Since I have come home I have told everyone that I do not regret going to Bambelela... I loved the hands on with the animals, and even loved that we had a variety of animals there as well. You were able to feed the baby vervets, play with the 2 Capuchin monkeys, and much more. One thing they have going for them is that they are very hands on.
This brings me to my main concern. Saying I do not regret paying to go there and volunteer, if I was given an option to go back there I would flip them the middle finger (excuse the graphic gesture). I would not pay to go back to a slave camp. One of my favorite parts of the day was cleaning the cages and sitting with the pink face vervet monkeys, but having us work 7 days a week from 7 in the morning sometimes until 9 at night is so ridiculous it actually makes me laugh now when I think about it. You are fed food that is sometimes not edible...(but I understand that they cannot afford to feed us nice things so that's OK)...but what isn't ok is that you only have 2 meals a day. Yes the website said only 2 meals, but conveniently enough it doesn't warn you about the portions. But you probably don't want a big portion anyways because the kitchen they cook it in is a cesspit. No volunteer has a set day off.. you are responsible to ask for your own days off, and more then likely they will decline it... or come up with a reason why you cannot have one. Many of the people who were volunteering there were unhappy with the work load, hours and food! Back to the days off.... they say you can have half days on sundays and I think maybe Saturdays.... this is not true. There was one night where one of the girls had to work until past 10 pm because Silke was leaving the farm. This brings me to Silke. She is helping monkeys and I commend her for that..... but she is a manipulative liar who I heard talking badly about volunteers when she didn't think I was listening. We pay to come and donate or time to those animals while shes having us work 12 hours a day and driving around in a nicer truck then my mom owns! Her staff is out of control. Belinda was absolutely lovely and so was Adelle and Minette but the rest of them had bad attitudes. Silkes daughter... well there are many words I can use here but I will resist, I can't remember one morning she actually smiled and said good morning. R.j does absolutely nothing, which made alot of volunteers angry seeing as they are paying to get worked down to the bone.... but many people especially one girl who was there thought Sue was the worst of them. She yelled at you, treated you like you were in the army, and threatened not to feed some of the volunteers any dinner one night if they didn't finish there chores (I was not here for that but I heard from other volunteers, and it wasn't just one volunteer it was several). I've run out of room, so this is the end of my rant. Thank You!
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