Wildlife Conservation Volunteers Are On The Rise - Make Sure Your Park Volunteer Program Is Organized! | Track It Forward

Wildlife Conservation Volunteers Are On The Rise - Make Sure Your Park Volunteer Program Is Organized!

Written by Kasey Murphy

Wildlife conservation is something many people have always cared about, but recently, it has had a spike of volunteers interested in helping out with specifically wildlife conservation! 

According to a study done, 40% of Americans feel they need to start paying more attention to wildlife conservation. And, around 5% of volunteers want to focus on environmental issues - which is definitely looped under conservation volunteers! 

Most national parks or state park programs might have volunteers that help with a multitude of activities, but they also might have volunteers in groups or committees that help different areas of the parks. 

If conservation volunteers don’t already exist in your national park volunteer program, we think that it might be time to add a wildlife conservation volunteer opportunity for your volunteers! It could even bring more volunteers into your program, or just engage current volunteers a bit more! Both of these are good for any volunteer program, so why not give it a try! 

Ideas For Wildlife Conservation Volunteers 
Raise Money For A Nearby Wildlife Conservation Effort 
Inspect Park Areas For News Signs Of Life - Wildlife Conservation For Baby Animals
Log Abnormalities In A Park Or Walking Path 
Clean Out Conservation Areas / Mark Off

What Can Wildlife Conservation Volunteers Do? 

Like most volunteer programs, conservation volunteers can help raise money and awareness for research or tools needed in a national park or wildlife setting. One of the most popular ways for wildlife conservation volunteers to help is to fundraise and create traction for a conservation project within an area!

For example, raising money and awareness for a dying breed of plants or animals might bring new resources and new research partners to the park to investigate and attempt to conserve the land for these plants and animals. 

Volunteers could also do entry-level research themselves. This could be on different types of wildlife conservation that might need to take place within a park, that other volunteers and administration are not aware of! 

In addition, observation conservation volunteers are those who observe changes and potential issues within a national park environment with the wildlife or any areas that are trying to be conserved. 

For conservation areas, volunteers can build a shelter for those wishing to see the area, as well as tape off where no human should go if it is near a footpath! 

In addition to this, conservation volunteers can also collect trash or misplaces items in an area around the park to help conserve wildlife.

How Can I Incorporate Conservation Volunteers Into My Park Volunteer Program?

Whether you want to offer wildlife conservation volunteerism as an option to bring in more volunteers or to help current volunteers feel more involved in your park or land management - it is good to be organized with how you bring them on and continue to monitor them. 

Here is our advice for managing conservation volunteers: 

1. Pick A Few Projects You Might Want To Do

Start with figuring out what could potentially be in your wheelhouse or a project or two that you are even capable of providing to volunteers. It is important to know what you are going to do in wildlife conservation before getting volunteers on board!

2. Outline How You Can Have Volunteers Do These Projects 

Then, create an outline of the processes you are going to need to do and change for these projects to happen. Do you need to get approval? Will you need tools to help you and conservation volunteers with your project?

3. Decide If You Need To Create A Committee Or Choose Leaders For Conservation Volunteers 

Figure out how the conservation projects and volunteers will be managed. If you have a large volunteer base and volunteer program with leaders - your wildlife conservation projects and conservation volunteers should follow suit. If you have a smaller volunteer base where volunteers pick and choose their department or activity, then you can probably just stick to that!

4. Let Current Park Volunteers Know About New Conservation Projects or Committees 

Current Volunteers should always be made aware of new volunteer opportunities. While they might not specialize or have skills in wildlife conservation, they might be interested in becoming a conservation volunteer. And, since they know the park already - they would be great to have!

5. Start Advertising Conservation Volunteers Wanted To The Community & Online 

After volunteers have gotten the chance to sign up as a conservation volunteer, then its time to recruit more interested volunteers, and hopefully you’ll find some with skills that go hand in hand with creating and researching wildlife conservation.

6. Create A Section Specifically For Conservation Volunteers To Track Time & Analyze Impact 

You’ll want to analyze how your wildlife conservation project and conservation volunteers are doing for your park and program. You should track their hours along with the goals and outlines you had thought of when you started the conservation project. 

This is easy to do with a tool that has sections that volunteers can log their hours under, and reports that can be pulled automatically.

7. Introduce More Projects In As Many Locations As Possible!

As interest and awareness for wildlife conservation grow, volunteers will be more excited to do more work, and they will want to reach out and help wildlife conservation projects everywhere. You can help supplement this, by providing wildlife conservation projects for your newfound conservation volunteers!