Hands On Summer Programs - Working with Animals.
Ten hands on summer programs that will allow participants to work with animals have been compiled on the attached spreadsheet. My methodology and an overview of findings are below.
When selecting these programs, I ensured none were included in the initial 10 programs you received in the first request. In addition, I included 10 different programs that offer a variety of animal experiences. As such, I did not detail all programs available from each company, but instead chose those that I believe offer unique experiences in a variety of locales. I also noted if other animal care experiences are available through a specific company in column F.
None of the programs have educational requirements except World Endeavors, which requires a high school diploma and is open to "current students, graduates, and professionals." All others are open to adults ages 18 and older, except for Projects Abroad, which allows participants as young as 16 to apply to its experiences. Please be aware that African Impact and Global Vision International do allow younger participants if they are part of a family volunteer group.
All programs indicate there will be significant hands on experience, mostly in the form of feeding animals, cleaning enclosures, monitoring animal behavior, and educating locals. In addition, all programs allow for shadowing, as they are all led by trained veterinarians, zoo keepers, sanctuary professionals, or field guides. Likewise, all programs are highly structured, with program leaders providing daily schedules for participants to follow.
Most programs are open on a rolling basis, with new volunteers arriving on a weekly or bi-weekly schedule. As such, all experiences can be reserved in the summer months. There were rarely any application deadlines available, with most programs stating they will place applicants in a location on a first-come, first-served basis. The exceptions to this norm are the Malaysian Zoo Keeper experience, which only occurs in February, June, and August; the Ecoteer Wildlife Rescue in Indonesia, which says to allow three weeks to process applications; and the Greenheart Travel Animal Rescue Center in Costa Rica, which has an application deadline of one month prior to the desired start date.
In the cases where the program prices were given in a denomination other than U.S. dollars, I used a currency converter to present them in dollars for consistency purposes. Please note that while all programs are open to Americans, you may have to pay for the program in the local currency. This appears to be the case for the Oceans 2 Earth Wallaby, Kangaroo, and Possum Care in Australia. In addition, since you mentioned that four weeks is your ideal duration, I only provided pricing for four-week experiences. However, all programs offer flexibility in duration and as a result, costs will be different depending on the actual length of stay.
Ten hands on summer programs that allow participants to gain hands on experience working with animals are:
Projects Abroad (multiple locales)
World Endeavors (multiple locales)
International Volunteer HQ (multiple locales)
Greenheart Travel Animal Rescue Center in Costa Rica
Global Vision International — Elephants in Thailand
Worldwide Experience — Living with Orphaned Rhinos in South Africa
Oceans 2 Earth Volunteers Wallaby, Kangaroo, and Possum Care in Australia
The details for 10 hands on summer programs that will allow participants to work with animals have been entered on the attached spreadsheet.