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As a volunteer, you will be working on nearby islands and coastal reefs around the base. The expedition focuses on data collection through underwater research dives; the results of which will provide long-term benefits for local communities and environmental initiatives. Work with local coordinators to guarantee the community's ability to better manage and conserve their natural resources.

During the expedition, volunteers will improve their diving skills and assist in the creation of a network of Marine Protected Areas, while discovering an abundance of unique marine creatures. The expedition also focuses on community education and is a great way to discover the indigenous culture. Volunteers will partake in weekly school visits where they will teach local children about environmental conservation and also have a chance to get to know the community and their traditional villages.

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Location of the Project:  Caqalai Island, Fiji
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Project length:  4, 8, 12, 16, 20 or 24 weeks
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Arrival Airport:  Nadi International Airport
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Volunteer Work:  Diving, research, and local education initiatives
Age:  18 - 70
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Number of Volunteers:  Up to 24 international volunteers at the base camp
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Important Note:  Equipment: all necessary project equipment and training are provided upon arrival. There is also a kit list available post registration which will outline all the essentials that volunteers will need.

What's Included

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Accommodations:  Mixed dormitories
Food:  Ingredients provided for cooking
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Airport Transfers:  Airport drop-off provided upon completion of the program
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Support:  Local in-country team and 24hr emergency support

What's not Included

Flights, personal kit, travel health insurance, additional drinks and gratuities, extra local excursions, International and domestic airport taxes, transportation from airport to project on arrival, visas (less than 3 months $105 USD, more than 3 months 364 USD)

Fiji is a stunning Melanesian country that lies in the South Pacific Ocean, just 2,000km from New Zealand’s North Island. Surrounded by the crystal blue warm pacific, the islands of Fiji were formed from volcanic activity, creating a majestic landscape and coral reef that make it a prime location for divers, volunteers, and Eco travel connoisseurs alike. The project itself is located on Caqalai Island in the Lomaiviti group. Here you will find white sand beaches that lead to volcanic mountainous landscapes and crystal clear lagoons, making it a stunning location for any expedition.

The expedition begins with an initial training phase involving snorkeling and dive point outs with the professional staff. During this time volunteers will learn to identify locally targeted fish species as well as benthic coral and invertebrate.

Surveys are conducted twice a day, four days a week. The expedition consists of early morning starts so as to make the best of daylight hours, with a late finish of data entry and equipment preparations for the next day.  The fifth day of the week is reserved for fun diving expeditions in the morning with the afternoon to relax and enjoy a barbecue.  Weekends are mostly free for volunteers to either rest or explore the local area. 

Key volunteer contributions:

  • Data collection on targeted fish species
  • Coral reef and mangrove habitat mapping
  • Environmental awareness and educational program development for local schools

Accommodations
Accommodations:  Shared mixed huts with shared bathroom facilities at field station. Rain water available for cooking, drinking, and washing.
Food:  Ingredients provided, volunteers take turns to prepare meals.

Please take note of the project's minimum requirements:

  • Minimum age 18 years old
  • Criminal background check (must be officially translated into English)
  • Must be PADI Open Water Certified for the 4 week program prior to arriving (not necessary for those staying 8 or 12 weeks, as this can be included in the program)
  • Willing to work hard
  • Passion for marine conservation
  • Good level of physical fitness
The majority of the expedition is spent Scuba Diving, the pre-requisites for this are as follows:
  • 4 weeks: Volunteers must already have a PADI open water, or equivalent
  • 8-12 weeks: Training for PADI certification provided, after which volunteers will become a PADI Advanced Diver. 

The stunning islands of Fiji offer many fantastic activities to do in your spare time.  These include: climbing volcanic mountains, cave swimming, witnessing breathtaking landscapes from white sand beaches to beautiful rivers and water falls, discovering the unique indigenous culture, learning to speak Fijian, and many more. 

Program Add-Ons:  
Take your volunteering experience one step further!  

  • Through the Internship Certification Program, you’ll have a personal mentor who will help you develop leadership skills, routinely assess your progress and provide a professional reference upon completion of the program. 
  • Take part in the Biological Survey Techniques Course for in-depth training that will allow you to effectively plan and execute your own field surveys in the future.
  • You can never be too prepared. Join the EFR Training and get certified in First Aid and CPR for adults and children.
  • Get your PADI Rescue Diver Certification and further your diving knowledge. To take part in this course you must have your EFR certification.
Please note that there is an additional cost for these programs.

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