CBMWC Living Seas Volunteers


Each year we recruit dedicated and enthusiastic individuals to volunteer with us and gain valuable experience whilst helping us to collect data on the marine wildlife of Cardigan Bay, run our visitor centre and inspire visitors and the public through community engagement activities.

What You Will Gain

Volunteering for the Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales at CBMWC is a fantastic opportunity for you to make a positive contribution to marine conservation and meet new people who share your interests. You will learn about the species and habitats in Cardigan Bay, gain experience in field work, research methods, data processing, public awareness and education programmes. The data you collect will contribute to long running research studies on bottlenose dolphin site usage, abundance, photo-identification and acoustic studies. Past volunteers have gone on to further education, work as Marine Mammal Observers and to work for other conservation or Government organisations.

The Volunteer Role

Living Seas Volunteers will assist with the delivery of our Living Seas research and engagement objectives and are required for specific periods.

Volunteer Tasks Include (but are not limited to):

  • Land based surveys (daily)
  • Boat-based surveys*
  • Manning our visitor centre, providing interpretation for visitors, selling merchandise and taking boat bookings
  • Community engagement, inspiring the public through events and activities
  • Data entry and checking
  • Updating daily sightings information
  • Beach Cleans
  • Maintenance and up-keep of our salt water aquarium
  • There may also be the opportunity to assist with various projects e.g. acoustic analysis, writing articles for publication on social media

* Boat trips are run by an external company who we collaborate with. They are weather dependent and volunteers take turns to join trips to act as onboard researcher. During times of bad weather, you will spend more time carrying out shore-based activities.

Important: In the past volunteers have worked up to 6-8 hours a day 6 days a week, to ensure surveys can be conducted during periods of good weather and volunteers gain the most out of the experience.Some training and activities may take place outside of normal office hours.

Living Seas volunteers will receive training in marine species identification, survey techniques, data entry, running a visitor centre and community engagement.

Day in the Life of a Living Seas Volunteer

Volunteer Skills/Qualities

  • Fluency in English
  • A commitment to volunteering
  • Research and surveying experience (not essential as training provided)
  • IT skills, including Microsoft Office
  • Confident in dealing with the public both face to face and over the telephone
  • Interest and/or experience of working with the public
  • Positive, reliable, responsible, conscientious and mature attitude
  • Ability to work and live closely with others as part of a small team
  • Strong work ethic with an ability to work unsupervised
  • Adaptable and patient (particularly as boat work is weather dependent)

Please note that enthusiasm and passion for our work and the marine environment is as valued as experience, since full training is provided.

Student projects

We welcome undergraduate and postgraduate students who require field work support – including boat time and office space to conduct their research projects. Please note that we do not have a list of specific project ideas but if you have a project idea in mind, please contact us to discuss whether your ideas are feasible. Students are expect to contribute to the work of the CBMWC by assisting with volunteer activities.

Volunteer Dates 2018

Volunteer positions are available from 12th March until 5th November 2018. You must be able to volunteer for an entire block and priority will be given to those who can volunteer for more than one block.

  • Block A – 12th March – 16th April (5 weeks)
  • Block B – 16th April – 14th May (4 weeks)
  • Block C 14th May – 9th July (8 weeks)
  • Block D 9th July – 3rd September (8 weeks)
  • Block E – 3rd September – 5th November (9 weeks)

Accommodation Arrangements

An administration fee of £45 will be required from all successful applicants.

Shared accommodation will be arranged for successful volunteers (where required) at a cost of £50-£55 per week (includes bills) and a £50 refundable deposit. Deposits will be refunded if the accommodation is left in the same condition it was found in. Please be aware that volunteers share same sex bedrooms. Volunteers are responsible for their own food, travel and accommodation costs.

Due to payment arrangements with the accommodation owners, accommodation costs are required in advance to cover the cost of each block so before applying please ensure that you can cover this and all other expenses. Many volunteers undertake part time, evening work 2-3 times a week alongside volunteering to help cover costs.

How To Apply

Download a CBMWC Living Seas Seasonal Volunteer App Form here and email it along with a CV and covering letter (no more than one side of A4) detailing your motivations for applying to volunteer@cbmwc.org with “Living Seas Seasonal Volunteer App 2018” in the subject line.

Incomplete applications will not be assessed so please make sure you complete the form fully, including availability and be sure to attach your CV and covering letter.

The closing date for applications is 23:59pm on Sunday 14th January 2018

Further Information

For further information on the role or application process please contact Laura Evans at volunteer@cbmwc.org or on 01545 560224

    CBMWC volunteer