Ecosystems like rainforests, tropical islands and mountainous cloud forests aren’t usually just beyond your doorstep. Here’s your chance to work on conservation projects grounded in science, help change the world ethically, and come face-to-face with some of the world’s rarest animals in remote, thrilling and beautiful habitats.
Are you an animal lover looking to volunteer with animals abroad?
There are many different ways to volunteer to help animals around the world. Some organisations offer volunteer opportunities that involve working with wildlife in their natural habitats. Other organisations offer opportunities to work with domesticated animals in shelters or sanctuaries, such as volunteering at an animal rescue centre.
At GVI, we offer you an animal care volunteer experience with a difference – you’ll join cutting-edge conservation research teams alongside like-minded, passionate people from all over the world on remote research stations in the heart of wildernesses all over the globe:
Our animal care volunteer abroad programs are open to anyone who wants to make a difference while they travel and is interested in animal welfare and conservation. Animal care volunteers could be:
GVI offers animal care volunteering programs in the following locations:
This varies from project to project. Some examples of animal care activities you may be involved include:
Animal care volunteering offers a range of benefits, both for the animals you’ll be working with and for yourself. Some of the benefits include:
All of our projects are led by local conservation organisations, governments or NGOs. Project needs and goals are based on objectives as determined by these partner organisations:
And of course, you’ll be joined by passionate animal lovers and animal care volunteers from around the world. These people will become the friends you think of as family, and have been brought together by a shared mission and values: to live a wilder life. And to help change the world.
We offer animal care volunteer programs focused on sea turtles in two locations:
Our project work focuses on four species of sea turtles:
Our sea turtle animal care and research efforts centre around studying the nesting success and habits of adult turtles, including collecting and collating information such as tag numbers, carapace (shell) measurements, and number of eggs laid. You will also carry out nest evacuations to measure hatching success rates.
Leaving behind their lives in the tourism industry, these gentle giants now live a wilder life in Chiang Mai Province in Northern Thailand, an area famous for its traditional elephant-keeping communities. Observe the elephants in their natural habitat and learn about elephant history, behaviour, training, biology and social interactions directly from the people who have cared for and worked alongside these beautiful animals for centuries.
Travel with us to some of the world’s most extraordinary and vulnerable habitats, where you can experience every kind of terrain – from tall jungle peaks to colourful coral reefs and every summit, shore and isle in between.
We offer animal volunteer opportunities in the following locations:
Thailand is an abundant tropical territory home to thousands of species of mammals, fish, reptiles and insects. If you join a GVI animal care volunteer program in Thailand, either one of the following locations will become your office:
Volunteers will learn about the biology and ecological importance of sea turtle species, as well as gain insights into what threatens their survival. In particular, participants will assist our local partner – the National Commission for the Natural Protected Areas (CONANP) – with their sea turtle nesting and hatching monitoring programs, help in photo identification of sea turtles in the Ojo de Agua snorkelling site, and help develop and implement conservation education programs in the local community.
Animal volunteers work on conservation projects that are dedicated to the preservation of a single animal species and its habitat. One of the most striking features of an animal care internship is that it provides a real-life demonstration of how animals, environments and human beings can – and do – interact positively within an ecosystem.
Volunteering to work with animals is an incredible opportunity to make a difference, learn new skills, and have fun while doing it. On one of GVI’s animal care programs, you’ll be playing an important role in helping protect some of Earth’s most treasured species, provide hands-on care in animal shelters and support locally-led wildlife conservation efforts. You’ll also have the opportunity to learn about animal behaviour and conservation techniques from experts.
Yes. GVI has a very strict and robust ethical animal handling policy on all our animal volunteer programs and research projects, which is constantly monitored and updated. You can read more about it here.
Simple! GVI’s animal care programs make it the easiest thing in the world to simultaneously volunteer with animals in need of care and rehabilitation and travel to some of its most beautiful locations.
It’s not always essential to interact with wild animals to contribute to their conservation. But in some cases, the benefits of interacting with wild animals, under the supervision of experts, outweighs the risks. All of our international animal care internships only allow for interactions that are essential to the well-being of the animals involved.
If you’re working with a reputable and ethical animal care organisation you can rest assured that you’ll be taking part in work that won’t put you at risk of being injured by a wild animal. All of GVI’s local staff and partners have expertise in the field and will supervise you in a way that is safe, while still allowing you to gain valuable experience. GVI also has a strict stance on animal interaction that is applied to every animal care internship we run.