Volunteer for wildlife
Can you volunteer to help wildlife on your patch?
We have over 1,000 volunteers helping wildlife. Volunteering with us means joining a network of like-minded people helping to protect wildlife in Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire and ensure a Wilder Future for all of us. Please see the relevant pages below for each county to see which work party activities are currently under way.
Whether you can spare a few hours or a full day, volunteering is a chance to make a real difference to local wildlife, while learning useful skills, making new friends and increasing your knowledge of wildlife conservation. The time you give makes a huge difference.
If you want to apply to be a volunteer, but you're not sure what the best role would be, contact us and we will get in touch as soon as we can.
Search our database of opportunities or explore by category
We offer Career Placements in the form of Voluntary Officer (VO) roles. These placements are aimed at people looking for an in-depth introduction to conservation or environmental education and a high percentage of VOs have gone on to jobs in the conservation sector.
Placements are offered for up to a year in our Reserves and Wider Countryside Teams and are designed to offer valuable hands-on experience in practical skills and related office work through volunteering in our teams across the three counties, alongside the opportunity to attend any in-house training and externally certificated courses that are essential to your volunteering role, such as first aid, brushcutter and chainsaw operation.
Work Experience for under 18s
During the summer holidays (not at other times) we run work experience opportunities in the Nene Wetlands (Northamptonshire) and the Cambourne (Cambridgeshire) areas. These are aimed at young people who can demonstrate a passion for local wildlife and environmental issues, and are filled via an application process. These placements are with our Communities and Education Team but also include an aspect of practical work. Priority is given to local young people already known to the Wildlife Trust BCN, often through Youth Ranger involvement.
Unfortunately, work experience cannot be offered at other times.
Young People's Forum
Aged 13-24? Concerned about climate change, biodiversity loss, and local wildlife? Interested in supporting other young people to take action? Have you been inspired by young activists like Greta Thunberg and want to play your part locally in the fight for our planet?
We are looking for passionate volunteers just like you to join our Young People’s Forum.
Find a local group near you, for an opportunity to discover, enjoy and protect wildlife through guided walks, illustrated talks and meetings. Many groups provide practical help to the Trust's conservation teams at nature reserves. Some spread the word about wildlife and the Trust in local magazines and host fundraising events. All of them encourage new people to get involved.
What is a volunteer?
The term volunteer means slightly different things to different people. At the Wildlife Trust we mean any person who freely chooses to carry out a task or role that we have specifically agreed for them to do, which contributes to the aims and objectives of the Trust, and for which they do not receive any financial or material reward.
What do volunteers do?
There are lots of ways that you can volunteer for WTBCN – whether you want to help with managing our nature reserves or monitoring wildlife, helping children and young people connect with wildlife, or help out in one of our offices. In whatever way you choose to help us, you will receive a warm welcome from our staff and other volunteers who will all be keen to make you feel part of our team.
Who can volunteer?
Anyone! We’re wild about inclusion and want our staff and volunteers to be as diverse as wildlife. As an inclusive organisation we want our staff and volunteers to better reflect the communities in which we live and work. We actively encourage applications from people of all backgrounds, identities and cultures. We believe that diverse staff and volunteers will help us create our vision of ‘people close to nature, with land and seas rich in wildlife.’ Our volunteers are of all ages and backgrounds. If you’re interested in wildlife and would like to help, please get in touch!
Do volunteers have to be members?
Some people give donations of money or join the Trust as members; some people offer their time as volunteers. Whichever you do, we are extremely grateful. Being a member of the Wildlife Trust does have additional benefits including discounted tickets for our events, quarterly member’s magazine and more.
Do you need prior experience to become a volunteer?
In a word, no! We encourage people from all walks of life, with a variety of life experiences to become involved. Some roles require specific skills or experience but most allow you to learn as you go along, sometimes after receiving appropriate training. You will always be fully briefed about your role and the tasks you will be involved in. We will make training available as and when it is needed by a volunteer in order for them to undertake their role or enhance their skills relevant to their volunteering.