Projects Abroad volunteers being prepped to go out and surf during a lesson by our surfing coordinator

Surfing Coach Volunteering in South Africa for Teenagers

Volunteer as a surfing coach in South Africa and help disadvantaged children ride the waves

At a glance

  • Travel to South Africa and with the help of other teenagers, teach disadvantaged children and young adults how to surf, while riding the waves yourself!
  • Surfing volunteer work in South Africa for teenagers is part of our community outreach and development programs. You’ll also be working with disabled children teaching them the occupational therapy techniques we teach you.

  • This surfing coach volunteer as a teenager opportunity is based in Cape Town. You’ll be riding the waves at Muizenberg beach, a small suburb along the beach.

Start Dates: 

Fixed dates during school holidays

See Dates

Minimum Duration: 

One Week


This project is only for 15-18 year olds

Is this Surfing Volunteer Project right for me?

If you like going with the flow in a literal sense, and want to help people develop through sports, then our Surfing Project for teenagers is just what you need!

You’ll spend plenty of time outdoors; on the beach and in the water with other teenagers and like-minded people. This is a great way for you to support local communities and get some coaching experience for you CV. Coaching will also help develop your leadership skills.

If you don’t know how to surf, no problem. Our International Surfing Association (ISA) surfing coach, will make sure you’re gliding atop the waves in no time. You will have to be a strong swimmer, however, since you’ll be spending lots of time in the water

Projects Abroad surf instructor guiding a group of children through stretches on the beach

The project runs all year round, you can start on any day, and it’s fully supervised. So all you need to do is decide on some dates, complete our application form with a £195 deposit and we’ll take care of the rest.

Teach disadvantaged children and adults to surf

Your number one task as a teenager volunteer surfing coach in South Africa will be to plan and run surfing classes for disadvantaged kids and adults from the local area. You’ll teach them to surf once you’re able to. It’ll be a breeze with the help of our surfing coach. If they need help swimming you’ll give them a hand with that too. It’s also important that you share with them the importance of protecting our oceans and marine life.

Work with a local non-profit on surf therapy sessions

We have a project partner organisation that works with disabled children. The children have conditions like autism, Asperger’s syndrome, cerebral palsy, and Down’s syndrome. You’ll be trained on how to do basic occupational therapy techniques, and use these methods to help them surf and keep active.

Plan and run educational workshops

Sometimes the weather can be unpredictable in Cape Town so any surfing plans for the day can be put on hold. If this happens we’ll grab the opportunity to do workshops, arts & crafts, games, and other activities. These will focus on healthy nutrition, marine life conservation, and recycling.

Explore Cape Town

After you’ve had your coaching sessions for the day, we’ll take you on exciting nights out in the Mother City. There’ll be lots of cultural activities you can enjoy with other teenagers. You’ll also see some of Cape Town’s most picturesque places, like Table Mountain or Boulders Beach. South Africa has a rich history and you’ll be hearing about it when you visit some of the cultural areas like District 6 and Robben Island.

Where will I work in South Africa?

Cape Town

You’ll be staying in one of Cape Town’s most popular surf suburbs - Muizenberg. There are plenty of surf spots for you to explore, whether you’re a beginner or an upcoming star!

The gentle sloping sandy beach and consistent waves make it one of the safest and most user-friendly beaches in the world for beginner surfers. On the doorstep of the beach you’ll find a host of restaurants and shops for you and your fellow teenagers to shop at if you feel like finding a trinket or two.

Airport pickup, flights and visas

When you arrive at your respective airport, a member of Projects Abroad staff will be there to meet you. You can find more detailed information on arrival airports, orientation, and visas on our South Africa Arrival Procedures page.

What are the aims of the High School Special Surfing Coach Project?

The main aim of the High School Special Surfing Project is for you to help support local communities through teaching surfing in South Africa.

Many of the children and adults we work with on the High School Special Surfing Project battle difficult problems in their communities. These are issues like drug abuse, lack of education and resources, high unemployment rates, and violence. Many of them cannot take up a hobby like surfing due to the cost of it. With your help, we try to make it inclusive for everyone.

Our goals are to create better options and new perspectives for these people outside of the hardships they know in their communities. A healthy, teamwork activity like surfing helps create this. Many of these people may never fly in a plane, but we can help them fly on the waves. Our surfing staff will confirm this is a much better feeling.

Tag along and join our Surfing Coach Project in Cape Town during your school holidays.

Local kids standing with their surfboards at Muizenberg beach before they go out to surf

Management plans

We set out the aims and objectives of our projects in documents called Management Plans. We use them to properly plan the work you’ll do. They also help us measure and evaluate our achievements and impact each year.

Ultimately, our Management Plans help us make our projects better. This in turn means you get to be part of something that makes a real impact where it’s needed. Read more about our Management Plans.

Measuring our impact

Every year, thousands of High School Special volunteers and interns actively make a difference around the world. During their time abroad, they contribute towards achieving long-term goals and make a long-lasting positive impact on the communities where they work.

We produce an annual High School Specials Impact Report, which documents some of these achievements. Find out more about the impact of these projects, and read the latest report.

Food and accommodation

You'll stay with a host family in Cape Town. They will welcome you into their home, eager to share their customs and have you teach them about your own culture. We believe that this is the best way to immerse yourself in the culture of South Africa and have a truly unique experience.

On our High School Specials, we will always try to have you share a room with at least one volunteer or intern of the same sex and approximate age. Your room will be modest, but comfortable, clean, and safe.

Your programme fee includes three meals a day.

Find out more about our accommodation.

Safety and staff support

Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have all the extra support you need as a young person travelling abroad. Our Projects Abroad staff are there for you 24 hours a day during the week and over weekends to provide constant support and guidance. Our staff also make sure you feel comfortable and safe at your placement and accommodation. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.

Find out more about safety and backup.

This placement is fully researched, safety audited, and risk assessed in accordance with the British Standard BS8848 for the Adventure Travel Sector.

We currently don’t have any available dates for this project. Contact us on 01273 007 230 to discuss future dates or alternative projects.

Our accreditations