Conservation work during your Career Break or Sabbatical leave takes on many different faces throughout the world. Some conservationists and charities work to protect animals, plants and their habitats. Others deal strictly with resource conservation, such as energy and water. There are also multidisciplinary conservation organisations, dealing with an assortment of species and habitats. Whatever the area, volunteering with conservation projects and organisations is a worthy way to spend part of your career break or sabbatical.
All have one thing in common, however, and that is the fact that good, hard-working, caring people are desperately needed to volunteer to ensure that these charities and their different projects are seen to fruition. Can you think of a better way to spend time during your Career Break or Sabbatical leave?
If you are a conservationist at heart and wish to give your time and/or money to a worthy cause, here is some information you should know about the subject.
Conservation Organisations and where They Help
Whether you’re seeking to volunteer for a conservation organisation at home or abroad, the good news is that there are many reputable charities to work with. Although there are only a few top-rated charities listed below, remember to research different conservation causes and projects to find the best organisations in operation.
African Wildlife Foundation: The African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) is one of the best-rated conservation organisations on the planet. Founded in 1961 with the purpose of training African citizens to maintain game preserves, the foundation has branched out and now focuses on education and development amongst the nine African heartlands. They are a grossly underfunded charity, operating with less than 20 million per year. Even still, the charity does tremendous work in the Congo, Limpopo, Kilimanjaro, and other reigions.
Marine Conservation Society: As the UK’s premier sea conservation charity, the MCS does fantastic work while remaining in the background, so to speak. Marine life and habitats unfortunately play second fiddle to dry land, but with the changing climate, the seas bear the brunt of brutal and speedy changes. The MCS does well to replenish fish stocks, to clean pollution, and to help with beaches and especially with clean bathing and drinking water with rivers that run into the sea. They tackle very difficult jobs and remain underappreciated for their efforts.
Greenpeace: One of the biggest names in charities across the globe, Greenpeace has offices in over forty countries and continuously strives to reverse global warming, to stop deforestation, and to stop commercial whaling and nuclear proliferation, amongst other notable causes. Since the 1970s, Greenpeace has operated wholly independent of government, and while they do still receive some public funding, they rely mostly on private donations and the hard work of determined volunteers.
World Land Trust: The World Land Trust (WLT) is a UK-based conservation charity founded in 1989 and working to conserve plants, animals and natural habitats within the UK and well beyond. The WLT works similarly to the Nature Conservancy, in that they make use of land trusts and education and training to help land stewards in bad areas reverse damaging trends. Apart from helping to preserve areas in the UK, the WLT has current projects in Ecuador, Brazil, the Grasslands of Kenya, in Patagonia, and in other locations around the globe.
Understanding the Field
One thing you must understand before seeking to connect with any charity is that volunteering with conservation organisations & projects is an incredibly broad topic. Conservation deals with many specific areas, and thus requires very specific knowledge. Some projects and areas conservation charities help with:
• Reversing global warming
• Healing coral reef habitats
• Cleaning pollution in waterways and in bodies of water
• Preserving land habitats; i.e. plant and animal life
• Assisting animal and plant populations
• Stopping deforestation
• Training and educating native peoples
• Replenishing natural animal stocks
• Implanting green energy
• Cleaning and conserving drinking water
The different areas listed above are only the tip of the iceberg. There are literally hundreds, if not thousands, of different areas of focus in conservation.
The charities listed above, and countless others just like them all need your help. If you are looking to volunteer for a conservation project, please take this responsibility seriously and choose the right project, the right charity, and be ready to give what you can for the cause.
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