Elephant Conservation Adventure

Spend some time deep in the jungle clad mountains of Western Thailand enjoying the natural environment while you assist in the care of elephants in their natural habitat. We are stricly against the exploitation of Elephants and this is a responsable placement where you will help in bathing and feeding the elephants and enjoy, swimming and trekking alongside with them.

we need you in Thailand

  • Although Thailand's economy is improving, there is still a wide gap between the rich and the poor.
  • The majority of Thailand's poor live in rural areas, with a lack of education being a main contributor to poverty.
  • Due to economical developments, environmental degradation is evident. The decline of biodiversity and deforestation is increasing.
  • The expliotation of animals in Thailand is a big problem. With many being beaten and held in small cages for the tourist trade.

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Ready to volunteer abroad? Complete your application online in about 5 min.

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can you help?

  • Play an important role in caring for elephants in their natural habitat.
  • Help with daily activites around the centre, such as feeding and cleaning
  • Work with rehabilitation centre staff who’ll guide you and teach you on how to care for these animals
  • Take part in and gain valuable in-field research experience

can you do?

  • Trekking in the jungle to look for sugar cane and banana leaves
  • Feed the elephants and bathe them in the river
  • Assist with any other daily duties around the centre 
  • Assist with health checks and research on elephant behaviours

Why Involvement Volunteers International?

  • Non Profit Organisation & Charity
  • Over 30 Years Expertise Globally
  • Low Program Fees - From US$295
  • Excellent Safety Record, In-Country 24/7 Support & Emergency Assistance
  • 1 Application Fee - Multiple Countries
travelling overseas can truly change your life!

  PROJECT NAME: ELEPHANT CONSERVATION

LOCATION: UMPHANG, THAILAND

  START DATES: WEEKLY (SAT/SUN ARRIVALS)

  ACCOMMODATION: VOLUNTEER HOUSE (SHARED ROOMS)

  MIN DURATION: ONE WEEK

  MIN AGE: 16+

  SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: N/A

  PROJECT COSTS: From US$495 + APPLICATION FEE

Overview

Our aim of this project is to bring elephants back into their natural habitat by working with the local communities to not only provide a safe haven for the elephants, but also an alternative livelihood for their mahouts and owners.

The elephants have been taken from a life of poor health care, exhaustion, inadequate diet, and entertaining tourists where they were unable to just be elephants. These wonderful creatures are bought back to their natural environment where they are living in semi-wild conditions, free to roam as much as possible and live their lives how they choose by foraging and interacting. In order to bring the elephants home to their natural habitat we need your help.

There are more than 4,000 captive elephants in Thailand, most of whom are living in poor conditions with inadequate care and lack of freedom. IVI recognises that this is inhumane and a reason we work with local partners to help bring as many elephants back to their natural environment as well as raise awareness about the captive elephant situation. We work alongside the elephant owners, local community and other organisations to raise awareness about a brighter future for all captive elephants.

Location

Umphang is one of the most hidden and beautiful places in Thailand. The area was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and here you work with the majestic elephants feeding and bathing them completely on their terms. Close to the border of Burma, this placement is deep in the mountains and well off the beaten path. Set amid numerous national parks, mountains and lakes, you are surrounded by nature and beauty. It offers a peaceful environment and a perfect setting to see the elephants enjoy their natural habitat. Here the elephants exist in their natural habitat with no tourist exploitation.

Project Tasks

  • Maintaining the natural habitat of Asian elephants 
  • Carry out research on the Elephants natural behaviours
  • Prepare food, baths and assist in health checks of the elephants
  • Provide assistance to the local mahouts
  • Provide a unique, unforgettable experience of Thailand’s culture

Food & Accommodation

The volunteer centre is a safe, clean and comfortable wooden cabin guest house. There is even a bar to enjoy in the evenings, free WIFI in public areas, lockable rooms, hot showers, purified water, private western style bathroom shared between 2-4 volunteers, bed linen, mosquito protection and fans (no air con).  Laundry facilities are available nearby for a small cost.   

There are Thai restaurants, bars, and shops located within walking distance from the accommodation as it’s in the middle of a small yet lively village. There is an ATM machine nearby at a 7/11.

Private rooms are available at an extra cost of US$150 p/week (p/room). Must be booked in advance.

Three healthy & traditional Thai meals are provided each day. Filtered water is available.

Testimonials...

FAQ...

Anyone interested in animal conservation and off the beaten path Thailand adventure. This project has a cap on the number of volunteers so it’s recommended to book well in advance to ensure availability. Joining this project will provide valuable in-field research experience and the opportunity to live abroad immersed in another culture with no previous experience required.

  • Accommodation
  • 3 meals p/day weekdays / 2 meals p/day weekends
  • Arrival airport transfer (Sat/Sun arrivals)
  • Filtered drinking water, coffee & tea
  • 1 day orientation
  • Daily transportation to project
  • In country 24/7 support & emergency assistance
  • Fundraising support
  • University course credits (where applicable)
  • Certificate of Completion
  • Airfares
  • Travel Insurance
  • Tours, Souvenirs & spending money

Volunteers in Thailand are encouraged to take up the orientation week to help you ease into the lifestyle and pace of Thailand. You will get to know your town and it’s facilities and everything required to make your stay comfortable. You may choose after the first few days to move straight into your chosen volunteer placement if desired or otherwise just enjoy the company of your new friends and extended family!

When confirming your dates please take note of the long holidays (mid-March till mid-May and October). During these times, renovation work continues, with the option to join special classes and English camps that are regularly requested by the local Thailand communities involved.

Airport pick-up is included in the volunteering cost. This may involve either a local pick-up by your volunteer host or a public transport ticket where necessary. These details will be finalised with you upon making a booking as this will depend on your arrival information.

A transfer coordinator will meet you upon arrival into Bangkok airport and will arrange your transfer from the airport to the Mo Chit Northern Bangkok bus station and then further on to Singburi bus station, where you will be met by one of our local coordinators who will take you to the Volunteer Centre.

  • Sunday – You will be transferred from Singburi to the project site by bus in the evening (around 20:00)
  • Monday – Pick up from Mae sot bus station to head to Umphang by local truck (4 hours)
    Breakfast, Time to rest and relax, Lunch, Visit the elephants to feed them, Dinner
  • TuesdayBreakfast, Cut banana trees to feed the elephants, Feed the elephants, Lunch, Washing and swimming with the elephants, Kayaking or canoeing (depending on weather), Dinner
  • Wednesday – Breakfast, Cut banana trees to feed the the elephants, Feed the elephants, Lunch, Washing & swimming with the elephants, Visit a nearby Karen Tribe village, Dinner
  • Thursday – Breakfast, Cut banana trees to feed the the elephants, Feed the elephants, Lunch, Washing & swimming with the elephants, Head to the mountain see the sunset (possibility for camping if weather is good), Dinner
  • FridayBreakfast, A short trek to reach a gorgeous waterfall where we can swim and relax, Lunch, Back to the guesthouse, Time to relax, Dinner
  • Saturday – Transfer back to Singburi if you are continuing further programs or for those completing the program, transfer to Mai Sot bus station which has many connections to the rest of Thailand.

Since the placment is set in an unspoilt natural environment, scnenic treking is the main draw card with a trek to Thi Lo Su waterfall a must as it’s the largest waterfall in Thailand. Here you may also witness local Karen Hill Tribe villages who originally came from Burma. There are 3 temples in Umphang where you can see monks.

With a long sandy coastline and jungle-topped islands anchored in crystal blue waters Thailand is a tropical getaway and favorite traveling destination for holiday makers and volunteers from all over the world. Thailand’s culture is generous, warm and outgoing and the cuisine is world renowned for a tropical abundance of fresh and varied flavors of spicy, sweet, salty and sour. 

Thailand is a fascinating and exotic country to explore. Through volunteering, you’ll gain a love in the people, culture, scenery, cuisine and in the overall lifestyle of Thailand.

We offer diverse project options catering to many different interests. Volunteering is the ideal way of assimilating into the local Thai culture and experiencing the real lifestyle in Thailand.

November to Febuary is the best time to visit Thailand, with a pleasent temperature through most of the country. From March to May temperatures can get very hot. The monsoon rains start from about June to October. Showers usually are quite predictabe and come in short bursts, so this time of year can be great to visit, as everything is so green and there are fewer crowds!

Temperatures are around 30 degrees on average throughout the year. If in the North of Thailand in the winter, evenings can get quite chilly, so bring some warm clothes too!

Vietnam has one of the oldest cultures in South East Asia, creating a rich history with ancient traditions dating back thousands of years. It also has a large Chinese influence. Elders are very well respected in Vietnamese culture, the older you are, the more respect is shown to you. ‘Saving face’ is a concept shown by most Vietnamese people and is thought of as extremely important in their culture. This means that if you feel angered or annoyed by someone, you do not show it and remain respectful. If you lose your temper/ are rude, then this is seen as losing face and therefore a loss of reputation and self-respect.

Vietnamese is the most widely spoken language, other languages include Chinese, Khmer, Cham and tribal dialects. Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism are the main religious beliefs in Vietnam, and you will find many temples dotted around the country. You will often see the local people giving fruits and burning incense to give as offerings.

30 Years Non Profit Experience

IVI is an Australian charity & non profit organisation founded in 1989 and is one of the pioneers of overseas volunteering successfully placing over 20,000 volunteers globally.

Affordable Volunteer Travel

We’re not motivated by shareholder profits.   Our fees are fully transparent to ensure maximum benefit where it is most needed. 

Safe & Responsible Projects

All projects include a dedicated 24/7 in-country management team, operational & risk assessment & overseas support contact.   All projects are personally inspected to ensure very high quality.
 

Work Experience & University Credits

We place thousands of Uni students and can assist you with course credits and in-field experience points.   Many of our project coordinators are qualified practitioners in their respective fields allowing unique in-field supervision and Uni accreditation options

Check out this amazing blog with step by step info on how to raise funds for your overseas volunteer experience to help maximize your impact abroad. Guide to Fundraising

Weekends & Extra Tours

Ready to Volunteer in Thailand?

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APPLY NOW

Ready to Volunteer abroad? Complete your application in about 5 min

placeholder - Elephant Conservation Adventure

NEED MORE INFO?

Not sure which program is right for you? Contact us for more info

placeholder - Elephant Conservation Adventure

SCHEDULE A CALL

Let's talk about it! Schedule your preferred time and date.

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    Thailand was amazing! We all really enjoyed the volunteer program, but even more so the people that ran it and the other volunteers that were there, everyone was so friendly and our coordinators were hilarious!!! Wouldn’t change it for the world.  There were just the 5 elephants and we saw them 4days of the 5 we were there …

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