SPCA & Community Outreach

Lilongwe, Malawi

This program involves 2 weeks of small and large animal experience at the Lilongwe SPCA and 1 week of helping the small farming community of Monkey Bay. Build your clinical confidence at the LSPCA and then put it into practice in a community with no access to veterinary care. The LSPCA is dedicated to veterinary care and animal welfare, building compassion for animals in Malawi through public awareness campaigns, humane education, veterinary support and by promoting the enforcement of the Animal Protection Act.


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USD per session


  • Safe and comfortable accommodation
  • Meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner 7 days a week)
  • Monday airport transfers
  • Project-related transportation
  • Washing facilities
  • Permits & entry fees
  • Pre-departure support
  • Clinic support
  • Welcome packet
  • Volunteer t-shirt


Not included:

  • Flights
  • Visa fees (if applicable)
  • Travel Insurance
  • Weekend activities and trips

GVE volunteers get discounted rates on flights, travel insurance, and weekend activities through our STA Travel partners!


Click here for our fundraising tips & discounts!

2020 sessions: 

May 11 – June 1
June 1 – June 22
June 22 – July 13

Limited to 6 volunteers / session  

5 working days + 2 days off per week

Weeks 1 & 2: Lilongwe SPCA clinic

Week 3: Community farm work in Monkey Bay

Week 4 (optional): Liwonde National Park (additional $500 USD)

LSPCA Clinic:

Volunteers learn a wide range of clinical skills under continuous vet supervision in the main clinic and in local community clinics. This program meets pre-clinical and clinical EMS / internship requirements, and pre-vets can expect a minimum of 80 vet experience hours per session. We also welcome experienced vets for temporary work and skills exchange.

  • Busy clinic and veterinary hospital (clinical skills), cattery (feline enrichment), rehoming shelter (canine training) and boarding kennels
  • Three visits per week to farming communities with cows, sheep, goats, chickens, dogs, cats, rabbits, donkeys, ducks and pigs (farm clinics & donkey welfare training)
  • Weekly spay/neuter campaigns and primary health clinics
  • Humane Education to teach the children attitudes of care, respect and responsibility towards their fellow human beings, animals, and their environment
  • Annual Community Projects including rabies campaign (vaccinations, vet support & education)


Community Farm Work:

Based in a beachside eco-lodge and equit with knowledge and training from the LSPCA, volunteers travel to help animals in remote, disadvantaged communities with no access to veterinary care.


Liwonde National Park:


  • Animal Experience (hours/week): 30-40
  • Vet Experience (hours/week): 20-30
  • Clinical Experience (hours/week): 10-20
  • Surgical Experience (hours/week): 0


Free Time: volunteers have evenings and weekends off- free-time activities include board games, movie nights, lounging on the beach (Monkey Bay), snorkeling (Monkey Bay), and canoing (Monkey Bay).

LSPCA: Volunteers stay in a house near the clinic with 3 bedrooms (2-4 single beds in each) and 2 bathrooms. Bedding (pillows, sheets, and blankets), electricity, hot water, and laundry are included.

Monkey Bay: Volunteers stay at Mufasa Eco Lodge. Bedding (pillows, sheets, and blankets), electricity, hot water, and laundry are included.


Meals are simple and nutritious. Breakfast consists of cereal, fruit, eggs, toast, tea, and coffee. Volunteers pack a sandwich lunch at the beginning of each day- options include meat & cheese, peanut butter & jelly, or tuna mayo, along with fruit and juice. Dinner includes a protein, a starch, and at least 1 vegetable. We try to accommodate all dietary preferences, including vegetarians!


Animal lovers, Pre-vet students, Vet students, Vet techs/nurses, Vets


Small Animal, Large Animal, Wildlife


May – July


Lilongwe, Malawi

“My experience… has far exceeded my expectations. Everyone here was welcoming and made me feel like part of the team. My favourite part was getting the opportunity to perfom a dog castration (with guidance) for the first time. I am especially grateful for Dr. Tino, Dr. Maddy, and Dr. Tari for all their teaching during the two weeks i spent at [this program].”

– Samantha S. 

Volunteer Stories

“I decided to come to [this program] because I wanted to contribute my professional skills to a country where animal welfare is poor but at the same time be able to travel and experience a new culture. My favorite part of the placement… was the field work because it is such a unique style of providing veterinary care which I can’t experience back home, and it always gave me a great sense of achievement at the end of each day… I felt appreciated by everyone; the community and staff alike. The volunteer experience was quite unique to this place and even the shelter was a great experience; the animals are well taken care of, they have nice kennels that are kept clean, the availability to run outside every day, they get behavior/training attention which is crucial for a chance for them to be adopted. I will, of course, miss all of this, but mainly the sun and Dr. Madeline; she was a lovely person to work with!”

– Magdalena D. 

“Before I came to [this program] I was worried that I would be a burden as I didn’t have much handling skills and even less practical veterinary skills, but the whole team, especially the clinic, were so patient with me! I really enjoyed the spay days and farm clinics, but I enjoyed surgery the most. Both of the veterinary surgeons taught me skills I have only read about in books; it was amazing!”

– Maike M. 

More Stories...

“As I will be studying to be a vet in the coming acedemic year, I came to [this program] during my gap year to gain experience in a different country to Norway. Due to the timing of my placement, I was able to get involved with [the] annual rabies campaign which, even with the long days… I was also lucky enough to inject a couple of shelter animals and observe various surgical procedures.”

– Oda I.


“Decided to volunteer because you always say ‘One day I’ll go to this charity and help out’ but very few actually do. On my first visit, I was quickly made to feel like a member of the clinic undertaking consults and surgery for paying clients but I enjoyed the Spay Day and Farm Clinics (field work) the most! I also really enjoyed the opportunity to go with Anne-Marie on dog trainings, what a fantastic thing to be able to visit Malawian homes and to see how a typical (well, a well-off) Malawian dog’s life looks like; it’s very different to how our European dogs live! When I returned in 2017, I was able to relaunch [the] stray dog population control at Kamuzu Central Hospital which was an amazing opportunity to make a major impact on Lilongwe’s huge stray dog problem.”

– Anonymous


“I volunteered [here] a few years ago and had an amazing experience. Dr. Ssuna and his team work tirelessly, educating the public and improving the health and lives of companion animals. One of my favorite programs is how they go out into the villages weekly to do spay/neuter clinics, reducing the number of unwanted dogs immensely. They’re an incredible organization and every donation they receive goes towards their programs like the spay/neuter clinics, caring for the homeless animals in their care and providing vaccinations. If you’re passionate about animal welfare like I am, this is a great organization to support.”

– Kate K.


“I’ve just spent 3 weeks as a veterinary volunteer… Thankyou to all the staff for being so welcoming and making my stay so enjoyable. I’ve had fantastic time, i particularly enjoyed the spay days and working wih the donkeys. I can thoroughly recommend [this program] to anyone thinking about doing volunteer work. Thanks so much everyone – keep up the good work!”

– Sophie G.


“I have just come back from a 2 week stint… We sent a vet and nurse team out to help with cover while they were short of vets. We expected to have lots of routine vaccinations and neuterings but also in reality saw a variety of weird and bizarre cases that we would never have imagined! We loved all the friendly staff… and thoroughly enjoyed the challenge of working out of our comfort zone for a bit. It was great to see that their neutering days also involved vaccinating for rabies, a worming injection and a spot on for each dog! Fantastic! Tracey and I are both very sad to have left all our friends… and hope to see them again some day.”

– Kate M.