me this opportunity to teach tennis to hundreds of great South African children. These 5 weeks made me a very happy girl and changed my life back in Holland in a positive way as well.
    Maud Calame (NL) , Tennis, South Africa
  • Watching the kids improving in the water was so moving I can't think of a more rewarding way to spend a summer. Phenomenal."
    Amy Nicholls , Swimming, South Africa
  • "Taking my love of tennis to Argentina was a dream come true. I will never forget this once in a life time opportunity to play and coach tennis to a range of abilities in such a great country. Thanks to all who were part of this!"
    Emily Prescott , Tennis, Argentina
  • Teaching in Argentina was better than I ever expected it to be. It was very emotional saying goodbye and I will miss the buzz of excitement we used to get before arriving at the schools and the incredible welcome the kids would always give us."
    Sam Edwards , Teaching, South Africa
  • "I loved it, just loved it! Hope to get involved with United Through Sport again in the future!!"
    Max Vigor , Teaching, South Africa
  • Great tour! Met some lovely people in South Africa, me and the guys loved the warmth that we were met with and the teams we played against were fantastic, it was good to Braai with those guys after the games. Superb"
    Matthew Brannigan , Sports Tours, South Africa
  • We were all impressed with the standard of football that we were up against in South Africa and it definitely brought out the best in us. As for the opposition, a great bunch of lads."
    Jonny Cox , Sports Tours, South Africa
  • "What an amazing time I had in Argentina, I miss it already. Alejandro, our coordinator, showed us all a fantastic time. Thanks United Through Sport!!!"
    Tom Leahy , Football, Argentina
  • "Thank you to everyone at United Through Sport. I have had my eyes open to the poverty in Argentina. It is so important that volunteers continue to sign up, they will not regret it"
    Declan Cockpu , Football, Argentina
  • "The most amazing experience of my life. I enjoyed this opportunity so much that I now live in Ghana and work for the charity's sports academy".
    Alex Burrows , Football, Ghana
  • "This was my first time in Africa and it was such an eye opener. An amazing opportunity to coach the academy lads at United Through Sport."
    Tom Lyonette , Football, Ghana
  • "I loved the friendships I made through the netball sessions and it's great to see what this charity is doing for so many."
    Anna Robinson , Netball, Ghana
  • "I volunteered on a netball project in 2010 and loved it so much that I never went back. Ghana is my favourite place on earth and I just love the Dzandza brothers who look after you."
    Liz Wells , Netball, Ghana
Back to Top