Conservation Volunteer Projects in Australia and New Zealand

Become a conservation volunteer in locations across Australia and New Zealand.  Volunteers will have the opportunity to carry out tree planting, trail construction, wildlife surveying, invasive species control and a range of other environmental volunteer projects. Volunteer as part of a team and meet new people from across Australia and the world.

You can volunteer in Australia or New Zealand for between 1 week and 12 weeks in duration, and we have places available throughout the year.

Individuals, groups and students are all welcome.

Cost for accommodation, food, equipment, in-country travel and training starts from £430.

Conservation Volunteers in the fieldReforestation volunteer projects in AustraliaWetlands Conservation ProjectsBeach Patrols in New ZealandVolunteer Tree PlantingsPark Conservation ProjectsNew Zealand CoastWildlife ConservationA Team of Volunteers in TaranakiWaterfall in Volunteer Project LocationInvasive Species Removal by VolunteersAustralian Coastline

About the Project

A group of volunteers in Australlia

Volunteer on a range of conservation projects and help to protect, preserve and restore Australian and New Zealand environments.

Volunteers can choose to start from a variety of different starting locations around Australia and New Zealand and normally travel to a different project location every week.

Volunteers work in teams of up to 10 people on projects in urban, regional and remote locations. Team Leaders provide training on-site. Typical Activities include:

• Tree planting
• Walking trail construction
• Wildlife surveys
• Seed collection
• Weed control
• Conservation fencing
• Heritage restoration

Please note that for all of our programmes in both Australia and New Zealand, we’re not able to guarantee any particular project activities as they are dependent on seasonal climate conditions as well as the conservation priorities at the specific time & location you have selected. As such, you will likely be spending your time on a few different activities during your stay, but the list above should just be viewed as an example of the types of projects volunteers may experience during their programme, but not as a guaranteed list.

Volunteers take a walk on New Zealand CoastVolunteers will also receive:

• The opportunity to learn about conservation issues in Australia and New Zealand
• Practical conservation skills training provided as part of each project
• The chance to make a volunteer contribution, earn references and certificates
• Team-based experience – living with up to 10 volunteers from around the world
• Opportunities to visit places tourists don’t normally see, including remote areas
• Certificate of Appreciation upon completing the programme

This project is a great opportunity for people with a love of the outdoors and an interest in the environment to take part as a volunteer on practical conservation projects. Volunteers come from a wide range of backgrounds and no prior skills or experience are required, and volunteer projects are available to suit your availability and particular interests.

These conservation volunteering projects are managed in conjunction with project partners that may include regional councils, national parks, museums, land-care groups, conservation departments and other national conservation agencies in Australia & New Zealand.

Project locations available include:

Volunteers on trail maintenance projects in AustraliaAustralia:

  • Adelaide (South Australia)
  • Brisbane (Queensland)
  • Cairns (Queensland)
  • Darwin (Northern Territory)
  • Hobart (Tasmania)
  • Melbourne (Victoria)
  • Newcastle (New South Wales)
  • Perth (Western Australia)
  • Warrnambool (Victoria)
  • Wollongong (New South Wales)

New Zealand:

  • Auckland (North Island)
  • Christchurch for Punakaiki (South Island)
  • Wellington (North Island)

Dates & Costs

A wild Kangaroo

11th to 25th January 2019
25th January to 8th February 2019
8th to 22nd February 2019
22nd February to 8th March 2019
8th to 22nd March 2019
22nd March to 5th April 2019
5th to 19th April 2019
19th April to 3rd May 2019
3rd to 17th May 2019
17th to 31st May 2019
31st May to 14th June 2019
14th to 28th June 2019
28th June to 12th July 2019
12th to 26th July 2019
26th July to 9th August 2019
9th to 23rd August 2019
23rd August to 6th September 2019
6th to 20th September 2019
20th September to 4th October 2019
4th to 18th October 2019
18th October to 1st November 2019
1st to 15th November 2019
15th to 29th November 2018
29th November to 13th December 2019

Reforestation volunteers in Australia

Please note that you can join on dates other than those specified above, as long as you are volunteering for a minimum of 1 week. You can nominate any Friday throughout the year as your preferred starting date, and you can choose to start your project from a range of locations around Australia or New Zealand. You will need to arrive at the location you have nominated by 11 am on that Friday.

The cost for 1 week is £430, 2 weeks is £680, 3 weeks is £880, 4 weeks is £1090, 5 weeks is £1350, 6 weeks is £1580, and each extra week is £240. Please email the volunteer coordinator for prices of other durations. This covers all food and accommodation costs (including weekends), all in-country travel (once you are at the project meeting point), project support, guidebooks and training. Your airfare to Australia or New Zealand and your transportation to the project start point to and from the airport, travel/medical insurance, visas and personal expenses including laundry are not included in the cost. It is mandatory for you to take out travel and medical insurance for the duration of the project.

Wetland environments in AustraliaFood, Lodging, Requirements & Travel

Accommodation will vary due to the wide variation in the volunteer projects and locations available on the programme. Typical accommodation can include caravans, hostels, shearer's quarters, bunkhouses or camping (volunteers will be supplied with tents).

All meals are provided. Everyone helps with the cooking, cleaning and washing up. Don't worry if you're not a great cook as everyone can do something to help, even if it's just chopping vegetables. Fresh (seasonal) produce, meat and vegetables are used as often as possible although this cannot be guaranteed every day, particularly on remote projects far from shops, so please make allowances. Special diets, such as vegetarian, vegan or food allergies, can be catered for - please remember to let us know when you submit your application.

Conservation volunteers hiking in New ZealandRequirements
You should be aged 18 or over, in good health and reasonably fit, flexible, self-motivated and prepared to take part to the best of your ability. All prospective volunteers should declare any medical conditions, allergies, dietary requirements, disabilities or existing injuries that may affect participation - our staff will discuss these with volunteers in a sensitive and confidential manner. You should be aware that volunteer projects are usually labour-intensive, and take place in both urban and rural areas. Be prepared to participate in all weather conditions. You'll need to bring appropriate clothing for the weather. You will be shown how to use all tools and equipment safely before you start the project and there will always be a Team Leader with first aid training working on the project with you. Any essential safety equipment will be provided, and you will be shown how to use it.

You can select the location where you would like to start your volunteer project from, and we will provide details on getting to your specific meeting point to start your project. You will need to arrive at the location you have nominated by 11 am on a Friday. From here you will travel to different conservation projects throughout the State, Region or Territory that you have chosen. 

Interactive Map & Video

Use the interactive map below to view the available starting locations for this project:


Volunteer Testimonials

Australian coastline

Past volunteer Terry Palmar

I had a wonderful time during my 2 weeks volunteering (at Walka Water Works and then Murray's Run). It was all very much not what I am used in my usual daily routine but I enjoyed it so much, and we were looked after so well! I particularly loved meeting all the other volunteers - such lovely, lovely people, and I hope to stay in touch with some of them! I have some fantastic memories of my time and wouldn't change a single minute of it (even the camping!!).

I managed to see a bit of the rest of Australia during the 10 days after I finished the programme - I walked and walked around Sydney, climbed the Harbour Bridge, flew up to Port Douglas and sailed out to the Reef to do some snorkelling (fantastic!) and had a day trip to the Rainforest (one of my favourite days), then another trip out to the Blue Mountains, so it was a very busy time. I loved it all so much but realised when I left that I hadn't even scratched the surface of this beautiful country. So I hope to come back sometime.

Rainbow appears over reforestation areaPrevious Volunteer Paul Barber describes his time on the project
I spent four weeks working in the Brisbane area during May/June and the weekends were spent in the Volunteer House. During my stay the majority of those staying in the house were either school leavers or were at university. The most common nationality was Korean although the common language used by everyone was English. Food was provided but it was up to individuals or groups to prepare meals.

Each week was spent working in a different place and the maximum group size was ten although is was often slightly less. We used to aim to start work by 8.30am and finish by 3.30pm with plenty of breaks during the day. Some weeks were rather monotonous but others were much more interesting. Some weeks the area was much more scenic than others and there was always time to investigate the area and to enjoy the scenery that was on offer. The accomodation during the week was in a variety of places and food was bought by the team leader and everyone took their turn in helping to cook.

The first week was spent working in a place called Dayboro and we were removing a weed called Cats Claw Creeper. As Dayboro was close to Brisbane we returned to the Volunteer House every night. The second week was spent working and camping on Fraser Island removing invasive weeds and shrubs.

The third week was spent working in an area called Kallangur which was quite close to Brisbane. Accomodation was in a Scout camp at Samford and the work involved planting trees and shrubs to make a Koala corridor.

The fourth week was spent working in an area called Tin Can Bay which is close to Rainbow Beach. The work involved clearing an area at the rear of a school of invasive weeds and shrubs and planting trees and shrubs along a recently cleared pathway close to the bay. Accommodation was in a caravan on a caravan park.

Volunteers making friends in the outbackHow to Join the Project

If you are interested in conservation volunteering in Australia or New Zealand, you will need to fill out the online application form (you can also print it out and send it to us by post) – to secure a placement on the project, please complete and submit the form including your application payment of £180. If for some reason, your application is not accepted, we would reimburse this payment fully. However, for those who are accepted, 15% of the full amount needs to be paid within 14 days of being confirmed on the project, with the remainder (85%) to be paid one month before departure. If you apply with under 4 week's notice, the full payment is due in full on confirmation. Once your place is confirmed on the programme, you will receive pre-departure information with all details on your project, travel info, the Australian/NZ environment, suggested items to bring etc.

Apply Now

Related Projects

Kiwi Conservation Volunteer & Internship Project, New Zealand

Volunteer in New Zealand and help to preserve the native forest and kiwi birds of the Kauri Coast. Explore an undiscovered forest while learning about conservation and wilderness skills.

Skaftafell Wilderness Volunteer Programme in Iceland

Volunteer in Skaftafell National Park in Iceland, and help to maintain the park's natural beauty and hiking trails for visitors.

Elephant Volunteer Project, Thailand

Volunteer at an Elephant Sanctuary and home for old elephants in Mae Chaem, situated in the countryside of Northern Thailand near Chiang Mai. Help to give elephants a chance to live free.