Tshemba Foundation

Tshemba Foundation is a non-profit organisation with a vision of fair and equal healthcare in South Africa’s rural northeast.  Founded in 2014 by Neil Tabatznik and Godfrey Phillips, this unique volunteering programme provides the opportunity for medical professionals to treat, teach and learn, while also finding refuge at a quiet, luxury lodge in a private game reserve.

Tshemba’s aim is to attract world-class medical professionals from a wide range of disciplines, to volunteer their time and expertise for short- or long-term stays.  Services include direct patient care, postgraduate support, skills development and formal teaching.

We do not take direct responsibility for healthcare delivery but rather add our volunteers to existing services, to support and complement the work of local staff.  This means that no service can become dependent on the volunteer programme for its existence.

The focus of our volunteer effort is Tintswalo Hospital based at Acornhoek, about 38km from the Orpen Gate of Kruger Park.  Acornhoek and the immediately surrounding villages have a population approaching 500,000 people; the broader area has well over a million.

Volunteers provide a massive contribution to the Acornhoek community through direct clinical care, teaching and skills transfer, and management support.

Mission Statement

Tshemba is a non-profit organisation committed to working within the existing health and education systems in rural SA.


To enhance access to healthcare in the under-resourced rural communities in the Mpumalanga and Limpopo provinces in SA.

Volunteer Roles

The Tintswalo hospital has over 400 beds including general male and female, adult surgery, paediatric, obstetrics & gynaecology, and psychiatry.  The older wards, including medical and surgical, are very basic, often over-crowded, and contain minimal equipment that is of basic standard.  There is a rehabilitation unit incorporating physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and speech and hearing.

There is an optometrist with limited facilities, and a radiology department which is under-equipped.  The accident and emergency facilities are very crowded, while intensive and high care options are lacking.  There are specialist tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS facilities, and an on-site laboratory providing basic investigations.  Drug supply is reasonable but we often suffer stock outages and resource constraints.

The Tshemba Foundation provides complimentary, luxury accommodation in a secure 5-star lodge in the Moditlo Private Game Reserve.  There are stand-alone, ensuite chalets that accommodate up to 18 volunteers, and a communal home that can sleep six.  The lodge has free internet, an onsite gym, two lounges, a separate TV room, fully equipped kitchen, a beautifully designed patio, and outdoor boma and infinity pool.


  • Flights – Volunteer
  • Accommodation – Volunteer
  • Food – Volunteer
  • Transport-In-Country – Volunteer
  • Visa – Volunteer
  • Travel Insurance – Volunteer
  • Medical Indemnity – Volunteer

Volunteer Requirements


Occupational therapists
Speech & language therapists


Must be fully licenced in volunteer’s home country

Time commitment


Volunteering experience

None required

Clinical experience




Other skills


Contact Details:






+27 (82) 825 3063 (South Africa)