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Canadian Wilderness Volunteer Programme

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Canadian Wilderness Volunteer Programme

Provide support to registered charitable organisations throughout Canada and assist them with wildlife preservation or environmental conservation tasks.

Prices from US$2,545

As the second largest country in the world, Canada is filled with spectacular scenery and unique natural beauty. The country’s vast wilderness is also home to an array of extraordinary animals such as bears, raccoons and moose. However, despite Canada’s wide open spaces, a 2017 study by WWF showed wildlife populations in Canada to be significantly declining. Action is required to reverse this and prevent further wildlife and habitat loss across the country.

By joining this project, you have the opportunity to get out into the Canadian wilderness and gain hands-on volunteer experience preserving the remarkable natural beauty of some of Canada’s most remote environments. You will work with a registered charitable organization on either a wildlife preservation or environmental conservation project, in order to complete essential and meaningful work to protect nature in Canada.

The environmental conservation volunteering will involve some strenuous physical work, however, as one of a team of volunteers you will work collectively and the rewards will be extremely gratifying.There is a large variety of vital tasks you may undertake, including clearing wilderness areas, repairing rivers and completing surveys, in order to catalogue invasive species.

If working hands-on with the wildlife is more appealing to you, there is also the option to volunteer in animal rehabilitation and to get up close to wildlife such as bears, wolves and eagles. The essential tasks whilst working with the animals may include feeding, enclosure cleaning, collecting data on the behaviour of the animals and promoting conservation to the local community.

PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS

  • Work with Canadian wildlife such as wolves, bears and eagles
  • Conserve wildlife and habitats in the stunning surroundings of the Canadian wilderness
  • Work and live in one of the most beautiful environments on earth
  • Opportunities to see the northern lights!
  • Get to know other volunteers from Canada and around the world

PROJECT REQUIREMENTS

  • Age 18+
  • Minimum 1 month placement

FAST FACTS

Location Canada, Country-wide – choose your preferred destination from Western Canada, Central Canada or French-speaking Canada (French-speaking Canada requires an intermediate level of French)
Activities Choose an environmental conservation or wildlife rehabilitation based project – activities could include:
Feeding animals
Trekking
Recording data
Cleaning enclosures
Providing workshops to the community
clearing trails and site maintenance
Transport Airport pick up service and 1 night hostel stay in the city when you arrive, transport from arrival city to your project accommodation, transport during project
Accommodation Host family, cabin or hostel

WHAT'S INCLUDED

Before you go

Pre-departure support & documentation
Travel & medical advice & documentation
Advice on equipment
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt (UK only)
 

In-country

Airport pickup
Accommodation
Project orientation and training
In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ back-up

QUALIFICATIONS

A variety of qualifications are available on many of our projects. For example, BTEC certificates and diplomas on our Group conservation projects and TEFL certificates and BTECs on most of our teaching projects. You may also be able to gain a CoPE to support your university application. For more information on these qualifications, please see the qualifications section of our website or ask your volunteer advisor.

WHAT DOES THE PROJECT DO?

The aim of the Canadian Wilderness Volunteer Program is to provide support to registered charitable organisations throughout Canada and to assist them with wildlife preservation or environmental conservation tasks. The placements will be located across the country and you will choose your preferred destination (Western Canada, Central Canada or French-speaking Canada) and either a wildlife protection or environmental conservation based project. This will enable you to be matched with your ideal project in your chosen field and destination. We will also take into account your skills and where your vital contributions will have the most impact. Throughout your volunteering experience you will enjoy structured and meaningful work that will contribute to the conservation of nature, whilst also providing you with valuable skills and allowing you to improve your English or French skills.

WHAT WILL I BE DOING?

Instead of choosing a specific organisation you would like to work with, you can chose whether you would like to volunteer with a wildlife protection or an environmental conservation project and you will be allocated the best project for you, based on your skills and interests. Your day to day tasks will depend upon where your placement is located; this could be in a conservation area, indigenous reserve or wildlife preservation site. Tasks also depend on the main focus of the programme at the time of your visit.

If you choose to work with wildlife you could be working for an organisation that is involved in critical animal care, dealing with wildlife that has been severely harmed, often by conflicts with humans or other animals. Other organisations operate rescue projects where you will be involved in the primary care of injured animals and promoting conservation through education and community outreach. Another example program involves monitoring and collecting DNA samples from protected large animals such as mountain goats and grizzly bears. In this project volunteers will learn about animal behaviour and participate in data collection during field surveys.

If you choose to volunteer with an environmental conservation organisation, you could be involved in restoring plant food sources for many animals including mule deer and bighorn sheep after devastating forest fires. You may also be involved in data collection focusing on protecting forests and local species that have experienced major threats such as insect infestations or invasive species. You could also be volunteering with organisations that conserve wild pacific salmon populations, by operating hatcheries and restoring salmon habitats.

These are just some of the examples of volunteer work that you could be involved in. All of the projects provide training over the first few days of the program, with clear instructions on your allocated tasks, ensuring you are confident in your responsibilities. Although some tasks may be laborious, the results will be gratifying and you will have the opportunity to make a real difference!

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I ARRIVE?

There are projects available in Western Canada, Central Canada and French-speaking Canada therefore you will arrive in one of recommended arrival cities: Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto or Montreal.  Please note that French-speaking Canada requires an intermediate level of French and participants must submit their resume and motivation questionnaire in French. 

You will be welcomed at your arrival city airport by your local project representative and transported to hostel accommodation for one night. The next day you will be transported to your project accommodation,  which will be situated on, or near to, your project location.

WHERE WILL I BE STAYING?

During the project you will be provided with accommodation which may involve staying in a hostel, shared cabin or tent when on very remote placements.  You may also be placed in a homestay which is a great chance to meet Canadian locals and get a real feel for the Canadian way of life. Depending on the location of your project, you will either live on-site or be accommodated within a few km of the volunteer site, in which case your transportation will be arranged each day.

WHAT WILL I BE EATING?

Only a few of the wilderness volunteer projects include meals, therefore most of the placements will be self-catered. You will be able to do a weekly shopping trip for your food and can then prepare your meals with fellow volunteers in a shared kitchen facility. Although some placements may be located deep in the wilderness, all accommodations will have a shop within a one hour car journey and your hosts will provide your transportation for these weekly trips. 

Ten Most Recent Reviews for This Project

What a beautiful trip!  | 17 Jun 2018
The experience was fantastic and beyond my expectations. There was brilliant organization in all ...

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ADDITIONAL OPPORTUNITIES

During your free time in the Canadian wilderness there are a lot of activities for you to enjoy and scenery for you to admire. Depending on your project location and the season of your deployment, you will be able to take part in hiking or horseback riding, to attend local markets or campfires and to visit the beach.

COSTS

2 weeks US$2,545

4 weeks US$3,245

6 weeks US$3,745

DEPARTURE DATES

The project runs weekly, beginning every Monday.

DURATION

Your time on the project can be for a minimum of 4 weeks to a maximum of 16 weeks.

AIRPORT INFORMATION

Nearest airport(s): Saskatoon (SK) (YXE), Vancouver (BC) (YVR), Toronto (ON) (YTO), Montreal (QC) (YMQ), Calgary (AB) (YYC)

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

  • Flights
  • Visas
  • Insurance

For detailed information on flights, visas and insurance, click here.


LEGAL STATEMENT

Please read our legal statement regarding the running of NGO projects.

To apply for this placement, click on "Apply Now" below. Fill in the short application form and one of our advisers will then call you back to answer any questions and make sure this is the perfect placement for you. Applying doesn't cost a penny and you won't pay anything until you're completely happy and you're ready to reserve your place.

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