New Zealand: Voluntary work on the green isle

New Zealand – the green island within the Pacific Ocean – a dream destination for everyone who loves nature and is looking for the ultimate outdoor adventure! By participating in a voluntary project with NATUCATE you will not only have the chance to explore New Zealand but also to broaden your horizon and combine your trip with a sustainable project in nature and species conservation.

What’s the benefit from combining your journey with voluntary work? Travelling in general, whether it’s to New Zealand or to another place, consumes resources and everyone who wants to explore the world should be aware of that. Most of the time you will have no choice but to travel by plane as your destination may be in a very remote area or in a very large country so that there is no reasonable way around the generation of greenhouse gasses. Moreover, you will also consume resources at your travel destination as you will do touristic activities, consume goods and produce trash.

By getting involved in some voluntary projects you will have the chance to give something back to the country of your destination. This will not diminish the effect of the resource-consumption but it will contribute to compensation. Whether it is the renaturation of destroyed habitats, the removal of invasive plants, the maintenance of national parks and infrastructure or the protection of endangered animal species – New Zealand’s manifold nature offers plenty of possibilities to contribute actively to nature conservation.

Due to its isolated location, New Zealand’s unique flora and fauna was able to develop in an undisturbed way for millions of years. Flightless birds like the kiwi or the kakapo, curious keas and majestic elephant seals, busy penguins or large groups of whales and dolphins are part of this amazing country as well as characteristic mountain sceneries, deep valleys, long fjords and ancient coniferous forests. In rainforests on south island seldom fern species are growing as well as the kauri tree that can reach an age of up to 2,000 years.

As a conservation volunteer you will mainly support the protection of local endangered animals and plants. For this purpose there are several conservation projects throughout the whole year for groups of 6 to 10 volunteers. You will plant trees in nature reserves, help with the maintenance of trails in national parks or carry out field studies concerning the distribution of endangered animals like the kiwi bird. In project sites near the coast you might also support the cleaning and conservation of beach areas. At other project sites the focus may also lie on the maintenance of places that belong to New Zealand´s cultural heritage.

Besides your active contribution to nature conservation you will also have the chance to broaden your personal horizon and learn to experience something new in an unbiased way. Especially while travelling you will learn that “different” does not always mean “worse” and that even unusual situations may develop into something you can benefit and learn from.

New Zealand as a multicultural country with countless options to experience your own nature adventure offers excellent opportunities to engage in some voluntary work that can contribute to a sustainable enrichment in life.

Author: David Pyka – NATUCATE

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