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Travel to beautiful Sri Lanka to volunteer for sea turtle conservation!

Program Highlights:
  • Contribute directly to the conservation of endangered sea turtles along the coast of Sri Lanka
  • Ethical wildlife volunteering and interactions
  • Engage with the local community to raise awareness for marine conservation
  • Live in close proximity to world-class beaches
  • Enjoy weekly rooftop yoga sessions, night fishing trips, weekly movie nights, monthly bike tours and monthly barbecues (beginning in 2020)
 
Your schedule at a glance (Minimum one-week commitment):
 

Arrival Day, Saturday: Arrive at Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB). A team member will be waiting to pick you up for transfer to the volunteer villa. Meet and greet with fellow volunteers.
 
Day 1, Sunday: Volunteers will receive a tour of the area, and orientation if it was not given on Saturday. Enjoy the rest of the day by exploring local beaches with fellow volunteers or joining an adventure! ( See “Travel Highlights” below for recommendations!)
 
Days 2-6, Monday-Friday: Rewarding volunteer work. Three days each week, volunteers work in the hatchery, which is about an hour away from the volunteer villa. Tasks include feeding and cleaning the turtles, moving turtle eggs into the hatching area, caring for disabled turtles, cleaning tanks and more. One day a week is Environment Day, where volunteers will take part in beach cleaning activities in Galle. The remaining weekday is Community Day where volunteers either educate local school children or rural women about sea turtle conservation or work on a special, related project. During nesting season (November-May) there are two night patrol camps each month where participants camp out on the beach and protect the nests.  Please note that this schedule may change at any time. Please note that this schedule may change at any time.
 
Days 7, Saturday: Departure day for volunteers staying just one week. Free time for volunteers who are extending. 
 
Remaining Weeks: The following weeks will follow the schedule of volunteering Monday-Friday and having weekends free. Departures are on Saturdays.

Check out what our past volunteers had to say!

 
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Location of the Project:  Galle, Sri Lanka
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Project length:  Min 1 week - Max 12 weeks
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Arrival Airport:  Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB)
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Volunteer Work:  Turtle conservation
Age:  16-65 is the recommended age range. Those over 65 may still apply.
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Number of Volunteers:  Up to 15 international volunteers

What's Included

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Accommodations:  Shared rooms in a volunteer villa
Food:  Three meals per day are provided
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Airport Transfers:  Airport transfers are provided on both arrival and departure days
Orientation:  Upon arrival, volunteers will receive a walking tour and welcome/ introductory training presentations.
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Support:  Comprehensive and professional pre-departure travel guidance, 24/7 GoEco emergency hotline, experienced local field team.

What's not Included

Flights, visas (if required), travel health insurance, personal expenses
Galle is a beautiful area in southern Sri Lanka that is surrounded by lush greenery and is in close proximity to world-class beaches! Many of the nearby beaches are prime surfing spots, and others are more relaxing. There is even a turtle lagoon nearby. Galle is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, complete with Dutch-colonial buildings, ancient religious buildings, museums and more. Galle is also quite trendy, and is home to cafes, boutiques and boutique hotels.
Sea turtles in Sri Lanka are an endangered species. The species is threatened by human poachers as well as predators. The Sri Lankan government has approved the creation of hatcheries in order to conserve this species.

Volunteers on this program spend 60% of their time working in the hatchery, and the other 40% is spent on activities such as beach cleans 
and creating awareness within the local community. During nesting season (November-May) there are two night patrol camps each month where participants camp out on the beach and protect the nests. Please note that this schedule may change at any time.

Typical hatchery tasks include:
  • Cleaning the turtles
  • Preserving turtle eggs by burying in the hatchery area
  • Cleaning the tanks
  • Applying medicine to turtles in need

Cultural Note: Due to cultural norms of Sri Lanka, participants are required to remove any body piercings and cover all visible tattoos while at the project site.
Internet
Internet:  Each volunteer may use up to 5 GB of WiFi in the volunteer house during their stay.
Laundry
Laundry:  Laundry services are available for an additional fee.
Accommodations
Accommodations:  Volunteers will be in shared rooms with bunk beds in a volunteer villa with 3-5 other volunteers. There may be up to 40 volunteers in the house at one time. The villa includes a private garden, a rooftop terrace(with yoga sessions!), a lounge room with sofas, bean bag chairs, books, speakers and a projector. There are ceiling fans as well as floor/table fans in the rooms. Air conditioning is available for an additional fee. Rooms are cleaned twice per week, shared bathrooms are cleaned daily and sheets are changed once per week. Private rooms in a separate house are available for an extra fee. Dewata Beach is just a five-minute walk away! During busier seasons, volunteers may be in alternative, but similar accommodations.
Food:  Three meals per day will be prepared by the main and assistant chef, using local, fresh ingredients. Tropical fruit is available during every meal and there is a salad bar set up during most lunches and dinners. Vegan, nut-free, gluten-free and lactose-free diets can be accommodated. The local team will do their best to accommodate special diets, but notice must be given in advance. Tea, coffee and filtered water are available 24/7.
Please take note of this project's minimum requirements:
  • Minimum age of 17
  • Police clearance
  • Good physical fitness
  • Immunizations (please consult your doctor)
  • Ability to work in a team 
  • Willing to work hard and get your hands dirty
Volunteers can enjoy weekly evening yoga session on the rooftop, night fishing trips, weekly movie nights, monthly bike tours and monthly barbecues! Additional travel adventures are available for an additional fee, and a few recommendations are listed below:

Adventure Tour (Highly Recommended):
Extend your stay in Sri Lanka by participating in a seven-day Adventure Tour! This adventure tour includes a game drive, visits to waterfalls, a long train ride, an overnight stay at a riverside eco lodge, visit to temples, a village walk, visit to a spice grove, a visit to Lion Rock, time in the local market as well as a trip to Negombo Beach!

Additional Recommendations:
  • Elephant safari
  • Rainforest hike
  • Surfing lessons on nearby beaches
  • Whale watching (during the season)
  • Cooking class
  • Fort Galle visit
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