Volunteer for Wildlife
Most volunteer with wildlife programs focus on the safeguarding and protection of animals that are under severe threat due to the illegal wildlife trade, poaching, pollution or habitat destruction. Volunteers are needed to work with animals at wildlife sanctuaries or rehabilitation centers around the world, while at the same time conduct important research through data collection and surveying or even helping to educate indigenous communities about animal rights.
When you volunteer with animals abroad, you get the chance to interact with wildlife in their natural habitats - allowing you to experience, first hand, the importance of conserving these regions while simultaneously helping to prevent the current decline in certain animal populations.
The African continent is home to a large amount of indigenous - and unfortunately endangered species. These include the majestic African elephant and rhino’s as well as the regal African lion - to name only three. Due to the increased international demand for ivory and the illegal hunting and trade of wild animals, numbers of these magnificent animals continue to drop. Animal sanctuaries throughout the country are playing a vital role in the protection of these endangered animals.
The iconic Amazon Rainforest is home to almost 12 percent of the planet’s species. Located in the heart of South America, this magical location and all its inhabitants are currently under threat due to increased deforestation. Rescue centers scattered throughout the country provide sanctuary to a variety of the animals who have lost their homes and volunteers are always needed to help provide care for them while also educating the local communiti
Parts of the Southeast Asian landscape is also suffering at the hands of humans looking for land and financial gain. The logging and palm oil industries, among others, are responsible for the destruction of countless homes of the indigenous animals of the region. Rehabilitation centers are becoming more and more important in the rescue and rehabilitation of the animals from the region and volunteers are often the glue that holds them together - helping with everything from preparing food and providing love and attention for animals such as Orangutans. read more close
I enjoyed ranger days the most. On these days you were paired with a ranger and got to do everything they did. This included feeding, cleaning, and in some cases even treating the animals. There were so many animals at the park that it was so much to see every day. My favorite part was getting to know each animal and their story. Every animal at the park has a name and is looked after carefully. It was great because you weren’t just standing behind a fence looking at the animal you were in the enclosure handling and helping.
The first three days of the program took place in Sydney, as our coordinator showed the volunteers around Sydney and filled us in on the history and customs in Australia. Along our tour we visited the Sydney Opera House, Botanical Gardens, a couple different museums and took a ferry ride to Darling Harbour.
While I was there, we were working on a new space for Roger the caracal. We also assisted on daily tours of the facility. In between working, there was plenty of free time to spend quality time with the animals of our choice, including cheetahs, caracals, lions, servals, monkeys, and more.
I’ve traveled to farms to work with livestock, injecting, de-horning, pregnancy testing and artificially inseminating. I spent a lot of time in the townships, getting to know the locals – dogs and children! It was refreshing to be in community that valued love and kindness over materialistic items. We dipped the dogs (and many puppies!) for fleas, ticks and mange, de-wormed, vaccinated, and injected antibiotics to treat illnesses and injuries.
At night, the stars and moon were so bright we didn’t need flashlights and the waves glowed yellow from plankton. The next three weeks were filled with hard work during the day (building the hatchery, cleaning the beach, maintaining the land) and beach patrols at night. We collected eggs from and tagged six turtles in my time. We had each weekend off and would travel to nearby beaches. We were given breaks throughout the day and would spend them exercising, relaxing on the beach and playing games.
Hard work pays off, and this doesn’t go unnoticed by the amazing crew. I managed to go onto an exclusive boat trip which had less clients on board, giving me more opportunities to capture some great footage of the sharks who displayed incredible activity, breaching around six times in the space of two hours.
Volunteering with GoEco on the Great White Shark Conservation Program has been a most rewarding experience! Being able to go out on the ocean almost every day, seeing Great Whites 20cms from your face, and helping manage a commercial shark cage diving vessel is possibly the most exciting thing I have ever done!
Most people in Sri Lanka were extremely friendly, and it was ok to use the combination of English and body language to communicate with them. I chose the orientation week as my first week program, and during this period, I visited many interesting places in Kandy, which included the temple of tooth. Kandy is the center of Buddhism; it was an impressive experience to learn the history and culture of this city.
Volunteering at the dog care clinic has been an unforgettable experience and I absolutely recommend the program to anyone considering it. You don’t any special qualifications, experience or veterinary knowledge. Just bring along a love for animals and a desire to lend a paw. I’m sure your time here will be meaningful and you’ll fall in love with the people and animals there just as I did.
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