Kilimanjaro Volunteer CEDE

  • Himo

About Us

CEDE (Community Economic Development & Empowerment) is a local NGO based in the Kilimanjaro region specifically dealing with sustainable ecomomic development and improving the livelihoods of Kilimanjaro society, i.e. youth, women, vulnerable and management of the environment.

CEDE is a non-governmental organization founded in February 2008 by a group of people concerned with the wellbeing of the community. The group includes conservationists, traditional community elders, civil servants and the disadvantaged people within the society.

KEDA and CEDE 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 and CEDE 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 CEDE.

CEDE 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.

Research Topics:

  • Broad-based research topics include:Relationship between greater levels of medical examination and frequency of HIV
  • Impact of donor aid on the community
  • Further education opportunities (or lack thereof) available after secondary school or university
  • Extension of indigenous food crops, including studies of the different regional foods and known health benefits of particular crops
  • The difference in life expectancy between higher and lower educated families.
  • Gender abuse and discrimination in job seeking, and management of family resources by gender
  • Cultural impacts of female circumcision
  • Food processing and storage

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 CEDE

Nowhere are the effects of global warming more evident than in this region as we stand witness to the disappearance of the ice cap at Mount Kilimanjaro. In addition to this, rural communities testify not only to noticing changes in weather patterns in recent years but in also physically observing the loss of biodiversity in the ecosystem, degradation of topsoil, extinction of certain natural resources -though seemingly simple have sustained generations. These problems continue to negatively impacts on the communities well being and are, in themselves, a cause of poverty.

At the roots of these problems lie social and economic drives and thus there is need to appreciate the human dimensions or socio-economic aspects that are linked with these changes such as population growth, environmental degradation perpetuated by the unabated deforestation and over cultivation, soil infertility as a result of continued crop cultivation without replenishing with fertilizers and manures, leading to crop failures and poor yield which corresponds to nutritional problems. Through a shared vision of improving the livelihood of the rural populace, it is obvious that our environment has to be improved so as to maintain the natural status of our planet suitable for a balanced biodiversity which will facilitate improved crop and livestock production patterns.

For this reason a special focus on human interactions to the environment must be enforced so as to attain the desired goal. Our first challenge remains to bring to light the plight of the Kilimanjaro region; establishing and strengthening community awareness on environment conservation; global warming; and climate change.

CEDE is committed to the wellbeing of the community by promoting the economically and socially responsible use of our natural resources and working to ensure a sustainable economic growth of our community through embarking on trainings, seminars and participatory action research.

In this strategic plan CEDE identified priority areas and these are; the urgent need of involving the community in identifying development blockages and look for the means of rectifying them, the need to develop adaptive capacity to effectively respond challenges for the future by prioritizing strategies that will address associated vulnerabilities and instigation of project activities in responses to current and emerging community development issues pliability.

CEDE recognizes that entrepreneurship knowledge, vulnerability and resilience to economic development externalities are embedded in societies and cultures, thus we seeks to fully involve the general public in the production process, from the initial point of production plan.

Consequently the focus of CEDE is on empowering communities through education, communication to take corrective action and sensitization on the need for greater integration of economic development concerns by strengthening advocacy on the issue. Communities need to be well informed and aware about the many environmental, social, cultural, economic, and political phenomena that affect their life and the many ways in which their own actions affect their local economic environment.

CEDE intends to utilize participatory field research that will be centered around a critical analysis of existing initiatives and identifying sustainable practices and concrete initiatives to develop participatory insights into what a community knows and to ascertain indigenous knowledge and expertise in the management of natural resources for sustainable economic development, what challenges they face, and what opportunities are available for development. This undertaking is oriented towards community empowerment and generating data for advocacy and the planning process based on priorities expressed by stakeholders

CEDE also recognizes the fact that women represents an immense source of potential and power to combat the increased house hold poverty. CEDE poses and will therefore place emphases on building women’s knowledge and capacity for the production process. CEDE seeks to increase women’s participation in community decision making processes. In this strategic plan networking will be adopted as the main strategy to the holistic methodology all appropriate measures will be taken to ensure strong alliances among both like-minded NGOs and other partners in the public and private sector in order to find the expertise elsewhere if needed.

CEDE is working towards proactively building adaptive capacity to respond to climate changes, ensure maximum productivity of livelihoods while at the same time maximizing the ecological sustainability and conservation of the Kilimanjaro region and in turn generate global environmental benefits and increase resilience in the face of climate change impacts.

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. "