How to find diving volunteer positions
Nowadays it has become very popular to go and work as a volunteer. It’s a great opportunity to go to a country where they are in need of help. Doing a good deed will make you feel so good, and you will get so much out of it. You will learn a lot, meet a lot of people. Like some of the organizations say “you will make the difference”. In other words, this is a life experience you will never forget.
However, many people believe that you can only work in schools and hospitals. But every day just pop up more and more organizations that are seeking divers to help with volunteer work. A number of organizations will offer dive education too, from advanced diver to a dive master internship. Yes, you will probably have to pay, but think about what you will get back. You will be a more experienced and responsible diver, your knowledge about marine life will improve, you will do something good for another country and for the sea, and you will have new friends for life.
So how do you find these organizations? Just search on google and you will find many different organizations. Check up as many as you can, compare them, check which countries you can choose to go, the length of time you can stay there, accommodation, how much food is included, perhaps there is more than diving tasks you’ll have to do, for example community work. So when you compare them pick the one you think is best suited for you.
What I recommend is to try to find someone who has been there before as a volunteer, who can tell you if it was a good or bad organization. They can tell all about their experience and give some information that could be interesting to know before you go. You will find these persons in the organizations website, although the organizations will probably have added just satisfied customers there. On the other hand, there are many websites where people write their travel dairy and blogs about their volunteer experiences, there you can also get in touch with them.
Then there are research centers in many places in the world, which study a particular species. Maybe they do not promote their need for volunteers but they often do need them. So if you’re traveling you can always ask the dive shop if there is any research center in the area and simply go there and talk to them. Or search for Research Center on Internet and send them an email.
Here’s some websites of organizations that have been operating for many years and have good reputations: Reef Doctor, Frontier, CoralCay, BlueVentures and Gvi. But still look for other because there are so many out there.
Story & Photography by Susanne Stigsson.