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Student project

Every summer, around 50-60 students and staff volunteers from across the eight Wallace Group universities join forces with colleagues at Sport in Action to deliver sustainable sport for young people in some of Zambia’s poorest communities.

We do this primarily through the network of Community Hub Sites and offer roles focussing on enhancing sport specific developments that will provide opportunities for Zambian young people to develop as players, coaches, and leaders.

We are focussed on ensuring what we do is sustainable year round within those communities and that they provide support to encourage and empower women and girls.

The student project runs from June-October and based in Zambia’s capital city Lusaka. The students are split into three groups, with each group spending 6 weeks on placement at the various hub sites around the capital.

The Volunteer Zambia project encourages young people to build their own understanding of world events; develop their values; take learnings into the real world; challenge ignorance and intolerance; get involved in their local, national, and global communities

Why volunteer?

  • Make a difference to the lives of young Zambians
  • Improve your global awareness
  • Empower those around you
  • Train others in your sport
  • Help develop a community from within


Each university recruits 6 students to undertake the voluntary role of ‘Student Sport Development Officer’ in one of the following areas:

  • Netball Development Officer
  • Basketball Development Officer
  • Football Development Officer
  • Women’s Football Development Officer
  • Media, Marketing & Communications Officer

Student roles are aligned to those operating within the hub sites (as outlined in the Community Sport Hub tool kit), with volunteers now recruited to provide support to the leadership positions and volunteers running the hub sites, helping to build capacity and ensure each hub site remains sustainable.

We place the student at the heart of the project creating life changing, safe experiences that leave a legacy in country.

What will it involve?

  • 6 weeks in Africa
  • Sports development
  • Coaching
  • Delivering workshops
  • Fundraising campaigns
  • Team work
  • Developing leadership skills
  • Forming new friendships

Student Sport Development Officers

Within each group, students are placed at one or more of the various hub sites located around Lusaka:


Hub Sites:

  • Makeni
  • Kanyama
  • Ellensdale
  • Kalingalinga
  • Kamwala
  • Chibolya
  • Chipata
  • Chawama
  • Mtendere
  • Matero
  • Kaunda Square
  • Olympafrica
  • John Howard


Hub Sites:

  • Munali
  • Kabwata
  • Kafue
  • Kamwala
  • Kanyama

Women’s Football

Hub Sites:

  • Kamwala
  • Chipata
  • Mtendere
  • Matero
  • Kaunda Square
  • Hellen Kaunda

In-country roles are assigned based on the needs of the hub sites and levels of experience, but could include:

  • assisting hub site coordinators to deliver sport sessions and activities
  • mentoring hub site coordinators
  • passing on knowledge and experience with regards to sporting skills and session delivery
  • supporting SIA coaches to upskill hub site leaders in the areas of planning, evaluating and progression of session delivery
  • working with other student volunteers to coordinate cross SIA activities
    e.g., workshops, training and development, leagues, tournaments, events
  • conducting outreach work such as taster sessions to engage new participants, or a new demographic into activity at the hub sites
  • developing new activities within hub sites, including games, practice ideas and the empowerment of the young leaders in their delivery
  • assisting SIA and the Project Manager with the wider development of their sport

Media, Marketing & Communications Officers

Each year three students are recruited to take on the role of Media, Marketing & Communications Officer within each group of the Volunteer Zambia project.

Each Media Officer spends 6 weeks in Zambia helping to promote news and activity from across the project, highlight the work of Sport in Action and our charity The Volunteer Zambia Foundation.

Day to day life on Volunteer Zambia

Your daily efforts will result in small, but life changing impacts. You will travel to and from your allocated placements to develop and up skill local Zambian community leaders. You will do this for the duration of your six weeks in Zambia, making immense impact, and developing tight friendships with those you are working with.

In Zambia, no day is the same, which is what makes it so special. However, your daily goal is to develop the coordinators, leaders, and coaches at the various hub-sites, who are working tirelessly to better their communities and the children that reside there.

You will support their learning as sport coaches, coordination as sport facilitators, and leadership as mentors to the many young children that depend on them

Day to day life

  • Travel to YOUR hub site within Lusaka
  • Support Zambian leaders in sport education
  • Run training and coaching sessions for children and staff
  • Work with Zambian staff to deliver effective courses
  • Relax in the evenings with your fellow Zambian and UK Volunteers

Join a growing international community, on a once in a lifetime opportunity. Help run and coordinate sports development practises across Lusaka, Zambia, and see the difference you make for yourself. Work alongside the largest Sports NGO in Zambia and an ever-growing number of industry leaders between Africa and the UK.

How to apply?

If you are a matriculated student at one of the Wallace Group universities and would like to take part in the Volunteer Zambia Project, please contact your respective Operational Lead to find out how to apply and more information about the recruitment process.

Football at Chipata

“Okay boys, take a couple of minutes to get some water and we’ll go again!” Some jog up to the water taps at the school – most stay and ping passes to each other along the dusty ground or take shots at one of the small goals. It is 3pm in Chipata, and the sport…

Netball Coaching at Munali

What makes Munali so special is the sense of community and how all of the people there, both players and coaches, form one big family. It is such a fun site with netball, football, basketball and volleyball on offer; it is always buzzing with activity and filled with happiness and laughter. Netball training takes place…

Emily’s Experience at the Mtendere Netball Hub

During my time here in Zambia I have been placed at Mtendere netball hub, which has been a thoroughly enjoyable experience. Mtendere has been a hub site for over a year now and feels very well established. In my opinion Mtendere is an exemplary hub site. Each Monday they have a meeting in which all…

Kalingalinga Netball Hub

If you were to step on the dusty heartland of Kalingalinga’s sport pitches, you would see Zambian life in its element. To your left, the “Fritter Lady” greets you (or rather me, a very regular customer.) The far-side of the netball pitch, a shop and hustling busy residential lane. The young men on the neighbouring…

Football at the Fountain of Hope

Fountain of Hope is an orphanage based in Kamwala, Zambia. Fountain houses both boys and girls and currently has approximately 120 children living on the premises. The orphanage itself is a small compound with a mixture of wooden and concrete buildings sitting opposite the newly refurbished basketball court. I was lucky enough to be allocated…

Volleyball in Munali

One of the sites where the Wallace group is active in Lusaka is Munali. The Munali site is surrounded by schools, making it a very busy site during school time, with lots children passing by, who often stop to chat to their friends or join sessions such as football, basketball, netball and volleyball which all…

A Day at Mtendere Football Site

In the distance players work together to carry the goal posts to the pitch. The dedication from the players shows how incredible the football community is here. Player by player, the number of people increases, you instantly feel excited and engaged because of the smiles and happiness of everyone around. Starting from under eights all…

Fountain of Hope, where no one can take your hope…

The first time walking through the gates of Fountain, I was greeted with an abundance of hugs and lots of smiling faces beaming up at me. What an amazing atmosphere this placement site has – a real family feel. Mirriam, Felicis and Steven, my peer leaders, introduced me to the group of girls I would…

2019 Kabawata Group 2, Dec and Abby

From the very first session that Abby and I attended, we were blown away by just how proud the Kabwata community were of their newly renovated playpark, and the welcome we received from Katambi and Agness our peer leaders was truly awesome. From Day 1, we knew we were onto a winner. Over our 6…

Chipata in 6 Weeks – Claire Cumming (Group 2)

What an adventure! The last 6 weeks have flown by and I don’t think there would have been a better placement site for me to spend my time. Everything about Chipata makes me smile and the sense of community with this site is incredible. During my time at Chipata I was appointed the netball coordinator…

2019 VZ Group 3 Blog: Week 6

Volunteer Zambia… where to start, or more so, where to end. I write this final blog to finish off 4 months of volunteer work from 8 universities and 37 students who have put blood, sweat and some tears into trying to make a difference in a city and country trying to develop the next generation…

2019 VZ Group 3 Blog: Week 5

My volunteer Zambia journey is nearly complete and its safe to say I’m not ready to go home yet. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with my peer leader Miriam at the Chipata hub site alongside Aimee, another volunteer of the programme. Monday The first day of our fifth week started with a 5am to go…

2019 VZ Group 3 Blog: Week 4

As week 4 began, the schools returned from their break at Chipata. During the school holidays attendance was extremely high for the hub site, therefore Lucy, Mirriam and myself looked forward to this continuing throughout term time. During the holidays all girls from different schools were able to participate together in fun sessions along with…

2019 VZ Group 3 Blog: Week 3

After an exciting two weeks coaching here in Zambia and immersing ourselves in Zambian culture, it’s safe to say our small group of 9 have settled in really well. For the past two weeks, I have had three placements coaching netball at the Mutendere Hub, Kalingalinga Hub and the traditional site at Fountain of Hope.…

Assistant Project Manager Applications Now Live!

This fantastic opportunity will run from the 23rd May to the 3rd October 2020. Role Purpose:  To assist the in-country Project Manager in working with Sport in Action (SIA) and the Wallace Group (WG) to project manage and operationalise the objectives of the ‘Volunteer Zambia’ project during the 4-month project in 2020. This includes assisting…

2019 VZ Group 3 Blog: Week 2

After our first week in Zambia it was time to start placement at our assigned hubs. I have been stationed at the Munali Hub, coaching and conducting outreach for Volleyball alongside Karolina, another volunteer. Coaching Volleyball at Munali On Monday, myself and Karolina made our way to the Munali district with the help of our…

Last hub-tournaments of the summer for Chipata and Mtendere

Chipata and Mtendere both saw their last Hub-Tournaments of the summer, with the aim of bringing girls together for Netball and life skills, while also saying farewell to their beloved Volunteer Zambia coaches. The well oiled machine, Mtendere hosted yet another great event. NOWSPAR also joined the event to deliver life skills sessions with a…

2019 Group 3 Blog: Week 1

Wow!  What a crazy, surreal introduction to Zambia we have had; I am writing this on day eleven since landing in Lusaka and it is paradoxical in the sense that it seems only yesterday that we landed but at the same time that we have very quickly dived into this fascinating culture and have already…

2019 Group 2 Blog: Week 6

“Enjoy every second of it, the 6 weeks will fly by”; the famous last words shared by everyone and anyone that is ever lucky enough to experience this trip. 6 weeks later and I already find myself writing the final blog entry for Group 2. The past 6 weeks has gone by in a flash,…

2019 Group 2 Blog: Week 5

One would think that after 5 weeks in Zambia, I would be used to leaving the house at 8am. But I’ve never been a morning person, and so I was still half asleep as we walked to the hectic bus stop near Kobil gas station. My ‘work week’ was beginning on Tuesday after a group…

2019 Group 2 Blog: Week 4

Week 4 began with the end to our amazing Livingstone trip. A little fatigued after the sunset cruise the evening before, ZamFam Group 2 headed out to experience Victoria Falls in all it’s glory. I was fortunate enough to not have the 6am slot, so when my team hit the national park at 9 the…

2019 Group 2 Blog: Week 3

I think this is a rather advantageous week to be assigned the blog because we have had a while to get used to our assignments and now, I’d say, know the kids and peer leaders pretty well. From my observations, everyone else seems to getting on even better than I, and I thought I was…

2019 Group 2 Blog: Week 2

Can’t believe it is already week 2. The group has got into the swing of day to day life in Lusaka and the routes to placement seem much easier than they looked the first day. The group is getting on very welland everyone is working hard at their sites. The experience has been amazing so…

2019 Group 2 Blog: Week 1

I landed on the 12thof July at Lusaka airport full of excitement. I was ready to spend six weeks coaching in a different country, living with 18 people I had only met once. I met JP (Hub Site Coordinator) and Sarah (Project Manager) whilst waiting for the rest of the group to get through immigration.…

2019 Group 1 Blog: Week 6

Once you get into the swing of things out here, time starts to move very quickly. As the staff member (from the University of Edinburgh) I arrived on the Wednesday of week 5, and after a bit of a settling in period and the warmest of welcomes from the group, week 6 has disappeared before…

A big week for community hub-sites

This past week we had 4 Netball Community Hub-Site Tournaments taking place. The host communities for these events were; Matero, Chipata, Mtendere and Kalingalinga. With a combined total participation of over 400 girls under the age of 15, the community centres were bustling with, activity, noise, educational messages and Netball. First up was Matero. Last…

2019 Group 1 Blog: Week 5

Week 5 was incredibly busy but great fun; it went by in a flash. At the beginning of the week we were still in Livingstone enjoying the break from placement and seeing the amazing sites. On Monday morning we went to the markets to get some souvenirs where there were so many things to chose…

2019 Group 1 Blog: Week 4

Monday morning and it’s the first of six football workshops that will be taking place over the summer. We had a good turnout with a lot of keen Zambian leaders looking to improve their football knowledge. We covered the four corners model, a warm-up and a passing drill that progressed into a game. The peer…

2019 Group 1 Blog: Week 3

I am based at Chipata coaching Netball. During this week at Chipata, I went around all the hub site schools and invited the children to attend future hub sessions at Chipata compound. This was quite challenging due to the lack of engagement from the staff at schools, but after some hard work and encouragement, Moses…

2019 Group 1 Blog: Week 2

Week 2… what a week! I am based at two sites, Fountain of Hope and Mutendere, teaching Maths and English. At Fountain of Hope I am in an older class most of the time, whereas at Mutendere I am in a variety of age groups. Working with the children is one of the most challenging…

2019 Group 1 Blog: Week 1

This was one of the best and busiest weeks of my life, there were an overwhelming number of new things to do and see and experience. We arrived in Zambia on Sunday afternoon and were greeted by lots of smiling faces (we’d soon learn that that’s the norm here). It didn’t take us long to…

Job Vacancy: Volunteer Zambia Project Manager

Closing Date: Friday 31 May 2019 On behalf of Sport in Action in Zambia, the Wallace Group are seeking a passionate and committed Volunteer Zambia Project Manager for 2019-2020. The role of the VZ Project Manager is to work with Sport in Action (SIA) in Zambia and the Wallace Group (WG) to project manage and operationalise…

2017 Kit Appeal

We campaigned, we donated, we did it! The 2017 Sports Kit Appeal goes down in Wallace Group history as the biggest and most successful to date. In just over 30 days, the 7 UK universities and their partner organisations and contacts managed to fill a 40-foot shipping container with thousands and thousands of items, including;…