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There are opportunities for a person with any level of experience and expertise to become a marine conservation volunteer. Volunteering for a local marine conservation organization often only requires a willingness to help out and a few free hours on a weekend or evening. While local organizations often appreciate volunteers who work for them weekly or monthly, they may also accept volunteers for a single day of work when extra volunteers are needed. In order to become a marine conservation volunteer in a foreign country, there is often an application process and a fee that must be paid to the conservation organization.
In the majority of cases, the only thing a person needs to do to become a marine conservation volunteer is to find out when a local marine conservation program requires assistance. A person who wants to volunteer can simply show up at the offices or a beach that the conservation organization is meeting at in order to immediately help out. Many of these programs frequently need assistance cleaning up local beaches or assembling mailing materials and can nearly always use more volunteers on an intermittent basis.
People who wish to volunteer at local marine conservation programs on a more regular basis or as more active participants may wish to apply for a long-term volunteer position. Though these positions do not usually require any specific education or training, they may give preference to volunteers who have taken certain courses or held certain types of jobs. A person who wants to become a marine conservation volunteer who educates children in the community, for example, may be required to have completed courses or to have experience working with children. In most cases, the application for a volunteer position is easy to fill out, though programs may require a couple of personal references. There is also usually a minimum age to volunteer, though this age will vary depending on the position applied for.
Becoming a marine conservation volunteer in a conservation program located overseas may require more qualifications. These programs may require that the volunteer have some experience in marine conservation and possibly some level of university education. Volunteer positions may also require strong swimming ability and certification in SCUBA. It may also cost a great deal of money to travel to these types of programs, and the costs of travel are usually incurred by the volunteer. Some programs also require a donation from the marine conservation volunteer.