Volunteer Abroad New Zealand: Nature Conservation
As a volunteer in New Zealand, you will act as an advocate for the indigenous endangered animals and help protect the unique flora and fauna.
For this purpose, there are numerous year-round nature conservation projects on both main islands in New Zealand. In small groups you carry out renaturation and maintenance tasks, helping to clean up beaches and taking care of cultural heritage sites in the country.
You will work in regions that remain hidden to most tourists and therefore experience a completely different and exciting side of New Zealand.
- Actively contribute to sustainably conserve New Zealand’s pristine nature
- Work together with volunteers from all over the world
- Get to know different spots of the country in an incomparable way
- Experience the unique flora and fauna from up close
Plan your trip
Included in the programme fee
- Placement in the programme
- Assistance with travel arrangements
- Assistance with selecting travel insurance
- Assistance with booking flights
- Pre-departure information pack
Chrissy, your travel agent for New Zealand
You are interested in joining this adventure? I am happy to help you! From the first steps until the end of the trip – I answer all of your questions and support you throughout your time abroad.
Volunteering in New Zealand
As a volunteer in this project you experience New Zealand’s rich flora and fauna and help protect the country’s natural beauty and conserve unique habitats.
Arrival and orientation in New Zealand
Your start your volunteer work in New Zealand with an information event that takes place Friday at 11 AM in the corresponding office of our partners in Auckland, Wellington, or Punakaiki (via Christchurch). The volunteers are assigned to various projects depending on the current needs. In the seminar, you will learn everything you need to know about the project such as what to expect when you are there, what security precautions need to be taken, and how to behave appropriately at the site. You should make sure to arrive early so that you do not miss this seminar. Afterwards, you can enjoy your first weekend in New Zealand, explore the city, and shake off your jet lag.
Volunteer activities in New Zealand
On Monday morning, you will meet the other members of your group and head off with them to the project site. During the project, you will generally work Monday to Friday from 8 AM to 4 PM. In general, the projects run for one to two weeks, but if the project site is more remote, then you may be staying there for ten days. In this case, you will have several extra days off. The projects end on a Friday afternoon so that you can spend the following weekend any way you want.
In groups of six to ten volunteers, you will carry out small projects in various regions. You'll plant trees in nature reserves and thus help to preserve the habitat of the endangered kiwi or help to maintain hiking trails. In addition, you may be taking part in conducting field studies for projects dedicated to researching endangered species. Cleaning up beaches and taking care of cultural heritage sites in New Zealand may also be part of your responsibilities.
Accommodation as a volunteer in New Zealand
Where you will be accommodated depends on the particular project and its location. You may have a bed in a shared room in a hostel, in a hut, or in a caravan, and in some cases you may be sleeping in a tent. The accommodation in which you will be living with your international team are located in most cases directly on the project site. During your working hours and on the weekends, you will be provided three daily meals that will be prepared by you and the members of your team.
Leisure time during the conservation project
If you decide to take an extended time off between two projects, then we recommend you take a tour around to fully enjoy the fascinating beauty of the country. You can visit some of the countless number of protected natural environments in the national parks and see hot springs, geysers, and glaciers or explore the fjords on the South Island.
“Living simply, taking care of each other, growing together as a team, testing limits. This all gave me so much positive energy, which I do not want to miss.”
“Ich habe meine Zeit in Neuseeland sehr genossen. Es ist ein wunderschönes, interessantes Land.”
“I was able to improve my English, witnessed unique landscapes and a fascinating flora and fauna, which I had never seen before.”
“Three exciting months full of new experiences. Even though it did not go all as it was planned, I had a wonderful time and I learned a lot.”
Punakaiki is a small community on the west coast of New Zealand's South Island with less than 100 inhabitants. It is located between Westport and Greymouth, on the edge of the famous Paparoa National Park.
Rugged rock formations on the coast and dense rainforest in the inland determine the landscape. Punakaiki is particularly famous as it is home to one of the most iconic sights of the region: the fascinating rock formations of the "Pancake Rocks". But also other great natural sites can be admired in this special region of New Zealand.
Purpose of the volunteer project in New Zealand
New Zealand’s natural environment is one of the most unusual on the planet. Due to its isolated position, a large number of endemic (i.e. species which only exist in one region) animal and plant species have developed on the island nation over millions of years. From the flightless kiwi and curious kea to huge elephant seals and cranky penguins, the wildlife has fascinated visitors and residents alike. Primal fern forests and mighty kauri trees, which can be up to 2000 years old, will carry you away into a strange world.
Because New Zealand has no native land mammals, birds have taken up a number of their ecological niches. Flightless birds such as the kakapo parrot or the kiwi play a particularly important role in the ecosystem.
A number of unique bird species are now seriously under threat, particularly since humans brought land mammals like cats, dogs and rats with them when they settled in New Zealand. Anthropogenic (human) pollution, habitat devastation, intensive agriculture and climate change are posing more and more of a risk for sensitive ecosystems.
Wide-ranging environmental monitoring and nature and species conservation measures are therefore essential in order to maintain the natural biodiversity of New Zealand.
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