Applying for projects
When considering your project options, take into account the fitness required, your availability, the work conditions, and personal commitments that may impact on your choice.
Confirmation of your booking will be sent to you when you have been accepted for your conservation project. If applying several months in advance, notification of acceptance may not occur until closer to the project, but every effort will be made to notify you in a reasonable time frame.
Some projects may be oversubscribed. Selection criteria will include applicant suitability and then the applicants will go into a ballot. Due to the popularity of volunteer projects we are unable to guarantee that all applicants will be accepted for a project.
Any changes or additional details of the project will be advised.
If applying as a couple or friends, please specify this on your application form.
If you are unable to attend a project, please notify the Volunteer Coordinator as soon as possible. Last minute cancellations will incur a cancellation fee and may lead to project cancellation.
Extreme weather conditions (flooding, extreme weather warning events, etc.) may make it impractical to carry out the project. In such cases, every effort will be made to reschedule it. If this is not possible, we reserve the right to cancel the project. No fees will be charged in this instance.
What to expect
- Most projects provide transport from the nearest DOC office, unless otherwise stated.
- Equipment and tools are generally provided unless otherwise stated.
- Meeting people and enjoying their company is an important part of conservation volunteer projects. Time may be given for recreation and visiting local places of interest.
- Activities are outdoors and require reasonable fitness and self motivation. The Department of Conservation has ultimate discretion of suitability of applicants for projects.
Fitness level guide
- Low – easily walk up to two hours over flat ground
- Medium - comfortably walk with 5 kg pack up to four hours over uneven ground
- High - capable of walking with 10 kg pack up to six hours over uneven ground
- Very high – experienced at walking consecutive days with 10kg pack over steep, rough terrain
What to bring
A full equipment list will be issued prior to the commencement of the project.
Our volunteer goals
- Provide volunteer opportunities for the community to assist in the conservation of New Zealand’s natural, cultural and historic resources.
- Provide opportunities for people to safely experience the natural and historic environments, and engage and grow peoples' sensitivities to those values.
- Provide volunteer opportunities which include knowledge and skill sharing.
- Support and strengthen links, in conservation, between tangata whenua, recreation groups and the community in general, and the Department of Conservation.
- Where appropriate and opportunities present, communicate Maori values and perspectives on the environment.
- Enable conservation tasks that otherwise would not have been done, to be completed through the assistance of volunteers.
- Focus on providing opportunities primarily for local communities, then other New Zealanders and lastly overseas visitors.
All projects are subsidised by the Department of Conservation.
Other volunteer opportunities
- DOC volunteer opportunities
- Join a conservation group in the Coromandel
- New Zealand Trust for Conservation Volunteers website
- Conservation Volunteers New Zealand website