Our story

Established in 2017, a group of volunteers liked the idea of travelling to emerging communities where they could explore giving back in a different context.

Our first trip took us to Mannar, in Sri Lanka, where we visited a part of the world seen by few foreigners. Partnering with a local NGO, we considered how we might best contribute to the community before volunteering from home with the knowledge that our skills, time and effort would make a difference.

New adventures to Cambodia, Mongolia and Nepal followed. Reflecting on the experience we decided to formally establish and invite others to experience what we had. In 2021, the Mad Cow Project was incorporated as a not-for-profit organisation and registered as an Australian charity.

How we are different

At the Mad Cow Project you don’t volunteer for us, you volunteer through us. We understand you’re busy and that’s why we encourage you to explore first and then choose how you might best contribute.

We want you to enjoy your experiences while giving back. Whether this means travelling with a small group, working on a volunteer project, fundraising to support existing work, or connecting with a new part of the world, the Mad Cow Project is there to support you.

We’re not a once and done organisation. 

As an organisation, we establish and maintain long-term relationships with local communities so that our volunteers are warmly welcomed and able to revisit and see how their contributions have made a difference. We’ve had the opportunity to grow personally and professionally while doing some good and want you to experience this too.

Our directors

We’re explorers. Our directors all started out as volunteers with us. In finding a way to solve their own problems they discovered something worth sharing. Below they share their hopes for The Mad Cow Project.