Associate Conservation Minister Nicky Wagner today paid tribute to the thousands of volunteers in the conservation sector who are playing a vital part to protect our special plants, animals and places.
More than 15,000 people are now participating in Department of Conservation volunteer programmes each year, working an estimated 35,135 work days. This compares with 11,900 volunteers in 2011 and 6,500 in 2006.
"I’d like to take the opportunity during National Volunteer Week to say a big thank you to all conservation volunteers, as volunteering creates an awareness and passion for conservation issues that permeates far beyond the work that DOC does.
"This closely links with DOC’s new strategic direction, which aims to encourage more people to engage with conservation so the whole country benefits," Ms Wagner says.
DOC volunteer Jasmine Chin
Traditionally volunteering at DOC is seen as helping to build tracks, repair huts, plant trees and set traps. But there are also many volunteers without gumboots.
"A good example of volunteering without gumboots is Dunedin’s Jasmine Chin, who has been supporting Hoiho Yellow-eyed penguin conservation from her home by entering data from many years of field research into databases.
More than 20,000 people a year also volunteer on conservation programmes with community groups that DOC works closely with, such as Kiwis for Kiwi, Enviroschools and Forest and Bird.
For more information visit the DOC website.
- 15,000+ volunteers who participate in DOC volunteer programmes
- 35,135 workday equivalents contributed by people volunteering
- 210,810 hours volunteered by individuals
- 595 partnerships run during the year
- 20,000+ conservation volunteers in community groups
The above estimates relate to the past year.