About Rustic Volunteers Uganda

Volunteer in Uganda

A Life-changing, Rewarding and Affordable Ugandan Experience!

Volunteer in Uganda and have the experience of a lifetime while improving the lives of others! Uganda is the perfect African destination to travel and volunteer and your time in the beauty country will surely be unforgettable. With its breathtaking location on the forested shores of Lake Victoria, Uganda offers unlimited opportunities for adventuring, volunteering and traveling. This world famous safari destination offers over 100,000 species of animals and astonishing surprises at every turn with beautiful lakeshores, a century-old botanical garden, chatters of acrobatic monkeys, friendly people and colorful tropical birds. Rustic Volunteer's programs in Uganda are located in Entebbe, Jinja and the capital city of Kampala. Rustic Volunteer invites you to join our volunteer and travel programs in Uganda and explore a peaceful and stable African destination. Whether you work in an orphanage, on HIV/AIDS projects, on healthcare projects or teaching English, you will have a memorable and rewarding experience that will positively affect your life as well as the lives of others.

Rustic Volunteer invites you to join our volunteering Uganda programs, and explore a peaceful and stable African destination. Whether you work in an orphanage, on HIV/AIDS projects, on healthcare projects or teaching English, you will have a memorable and rewarding experience that will positively affect your life as well as the lives of others.

To begin an amazing and unique journey, send us an email now for more information. The sooner you inquire for information, the sooner you can help change the world for the better!

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Fees and Dates

Start Dates:

All volunteer programs start on the first and third Monday of each month.

If you are tired of expensive volunteer programs but want to make a positive contribution in the world, look no further! Rustic is dedicated to offering high quality, well-organized and meaningful programs at the most affordable price in the United States. We work hard to keep costs as low as possible, focusing on the effectiveness of our projects, the safety of our volunteers and the quality of participant experiences. We currently offer the most competitive price possible in today's market including an application fee (of $299) AND a small weekly fee as follows:

Duration Fee
  1 week   $150
  2 Weeks   $250
  3 Weeks   $350
  4 Weeks   $450
  5 Weeks   $550
  6 Weeks   $650
  7 Weeks   $750
  8 Weeks   $850
  9 Weeks   $950
  10 Weeks   $1,050
  11 Weeks   $1,150
  12 Weeks   $1,250

Airport Pickup and Transfer to Moshi (1 hour) $65

Mandatory Comprehensive Travel Insurance $3.49/day

Language and Culture Program fee $250

  • Program fee covers
    • Accommodation
    • 3 meals a day
    • Donation to project
    • In-country office expenses
    • Field support
    • Project coordination
  • Program fee does not cover
    • International flights
    • Passport and visa fees
    • Immunizations
    • Personal food and beverages
    • Travel costs
    • Entertainment
    • Local transportation
    • Laundry
    • Communication (telephone, internet)
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Volunteer Programs in Uganda

Work in an Orphanage

Volunteer in Uganda in an orphanage and help destitute children live the lives they deserve as you explore a beautiful African country. Numerous deaths resulting from HIV/AIDS have caused a dramatic increase in orphans in Uganda. AIDS often leaves a legacy of infected children being born into a hunger-stricken existence, where their parents usually die before they can care for them. Rustic Volunteer’s partner orphanages in Uganda provide not only housing for these children, but also the chance for quality education and a hope for the future. However, they are understaffed and need virtually any and all assistance possible in continuing to offer these vitally important necessities. Volunteers/travelers can help to supply these orphans with much-needed love and companionship as well as a solid foundation to meet their needs.

Project/Volunteer's Life

As a volunteer/traveler in Uganda working in an orphanage, responsibilities will vary depending on individual skills and interests and the needs of the orphanage, but may include:

  • Tutoring (mostly teaching English, but may include other subjects such as math, science, health, etc.)
  • Helping home-schooled children in the orphanage
  • Assisting/educating children in areas of personal hygiene (i.e. brushing, flossing their teeth)
  • In the afternoons/evenings, organizing activities, games, sing-a-longs and dances as well as other creativity-based activities to teach the children
  • Helping children with homework
  • Observing academic progress
  • Playing with children
  • Helping orphanage staff with administrative tasks
  • Cleaning and helping children with daily chores
  • Helping to maintain orphanage garden
  • Cooking and helping local staff during meal times
Skills and Qualification

There are no specific qualifications needed to join the orphanage volunteer project in Uganda. However, volunteers are expected to be flexible and patient. You should have passion and love for orphans.

English Teaching in Rural school

With globalization and international travel/trade, English-speaking Ugandans are becoming in-demand resources. While English is spoken in some parts of Uganda, there is still a lack of quality English education for children. Improved English education is proving more and more vital due to the growing tourism industries in and around Uganda and just a basic knowledge of English can open future opportunities for children. Each volunteer working in Uganda’s English-teaching project can make a meaningful contribution in the lives of local children by sharpening and honing their English skills. Improving Ugandan children's conversational English opens doors for them and helps them to compete and participate in the global market.

School will remain closed in Uganda will remain closed in dates mentioned below. The project is not available then but volunteers can enroll in other projects.

  • End of April to mid May
  • End of August to beginning of September
  • December to start of February

Project/Volunteer's Life

Each volunteer English teacher in Uganda will work in a private school, public school or school run by an orphanage. You will mostly teach English 2-3 hours a day (six days a week) in primary, secondary or high school. Examples of activities may include:

  • Teaching basic English to the children
  • Assisting the main English teacher with lessons and activities
  • Teaching other subjects such as math or science
  • Playing with the children
  • Organizing extracurricular activities such as music, dancing, sports, art, games, etc.
  • Teaching life skills such as painting, sewing, cooking, etc
  • Promoting nutrition and health
  • Helping to fundraise for schools
  • Working with local teachers on curriculum development
  • Assisting school administrations with daily tasks
  • Helping with basic maintenance of schools
  • Aiding local school staff in any way possible
Skills and Qualification

There are no specific qualifications needed to teach English in Uganda. However, volunteers interested in participating in this program should have a passion for teaching, a love for children and be willing to share their time, energy and compassion.

Health/Medical Projects

Hospitals and clinics located in and around Uganda's major cities lack adequate staff and resources. In effect, knowledgeable and able-bodied volunteers are in great demand. Rustic Volunteer collaborates with local hospitals to provide volunteers who have a strong passion for helping others and a willingness to dedicate their time and energy to those without easy-access to medical facilities. Participating in the healthcare volunteer project in Uganda opens tremendous opportunities for volunteers/travelers to experience new opportunities in their lives and careers. Volunteers have the unique chance to immerse themselves into another culture while making a positive contribution to the community where the need is the greatest.

Project/Volunteer's Life

Duties greatly depend on the educational background, skills and personal interests of volunteers. Participants will not be able to perform major surgeries/procedures. Each volunteer in the Uganda Healthcare Project will assist doctors and other already-existing healthcare professionals by carrying out activities such as:

  • Measuring patients' blood pressure, temperatures, height and weight
  • Assisting various health camps/posts in distributing medication
  • Providing health tips
  • Promoting healthy eating and nutrition
  • Promoting personal hygiene
  • Counseling patients
  • Treating minor wounds and injuries
  • Keeping and helping to maintain health records
  • Planning and organizing community health awareness campaigns
  • Helping hospital/clinic administrations with organization and administrative tasks
Skills and Qualification

Applicants must be able to provide some form of medical certification (medical ID, EMT, paramedic, nursing, etc.) or be a healthcare professional. Due to liabilities, applicants lacking some form of medical training/expertise will be ineligible for this project. All healthcare-related credentials must be provided prior to arrival in-country.

Uganda - HIV/AIDS Awareness)

As a volunteer in the HIV/AIDS Awareness Project in Uganda, you can truly make a difference in the lives of others. The pandemic resulting from the spread and acquisition of HIV/AIDS is a serious and deadly challenge facing the entire country of Uganda. Children are often born from AIDS-infected parents who often pass away before they are able to make any kind of contribution in these children's lives. Volunteers' assistance is greatly and urgently needed in many areas of Ugandan HIV/AIDS projects.

Presently, Rustic Volunteer works in collaboration with local organizations promoting HIV/AIDS awareness while simultaneously providing comfort to HIV/AIDS-infected citizens. Volunteers/travelers can have the rewarding opportunity to create hope among the sick and assure them that they can live productive lives, even with AIDS (given proper care of their bodies). Volunteer now in the HIV/AIDS Awareness Project in Uganda and help counsel affected individuals while educating others on the causes, effects and preventions of the disease. The only way to decrease the number of those infected is through education.

Project/Volunteer's Life

As a volunteer in Uganda working for HIV/AIDS Awareness, you can help in a variety of ways. Each day, volunteers will meet at the project office in Wairaka, Jinja to plan and organize projects. Volunteers carry out field visits to towns such as Wairaka, Iganga and Mpumudde by walking or riding bicycles/motorbikes. Volunteer activities may vary depending on skills and interests and the necessities of the local organizations. Examples of activities include:

  • Providing comfort through counseling
  • Leading support groups
  • Delivering donated supplies such as food and clothes
  • Taking care of the sick
  • Taking sick people to TASO (The Aids Support Organization) in Jinja
  • Administering medication to fight health concerns such as fevers, coughing, diarrhea, etc.
  • Building or repairing homes of infected families
  • Building clinics
Skills and Qualification

There are no specific qualifications needed for this particular program. However, volunteers interested in participating in this program should have a passion for educating masses and addressing fears and the numerous misconceptions of HIV/AIDS. Participants should also have a passion for caring for others and a willingness to share their time, energy and compassion with these in-need Ugandans.


Rustic Volunteer arranges volunteer meals, accommodations and strong field supervision for the duration of projects and optional travel packages. In Uganda, most volunteers stay in our home base, a permanent home established for our international volunteers. Our home base in Uganda is located in a pretty community, in a very safe and clean neighborhood. There are internet cafés, restaurants, local bus stations, a police station and supermarkets near our home base. The home base provides is a comfortable place to relax after a long day. There are several bedrooms (which may be shared with a same-gender volunteer) and community areas. There is a shared kitchen, television and shared bathrooms, which have running water and "western-style" toilets. Orphanage volunteers may stay at their project, as many orphanages have special rooms set aside for international and these accommodations are normally shared with a same-gender volunteer.

Depending on the influx of volunteers, accommodations could be with a host family. Host family accommodations are simple and clean homes in safe neighborhoods. Volunteers usually have a private bedroom, but occasionally rooms share a room with a same-gender volunteer. Our host families are well screened and are respected members of their communities who live in affluent neighborhoods. Most of our host families have experience with hosting international volunteers. Host family stays are a great chance for cultural immersion and exchange.

Volunteers receive three local meals per day (breakfast, lunch and dinner). We can provide vegetarian meal options, but needs must be detailed in a volunteer's application. Snacks and beverages outside of mealtimes are not provided; however, there are local restaurants and grocery stores near the residences in which we place volunteers.

Rustic offers unparalleled field support to volunteers to ensure a safe and rewarding experience. There are many layers of support for you. The most important support comes from our country coordinator/field staff. The secondary support comes from the host project staff and members of host families and/or a home base staff. Volunteers will have access to our country coordinator's mobile number and they are available 24/7. Throughout the volunteer project, our local staff stays in contact with volunteers either with face-to-face visits or via email/telephone. Our field staff will visit regularly (every 2-4 weeks) to make sure things are going well and as planned. However, if placement is far from our local offices, staff members will stay in touch via email/ phone. Volunteers are also welcome to stop in the offices at any time.

Specific details regarding accommodations, food and contact details for our local coordinator will be provided in personalized volunteer placement documentation prior to arrival.

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Project Locations:

Uganda ProjectsThe projects in Uganda are available in Kampala (knowm for the Ssezibwa Falls, Ugandan National Theater, very active Balikuddembe Market and the Nakasero Market ), Jinja (located on the shores of Lake Victoria and near Bujagali Falls, a kayakers' heaven) and Iganga (the chief town of the Iganga District with shops, banks & internet cafes nearby). Famously called the Pearl of Africa, Uganda is renowned for its African fauna and fairly conservative Christian/Muslim based society. It's full of contrasts: from traditional culture and history to modern urban infrastructure and much of the amenities you would expect from a city. Volunteers can organize different possible excursions during and after the project to visit places of interest. There is a tourist infrastructure already in place and on weekends and in free time, volunteers can enjoy waterfalls, animal sanctuaries, markets, kayaking, whitewater-rafting, breweries, Hindu temples, hotels and much more.

Major FAQs - Uganda

  • Application Process
  • Please read Rustic Volunteer's 5-step application

    • There are two options for applying to volunteer in Uganda through our program. You can apply online or you can download an application, fill it out and mail it in to us. You will need to submit your application with a $200 deposit. This program deposit is required to make an application valid.
    • Once we get your application, we will immediately send it to Uganda for processing. They go over your application carefully and find the best project possible for you. The decisions for room and food are made at this time, Arrangement for room and food depends on the location of the project. The vast majority of our volunteers stay in full immersion home stays though some orphanage projects are residential.
    • Once we get the details of your placements, we pass it on to you with a final invoice. Your final payment is due six weeks before your start date and in expedited cases, as soon as possible. The placement details have local contact information use them for contacts on your Visa application or to get in touch with the local staff and host family.
    • Preparation for trips should include reading about Uganda , immunization, travel Visa (entry permit), and booking airfare. If you face any problems our Program Manager is always available for assistance.
    • Once you purchase your ticket, send your flight information to our US office by fax or by email. Your flight information will be forwarded to the Uganda staff who will arrange an airport pickup.
  • Arrival Information
  • Arrival Point:

    Entebbe International Airport , Entebbe

    Airport Pick-up

    Upon receipt of your flight information, our in-country coordinator or other project staff will greet you in the airport and take you to your project site. The address and telephone number of the local contact hotel will be given before departure just in case volunteers miss our representative in the airport. Please make sure to e-mail your flight information to both the USA office and the local in-country coordinator's office.

    Departure Point:

    Entebbe International Airport , Entebbe (about 21 miles from the capital Kampala)

    Airport Drop:

    Rarely, a few do request an escort back to the airport; this is an extra expense of about $75. Most are very familiar and comfortable with their stay and have great ease taking their own taxi or bus back to the airport.

    Internal Transportation:

    Rustic Volunteer manages one-way transportation to project. Volunteers will be responsible for their own personal and return travel. We do not cover daily transportation from host family/hotel to the project. Our program is designed to save you the volunteer as much as possible.

    Start Dates:

    1st and 3rd Monday of each month

    Arrival Before Start Date:

    Rustic Volunteers/Travelers coming to Uganda are advised to arrive one day before their program start date. If you arrive more than one day early or stay after the program, you will be responsible for your room and food expenses.

    Working Hours:

    30- 40 hours per week

  • Visa
  • Rustic strongly suggest that all volunteers apply for a tourist visa in a timely manner before departing for Uganda. Please call our office or contact the local Uganda embassy to learn more about the visa, visa fees and visa extensions. Getting your tourist visa is your responsibility.

  • Health & Safety
  • Being informed is your first defense against disease and safety risks. We recommend visiting some of the following websites for health and safety information:

    WHO website for international travelers ( http://www.who.int/csr/ihr/en/ )

  • Vaccination
  • Rustic Volunteer closely follows the Center for Disease Control's traveler's health recommendations ( www.cdc.gov  ). Discuss your travel plans and personal health with your health-care provider to determine which vaccines are necessary.

    The following vaccines may be recommended for your travel to East Africa - including Uganda

    • Hepatitis A or immune globulin (IG). Transmission of Hepatitis A virus can occur through direct person-to-person contact; through exposure to contaminated water, ice, or shellfish harvested in contaminated water; or from fruits, vegetables, or other foods that are eaten uncooked and that were contaminated during harvesting or subsequent handling.
    • Hepatitis B , especially if you might be exposed to blood or body fluids (for example, health-care workers), have sexual contact with the local population, or be exposed through medical treatment. Hepatitis B vaccine is now recommended for all infants and for children ages 11-12 years who did not receive the series as infants.
    • Malaria: your risk of malaria may be high in all countries in East Africa , including cities. See your health care provider for a prescription anti-malarial drug. For details concerning risk and preventive medications, see Malaria Information for Travelers to East Africa .
    • Rabies , if you experience extensive unprotected outdoor exposure in rural areas, such as might occur during camping, hiking, or bicycling, or engaging in certain occupational activities.
    • Meningococcal (meningitis) if you plan to visit countries in this region that experience epidemics of meningococcal disease during December through June, (see see Map 4-9 on the Meningoccocal Disease page ).
    • Rabies , pre-exposure vaccination, if you might have extensive unprotected outdoor exposure in rural areas, such as might occur during camping, hiking, or bicycling, or engaging in certain occupational activities.
    • As needed, booster doses for tetanus-diphtheria  , measles , and a one-time dose of  poliovaccine for adults.

    Required Vaccinations

    A certificate of yellow fever vaccination may be required for entry into certain countries in East Africa. For detailed information, see Yellow Fever Vaccine Requirements and Information on Malaria Risk and Prophylaxis, by Country  . Also, find the nearest authorized U.S. yellow fever vaccine center.

  • Money Matter
  • You might need $5-15 per day for your personal expenses such as water or soft drinks, taxi fares, and shopping. The optimal methods to make purchases is the use of a debit card as ATM machines are available in Nairobi and Entebbe (in airports and major hotels) where you can withdraw local currencies. Another alternative is traveler's checks which are secure and can be cashed in local banks, during business hours. In Uganda, people of US or European descent are considered regardless of financial circumstances. This will make you a target for pick-pockets and scam artists ('fly catchers'). Participants are required to be smart about their money matters when traveling through Uganda. Please be advised to remain alert and remember these suggestions:

    • Avoid external money pouches, dangling backpacks and camera bags
    • Limit the amount of worn, jewelry
    • Don't flash money or your wallet
    • Travel in pairs or groups to the ATM
    • Remain aware of the exchange rate and cost of items
    • Take requests for 'donations' with a grain of salt
    • Store money in a secure, well-hidden place or safe

    Carry money in different pockets and places

  • Field Support and Supervision
  • How does Rustic Volunteer help me when I am in the field? How can I maintain communication? Does Rustic Volunteer visit volunteers?

    Once the volunteer program starts, our local staff members will stay in touch with volunteers. In Uganda , our projects are approximately 10-25 km from our offices (and usually located in rural settings outside of the cities). Our coordinators stay in touch with volunteers via personal visits, telephone calls or emails. The director of each project will serve as participants' immediate supervisor. Rustic Volunteer 's Uganda coordinator maintains a mobile phone so participants are able to reach him with questions and concerns.

  • Communication
  • How do I communicate with my family? Rustic Volunteer staffs? Is there internet?

    Volunteers are requested to bring their mobile phones. Upon arrival in Uganda, participants can purchase and change sim-cards as there are 2-3 electronic shops in the Entebbe International Airport. The sim-card is placed into almost any internationally capable cell phone and provides service in Uganda. Participants are encouraged to ensure that they are bringing the appropriate telephone. This is the perfect way to stay in touch with your family and Rustic Volunteer's office. Internet cafes are widely-available in most areas of Jinja and Entebbe.

  • Climate of Uganda
  • Uganda's various topographical regions experience distinct climates.

    Generally, the hottest temperatures occur between February and March with the coolest temperatures occurring between the months of July and August.

    Higher elevation areas within the highlands receive much larger amounts of rainfall. The Lake Victoria basin in western Uganda is generally the wettest region in the country, particularly the highland regions, where average annual rainfall ranges from 1,740 mm (70 in) to 1,940 mm (80 in). Average temperatures in this region range from 14° to 34°C (57° to 93°F) in January and 14° to 30°C (57° to 86°F) in July.

    The average annual temperatures in the main areas are:

    • Nairobi : Max 25°C, Min 13°C
    • Entebbe (coastal): Max 30°C, Min 22°C
    • North Plainlands : Max 34°C, Min 23°C

    Rainfall occurs seasonally throughout most of Uganda. The coast, eastern plateaus, and lake basin areas experience two rainy seasons:

    - The "long rains" extend occur from March to June
    - The "short rains" last from approximately October to December.

    The highlands of western Uganda have a single rainy season, lasting from March to September.

    All parts of the country are subject to periodic droughts, or delays in the start of the rainy seasons. Uganda's climate has had a profound effect on settlement patterns, as for centuries population has been concentrated in the wettest areas of the country.

    To check the current weather condition of Uganda, please click here .

  • Materials to Bring
  • Most stuff of daily use is available in Uganda at a cheaper price. However, we suggest volunteers pack the following things;

    • Camera
    • Mobile phone (you can use mobile phone after changing sim card)
    • Sleeping bag
    • Mosquito repellent
    • Insect repellent
    • Sunblock
    • Working gloves (if you are joining conservation or construction project)
    • Map of Uganda
    • Toiletries
    • First aid kit
    • Flash light
    • Electricity adopter/converter
    • Sun glasses
    • Footwear (for work and travel)
    • Towel
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