Swimming Coaching Volunteer Project
Duration: 2 Weeks - 12 Weeks
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Teach children and young people how to swim in Ghana and give back a gift that will most certainly save lives. A truly rewarding experience as you guide someone through the steps, from being fearful of water all the way to being confident and able to swim in it.
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Swimming in Ghana
Most Ghanaians do not know how to swim and access to swimming opportunities for young people and children in Ghana is extremely limited, despite the entire width of the country being coastal and there being many public swimming pools available throughout the country! Many people are fearful of the sea even though many communities rely on fishing as their livelihood. This fear comes from a general lack of being comfortable in the water let alone being able to swim in it.
Parents are also very strict and will not allow their children near the water. On top of this, it is generally very expensive and outside the average families ability to afford the high cost associated to using available swimming pools. Your involvement will provide a huge impact on many Ghanaian lives as you teach them how to swim!
Your Swimming Volunteer Placement
You will work with children generally ranging from 5 to 15 who, on the whole, will have never had a structured swimming lesson in their life before. These children come from a number of the townships in Accra as well as our own sporting school of excellence.
With your enthusiasm and guidance you will spend time giving these children a vital life gift, getting them confident in the water and taking them through weekly sessions to progress their swimming technique. You will also get plenty of support from our in-country team allowing you to give as much or as little as you feel able to contribute.
We tend to run sessions for approximately 4 hours per day, giving you ample opportunity to get involved with other projects and activities, or you might just want to chill out on some of Ghana’s great beaches or visit the local markets to buy some gifts for family and friends back home
Your Swimming Teaching Role
Throughout this project, you will either assist or run your own full swimming lessons for groups of approximately 10 children per session. Work with other volunteer swimming coaches to deliver fun lessons for the kids, helping them to get confident in the water and steadily nurture them into competent swimmers.
You will have to assess the ability of the children when you meet them and work on a plan to cover the different stages they are each at with being able to swim or not. We will provide you with all appropriate and necessary equipment such as arm-bands and floats, allowing you to bring in fresh and fun ideas to keep the children positive and focused in the water.
There may also be opportunities to work on delivering theory lessons to the children on important topics such as first aid, health and safety and breathing techniques.
We believe it is important that you try and come for as long as possible (up to 12 weeks) in order to build strong relationships with the kids but to also be fully involved with their swimming development. You will gain a great deal of reward from this project and see the positive change you can make in a child’s life as you give them this life changing gift!
CRB/DBS (Criminal Records Bureau) Check
It is advised that participants complete a CRB/ DBS (Criminal Records Bureau) check in order to take part in this project. Sporting Opportunities can provide this service for you at an additional cost of £30. For more information on the application process please take a look at the relevant Add On Tab.
Gap Year Swimming Teaching in Ghana
This swimming teaching project is the ideal gap year or career break in Ghana. You will share something truly rewarding with the children you teach how to swim whilst giving you the opportunity to visit an amazing African country, share great memories and enjoy adventurous gap year travel. This project is also ideal for summer holiday breaks, so whatever stage of life you are at get involved with this swimming teaching project in Ghana and see what difference you can make.
- Trip Name
- Swimming Coaching Volunteer Project
- Trip Code
- Accra (Kotoka International Airport) (airport code ACC)
- Minimum Duration
- 2 Week
- Maximum Duration
- 12 Week
- Minimum Age
- Trip Type
- From £600 for 2 Weeks + £300 per Week
- £ 195.00
- Preferred Duration
- Volunteers should try to come for as long as possible preferrably for 8 or 12 weeks. This ensures better management of the project and also helps you get the most from the social activities and group travel opportunities on offer.
- No prior coaching experience or qualifications are required, but a basic understanding of the game and/or playing experience is necessary. You also need to be healthy and of reasonable fitness.
- Ideal for
- Swimming Coaching Holidays and Placements in Africa; Sports Activity Breaks in Africa; Sports Coaching Gap Years and Career Breaks in Africa; Student Summer Holidays.
Arrival DatesYou can arrive any weekend of the year to start the project on a Monday. We'll pick you up from the airport and take you back to the accommodation to settle in and meet the rest of the team.
Please note that some national holidays may cause disruption to normal sessions but our in-country team will do their best to support activities around this.
British Nationals will require a visa to enter Ghana, we recommend you apply for a tourist visa. You can check your visa requirements by visiting the Ghana High Commission website by clicking here.
Everyone will also require a yellow fever vaccination to enter Ghana and a certificate to prove you have had this. You should contact your travel nurse to discuss this further.
- Communal House; Basic but comfortable; Dormitory style rooms (4-10 people per room); Shared toilets and showers.
- 3 meals a day; Basic but nutritious local foods
- Airport Pick-Up
- Included on arrival date. Ask us for details if you are arriving early
- Full project induction and local orientation given on arrival.
- Pre-departure help and advice; Local in-country team; 24 hour emergency support.
- Part of your fee maybe used to buy decent equipment for the project and community you work with. We also encourage you to bring any extra equipment that you are happy to give away but this will need to fall within your personal weight allowance with the airline you travel with.
- Travel Equipment and Medical Discounts
- Sporting Opportunities customers will receive 10% off all Travel Equipment, Medical Supplies and Vaccinations from Nomad Travel Store.
Optional Teaching in Ghana
In addition to your coaching role, you will have the opportunity to teach classes, or assist in teaching classes, in one of the sports academies or schools based in Accra. This will give you another impacting experience while allowing you to make a difference outside the world of sport. With a western education, you will be able to contribute massively to the standard of tuition that the students receive. Subject areas include English (language and literature), math, science, journalism, business, IT, RE and a whole variety of extra-curricular activities.
Other Options in Ghana
It is likely that there will be a whole variety of other activities you can get involved with while you are away. Because we have focused in-country teams, they will be able to inform you of other opportunities both inside and outside the capital. This gives you a unique chance to combine projects and experience the country in a whole variety of ways.
Equipment Donation for Ghana
We are dedicated to sustainable development. This is why part of the fee you pay goes towards buying decent equipment for beneficiary organisations in Ghana. You will often use this equipment during your project and it is always left with the community when you leave. In some cases, an equipment donation may not be appropriate so a financial contribution is made instead.
Social Life in Ghana
Our social life is unrivalled and we believe it is important to give volunteers the chance to unwind and have fun while they are away. Our in-country team therefore organises a variety of activities to bring volunteers together, to share their experiences and, above all, have a good time. Some of these activities include visits to the best night spots, group meals, trips away and sports teams where you can to take on local competition.
If you fancy a game of footy while you are away, or simply enjoy the social side of football, you should join our volunteer team, Akpateshi FC. This gives you the chance to play alongside the other volunteers and challenge some serious African opposition. However, although the team has a competitive edge, the emphasis is on the social side of football and is aptly named after the locally brewed bush whiskey! If you play in the team, or simply become a supporter, you will soon see why Akpateshi FC is so renowned for its unpredictable matches and fiery social life.
Travel and Adventure in Ghana
You will be encouraged to explore Ghana during your free time so you can sample some of its breathtaking sights and meet some of Africa's friendliest people. The capital, Accra, is full of great places to visit and you will meet both locals and other travellers at a variety of bars and restaurants that provide authentic African live music and dancing. There are also a large number of western-style pubs and clubs, including an Irish Bar, an American Sports Bar and a series of dance-venues very close to where you are living. And, if you fancy a football experience to remember, then prepare yourself for watching Hearts of Oak at the National Stadium where the locals wave flags, blow horns and dance on the roofs of the terraces!
Beyond Accra, there are countless places to visit. You could take a Sunday pleasure-cruise on Lake Volta (the biggest man-made lake in Africa) or you might want to visit the history-laden slave castles of Cape Coast and Elmina. You may want to take a walk on the wild side with the elephants at Mole National Park or spot tropical birds in the rainforest canopy at Kakum National Park. Then there is the 60-metre-high Wli waterfalls, the Buabeng-Fiema Monkey Sanctuary (where monkeys are preserved as 'sacred' creatures!) and the endless palm-tree beaches lining the Atlantic coastline! The captivating places, intriguing people and diverse landscapes will make Ghana one of the most enlightening experiences a traveller could wish for. Our in-country team will also help you build a travelling itinerary and give you plenty of advice on how to make your way through the country.
The accommodation is basic but comfortable and you will stay in a dormitory style room. The accommodation has a very sociable atmosphere and you will find it a great place to relax and unwind in the evenings. The accommodation is also centrally located to the placements. Shops and other useful amenities are either a short walk or taxi ride away.
Participants are advised to complete a CRB/DBS check in order to join this project. Sporting Opportunities has a partnership with a third party organisation that processes all CRB/DBS checks and disclosures on behalf of the Sporting Opportunities team. This is a quick and easy procedure making all aspects of the application as straight forward as possible. Sporting Opportunities can provide this service for you at an additional cost of £30. For more information on the application process please take a look at the relevant Add On tab.
On this incredible trip you will get the opportunity to do some volunteering in an orphanage/care centre during your first week in Accra, teaching basic English and Mathematics to enthusiastic young children who are deprived of decent education due to extreme poverty.
For sports lovers we have a range of placement activities on offer for you to learn and coach your favourite sport in the local community and at schools.
Other highlights include an opportunity to learn the traditional Ghanaian way of cooking, African drumming and dancing lessons to get you in the party mood, a beginner’s class to introduce you to our most commonly spoken Ghanaian languages and finally a chance to develop your artistic flair by learning how to carve an elephant or create your own African painting.
Ghana is located on the West Coast of Africa, and is one of the most thriving democracies on the continent. It has often been referred to as an "island of peace" in one of the most chaotic regions on earth. Ghana is no doubt one of the friendliest and most popular English speaking destinations in Africa, and with its rich culture, stunning sceneries and welcoming population it’s not hard to see why. With an eclectic mix of traditional African culture and burgeoning western influences, Ghana is undoubtedly one of the most up and coming “must-visit” destinations in the world!
1. Visit Ghana’s largest wildlife sanctuary and game viewing- the best!
2. Go on a 40m high canopy walk in a jungle
3. Trek through the footpath of the Kakum rainforest and learn about some important African plants used for traditional medicine.
4. Visit the oldest extinct slave castles in Africa and learn about Ghana’s heritage
5. Enjoy a refreshing swim in Africa’s highest waterfall and also hike to the upper falls- Amazing.
6. Dine and play with the monkeys at the monkey sanctuary
7. Visit the sacred crocodile pool and witness the sacrificial chicken ritual
8. Volunteer in an underprivileged children’s school and pass on much needed skills to young children
9. Volunteer , play and coach your favourite sports
10. Learn some African dancing and drumming skills from a skilled and patient dance teacher
11. Take a Twi lesson and learn to chat to the locals in our most commonly spoken language
12. Learn to carve an elephant or paint a traditional picture
13. Learn how to cook your favourite Ghanaian dish
Note: We need a minimum of 5 people to do this trip so please check with us before booking.
- Accommodation will range from our volunteer house in Accra, to various guest houses and backpacker hostels throughout the tour.
- All mneals are provided during your first week in Accra, some meals are provided in week 2 and 3.
- All activities and excursions in the itinerary are included.
- Transport between your tour destinations, as per your itinerary, is provided.
- You will have a member of the in-country team available 24 hours a day to guide you during your tour.
- 24hr Support
- Support is available 24 hours a day from our in-country team and UK based staff.
CRB/DBS (Criminal Records Bureau) Check
To be eligible for some of our placements we require participants to use the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) Service, or Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) as it is now referred to. Completing a Criminal Records Check is an important and universally recognised way for Sporting Opportunities to check your suitability for the project especially those working with children or vulnerable people in a position of trust.
Sporting Opportunities has a partnership with a third party organisation that provides CRB/ DBS checks and disclosures on behalf of the Sporting Opportunities team. We can therefore process an application on your behalf, making the whole process as smooth and straightforward as possible for you.
You can check to see if your project requires a CRB check on the prerequisites section of your chosen trip, in which case you should choose the 'CRB/DBS (Criminal Records Bureau) Check' as an Add On whilst filling out your booking form.
If you have completed a CRB check within the past six months and can provide a valid certificate then you will not be required to make a new application.
Since gaining independence from Britain in 1957, Ghana has fast become known for its peacefulness, political stability and perhaps Africa's friendliest people. Ghana offers an abundance of traveller hot-spots, including the rain forests of Cape Coast, the almighty Lake Volta and the elephant watering-holes of Mole National Park. Ghanaians also share a love for sport that surpasses most other nations.
Ghana is a rich and beautiful country, packed with culture, history and authentic African tradition. Like many people who visit Ghana, you will soon fall in love with the laid-back attitude towards life and the variety of fantastic restaurants, 'highlife' bars and African music. However, most of all, you will fall in love with the warmth and charm of the locals.
- Republic of Ghana
- West Africa
- Bordering Countries
- Togo, Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast
- Capital City
- Parliamentary Democracy
- 25 million
- English (and over 60 local dialects)
- Cedi (GHS)
- Republic of Ghana
- 31% of population below the poverty line
- Main Exports
- Gold, cocoa, timber, tuna, ore, diamonds
- Tropical; temperatures up to 30 degrees
- Time Zone
- GMT + 0
• Lake Volta is the world’s largest man-made lake
• It’s not rude to pick your nose in public!
• A tro-tro is a local Ghanaian minibus used by locals and tourists
• Swimming under the Wli Waterfalls – the highest in Africa
• Kakum National Park canopy walk – enjoy the forest on another level
• Elmina Salve Castle – a fascinating insight into the African slave trade
• Admiring the sunrise at Mole National Park – Ghana’s leading game reserve
• Watching Hearts of Oak play football – expect lots of drumming and dancing!
Where is Ghana?
The Republic of Ghana lies on the Gulf of Guinea, on the western coast of tropical West Africa and is similar in size to Great Britain. Burkina Faso borders it to the north, with Togo to the east and the Ivory Coast to the west. The southern coastal boundary opens onto the Atlantic Ocean.
Language in Ghana
Over 60 languages are spoken throughout the country, the most common tribal languages being Twi, Ewe and Ga, although English is the official language and taught in schools. You will quickly pick up the local dialects and slang, so there is no need to worry about communicating with the locals. Ghanaians also love to speak in proverbs, the use of which is taken to be a sign of wisdom. Although proverbs are short, and sometimes funny, proverbs teach the ethical rules of the community.
Music in Ghana
Ghana is known as a country for festivals, music and traditional dances. The loud sounds of 'highlife' can be heard blasting from speakers on almost every corner and Ghanaians will hardly ever refuse an opportunity to party. There are many bars, restaurants and clubs that can be visited to sample the authentic African sounds where live music and dancing take place. In many of the markets, you will often see handcrafted wooden drums, bongos and other musical instruments.
Food in Ghana
You will have ample opportunity to discover the tastes of Ghana, especially at local 'Chop Bars'. In these family-run places, food and drink is cheap and the food served can be varied and tasty. You should also sample Fufu (fermented cassava), Banku and Kenke which are often accompanied by a sauce or relish. Dishes such as 'red', plantain and groundnut soup are a favourite among travellers.
The People of Ghana
The people of Ghana are renowned for being very warm, welcoming and friendly. Typically, Ghanaians come from six main ethnic groups: the Akan (Ashanti and Fanti), the Ewe, the Ga-Adangbe, the Mole-Dagbani, the Guan and the Gurma. You will most commonly come across the Ashanti, Ewe and Fanti tribes.
Ashanti : the largest tribe in Ghana and you will be regularly greeted by their smiles and hospitality. Today, they are most famous for their craft work and, in particular, their woodcarving and kente cloth making.
Ewe: Based mainly in the south-eastern region of Ghana, many Ewe are farmers who keep livestock and specialise in crafts. If you travel east towards Togo you will certainly come across this group of people.
Fanti: A tribe mainly located in the coastal areas of Ghana where fishing is an important trade. You will often come across small fishing towns whilst exploring the coastline where a number of sites may interest you including the famous Elmina slave castle or simply sipping a cool drink on one of Ghana's golden beaches.
Religion in Ghana
60% Christian, 15% Muslim and 25% indigenous beliefs. Anyone visiting Ghana will be overwhelmed at the deep faith of many of its people. You will often see company names such as 'Jesus Loves You Hairdressers' or the 'God Bless You Tyre Centre' around the capital city. It is also likely that you will be invited to an early morning church service by the friendly locals – an invite well worth accepting. The early morning call to Mosque is also a familiar sound that can be heard at the crack of dawn.
Art and Craft in Ghana
There are many specialised crafts, from weaving to ceramics to woodcarving. Kente cloth is very common in the south and is of a very high quality; hence it is usually only worn during festivals and other formal occasions. Wood carving is also an area practised by many Ghanaians and in itself is divided into different branches, each with its own specialists. It is a common sight to see sculptures and carvings of outstanding artistic quality laid out by the side of the road so that passing tourists can purchase them. You will most certainly want to buy gifts for friends and family and such items will be easy to get hold of. However, you should remember that it is standard practise never to accept the first price presented to you. Therefore, you will have to get used to bartering and 'knocking down' the price of pretty much everything, and this does not only apply to art and craft items!
Travelling in Ghana
During your stay, you'll have plenty of time to meet both locals and other travellers. There are countless places to visit. You could take a Sunday pleasure-cruise on the biggest man-made lake in the world, Lake Volta. Or you might want to visit the slave castles of Cape Coast and Elmina. Or take a walk on the wild side with the elephants and hippos in one of Ghana's National Parks. How about a stroll in the 30-metre high rainforest canopy at the Kakum National Park? Accra, the capital, is worth visiting and full of great places to explore. There are also a few western-style bars and restaurants if you’re craving a pizza after a few weeks of only eating Ghanaian food! You'll also get the opportunity to enjoy many of the bars and restaurants that provide authentic African live music and dancing. And if you get time, head down to the National Stadium to watch Hearts of Oak play football where you will be able to sing, dance and drum along with the locals.
Sport in Ghana
Ghana has regularly competed in the African Cup of Nations and FIFA World Cups, confirming football as the nation’s most popular sport. Ghana is therefore the perfect place to coach football at the grassroots level. The young football players are extremely keen to learn sports skills from you. However, sport in Ghana is not all about football. Boxing and basketball also enjoy huge success in Ghana alongside a number of newer sports such as rugby, netball and tennis. By embracing Ghana sports, and providing access to more sports for children, especially in deprived schools and communities, your contribution to sports in Ghana can make a real sporting difference to the future of Ghana’s youngsters. So get involved!
Volunteering in Ghana
Working as a volunteer in Ghana is a fantastic way to explore this enchanting country while volunteering your services to children and local institutions. Working with other volunteers in Ghana also gives you the chance to volunteer with other likeminded people and share your passion for sports with children. Volunteering in Ghana as a volunteer sports coach will, no doubt, be a life-changing volunteer experience for you. And one that you’ll never forget.
Gap Year in Ghana
A gap year in Ghana is one of the best gap year experiences you can have in Africa. A gap year in Ghana will let you combine gap year volunteering Ghana with a sports gap year in Ghana. You will also meet plenty of other gap year volunteers in Ghana.
Before you see a sports placement on our website, a lot of background work has gone on. We have met with local organisations, vetted in-country staff, conducted rigorous safety assessments and thoroughly evaluated the benefits of the placement. Only then do you get to see the placement on our website and book or apply for your place, safe in the knowledge that it is a well-structured and great opportunity to gain some sporting experience overseas.
Help Choosing Your Placement
If you are not sure which sports placement or country to choose, our hugely informative Travel Advisors are here to help. They are a friendly bunch, have all travelled extensively, all love sport and can offer lots of advice on choosing the right placement for you. This makes the task of deciding to travel much less intimidating, and far more exciting.
Once you have booked your placement, you will be assigned a dedicated Travel Advisor to offer essential pre-departure advice on vaccinations, visas, kit lists and more. They will also be on call to answer those important last minute questions like “how many pairs of socks do I need?” and “can I take my mobile phone with me?”
Help with Flights and Insurance
We do not include flights and travel insurance in our placement fee. This avoids us having to pass on unnecessary admin charges to you. It also gives you flexibility to plan any further travel before or after your volunteer placement. We do, however, offer lots of help on this through our leading flights and insurance partners, providing you with an easy booking facility and the best prices around.
Landing in a foreign country for the first time can be daunting. This is why we ensure our in-country staff are there to meet you on arrival. There’s nothing like seeing a friendly face when you walk out of a new airport. And once we have given you a warm welcome, the in-country staff will take you back to your accommodation where you can meet the people you will be living with.
We will take you through a local orientation and placement induction on arrival. This will introduce you to any useful amenities and local customs, and it will also show you how to stay safe while you are abroad. Our team also have lots of handy travel tips and advice if you are thinking of exploring the country in your spare time.
Accommodation and Food
Accommodation is included in all of our sports placements. Our volunteer houses, family home-stays and shared residences are comfortable and very sociable places to live while overseas. In some destinations, you may be able to upgrade to alternative accommodation. Just contact us for details. We endeavour to supply food on all of our placements, however in some cases this is not always possible. In many cases you will receive at least 1 meal a day, please see the project summary for further details.
Your safety and enjoyment is extremely important to us. That’s why we have dedicated in-country teams to look after you throughout your sports placement. Our staff live nearby, can be reached 24-hours a day and will check-in with you throughout your placement to ensure everything is running smoothly, and you are happy in your new environment.
24-Hour Emergency Support
In addition to our in-country staff, you will benefit from our international support network. You will be given emergency contact details before you leave which you can call in the event of a crisis. We are on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Ongoing Volunteer Project Support
For every person who travels with us, we make a donation to support our registered sports charity, United Through Sport. This donation funds future initiatives in many countries around the worlds, and helps to support the local community, ensuring that those living in disadvantaged communities also have opportunities to develop in their chosen sport.
Giving Others the Same Amazing Opportunities
In order to provide a reliable flow of participants on our overseas sports placements, we have to spend a chunk of money on recruiting people like you to take part in these amazing experiences. It costs to maintain a website, an office, phone lines and a team of dedicated Travel Advisors to answer all your questions!
There are quite a few things to consider and to organise before you travel to your chosen destination to take part in your placement, trip or tour.
Flights and insurance are not included on your placement which means you will have to arrange them before you leave. But don't panic this can be simpler than you may think! To make life much easier for you, we offer a free, personal booking service through our chosen flights and insurance partner – STA Travel. They will guide you every step of the way. Simply email STA Travel at firstname.lastname@example.org or call +44 (0)333 321 3102 to meet your personal booking agent and get a free quote.
In many cases your chosen destination country will have requirements with with regards to visas, which will depend on the purpose of your visit, and there will be recommended and required vaccinations to make sure you are protected against any possible health issues that you may face in specific areas. Sporting Opportunities is here to help and we are on hand to provide you with advice on visas and vaccinations.
Booking your flights is an essential part of your trip. That's why we have teamed-up with STA Travel. This means that once you have reserved your place on your chosen placement, trip or tour, you will have a dedicated booking agent on hand to talk through your plans.
Travelling after your project? Need a round-the-world ticket? Not a problem. Your booking agent will work with you to find the most suitable and flexible flights possible. And remember, the sooner you book your tickets, the better the price will be.
STA Travel is also one of the world’s largest flight providers specialising in adventure travel and can therefore offer some of the cheapest prices around. They have over 700 branches worldwide, which makes them easy to contact wherever you are in the world. They also hold an ATOL licence through the Civil Aviation Authority, meaning you can book in confidence, secure in the knowledge that your flights are fully protected.
Note: If you choose to book your tickets through another flight provider, you must ensure that they hold a full ATOL licence.
Why are flights not included?
By not including flights in our placements, trips and tours, it avoids us having to pass on unnecessary admin charges to you. This keeps the cost of your trip lower and also means you have the freedom to search around for the lowest fares and most flexible tickets that fit your travel plans. It also means you can benefit from the expertise of our preferred partner – STA Travel.
We take the safety of our travellers very seriously. You must therefore book adequate travel insurance before you come away with us – you simply won’t be able to participate in your placement, trip or tour if you don’t. Although policies vary, your insurance must include emergency medical expenses, personal accident cover, and repatriation. We also recommend that you book baggage, personal liability and cancellation cover.
To help you navigate through this confusing world of insurance, we have partnered with STA Travel to offer you a specialist insurance service. Your personal advisor will find out exactly what you’re planning to do, from scuba diving to jumping out of planes, and tailor a policy specific to your requirements. In addition to this personal service, some of the other benefits of booking with STA Travel are as follows:
• Access to a network of over 700 branches in over 40 countries worldwide
• Advice and assistance over the phone from a travel help facility, available 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year
• Access to a 24-hour multilingual emergency telephone number for medical help, hospital treatment and/or repatriation
• A choice of 3 levels of cover to suit your needs – budget, standard and premier
• A range of durations, from 4 days up to a maximum of 24 months
• A simple extension service that gives you the flexibility to extend your 4-week volunteer project while in-country (up to 24 months!)
• Cover for over 100 adventure sports and adrenalin activities, including black water rafting, bungee jumping, elephant trekking, heli-skiing, kite surfing, scuba diving, shark cage diving and sky diving
• Peace of mind – STA Travel is an Appointed Representative of Towergate Underwriting Group Limited and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority.
Note: You must provide us with details of your travel insurance before you leave as you will not be permitted to participate on your placement, trip or tour if you do not have adequate cover. It is also advisable to book your cover as early as possible to make sure you are insured for cancellation of your trip due to illness, serious accident or any other insurable reason.
Why is insurance not included?
Each of our volunteer’s plans are different, and while STA Travel can provide adequate cover for the vast majority of our travellers, there may be some activities or destinations that cannot be covered by STA Travel. It is therefore important to give you the freedom to choose the insurance that covers your plans and that you feel comfortable with. It also saves us from having to pass on extra admin costs to you.
Different destination countries have different visa requirements depending on things such as your length of stay and your reasons for entering the country, and whether you will be gaining paid work during your time in the country. Sporting Opportunities will supply your with any advice you need with regards to the visas you require for your chosen destination, and we will make information available to you to assist with your application.
It is important that you check your visa requirements well in advance of your travel date, as with many tourist and working holiday visas you will need to submit an application to the relevant consulate, embassy or high commission before your travel date. In some cases entry to your destination country will be granted at immigration on arrival without having to apply for a visa before the departure date for your travels.
With all visa applications it is important that you have sufficient space available in your passport for the relevant visas required for your travels, and that your passport is valid for at least six months after your planned date of return.
At least 6 – 8 weeks before your chosen travel date you should visit your local GP or Nomad Travel Clinic to discuss your vaccination and medication requirements. Your medical professional will be able to advise you of any recommended and required vaccinations for your chosen destination(s).You should inform your doctor of all of your destination countries, and what activities you plan on doing, and in which regions you plan to stay while you are there, as different regions and activities have different health risks in some countries.
Some destination countries will require you to produce a certificate of vaccination in order to enter the country, so be sure that you understand any vaccination requirements for your chosen destination, so that you do not have any issues when passing through customs.
Above all you should make sure you are well prepared for your travels, so that you have the best experience possible whilst overseas!
If you have any questions or would like some more information, simply contact one of our friendly Travel Advisors. They will answer any queries you have and tell you what it’s really like to be a volunteer sports coach overseas. You can give us a call, request a call back or drop us an email.
Book Your Place
Once you have decided to volunteer with us, you can secure your place by paying a small deposit. You will then be able to pay the rest of your project fee in easy-to-manage instalments.
Once we have received your deposit, we will send you a welcome email confirming your booking. This will contain your personal login details for your Travel Centre – an online account full of useful information about your destination, your chosen project and all the things you need to do before you depart.
We will ask you to provide some key information to help us create the best volunteer experience for you, such as medical and dietary requirements, any previous coaching you have done, and what you’re hoping to get out of your time abroad. We may also ask you to complete a police background check.
Flights and Insurance
You will need to book your flights and travel insurance before you leave, and then provide us with these details. We do not include flights and insurance in the project fee (to avoid passing on extra admin costs to you) but our partners will help you find the best options around.
Visas and Vaccinations
Next you will need to get your vaccinations and visas for your project. Your travel nurse or local doctor will tell you exactly what you need. We will also provide you with lots of information to make obtaining your visa very straightforward.
We will ask you for your final payment 90 days before your scheduled departure date. Once paid, you will be ready to pack your bags, grab your passport and get on the plane!
Our in-country team will give you a warm welcome at the overseas airport before taking you to your accommodation. You will then receive a comprehensive orientation to help you settle in to the country and prepare you for your project.
"Being able to teach kids how to swim has to have been one of my most significant moments in life. From seeing 12 year old kids fearful of water on day one to being able to swim full lengths of the pool with confidence after 5 weeks was just incredible. You also know that you are giving these kids a gift for life".Neil Dennison
"I have had the best three months in Ghana ever! Working a living alongside local Ghanaians and seeing a completely different way of life will live with me forever. My project in helping kids learn how to swim was so rewarding too and it has really made me think about what I want to do when I get home with my future career and working with young people. Thanks to everyone involved and I look forward to coming back to my African home again one day."Sarah Dunbury
We generally recommend that our participants are at least 18 years old when they volunteer on our projects in Ghana. However, we are happy to accept volunteers who are 16 or 17 years old, provided we receive written consent from a parent or guardian. Please contact one of our friendly Travel Advisors for more information.
2) Are meals included in this trip?
We provide you with 3 meals a day (a mix of Ghanaian and some western food).
Breakfast: usually Milo, tea or coffee with bread/toast and spreads, and fruit.
Lunch: sandwiches, wraps, pasta, salads.
Dinner: rice dishes, meat, beans, chicken, beef and fish, plantain.
You will also be offered some traditional local dishes such as Fufu (fermented cassava), Banku and Kenke which are often accompanied by a sauce or relish mixed with more recognisable beef or chicken and rice. Also dishes such as Red Red, kelewele, plantain and groundnut soup are a favourite among our participants.
Water is treated and supplied at the accommodation but when out you will need to buy water sachets or bottles.
3) What accommodation is provided?
Although basic, the accommodation is comfortable and you will find it very easy to relax after your day's activities. You will live alongside the other travellers and our in-country team. This makes for a very safe, fun and extremely social environment. You will be staying in a dorm room of 2-8 people and will eat most of your meals together.
• Several communal areas for socialising and relaxing
• Discounted use of a swimming pool at a nearby hotel at a reduced rate
• Wireless internet access at the accommodation
• Various shopping options for basic everyday items such as snacks and drinks, toiletries, SIM cards, phone credit and international phone cards.
• Are there laundry facilities available at the accommodation?
Clothes washing can be done using the traditional hand wash. You can either do this yourself with the materials provided, or for a charge our in-country staff will be happy to wash and fold your clothes for you!
• Can I make international calls at the accommodation?
There is a phone in the office at the accommodation that can be used for emergency calls. However, we recommend purchasing a Ghanaian SIM card on arrival to make phone-calls home, as these will be charged at a cheaper rate and you can track your expenses on a pay-as-you-go tariff.
• Can I book a private room?
If you are travelling as a couple there may be an option to book a private room at an extra fee. However, this depends on availability at the time of your trip. Individuals will be expected to share in a male/female dormitory. We may be able to arrange a private room at a local guest house, so please ask one of our friendly Travel Advisors for more info.
• Where can I store valuables at the accommodation?
The accommodation is very safe, with a security guard on site from 6pm – 6am every night. Valuables can be locked in the safety deposit boxes in the office at the accommodation. During the day there are staff around to manage the facilities.
4) How many hours a day will I be working on the Project?
You can expect to work for approx. 2 – 4 hours per day in total on your volunteer project or 4 – 6 hours for internship placements, weather and schedule permitting. Volunteering times will vary throughout the week, depending on local needs. Additionally, you can do more if you want and we have a range of other activities that may interest you so talk with the in-country team if you would like to fill out your time more. Alternatively, a lot of participants like to visit various areas of the city, chill out on the beach or relax in the posh hotels!
5) What activities take place throughout the day?
As a volunteer or intern on our projects in Accra you will work during the day on Monday to Friday, with some evening and weekend commitments depending on your chosen project. Most evenings and weekends will be free for social activities and additional travel. If you require a few days off around the weekends for additional travel our team can be flexible and assist you with your travel plans.
6) Will I run the class or assist in the teaching/ coaching sessions?
In most situations you will be supporting local teachers and sports coaches. However, when you feel ready you will have the opportunity to run your own sessions. If you feel more comfortable, you can also run sessions alongside another volunteer.
7) What experience do I need?
You do not require any specific qualifications or experience to take part, unless we have already specified this in the pre-requisites of the trip. However, we do recommend that you have a keen interest in your chosen activity. Enthusiasm for the project is the most important element of it!
8) What support will I receive in country?
During your first couple of days you will receive a local orientation of Accra, and an induction to welcome you onto your project/placement. You will not only receive a great welcome, but you will also have a chance to settle in and get to know the other volunteers in your group. You will then receive 24 hour support from our in-country team, and also will have access to our 24 hour emergency support team based in the UK.
9) What can I do in my free time?
You will have your evenings free after your placement, as well as your weekends, where you will be free to explore the city and take part in some awesome social activities. Our in-country team will arrange some interesting excursions and social activities for your group during your free time, and you are welcome to explore locally and further afield, including:
• Cape Coast: slave castles and Kakum canopy walk.
• Lake Volta
• Wli Waterfalls
• Mole National Park
• Jamestown: Ghanaian culture and Jamestown lighthouse.
10) When can I arrive?
You can arrive in Accra on any weekend of the year. You will be picked up from Accra Kotoka International Airport (ACC) and taken to the accommodation. Note that you should only leave the airport with a member of our in-country staff. They will be holding a sign with your name on it for you to see.
Participants will be arriving at various times throughout the weekend. Therefore, the induction will normally start on the Monday, when you will have a full briefing of the trip.
11) When should I book my departure?
You should book your departure flight for the end date of your project, unless you are independently travelling after. This will fall on a Saturday. Your return airport transfer is included in your trip fee.
12) Is transport included?
Airport transfers on arrival and departure are included. However, you will need to budget for your daily transport to and from your project/placement. There is a taxi rank located outside the accommodation, which offers good rates for participants and many people share with each other. Every other car in Ghana is a taxi which means fares are cheap.
13) Will I need a visa?
Yes, you will need a visa to visit Ghana. For UK citizens, obtaining your visa from the Ghana High Commission is relatively straightforward, provided you follow the instructions on the Ghana Embassy website. For non UK citizens, check with the Ghana High Commission or Embassy in your country of residence. We'll provide you with all the information you will need for the visa application once you have booked your trip with us.
14) Will I need vaccinations?
Yes, you will need to obtain specific vaccinations before travelling to Ghana. The only specific, required and regulated vaccination for Ghana is Yellow Fever. However, participants travelling to Ghana are also recommended to take Malaria medication, and other various booster vaccinations. You will need to consult your local Travel Nurse or GP to check your vaccination history and personal requirements with regards to boosters.
15) What is the climate like in Ghana?
Ghana is a tropical country lying just north of the equator. As such, the only seasonal changes are distinct wet and dry seasons. The dry season is primarily December-February, when day temperatures are in the 80s-90s F/27-36 C and nights in the 70s F/18-26 C. May-June and also September – October are the rainiest months in the south. Temperatures range from about 21°C to 32°C and the humidity is relatively high.
In most areas the temperatures are highest in March and lowest in August, after the rains. Variations between day and night temperatures are small.
16) Can I bring donations to my project?
Our in-country team appreciates any extra help from participants, so if you wish to bring donations, or purchase equipment whilst in Ghana to support your volunteer or internship project, it will be gratefully received. Our in-country team will provide a small amount of project related equipment as part of the placement too. Please note that we do not want to get involved with shipping equipment to Ghana as this provides major challenges for us, so any additional equipment would have to be within your personal weight allowance with the airline you are flying with. Some participants have been able to get an extra bag with their flight but this needs to be pre-arranged with the airline company. It is also wise that you make sure you put a note against the flight booking so when you are checking in and dropping off you bags at the airport there is no awkwardness!
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"Seeing the kids in week one be so fearful of the water to seeing them confidently swim after my 5 weeks in South Africa has been the most rewarding experience of my life. Thank you to everyone involved."Caroline Rudge , Swimming, South Africa
"I never thought I could take my love of football and coach it to kids in the Caribbean so this has been an experience I will never forget. Totally amazing."Scott Black , Football, St Lucia
"I've always wanted to travel to the Caribbean, so getting the chance to coach cricket and travel at the same time was perfect!"Manish Patel , Cricket, St Lucia
"What a great 4 weeks I had in St Lucia on the cricket coaching project organised by Sporting Opportunities. I've made friends for life and will never forget the fun times I had."Tom Webb , Cricket, St Lucia
"Best thing about the course - meeting so many like minded people, many of whom will be friends for life and getting to snowboard for 11 weeks without a care in the world!"David Turner , Skiing, Canada
"Every single detail about the ski instructor course exceeded my expectations by a mile and has totally changed my life! The only drawback of the whole 11 weeks is that I’ve become one serious powder junkie."Baibre Lacey , Skiing, Canada
"The best thing about course - Everything!! Fernie! The whole organisation of the course was great, and a really welcoming atmosphere."Gemma Soloman , Skiing, Canada
"I loved how instantly everyone acted as a big family and everybody looked out for one another, we ate together, we rode together, we celebrate together and we partied together!"Jason Ionotton , Skiing, Canada
"The rugby training season in South Africa was a great way of keeping up my fitness, ready to hit the University teams back home."Alex Carlton-Porter , Rugby Union, South Africa
"You get a first class level of attention on this rugby season trip, helping you develop into a solid player. Having Cape Town as your city backdrop is also an experience not to be missed."Nick Abendanon , Rugby Union, South Africa
"Spending 6 months in Cape Town was awesome. Such a great city and my hockey playing has improved 10 fold".Sarah Grey , Hockey, South Africa
"Playing at the hockey club was just what I needed to improve my game to a level where I could feel confident in trialing for the 1st team university hockey squad."James Harvey , Hockey, South Africa
"The experience of playing with the other team members from across the world was fantastic."Jonathon Hancock , Cricket, South Africa
"Top quality experience and brilliant to take my love of thai boxing to it's origin and train with some truly great masters."Tom Chalmers , Boxing, Thailand
"Already miss my fave boys and the kids from volunteering. Making plans to return already! Thanks to everyone that helped. I've literally had the greatest two weeks of my life despite how contrasting they were to normal life here."Vanessa Turner , Netball, St Lucia
"This was a great trip to just get me set up in Australia and have the support of the team. The surf camp was also totally awesome and great fun."James Scott , Surfing, Australia
"I made so many great friends on the surf camp that I stayed in contact with throughout my 12 months in Australia."Nikki Denton , Surfing, Australia
"Having the scuba diving course off the back of the job support and friends I made was such a useful start to my career break in Australia."Emily Lamb , Scuba Diving, Australia
"I loved everything about my time in Australia, made that much better by the Sporting Opportunities team helping me settle into Aussie life that more easily."Ed Dench , Scuba Diving, Australia
''It was an ideal opportunity for me to combine travelling with my passion for sport.''James Hairsine , Football, Ghana