VOLUNTEER & TRAVEL 1-800-352-1793

TEFL 877 526 3959

Nakuru - Building with underprivileged communities in Kenya

$949.00

Price above is guide only. Choose start date for your price.

   
  

Overview

Are you good with your hands and fancy putting them to good use?

Get your hands dirty building homes on projects in the stunning area of Nakuru. Get stuck into building one of the community development projects or help build houses for poor communities. Whichever building venture you embark on, this is a fantastic opportunity not only to live and work alongside the community who will benefit from your efforts, but to also learn something of the difficulties facing those in the developing world.

When you book this trip US$75 of your fee is used to purchase resources for the project through our Big Giving scheme.

Trip Highlights:

  • Getting your hands truly dirty working with the local community!
  • Spending time in this stunning part of the world
  • Exploring National Parks at weekends
  • Dancing to Kenyan music - some of the catchiest in Africa!

Fast facts

Project duration: 
Min 1 week - Max 12 weeks
Location of project: 
Nakuru
Arrival airport: 
Nairobi (airport code NBO)
Activities: 
Assisting the local community with all aspects of building and renovating homes and other buildings
Working hours: 
Flexible; usually Monday to Friday 6 hours a day, all other time is free
Getting to the project: 
Dependent on location of building site; 5 to 30 minutes walk or multi-person taxi ride (budget approximately US$40 per week)
Requirements: 
Minimum age 17

What's included

Accommodation: 
Shared room in homestay
Food: 
Breakfast and dinner
Airport pickup: 
Included on arrival date - ask us for details if you’re arriving early
Training: 
In-country orientation
Support: 
Pre-departure helpdesk, local in-country team and 24hr emergency support

What's not included

Flights, Insurance, Visas, Return Airport transfer, Local Transport, Food (lunch not provided)

Itinerary

Day 1 (Saturday) – Karibu Kenya! Arrive into Nairobi (airport code NBO)

Welcome to Kenya! You’ll be met at the airport by our smiling team holding up an i to i sign who will take you to your accommodation in the bustling capital of Nairobi for your first night.

The drive from the airport to the hotel takes under half an hour and then you’ll be able to relax in your new settings for the night and enjoy an evening meal in the hotel with your new fellow travellers. The hotel has two beds in each room, lockers in reception for your valuables, hot water in your own bathrooms and is in a great location if you want to go out and explore Nairobi. There are internet cafes, shops and cafes just around the corner to keep you connected to the Western world.

If you aren’t able to arrange a flight to get you into Nairobi (airport code NBO) on the designated arrival day then we’d recommend you fly in a day early. We can arrange an early airport pick-up for you including one night’s accommodation for an additional fee. Please call us for more information.

Day 2 (Sunday) – Orientation and transfer to Nakuru

The orientation is a crucial part of settling in to life in Kenya and will take you through what it’s going to be like at your project, do’s and don’ts, how to stay safe and it’s your prime opportunity to ask any burning questions that you haven’t yet had answered. After the orientation you’ll have some time to relax and prepare before your first day at the project tomorrow.

After your orientation, you’ll be transferred to your accommodation in Nakuru. The journey takes around half a day and is by private minivan. Sit back and relax as you watch Kenya whizz by your window!

Once you reach Nakuru, you’ll be introduced to your accommodation hosts and be given time to unpack before enjoying a delicious meal altogether!

Day 3 – Day 7 (Monday to Friday) – Starting at the project!

Good morning! Today is your first day at your new project! Rise and shine to a local hearty breakfast and head off to the building project. Depending on which building site you’re working on, the journey time can be either a short walk or a short matatu journey away.

You’ll be introduced to the local team who work on the sites, shown how to use your tools and get building! The following days will follow a routine of building for up to six hours a day, Monday to Friday.

Days 8 and 9 (Saturday to Sunday) – Free time

Hooray it’s the weekend so time to down tools and see some of Kenya’s sights and sounds! Saturday and Sunday are yours to spend as you please, but you might like to take our recommendations on board?

How about heading on a weekend safari? If you’re planning on going on safari whilst in Kenya, we’d recommend waiting until you arrive there before arranging anything. The costs are cheaper in country and there are so many different locations, durations and accommodations to choose from that it can be baffling! Let our team help you choose when you get here and we’ll make sure you have the safari of a lifetime!

Don’t forget that you are right on the doorstep of Lake Nakuru National Park! Now is your chance to go and see the famous sight of the flamingoes in the shallows of the lake! If you’ve always wanted to go and visit a dormant volcano, why not head to the nearby Menengai Crater. Continuing with the Lake theme, we also have Lake Bogoria and Lake Baringo nearby too! There’s a lot to cram into your weekend!

Following weeks

However long you’ve booked on, you’ll be thrilled to be involved in the ongoing building work! Even if you don’t get to see a family move into a house that you’ve help build, be reassured that you are part of an ongoing process with many painstakingly slow processes involved; meaning houses take time to be built properly. You should still see improvements made and see the results of your hard work during your building time – you’ll also see your muscles take shape too!

Your Last Day (Saturday)

Wow! How has it come to your last day already? Today is the last day of your project with us and we’ll bet good money that you don’t feel ready to leave…

If you’re heading back to Nairobi, you’ll be heading back by a private transfer again and this transfer is not included in your project fee so please budget around US$15 for this cost.

If you have booked an early morning flight on your last day, you might want to consider heading back to Nairobi the previous day. Our team can help you to arrange this when you arrive in Kenya.

Project

What does the project do?

There is no social housing scheme in Kenya which means that those people that cannot afford their own home will be forced to live on the streets, in caves or in slums. The need for simple housing in Kenya is great as is assistance in building for the community itself. This can include classroom building or repair, orphanages or educational centres, accommodations or churches to name a few. These are community run projects and as such the community will decide on the priorities at the time based on funds available and who is available. This is a great opportunity to interact, socialise and work alongside Kenyan people to help them build a better and more prosperous future.

If you are building in one of the established community development projects near Nakuru, you may be laying or repairing the foundations for the community projects with children (orphanages), which will provide an educational centre, accommodation and medical care for the children and community who make their living on the local city dump.

You may find that you are asked to work in the community of Hilton, directly beside the city dump, to build shelters for the people living there, usually single parents, or grandparents caring for their orphaned grandchildren.

What’s the project like?

The project is located around a slum area where there are terrible living conditions for locals, with no sign of respite anytime soon. What is most heartbreaking about this, is that the surrounding scenery around Nakuru is breathtaking and a pleasure to look at; the mountains in the backdrop invite you to stare.

Everyone you meet has a smile on their face and will be polite, friendly and welcoming – this project will definitely help you to remember and appreciate what you have back at home. The children in particular will follow you everywhere chanting your name and try to hold your hand! Nakuru is a fairly developed town, although the building sites you’ll be working on are further out of the town and in the poorer areas of Nakuru. It’s not uncommon for several generations of one family to live together in one house with only two rooms.

Why does the project need volunteers?

The projects depend on the goodwill and donations from the local community and sponsors from around the world to keep things moving. They will always welcome additional labour – but don't worry - strong muscles aren't a must. Any particular skills you may have, such as building, organisational, engineering will be gratefully utilised but we can’t stress enough that just being motivated and enthusiastic is all you really need for this project!

You will find yourself getting involved in many aspects of the building process, depending on the stage you join the project at. You could find yourself getting stuck into a number of mucky tasks, ranging from helping to renovate established buildings, to finishing off work well under way, or starting a building completely from scratch!

Activities and schedule

Whilst on the building project, your help would be appreciated between Monday and Friday for around six hours a day. Of course, any additional help that you would like to give will never be turned away, but it’s important that you have your time to relax and see more of Kenya too!

You will need to have an appetite for hard work, be very hands-on, and willing to get involved with a variety of tasks. You should be an outdoors person and be prepared to work in different weather conditions. While building experience is not necessary, if you have a specific skill it will be welcomed! The ability to view the bigger picture and long-term goals on the project are essential to the understanding of activities that may seem repetitive and a little insignificant at times.

Very few community building projects have a set timescale for their construction, as local communities will raise some money, use it to buy materials and build until these materials run out. Then they will wait until they have raised more money to start on the next phase. For this reason, building projects in Kenya may change with quite short notice, so you must be prepared to fit in with whatever is currently going on.

You'll find there are many types of building processes in Kenya, ranging from traditional styles using locally found materials such as wood and stones, to the bricks-and-cement style you may be more familiar with, so you'll need to adapt to the materials you're working with.

Project resources and advice

Based on previous returned volunteer feedback, we would recommend you bringing the following items with you to Kenya:

  • Torch/flashlight
  • Plenty of mosquito repellent
  • Work gloves – there will be a limited supply at the project but not necessarily in your size
  • Closed toe shoes

Accommodation

What type of accommodation will I be in?

You will be living with a local family in a homestay. Nakuru is Kenya's fourth biggest town, about 160km from Nairobi, and is a fairly laid-back and modern town. Nakuru has a good transport system and is well linked to the rest of the country. Nakuru has plenty of facilities, with several banks, internet cafes, Supermarkets, tour operators, and hotels. Water and electricity may occasionally go off, but its all part of the Kenyan experience!

Accommodation facilities

During your stay in Nakuru, you’ll be staying with a local Kenyan family in their home. You’ll soon feel like part of the family, as all of our accommodation hosts are very welcoming and have been receiving our volunteers for many years.

The accommodation has all the basic amenities that you would need during your stay; running water, Instant shower with hot water, a kitchen, electricity when the sun goes down and there are power points to charge electrical gadgets. The bedrooms are shared single sex on a 2-3 bed basis. Occasionally, as often happens in Africa, the running water may stop, and you should be prepared for electricity cuts – so please bring a torch/flashlight! You will also need to budget to buy bottled water, or bring purification tablets as tap water is generally not safe to drink in Kenya.

It is a 10-15 minute walk from accommodation to the main road where there is regular public transport into town and project.

There is a living room to relax and socialize in with your homestay family and share stories. It can get cold during the evenings, so it is recommended that you bring warm clothes to keep you nice and warm. You can wash your clothes here too, so don’t worry about having to bring a truckload of clothes.

Breakfast and dinner will be provided for you, but you should budget a few dollars each day to purchase your own lunch. You can always use the facilities in the kitchen if you wish to do so to make a packed lunch to take with you. The diet in Kenya revolves around meat and fairly stodgy and filling foods such as potatoes, rice, Chapati, pasta and bread. Vegetarians are welcome but be aware that Kenyans love their meat.

Things to bring from home

Bedding is provided but you may want to bring a sleeping bag if you are planning on travelling around at the weekend as not all places will have bedding available. Don’t worry about bringing a mosquito net as these are provided as well (although if you are travelling around Kenya after your trip with us, you might want to consider bringing one). It is also fine to spray plenty of mosquito repellent as an alternative!

It is worth bringing your own towel with you as these are not provided. It’s a good idea to bring a torch/flashlight as there can be power cuts. Please remember to bring a warm jumper for the evenings as it can get chilly at high altitude.

Where is the accommodation?

There is good access to public transport and other facilities. The house is close to a main road, and only takes about 10-15 minutes’ walk to board Matatus which drops you to into the town centre. In Nakuru town, there are internet cafes, supermarkets, banks, cafes and restaurants.

A local minibus (matatu) around Nakuru costs less than a US dollar and a taxi home from town costs around US$3. The famous Lake Nakuru National Park is only 5 km away, and it is easy to arrange safaris from the town.

How far is it from my project?

Depending on which building site you’re working on, the journey time can be either a short walk or a short matatu journey away. Please budget around US$20 per week for this cost.

We work in partnership with hundreds of established projects that are run by local communities. The information on our website comes directly from the projects and we work with them to ensure this information is as accurate as possible. However, due to the very nature of the projects themselves the exact details of what happens on a daily basis can change with little or no notice. If you have travelled with us and have any updates to this information, please let us know.

What you get

Next steps

Flights & insurance

Country information

I've done this trip. Write review >
Christine Jones gives this project
10/10
Here is what Christine had to say:
What were the highlights of your trip?
The Christmas party that I and two other volunteers threw for the project we were working with. The new friendships made and the genuine connections made with others.
Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?
Don't have any expectations. Don't compare everything to home or where you come from. Go with the flow.
Give Us Up To 10 Words That Sum Up Your Experience:
One of the most enriching experiences of my life, unforgettable.
Pat Fletcher gives this project
10/10
Here is what Pat had to say:
What were the highlights of your trip?
Too numerous to mention - I would advise anyone interested to go out and give it a go
Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?
1. Leave your old self at home 2. Know that life has delivered the experience to you for an important reason 3. Want to be what you can be
Give Us Up To 10 Words That Sum Up Your Experience:
An adventure that sparked important global connections
Jenny Lynam gives this project
10/10
Here is what Jenny had to say:
What were the highlights of your trip?
There were many highlights of my trip. The whole expirence was magical - but the people I met made it life changing for me. Espically my Kenyan host family. <3
Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?
Bring more clothes/work clothes you dont mind throwing out and light trousers.. Try to be relaxed about Kenyan time, things happen but happen slowly and if stressed, take a deep beath and look around you. Remember - T.I.A (this is africa)
Give Us Up To 10 Words That Sum Up Your Experience:
Beautiful country with the most friendly and grateful people I have ever met.
Luke Duarte-Dias gives this project
10/10
Here is what Luke had to say:
What were the highlights of your trip?
Meeting other volunteers working in Kenya, helping build a better place, seeing the sights and socialising with people out and about.
Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?
Becareful of your belongings as there are a number of pick pockets roaming about. Spend your money wisely or you may miss opportunities to spend it elsewhere. If you are travelling to Kenya you can buy most of your stuff there as it would save you an awful lot of money.
Give Us Up To 10 Words That Sum Up Your Experience:
An experience that leaves you amazed, changed, fulfilled and happy.
Marcus Riley gives this project
7/10
Here is what Marcus had to say:
What were the highlights of your trip?
Meeting local people, especially the kids, and seeing your work making a difference.Meeting like minded volunteers.Climbing Mt kenyaLearning how to deal with new situations, and learning more about yourself in the process.
Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?
Take every oppertunity you can- You only live once.Just relax, take it easy and dont get wound up.Be friendly, but don't be fooled! Always be aware of the situation, and your safety!
Give Us Up To 10 Words That Sum Up Your Experience:
Fun, eye opening, fulfilling and humbling.
Seain Way gives this project
10/10
Here is what Seain had to say:
What were the highlights of your trip?
Seeing a completly different side of life. All in all an utterly amazing trip and has been recomended to everyone i know. IF YOU HAVE THE OPPOURTUNITY TO DO THIS, DO IT.
Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?
Be aware of you surroundings, esspecially at night. You can not help everyone, be wary of street boys and con men. Be VERY open minded, you will enjoy yourself a lot more.
Give Us Up To 10 Words That Sum Up Your Experience:
An experience that i will never forget, that will benefit me for the rest of my life.
Shane McNamara gives this project
9/10
Here is what Shane had to say:
What were the highlights of your trip?
Just generally volunteering in Kenya.
Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?
- Go with the flow, just because things happen differently or at a different pace it does not mean that they will not be done as well - Ensure you are fit and ready to work each day. You should at stayed at home if you wanted to party and your contribution here will go much further - Explore the local towns and villages as much as you can and support local businesses
Give Us Up To 10 Words That Sum Up Your Experience:
A very different but worthwhile experience
Hazel Izzett gives this project
8/10
Here is what Hazel had to say:
Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?
Go to Lake Nakuru! Make sure you know what happens for your return trip back to Nairobi and what to expect! Immerse yourself in the culure, and when things don't happen quite the way you expect, just think "TIA" (This Is Africa) as it's a very different way of life!
Give Us Up To 10 Words That Sum Up Your Experience:
A great experience with new friends and memories made.
Dana Einhorn gives this project
9/10
Here is what Dana had to say:
What were the highlights of your trip?
seeing a finished building project, meeting the children and those who benefit from the work, meeting/getting to know new people and other volunteers
Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?
have an open mind, pack more than you think you need, do as much as you can with your time
Give Us Up To 10 Words That Sum Up Your Experience:
changed the way i look at EVERYTHING
Dawn Laffan gives this project
10/10
Here is what Dawn had to say:
Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?
You don't need to pack for every possible illness, there are plenty of places to buy reasonably price medicines Have an open mind to activities you though you would/could never do, get stuck in and you'll realise it's not s bad as you first thought. Give yourself time to take everything in, the differences to home are immense and it will take a little time to adjust. Everyone is different, don't worry if you feel differently to the other volunteers.
Give Us Up To 10 Words That Sum Up Your Experience:
A new found love, i will visit again and again!

We work in partnership with hundreds of established projects that are run by local communities. The information on our website comes directly from the projects and we work with them to ensure this information is as accurate as possible. However, due to the very nature of the projects themselves the exact details of what happens on a daily basis can change with little or no notice. If you have travelled with us and have any updates to this information, please let us know.