Volunteer at iThemba Trust

iThemba Trust has volunteer programs in education, wellness, outdoor adventure and sustainable farming.

Our volunteer program is a unique opportunity for young men and women of high school and university age to get involved in the life of a community that is actively and wholeheartedly pursuing their passions and dreams. We call it a program but in actual fact, each ‘program’ is specifically tailored to the group or individual taking part.

Typically our volunteers come to serve, primarily at our school but also in various other arenas within the greater Tarkastad community including our non-profit coffee shop, various building projects, our outdoor centre and our church – Gateway Community Church.

We love to have volunteers stay with families in the town of Tarkastad and they literally become part of the family during their stay. We live in a very close community where volunteers are fathered and mothered and mentored by a strong community of believers who are committed to pursuing the will of God in their lives and to loving and bringing out the best in those that they spend time with. While they are here, volunteers often take part in fun activities such as climbing and archery at the outdoor centre, hiking in the mountains around town, hunting and shooting and visiting nearby game reserves among others. Ultimately we believe we are called to discipleship and this works both ways with our volunteers as they are given opportunities to share their stories and gifts with our students and our community blesses them with words of encouragement, wisdom and prophecy.

It is almost invariably a life-changing time for our volunteers, many of whom have returned to a place they feel is like a second home to them.

Volunteer in Education

Volunteer in EducationOrange Grove Schools run under the umbrella of AEE, an organisation that provides educational solutions at a primary, secondary and tertiary level within South Africa. The ACE curriculum, is a Biblically based curriculum that emphasises values and character development.

Each class is run by a supervisor and a monitor, thus there are two adults who work as a team to manage the class. The supervisor oversees student’s academic progress, and tutors students individually in academic questions they have on their work. The monitor takes care of classroom administration, managing paperwork on student progress, and assisting students, practically in their daily tasks. The students work independently on small books called Paces, and the system works on a mastery style of education, with students requiring a minimum of 80% on Pace Tests to proceed to the next book of work.


  • Be a monitor in one of the Orange Grove Schools classrooms, and lend your administration skills to help your supervisor run a ship-shape classroom.
  • Be an individual tutor, sharing your knowledge in Maths, Physics, Chemistry, Biology or English with our students who need one-on-one attention.
  • Bring your practical skills in needlework, crafts, and cooking, and teach groups of girls skills that may provide them with valuable employment one day.
  • Share your knowledge in practical skills such as welding, electrical maintenance, mechanical repairs, construction and others with our boys in need of skills training.
  • Help on the sports field – train students in cross country, cricket, netball, tennis, and track and field events – or any other sport you would like to introduce, such as chess, volleyball, baseball etc.

The opportunities are endless, relying on the particular skillset you are able to contribute. Come as you are, and spend time with our students, sharing your life and experiences with them, and cheering them on in theirs.

Volunteer in Outdoor Adventure

Junior Hunters CourseOrange Grove Outdoor Adventures was first established in 2011, and donations enabled the building of ablution blocks, and later a thatched lapa (meeting area) and boma (fireplace area) on a beautiful shady green-treed area near a natural dam. Since these small beginnings, it has become fully established as a thriving enterprise, offering the popular Junior Hunters Courses twice a year, where students are able to learn about hunting with a conservation ethos. Leadership camps, adventure camps, and biology camps all take place in the calendar year. The centre additionally offers tracking courses, archery (with a 3D archery course available) and paintball.

Orange Grove Outdoor Adventures aims to make a significant impact on the lives of all who participate in its activities and offerings, with regard to appreciating and engaging with the gift of the natural world and environment, and how we as human beings can be better equipped to manage it and care for it. It has grown to incorporate a large, developed space of the farm, and has a boma (fireplace area), thatched lapa (meeting area), sports field, small dam (swimming area), ablution blocks, tents, camping chairs, obstacle course and climbing wall.

Join Dave Hood, Asisipho Mabuto and our other outdoor enthusiasts and be a part of touching people’s lives through adventure, sport and conservation. Whether you come for two weeks or a year, you can be a great help to this thriving part of Orange Grove. If you have outdoor adventure experience, come and help facilitate courses and camps, and share your experiences and knowledge. Think about sponsoring an underprivileged child to attend one of the courses, and to experience the opportunity of learning about conservation, hunting and the outdoors.

Volunteer in Wellness

Equine Assisted Psychotherapy

Equine Assisted PshychotherapyThe Orange Grove EAP program began in 2012 with therapy being offered to the children at the school free of charge in an effort to provide counselling support to those dealing with difficult home backgrounds and emotional problems.

EAP is a counselling tool that takes place outdoors, using horses as part of the therapy, and assists in processing relational conflict and emotional healing in adults and children.

If you love horses, and love to work with them, come and help Angela to look after Thomas, Angel and Highlander, our horse therapists, and make sure they are happy, groomed and full of love to give out to all our clients! If you are interested in people and counseling, come and be a part of our EAP team-building sessions, to observe how we work and learn more about this unique form of therapy.

Think about assisting us with advice, funding or practical skills with our vision of building stables, tack room, and therapy rooms for our EAP centre.

Contact Angela Price on +27.828998153 for more information.

Practical Nurse

Heidi Ferrar is a qualified, registered nurse who did her training in SA. She holds 3 diplomas: general nursing, midwifery and psychiatry. She has 36 years of experience, in SA and the UK. Heidi has managed orthopedic, surgical and maternity units. In the last 10 years, she has gained private GP surgery experience, where she obtained diplomas in diabetic care and minor illness. Heidi is registered with the SA Nursing Council and HPCSA.

Heidi’s private clinic, Health for Life , is situated in the premises of the Story. Contact Heidi on +27.714546216 for more information.

Volunteer in Sustainable Farming

Sustainable FarmingThe Vegetable Project has grown steadily since 2011. The ground now covers just under a hectare of fenced-off land. The vegetable gardens are run according to Farming God’s Way principles, using a no-till, mulching approach within a sustainable ethos of soil preservation and enrichment. A number of crops are harvested on a rotational basis including spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and potatoes. The vegetables are packaged and distributed at local markets in the Tarkastad, Queenstown and Cradock areas.

Come and share your knowledge of vegetable farming with us, and your experience in agriculture.