Kilimanjaro Volunteer KEDA

  • Himo

About Us

KEDA is a Tanzanian grass roots charity is seeking academic or skilled volunteers and interns to help them research into environmental and social topics. This is a great placement for volunteers who require to carry out research as part of a masters or PhD, volunteers who would like to stay for 6 months as a volunteer coordinator or people with experience, or with the drive to gain experience, in charity and development work.

Kilimanjaro Environmental Development Association, or KEDA, focuses on those that need the greatest help. These include families living in severe poverty or ill health. KEDA believes that the most sustainable way for a family to escape poverty permanently is to be self sufficient and generate their own income.

To find out more about KEDA's past projects please visit the case study page:

KEDA are seeking academic or skilled volunteers and interns who would help them research into any of these topics or any other topic that might assist them. Volunteers will be able to live and research within a Tanzanian community.

The Directors of KEDA are available in Tanzania to provide their experience and knowledge on particular projects as well as to act as translators.

Volunteers can also gain valuable experience by helping the charity to write funding proposals both their time in Tanzania and when they return home. Volunteers will gain hands on experience of helping the grass roots charities to develop further. The type of work and role that the volunteer might be involved with depends on the volunteers experience and interests.

To see photos from past volunteers please visit:

Below are a list of potential research topics which are of interest to KEDA.

KEDA especially requires:

  • Scientific data collection on a variety of socio-economic and socio-cultural aspects
  • Assistance in project write-ups based on the research findings
  • Logistical assistance, especially surrounding participatory research and strategic planning, and the implementation of the programmes and funding proposals
  • Particular topics of interest for KEDA currently include (but are by no means limited to):
  • Irrigation as a means to increasing food security
  • Income-raising programmes, including livestock distribution
  • Health education and improving health-care, including HIV/AIDS
  • Improved environmental awareness and education, especially regarding the use of organic agriculture
  • The impacts of climate change on local crops
  • The impact of donor aid on the community
  • Horticultural research into new crops which are better adapted to the changing climate
  • Agricultural engineering, including terracing, soil-erosion reduction, and irrigation
  • Food processing and storage research
  • Tree and nursery horticulture as a means to poverty reduction
  • Engineering with the goal of water-provision

There are also opportunities to teach English, Maths, Science and Geography in a local primary and secondary school. Prior teaching experience or qualifications (e.g. TEFL) is required. Practical Arrangements

Time of Year / Length of Stay : Volunteering opportunities are offered all year round, and length of stay can vary greatly. This will be catered to each individual volunteer, and are highly flexible. It is recommended that volunteers spend at least 1 month with the charity to get the most from the placement.

Accommodation and Food: Accommodation will be provided within the community which will cost between $5-$10 US dollars per night. Volunteers can buy food locally.

Arrival and Transport: Volunteers would be expected to make their own way to Moshi in Tanzania and then get a dalla dalla (local bus) to Himo where the charity is based. Volunteers will be in direct contact with the charity team in Tanzania prior to their departure. Volunteers will have to pay for their own transport while they are volunteering.

Cost: If volunteers would like the help of the charities to complete research for their degree, masters or PhD they are asked to donate $200US to the charities to cover the time, transport and associated costs of the research. This should be donated at the start of the placement. Volunteers are also expected to make meaningful contributions to KEDA and CEDE, in whichever aspect the volunteer has the skills and ability to contribute. Volunteers are required to pay for their own food, accommodation, flights, visas and other travel costs.

Visas: The UK volunteer coordinator (Gemma) will give you visa advice before your placement.

Volunteering will grant you the opportunity to learn both a local language and Kiswahili.

If you feel you can contribute to any of these topics, or if you feel you could suggest another relevant topic of research, please do not hesitate to get in touch. CEDE welcome volunteers of all ages and backgrounds, as long as they feel they can contribute meaningfully.

We can put you in touch with past volunteers who have conducted research with KEDA and CEDE.

More about KEDA

KEDA was founded in 1992 initially to address serious degradation on the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro. However, in order to tackle the environmental issues, the underlying issues of poverty within the region need also to be addressed. Farmers living in poverty would not invest their time and effort into an environmental scheme if it did not help them personally. KEDA focuses on increasing community awareness of environmental destruction and HIV. This is achieved by targeting small scale farmers and making them aware of their impact on their environment, and how to best conserve their farm land. This is accomplished via a variety of programmes that aim to increase household income while maintaining or improving environmental issues. An example is increasing food security in a sustainable manner via improved environmental awareness and education by the use of organic agriculture.KEDA has also implemented income-raising programmes as well as offering health education for people within the area who have HIV.

Past Volunteers:

Matt: "My time in Himo definitely satisfied my academic/research requirements thanks to the help of the directors and especially Mr Nyange and Mr Shirima. Thanks to their help I was able to interview a wide range of different people in different areas. The directors were extremely honest and open during certain interviews when it was found that the goats had no impact on assisting households in the lowlands due to the fact taht the recipients couldn’t breed them. This openness by the directors enabled me to do my research easily and find out a number of points on KEDA’s goat distribution programme. The most rewarding aspect of my trip was the fact that I was able to contribute to KEDAs efforts rather than conduct my research for my own purposes and then leave. The directors were extremely energetic and very helpful. During the first week we had an induction week and they showed us around the area so we could become familiarized with the places, the bus system and were the different places to buy food items and internet cafe could be found. They were also very hospitable and kind and invited us to their homes on many occasions and Mr Shirima invited us to his daughters send off party so from the beginning of our stay in Himo we felt welcomed."

Pallavi: "My KEDA experience was great. All of the directors were extremely welcoming and i couldn't have asked for anything more. I worked with the farmers in Matala which is just outside Himo. We planted banana trees, beans and spinach as well as dug compost pits and picked spinach. I also went up to Mr Sabbas's farm for 2 nights. we ashed potatoes, planted banana trees, and picked coffee. I had a great time. "