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Canadian Wilderness Volunteer Programme

Canadian Wilderness Volunteer Programme

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

Prices from $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. 

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 $2,545

4 weeks $3,245

6 weeks $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

Flights are not included in our trip costs. However, we have partnered with an experienced and professional team of travel experts to help our volunteers find the best flight deals for their trips with us. This travel specialist operates in the tailor-made, long haul multi-stop travel market, arranging complex airfares and transfers for independent travellers. They provide expertise, security and a vast product range along with a Travel Butler service which is a single point of contact and support whilst you are overseas.

We recommend that you obtain a quote using the following contact details rather than book online, as our partner will offer you the most competitive fares. To receive your quote or to seek any advice for your flights, please contact our dedicated team of travel experts on 0800 082 9994 (or +44 800 082 9994 outside the UK) or email frontier@flightcentre.co.uk .

Visas

For fast, efficient and up-to-date visa advice please contact our recommended visa consultancy partner:

Depending on your destination country and your country of origin, you might require a visa. Please see the appropriate country consular website for details or contact our affiliate visa consultancy service. Please note that your visa will usually start on the date that you enter the destination country regardless of when it was issued. Please check with the relevant embassy or high commission. If you are purchasing your visa or paying entry/exit fees in-country you will probably need to pay in US Dollars. If you have any questions please consult the relevant embassy or high commission. Please check the visa information regularly, as changes often happen without warning.

Insurance

You'll need to buy appropriate travel insurance covering your participation on the project. You won't be able to go without the right travel insurance so double check to avoid disappointment. Please make sure that you're covered for the whole duration of your trip – from the day you leave the UK to the day you return. It's also best to get your travel insurance at the same time as paying the deposit for your project. Depending on your policy, this will cover you for any unexpected cancellations.

Your insurance should include the following:

  • Medical cover, including medical emergencies and medical evacuations (up to USD$3,000,000 / GBP£2,000,000);
  • Personal liability (up to USD$1,500,000 / GBP£1,000,000);
  • Cancellation and curtailment of your trip (up to the value of your project contribution).

If you are going to be scuba diving you should get coverage for scuba diving up to 30m, including hyperbaric therapy treatment (unlimited). You should consider obtaining insurance to cover you for any additional activities which you plan to do during, before, or after your Frontier project. We recommend that you obtain cover for your baggage and personal effects.


LEGAL STATEMENT
Frontier Partner Projects and Frontier group projects are run in partnership with in-country NGOs, small community based organisations, local research institutes, academic organisations and conservation agencies. Project descriptions and information are supplied directly by our partners or field staff and are accurate at time of publishing.

We aim to keep information up to date and accurate, however, the nature of our projects and in particular the fact that they are constantly evolving and developing in response to changing needs means that project activities, travel schedules, tour itineraries and daily timetables can change overnight and without notice.

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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