Volunteer / work experience placements are available throughout the year and the type of work varies between seasons. It is in your own interest to organise your placement dates for the time of year most suited to your requirements. Placements run for a minimum of two weeks to a maximum of 8 weeks, starting on a Monday and ending on a Sunday (including some weekends). Please note that placements are only organised up to 10 months in advance.
We will be reviewing work experience and volunteer placements once the COVID-19 restrictions allow us to re-start the programme.
To qualify for a placement you must:
- Be aged 18+
- Be aware placements run for a minimum of two weeks to a maximum of 8 weeks including some weekends
- Complete an application form fully
- Arrange your own transport and accommodation for the duration of your placement (please be aware Gweek is quite a remote village and public transport is limited)
- Have an up to date tetanus vaccination
- Be physically fit and able
- Provide the required documents requested from the ‘Right to Work’ sheet in the application form upon attendance
- Be prepared to get stuck in with everything the Animal Care Team does!
All placements will include the same general daily routine with resident animal feeding, husbandry and care; however there is a different focus of activities depending on the time of year. The two different types of placement available are as follows:
- Rehabilitation: mainly takes place from October to March with the rescue of grey seal pups. IN ADDITION TO the daily routine (see Residents placement), volunteers will additionally assist with the rehabilitation process including helping with pup clinical care, hospital cleaning and maintenance, record keeping, rescues and releases. Please note that these activities will be dependent on the pups which are in the care of the Sanctuary during the volunteer’s placement, and not all of these activities are guaranteed during the placement.
- Residents: from April to September there is more focus on activities with the resident animals. Volunteers during this period will additionally assist with providing them with a variety of behavioural enrichment activities and training sessions, take part in conservation events and also interact more with visitors.
- If you wish to work around our rescued seals during the winter months, an up to date Influenza Vaccination within the last 12 months will be required. However, we cannot guarantee working with pups during your placement. You can ask for more details about the influenza vaccination from your doctor or local pharmacy.
All volunteers must apply using the application form that you can download here along with further detailed information regarding bookings, accommodation and clothing requirements. All placement dates will be agreed with our Work Placement Coordinator and following this must then be secured with a £15 deposit that is refundable on attendance. Failure to send a security deposit will result in the placement being cancelled if it is not received one month before the placement commences. Failure to attend will forfeit your deposit at the discretion of the Work Placement Coordinator and/or Senior Management.
Download your applications forms here.
For all enquiries regarding scientific research at the Sanctuary (including students), please email our research email.