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Atoll Volunteers

Marine Conservation

Naifaru, Maldives

Rehabilitate and release turtles that have been rescued from the illegal pet trade, while educating Maldives' community about environmental awareness.

Details

This program is a great chance to get involved in marine conservation and work closely with the amazing sea turtles.  Sea turtles are brought to the marine centre after being kept as pets, these turtles will then be rehabilitated and kept in the centre until they are ready to be released.  The program is run by our two resident marine biologists, allowing you to learn from and work with other ocean enthusiasts.  You will also take part in coral gardening in an attempt to restore the degraded reefs.  There is an opportunity to to learn and take part in reef monitoring, to record the health of the surrounding reefs.

You will be given the chance to immerse yourself in a different culture and experience the 'real' Maldives. The Maldives is far more than just luxury resorts (although you will get chance to experience the luxurious resorts too).

Our marine program is extensive and relies on volunteer support to help us achieve all our project aims. Simply put, without volunteers we would not be able to ensure the upkeep and continued operation of Atoll Marine Centre. Monitoring work is time consuming and extensive so we require all the help we can get in maintaining our coral frames and surveying local reefs.

Volunteer Tasks

Volunteers will work closely with our 2 resident marine biologists. Daily tasks are varied and may include:

• Cleaning and feeding the rescued turtles
• Conducting reef surveys on atoll islands
• Cleaning the coral frames/assessing coral health
• Organizing community beach cleans/marine awareness sessions.

Volunteers will receive training in fish/coral species identification and gain first-hand practical experience in international marine conservation for a local run NGO.

Typical day

Usual working days are Monday - Sunday.
  • Morning shift is from 7:00 - 9:00 AM - You will feed the turtles and start to clean tanks.
  • 9:00 AM - Eat breakfast with all the staff and volunteers.
  • 9:45 AM - Most days tourists from nearby resorts will come to visit the centre, you can answer questions and engage the visitors
  • Afternoon - Activities vary, you are encouraged to snorkel as much as possible! Learn about the fish, coral and invertebrates in the Indian ocean. Twice a week we will teach at local schools, here we educate them about marine conservation and the importance of a healthy ocean.
  • 4:00 - 6:00 PM - Feed the turtles and clean the rest of the tanks. 

  • There will also be excursions, reef monitoring and coral gardening depending on the day.  

Free-time activities

We organize one excursion per week, normally on a Saturday but the day may vary depending on weather/availability. 

We can go on a variety of exciting excursions around the Lhaviyani Atoll and always take into account what you as a volunteer would like to do with your time. Examples of some of the excursions include: resort day trips, snorkeling trips, overnight camping trips, night fishing trips, BBQs or visits to uninhabited islands. Volunteers may also get the chance to go on reef surveys of the neighboring islands with our marine team. During your free time on the island, we encourage volunteers to get in the sea as much as possible and take photos of the marine life and islands. We have a wonderful little community here and there is some fantastic sights and scenery to take in as you walk around our island.

Swimming
Diving/Snorkling
Sports

Program Requirements

In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s).
Language Skills
You need to speak English (basic level)
Education Requirements
n/a at University Degree or Enrollment level
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
An interest in marine conservation.
The ability to swim.
Bring your own snorkeling gear.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday

Suitable for

Singles
Couples
Groups

Any questions? Just ask. We at Atoll Volunteers are happy to help you.

Contact Project Coordinator
Contact & Reservation
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Included Services

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We refund your fees if Atoll Volunteers cancels your trip
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Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by Atoll Volunteers.
Services by Atoll Volunteers

Pre-arrival:

  • 24/7 support from our volunteer coordinator
  • Pre-arrival information about your program, organization and environment
  • We book local accommodation and organize airport pickup (additional $75 if you need to stay in accommodation for a night)

During:

  • In-country transportation between Male and Naifaru either via ferry or speedboat
  • Accommodation on Naifaru
  • 3 meals a day
  • 1 excursion/week
  • 24/7 support from our volunteer coordinator

Post-departure:

  • In-country transportation from Naifaru to Male either via ferry or speedboat
  • Certificate of competency
  • Lifetime of memories

Airport Pickup at Male International Airport

You'll get more info on airport pickup pickup during your application process.

Accommodation

Accommodation is provided in our local guesthouse, Aqua stay. We have single-sex shared bedrooms with 2/3 people/room. All rooms are en-suite and comes equipped with own bathroom. The house has free WiFi and a communal living area equipt with sofas, TV, books, a fridge and a kettle. Rooms all have air-condition. 

Single rooms are available at extra cost, $250 per month, $400 for 5-8 weeks, $600 for 9-12 weeks.

Dorm Room Bedroom (Single) Bedroom (Double)
Food & Beverages

We have breakfast at a local house, giving you the chance to experience Maldivian breakfasts!
We eat lunch and dinner at a choice of 3 restaurants.
We also cook for ourselves once a week and have lovely bbq's with fresh fish.

Internet Access
Good access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Male International Airport (MLE) in Male. We assist you to find cheap flights to Maldives.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Maldives provides security and is a plus to have.
Vaccines
If you are intending to volunteer in Maldives you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Maldives.
Costs (Prices in USD)
2 weeks (min. stay)
$1,600.00
3 weeks
$2,200.00
4 weeks
$2,750.00
5 weeks
$3,350.00
6 weeks
$3,950.00
7 weeks
$4,500.00
12 weeks (max. stay)
$7,450.00
Average fees
$710.00/week

You can volunteer at the project site in Naifaru/Maldives between 2 weeks and 12 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Atoll Volunteers will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Crowdfunding Service
Generally, volunteering abroad involves certain costs. In case you need financial support, we will assist you to fundraise your volunteer program in Maldives.
Deposit (15%)
The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.
Final Payment (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with Atoll Volunteers during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.
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