MAD Service Portion
Make A Difference is a registered 501 c(3) non-profit organization and locally registered Tanzanian NGO with expertise and experience in providing disadvantaged youth with access to quality education, technical, and vocational training and healthcare so they become contributing citizens in their communities and the world.
Their leadership is made up of women boasting over 20 years’ experience in addressing inclusive and quality education for all. The organization has been working on the ground in Tanzania since 2008. In line with the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, MAD has been providing scholarships to vulnerable youth and creating innovative educational career training programs and facilities benefiting over 50,000 people in the Kilimanjaro Region. The organization has obtained the Guidestar Platinum Seal of Approval for Transparency 2020 and Great Nonprofits Top Rated Award in 2020.
Nestled amidst the snows of Kilimanjaro and just a few hours from the Serengeti, MAD’s guest house offers a home away from home. The program is great for both individuals traveling alone as well as families and organizations. Every program is tailor-made to your schedule, so you can start your service any time of the year.
Popular ongoing projects include: Helping students get hands-on experience using computers for budgeting, presentations, and writing letters; conversational English workshops; playing with and reading to toddlers; and resume building and career development with older students.
A typical week schedule with MAD would be as follows:
Day 1: Arrival (most flights arrive at around 8:30 PM at Moshi/Kilimanjaro airport). Meet and greet our staff. Transfer in MAD’s vehicle to the guesthouse 45 minutes away near Mt. Kilimanjaro.
Day 2: Orientation. Get familiar with the local culture and learn a few key Swahili phrases. Review of your upcoming schedule for the week and later have an opportunity to tour one of the local schools we help support and meet the students.
Day 3: Walk to our Career Development Program for Young Women. Icebreakers with students and time to learn about their goals and potential businesses.
Day 4: Drive 45 minutes to the gates of Kilimanjaro to learn about the local Chagga culture, and then hike to a beautiful waterfall.
Day 5-7: Work on business plans with young women to help their communities.
Volunteers are scheduled to work 30 hours a week. However, the nature of work is such that volunteers and staff may occasionally participate in after-hours activities.
After your Service Learning Program, look forward to a safari in Tarangire National Park. Every safari is customized to your travel dates and interests.
Day 1: Arusha – Tarangire National Park – Swala Camp
Meet in Arusha, and drive to Swala Camp for lunch. Afterwards, enjoy a game drive. Tarangire is known for its elephant population and spectacular baobabs of every shape, which create an absolutely beautiful setting.
Swala Camp is located under a majestic umbrella of acacia and baobab trees at the southwestern part of the park, by the Gurusi marches. The camp offers a most peaceful setting for a traveller after a long day of game viewing. The camp is made up of 12 double tents, a swimming pool, lounge, and dining area with sweeping decks overlooking the waterhole. All tents face east, overlooking the marshland and watering hole and feature full-length windows, indoor & outdoor shower, and broad decks with comfortable lounge chairs.
Day 2: Tarangire National Park – Swala Camp
Tarangire National Park derives its name from the Tarangire River that rises in the highlands of central Tanzania and winds its way through the game sanctuary. During the dry season, the river lures herds of plains migrants from the parched, surrounding area to its shrunken, brackish waters. The animals come by the thousands, dramatically swelling the resident population with wildebeest, zebra, eland, elephant, hartebeest, buffalo and fringe-eared oryx. As the rainless days continue, the Tarangire’s pools are heavily populated with thirsty migrants, and the elephants begin to dig for underground streams in the dry riverbed.
Day 3: Tarangire National Park – Ngorongoro – Gibbs Farm
Enjoy a morning game drive in Tarangire National Park. Take a picnic lunch and drive to your lodge, which is perched on the outer slopes of the Ngorongoro Crater highlands. The lodge features easy access to the Ngorongoro Crater.
Coffee plantations and a vegetable farm surround Gibb’s Farm, with extensive views over the lush and beautiful agricultural country. The old, colonial farmhouse, built by German settlers in the early 20th century, still has the character of a well-kept after private house with log fires and friendly service. The food is delicious, and the farm provides most of the cuisine. Homegrown coffee or tea with cakes is served mid-morning and afternoons.
The main facilities — lounge, dining room, shop — are situated in the old farmhouse, while sleeping accommodation is in 19 double rooms (seven of them in separate cottages) set among the gardens.
Day 4: Ngorongoro Crater – Serengeti National Park – Kusini Camp
Following breakfast, drive to Olduvai Gorge — the site where Dr. Mary Leakey unearthed a Zinj skull believed to be 1.8 million years old. Continue driving to your lodge, located in the southern tip of the Serengeti National Park. Kusini is the ideal location to catch a glimpse of the wildebeest migration from December through March. The camp lies in the path of the wildebeest as they give birth to their young.
Lunch provided. Afternoon game drive.
Kusini Camp is built in and around a large kopje. The camp offers spectacular views across the woodland situated on the edge of the short grass plains. The camp is made up of nine double tents, scattered around the kopje, with the dining tent and common area as the central feature. Privacy between tents is guaranteed, as they are a substantial distance from one another and are generally concealed.
Day 5: Serengeti National Parks – Kusini Camp
Enjoy a full day exploring the Serengeti by four-wheel drive vehicle with thrilling morning and afternoon game drives. Whether this is your first time on safari or a return trip, the Serengeti will not disappoint you.
The Serengeti National Park is arguably the most famous National Park in the world. The Serengeti perhaps defines the safari experience with the wildlife that inhabits it. Established in 1951, and covering an area of almost 15,000 sq km – an area comparable to the state of Connecticut or Northern Ireland, the Serengeti hosts a fantastically diverse eco-system. The principal attraction of the Serengeti is the passing of the wildebeest migration, 1.5 million wildebeest, hundreds of thousands of zebra, gazelle and other plains game that follow close behind, stalked by the inevitable predators who make the most of the ‘feast’ close at hand.
Day 6: Serengeti – Arusha
After breakfast, return to Arusha or Kilimanjaro Airport.