Conservation Volunteering in Australia
Step off the well beaten tourist track and into the heart of some of Australia’s most beautiful land and seascapes. Use your gap year or career break in Australia to immerse yourself in this rewarding volunteer programme designed to preserve some of Australia’s most impressive natural wonders. Help conserve the land around the famous red centre, or head to some of the countries most beautiful beaches to take part in community volunteering.
Help preserve Australia’s iconic scenery and beauty
Australia is a traveller’s mecca, attracting people from all over the world, it is a must visit destination for many. Australia’s diversity is not to be underestimated boasting deserts, coral reefs, snow covered mountains, sparkling coastlines and vibrant cities. A perfect place to take part in your own Aussie Adventure!
The impact that tourism has on Australia is huge. Combined with climate change, pollution, agriculture and urban development, much of the beauty that travellers come to Australia to see is diminishing year on year. In an attempt to curb this trend, Oyster sends volunteers to conservation projects around the country. Along with a group of other volunteers you will step off the beaten path to places that most tourists don’t see.
These conservation projects take place across the country, starting in one of a number of cities across Australia. Depending on where you decide to do the project, you will take part in projects promoting the conservation of flaura and forna, wildlife, parks, coastlines and waterways.
What will I be doing?
This project can take you deep into parts of Australia that you will not have seen before. The range of conservation issues that you will be tackling are wide and varied: from planting trees to restoring boardwalks, from building fences to wildlife habitat restoration.
The conservation trip usually lasts from 4 to 12 weeks. There are also 2 and 3 week long opportunities available for those with less time, although 4 weeks is very much encouraged.
The individual projects that you are helping on will usually last a week or two, giving you the opportunity to help with more than one aspect of conservation. In essence, this means you’ll experience at least two different projects with varying types of conservation work when staying for 4 weeks.
You don’t need to have any experience or previous qualifications to join the project, just a passion for environment and nature and an enthusiasm to help out. You’ll make some great friends whilst you are abroad and will be spend a significant amount of time with them.
Depending on your arrival city and the conservation need the type of projects that you will be involved with will vary. There are 10 gateway cities spread around Australia- the whole of Europe could fit inside Australia’s landmass, so that gives you an idea of how different the landscape will be between each gateway!
Here are some ideas of where you could start, and what you could be doing there!
- Around Sydney and New South Wales: The region of New South Wales boasts over 600 parks and reserves, glorious beaches, vibrant cities and deep Outback terrain. Click here for more information.
- Western Australia: Western Australia’s capital, Perth, gets the most sunshine of any capital city Down Under. The region boasts 12,000km of coastline as well as national parks and Outback. Click here for more information.
- Melbourne and Victoria: home of the Great Ocean Road, boasting the most famed coastline in the whole of Australia. Get involved in landcare projects, habitat restoration and even urban projects in Melbourne. Click here for more information.
- Queensland and the Sunshine Coast: Queensland is known for its beautiful beaches, dramatic coastlines, rainforests, Fraser Island and the great city of Brisbane. Click here for more information.
- Northern Territory: The northern reaches of Australia is home to vast areas of red desert, in their midst the famous Ayers Rock. Click here for more information.
- Adelaide and Southern Australia: Southern Australia is the largest, driest state in the driest inhabited country in the world! The vast swathes of outback are home to fascinating creatures, from wombats to wallabies. Click here for more information.
- Tasmania: Australia’s only island state is home to the endangered Tasmanian devil. Rich cultural and artistic heritage, coupled with beautiful beaches, makes this island a great volunteer location. Click here for more information.
Accommodation and Food
Accommodation is provided during your time on the project. The type of accommodation varies from project to project. Often volunteers stay in volunteer houses or hostels but you could be staying in caravans, shearers’ quarters, bunkhouses or even camping (tents will be provided). You will need to take a sleeping bag and sleeping mat and should be prepared to share a room.
Food is also included; you help with the preparation of meals and cleaning dishes as part of the group and any other household duties that need to be done. This is a fun way of getting involved in the group and is a popular part of the day.
When should I book?
Whilst late-availability is possible, we would advise booking as soon as you can to guarantee your ideal dates. Our projects are very popular and spaces can fill up several months in advance, especially for the months of June to September.
- Make a real difference as you contribute to valuable conservation projects so that future generations can continue to enjoy this beautiful country.
- Step off the beaten track and discover some of Australia’s hidden gems
- Get back to the wild, and enjoy the simple and slow pace of life outdoors.
- Start your projects in one of Australia’s dynamic and beautiful cities, so that you can enjoy the best of both town and country.
- Get to know a group of like-minded people from around the world, some of whom might become friends for life!
Whyshould I do this?
Taking part in this conservation project not only means that you get to see one of the most beautiful countries in the world, it also allows you to get involved in something very worthwhile. Covering an area of land that is larger than Western Europe and providing a home to some very rare animals, there is a huge amount of conservation volunteering work to be done in Australia.
Seeing Australia from the perspective of someone living here is unforgettable. At the end of it you will come out with an appreciation of conservation, wildlife and the beauty of Australia that will last with you for a lifetime.
The projects start from central offices in each gateway city. Volunteers meet their group every Friday of the year (except at Christmas). You will receive an orientation presentation in your gateway office before being transported out to your first project. You usually have the weekend free with your fellow volunteers before you start the project work.
Most volunteers fly in to their chosen start project city a couple of days before the project starts. This means you can get over your jet lag, explore the city and get used to the temperature difference!
Brett is an experienced traveller, having backpacked and worked in Europe as well as in many remote locations around Australia. Before joining the conservation volunteering team Brett worked at locations such as Uluru (Ayers Rock), South Stradbroke Island in Queensland and Pemberton in the south west region of Western Australia. He knows the country pretty well! He has even volunteered on many of the conservation projects to get to know them personally- some of his favourites being in Victoria and Canberra. He has managed many volunteers in his role, and looks forward to getting your trip to Australia off to a flying start!
What is provided
- Before booking: a conversation either on the phone or in person to discuss the project, answer any questions that you might have and find out more about you.
- Access to your personal ‘My Oyster’ account – our online portal where you can find out much more about the programme and manage your booking.
- Pre-departure briefing.
- Advice on obtaining a visa.
- Comprehensive in-country orientation.
- Help and advice from our UK office before departure and whilst in Australia.
- Comprehensive support and advice from our reps whilst in-country.
- Accommodation whilst on the project – including weekends
- Food whilst on the project- including weekends
- Project related transport costs once the project starts.
- A wildlife guide book and/or birds guidebook
- Project and safety training.
- Oyster Worldwide volunteer t-shirt.
- Oyster luggage tag.
- Certificate of Appreciation at conclusion of programme
On your return:
- Welcome home pack.
- Certificate of Recognition (on request).
- References (on request).
What do I need
- A passport valid for the duration of your stay.
- Spending money.
- You must be eligible for a tourist visa.
- National Insurance Card or NHS card.
- Work clothes.
- Your travel costs to one of our partner’s gateway offices.
- A flight into Australia – please do not book this until you have accepted a place.
- Insurance – we can introduce you to a policy.