Program Details

  • Program Type: Volunteer
  • Location: Fiji Islands
  • Starting Price: EUR 2,800.00
Fiji Islands

Contribute to national efforts to conserve Fiji’s delicate coral reefs and marine ecosystems.

 
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Travel to the clear blue waters of the South Pacific Ocean, learn or improve your diving in one of the world’s most beautiful tropical countries and discover an incredible underwater environment.

Join an international team of volunteers on this marine conservation expedition which focuses on the collection of important marine inventory data collected on underwater research dives. This research is then made available to local communities and organisations to help better inform management decision making. The project is geared at providing long term benefits to the local communities through strategies designed to help guarantee food security for future generations.

Please note, this program offers durations up to 24 weeks. Speak to your Country Expert for more details of extending your stay in-country.

Highlights Include

Learning new scuba diving skills, conducting underwater surveys in the warm, turquoise waters of the Pacific, spending time getting to know the local community and their traditional villages, teaching children about environmental conservation during weekly school visits, assisting in the creation of coral farms, discover a myriad of fascinating marine creatures to study, enjoy island hopping, stunning remote island locations, scuba diving, snorkelling, traditional ceremonies, idyllic traditional Fijian villages, white beaches, climbing volcanic mountains, enjoying breathtaking scenery, cave swimming, cultural immersion in the Fijian way of life, learning to speak Fijian.

Project Details

The following research priorities have been identified:

  • Data collection on targeted fish species
  • Habitat mapping for coral reefs and mangrove (Coral Reef and Mangrove Habitat mapping)
  • Development of an environmental education and awareness program for local schools and communities.
  • Development of terrestrial and marine environmental best practice on Caqalai Island

How this project makes a difference

The communities with which we work do not have access to the necessary resources to carry out regular data collection in their fishing grounds and there has been a significant detriment to coral and fish stocks due to natural disaster events and unsustainable fishing practice.

Data collected on our volunteer powered surveys is presented to the local community land owners along with alternative livelihood methods and management strategies to help local stakeholders to make informed decisions with regards to their vital marine resources and long term food security.

Volunteers camp

Our volunteering programs are based in the remote Yasawa Island group, consisting of a chain of 20 ancient volcanic islands.  The resort is situated between two beaches at spectacular Drawaqa Island. One of the beaches overlooks a breathtaking lagoon boasting a large channel formed by coral gardens where majestic manta rays come to feed. After all we want to push how amazing base is as an experience on top of the volunteering experience.

Rooms & Meals

Set amongst mature trees, just a few steps from the beach, are the Standard Double/Twin Bures and Dorms with shared bathrooms and facilities. Safari-tent-style Deluxe Bures with ensuite bathrooms are also available as an upgrade. All rooms are serviced daily. Bed linen is provided however, you will need to bring all towels and toiletries. There is a basic laundry service available for a small fee.  Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included in your program cost. Meals are a social scene, with both volunteers and resort guests dining in a communal setting.

Weekends at your leisure

Each program begins and ends on a Saturday, with volunteer work carried out Monday to Friday. Saturday and Sunday are enjoyed at your leisure. Relaxation is big in Fiji, but if you’re in the mood there are incredible activities available throughout the Yasawas including some of the world’s best snorkelling and diving, hiking, local villages to visit, cultural activities, hand-line fishing, visits to caves… even swimming with manta rays depending on the season! Sunday is typically a ‘day of rest’ in Fiji so supervised activities are limited, but volunteers usually choose to chill on the beach...

Where your money goes

The fee for the volunteer programs covers your accommodation, transfers, meals and project costs. The Trust also raises funds for village projects through donations made by each volunteer as well as donations from partner companies, organisations and individuals. It remains a key principle of the Trust that the majority of the funds raised will be spent on the delivery of specific field projects. The small percentage that does not go directly to these projects instead goes towards administration costs, such as the recruitment of new volunteers. It is important that our efforts remain cost neutral. 

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Testimonials

  • Clare Curtis - Australie

    "Thank you for such an awesome experience in Fiji, I have come back reenergised and have changed the course of my medical career – I will be taking next year off to work in the developing world. Thank you all for the inspiring and profound impact you had on my person and my career. I feel that this decision is the beginning of something truly extraordinary!"

Included

  • Pre-departure support and discounted services 24-hour emergency phone
  • Airport pick-up (unless otherwise stated)
  • Long term experienced staff
  • Welcome meeting
  • Location orientation
  • All necessary project training by experienced staff
  • All necessary project equipment and materials
  • 24-hour in-country support

Not Included

  • Flights
  • Medical and travel insurance
  • Visa
  • Activities & excursions
  • Personal spendings
  • Terms and conditions for volunteers

  • Up to date CV/ resume
  • Copy of return flight itinerary
  • Police clearance
  • Basic level of English; understanding and speaking
  • Acceptance subject to availability of position

Payment & Cancellation

The non-refundable deposit payment is due within 48 hours of notice of acceptance onto the program. Deposits are currently €300(or equivalent) or €900 (or equivalent) for Programs costing €5000 (or equivalent) or more, or for Programs with a duration of 90 days or more.

For Programs with a deposit of €300 or equivalent 50% of the balance will be due 16 weeks before departure and the outstanding balance must be paid by the Participant no later than 10 weeks prior to departure. For Programs with a deposit of €900 or equivalent 50% of the balance will be due 20 weeks before departure and the outstanding balance must be paid by the Participant no later than 12 weeks prior to departure.

For Programs with a deposit of €300 or equivalent the Participant will be entitled to cancel at any time up until 16 weeks before departure. For Programs with a deposit of €900 or equivalent , the Participant will be entitled to cancel at any time up until 20 weeks before departure. In the event of timely cancellation, the Participant shall not be entitled to a refund of the deposit, but will be entitled to a refund of any other monies paid. All refunds are subject to an administration fee of €15, or equivalent. In the event of cancellation after the deadlines above, the Participant shall not be entitled to a refund of any monies paid.

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Our team worked closely with local village chiefs and communities to ensure they would not displace the islanders’ way of life, and to make sure the changes they brought to the Yasawas would be beneficial, not detrimental, to the locals. Very quickly, it became obvious that in reality, the villagers live far from the ‘paradise’ that first meets the eye. In fact, the villagers struggle from day to day with immense shortages of clean drinking water, little to no health services or facilities, poor nutrition, a lack of educational support and supplies, inadequate power and no sustainable way of life for the future.

The Trust aims to improve the provision of basic needs and amenities for villages throughout the Yasawa Islands. It seeks to do this both through direct aid and by acting as a facilitator, bringing those who can help together with the landowners and residents.

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