This volunteer project is located just an hour and a half outside of Australia’s lively, cosmopolitan capital, Sydney - an hour by car if the traffic is good - at the beginning of the picturesque NSW Central Coast. The sanctuary is made up of 80 acres of natural Australian bush that is protected by 2 miles of carefully engineered fox-proof fence and is home to a range of indigenous animals, including kangaroos, wallabies, koalas and dingoes.
About the Project
Australia is home to some of the world’s most unique wildlife, with many species found only in Australia. This makes wildlife conservation in Australia incredibly important. Sadly, however, Australia is facing an extinction crisis, with more than 30 native mammal species becoming extinct since European settlement only 130 years ago. Today, more than 1,700 species of Australian animals and plants are listed as at risk of extinction.
The leading threat to native Australian wildlife is humans, with most losses due to predation and competition for food by introduced species like foxes and rabbits, and destruction of habitat to make way for buildings, farmlands, mines, sports fields and roads. It is for this reason that animal sanctuaries are of critical importance, to preserve natural habitat for wildlife as well as being places where people can visit and learn how to help with wildlife conservation.
In this program you will have the opportunity to compensate for some of the damage that we do as we compete with animals for their scarce resources. You will make a real contribution to the conservation of Australia’s weird and wonderful wildlife as you work alongside the rangers at a local sanctuary that provides refuge for species that are at real risk of extinction. Set amongst 170 acres of natural bushland, with 80 acres protected by a state of the art feral-predator proof fence, this is the largest feral-free natural bushland on Australia’s eastern seaboard.
The sanctuary provides a safe natural home for over 180 species of mammals, birds, frogs and reptiles while also providing a refuge for rehabilitated but un-releasable injured and orphaned animals. Additionally, the site protects an ancient Aboriginal landscape where you can see examples of Aboriginal sites that show evidence of Australia’s original people dating back thousands of years, including a hand-stencil cave and sandstone engravings.
Arrival and Orientation
Upon arrival to Sydney, you will participate in a 2 day insightful and educational introductory program in Australia’s bustling capital, Sydney. This orientation will help you to ease into Australian life and make you feel more at home – learning more about the Australian environment, people, and their culture and customs, as well as ticking a few top tourist attractions off your bucket list. Following your orientation you will take a scenic train ride, along the coast, to the sanctuary.
By joining this program, volunteers will have an opportunity to make a real contribution to protecting Australian wildlife from extinction. The purpose of this program is to protect indigenous animals and plants, plus care for the dependent and wild animals that live there. Examples of work to be undertaken include planting eucalyptus trees to provide a long term food supply for the koalas and native grasses for kangaroos and wallabies, building and repairing barriers and tracks that control visitor access to environmentally sensitive areas, maintaining the 3km fox-proof fence that keeps the animals safe, whilst protecting ancient Aboriginal sites and making sure the bush habitat is protected so animals can live safely and happily in their natural environment.
Please not that Vvolunteers need to bring sturdy gardening gloves and wet weather gear! Furthermore, you need to consult your local travel clinic or doctor about immunizations!