The Shongololo Peace Train Trust has been founded to assist the varied needs of African communities located along the Shongololo Express Train route. These needs range from every day requirements to future sustainability. Areas such as education, taking care of hygiene, natural environment, the cultivation of land, heritage and their organisations.

The Shongololo Peace Train Trust, together with Shongololo Express will be providing guests from around the world with a unique and special travelling experience: VOLUNTOURISM.

Guests on the train not only get to see the towns, villages and countryside along the route, but their experience is extended through daily excursions, using a fleet of air conditioned buses which travel with the train. These guided tours offer guests the option to see so much more of the beautiful African continent, and in addition participate in activities such as hot air ballooning, elephant back riding, walking with lions and scuba diving.

Southern Africa is still classified as a third world region and therefore the train naturally passes through many areas and communities that are greatly in need of basic essentials such as food, clothes and shelter. As well as these fundamental necessities, children need education, and adults need to be equipped with skills that may help them find a job. The Shongololo Peace Train Trust volunteers will volunteer 40% of their trip in assisting in breaking the cruel cycle of poverty, by giving of their time.

The Name

The name Shongololo is derived from the Zulu word “to roll up”. The locals gave the name to organisation, as it illustrates a millipede found in Africa. The name is appropriate for the train as this is precisely what it looked like to the indigenous people of the Southern African continent when they observed the first trains passing on the distant horizons. The train has the exact profile and sinuous movement of the creature they called a Shongololo – the millipede.

The Background

The Shongololo Express began operating in 1995, providing a special train safari experience for visitors to Southern and East Africa. The Shongololo Express train travels seven countries: South Africa, Swaziland, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Zambia, and Namibia. The train travels at night with daily stops at the top tourist destinations enabling the passengers to get off the train to explore and experience the exquisite landscape, diverse culture, heritage and wildlife of Africa with the experienced Shongololo Express tour guides.

Introducing The Shongololo Peace Train Trust

In the past, Shongololo Express guests out of their own accord; opened their hearts and wallets not only by giving generously during their trip, but by making further donations once they have returned home. These donations have been in the form of cash, parcels, sports equipment, or clothing sent to the communities that have most touched the guests’ hearts during their adventures through Africa.

Through this inspiration the Peace Train offering has been established and will channel all this goodwill into a single source of funds that will be coordinated and managed to the maximum benefit of the chosen beneficiaries along each of The Shongololo Express’ routes.


The vision of The Shongololo Peace Train Trust is to identify and match the needs of the various communities along the Shongololo Express journey with wiling donors, ranging from individual travellers to corporates within South Africa and internationally. The Trust has been established to coordinate these initiatives into one channel which will be utilized to give back as much as possible to the communities in need.


Centipedes typically have between 80 and 400 legs, with the minority growing to have as many as 750 legs. The Trust will use this as a benchmark to grow into the longest shongololo possible, with every R10 000 raised forming another leg on the Shongololo Peace Train Trust. The goal for year one will be for the Shongolo Peace Train Trust to have 80 legs and thus raise R800 000 rand through individual and corporate donations.

How the Peace Train Trust Will Work

Each year, four beneficiaries will be chosen from amongst applications received by The Trust. These beneficiaries may also be projects or associations that Shongololo Express as an organisation feels they should be supporting.

Guests will join and pay for a normal Shongololo Express adventure. During this adventure, Shongololo Express will then subsidise the guests who spend 40% of their time volunteering at various beneficiaries. The other 60% of their time will be adventuring and exploring Africa at its best. In return, 40% of their fee will go towards beneficiaries and 60% of their fee will cover the costs of their trip on the train.

In the same way that guests can select their off train excursions by category, so donors can choose to give to projects under different headings. These are Education, Culture & Heritage, Environment, and Wildlife.


Voluntourism is a vacation involving taking your holiday and spending a percentage of your time participating in small and influential activities centered on furthering a charitable cause, as identified by The Shongololo Peace Train Trust. These activities may include spending time with children from a local orphanage to teaching sustainable farming.

Peace Train GIVE100 Campaign

The Shongololo Express is excited to launch the Peace Train GIVE100 campaign to encourage other people, organisations and guests to be involved with the Shongololo Peace Train initiative. The GIVE100 campaign will be used to raise funds for the various projects and beneficiaries. Therefore, GIVE100 & GIVE PEACE! For more information, click here or drop us an email.


The Shongololo Peace Train Trust is a registered Trust ( IT3143/2010) and not a non-profit organisation. Its statements are audited annually by Bruce Morrison & Associates, South Africa.

For more information on the Trust, its founders and its work, email The Shongololo Peace Train Trust.

Peace Train Voluntourism

PARTICIPATE in this once in a lifetime opportunity and step on board the Shongololo Express Peace Train.

40% of your travel fare will go towards The Trust and it offers an opportunity to participate in VOLUNTOURISM which means that 40% of your time will be spent on outreach projects, touching the lives of many African men and women.



Pledge Form

If you are passionate about making a difference to communities you have visited along your Shongololo Express journey, you can help by pledging a donation to the Shongololo Peace Train Trust. You may choose to make a once off donation, or to support our efforts on an ongoing basis. You may also choose to donate in a specific field as follows:

Educational projectsEnvironmental upliftment projectsPreservation of cultural & heritageWildlife protection and preservation

Personal ContributionCorporate Contribution


Once off amountMonthly debit orderParcel