I visited Chipangali in August 2013 for 2 weeks. I have to say that it was one of the most incredible times of my life. At a mere 17, the prospect of traveling to a foreign country alone was daunting. I was welcomed by a beaming Nicky who made feel welcome from the world ‘hello’.

Everyone was so lovely, after just a short few days I really felt part of the family. Whilst I was there, Chipangali were celebrating their 40th anniversary at Hillside Dams – what a brilliant day! With 10 people in the back, 3 baboons, a python and countless items of furniture, we were set to go and we all had excellent fun showing animals to visitors and dancing with the local children!

The daily routines were anything but tiresome at Chipangali. From digging through mud to find grubs for the birds of prey to bottle feeding young vervet monkeys- it was never a dull day. The staff at Chipangali were so friendly, I made a special bond with Mckay who I’d always help cut down branches for the antelope.

My time at Chipangali was short and sweet and I someday hope to return.

By Rebecca Sweet