Penguin Rescue and Rehab

Volunteer to help with and word hands-on with penguin and marine bird rescue and conservation in the beautiful seaside city of Port Elizabeth.

Minimum Duration: 4 weeks
Cost: From 260 Euro per week
Minimum Age: 18 years


The South African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB), a non-profit organization in Port Elizabeth, South Africa; is focused on the care of sick or injured African Penguins (also known as Jackass Penguins) as well as other marine birds such as gannets, cormorants and seagulls. The work of SANCCOB is vital for the safety of the largest breeding colony of African Penguins in the world which is situated on St Croix Island right off the shore of Port Elizabeth in the Indian Ocean.

This is the only centre in Port Elizabeth that has the capacity to collect washed-up penguins who are sick, hurt or exhausted; and to treat any diseases they may have, give them a vitamin boost, fatten them up and release them into the bay again.

They will re-learn how to catch fish independently with a definite advantage, being made fit and fat by volunteers.

There are currently only 25000 breeding pairs of African Penguins left in the world, and 21000 of those are mostly right here on our doorstep in Algoa Bay.

The centre’s purpose isn't just to rescue and rehabilitate, but also to inform and educate the general public through their different programs. The extensive displays at the centre give tourists, school groups and other visitors the opportunity to learn about these endangered birds but also a wider variety of marine life in the beautiful and incredibly diverse Algoa Bay.

Volunteers are needed for the diversity of tasks that come with caring for the penguins and other rescued birds, as well as the educational purpose of the centre. Volunteers will feed and clean the penguins, maintain their enclosures, welcome visitors and guide them through the educational centre, go out on occasional rescues and assist with releases.

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