Forest of Dean Volunteer Assistant

Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust

Various Wildlife Trust reserves in the Forest of Dean

Volunteer • Part Time 01452383333 Donna Cavill

Sectors: conservation & wildlife, ecology

Closing date: Sunday, 20th January 2019  

Our mission

Our mission at Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust is a simple one – to value nature. Our ambition is to preserve, recreate and reconnect Gloucestershire’s wild places. We want everyone in Gloucestershire to value, enjoy and share wildlife in the county and believe strongly that nature matters, not only in its own right, but for the huge benefits it brings to the people of Gloucestershire.

Role description

The Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust manages over 60 nature reserves in the County, 10 of which are located in the Forest of Dean. We are looking for a volunteer to shadow our reserve team in the Dean, you will help support our work and learn relevant management skills for a career in conservation. The volunteer role would ideally suit students looking for work experience alongside their college or university degrees or recent graduates looking to further their skills for a career in the environment and wildlife conservation sectors.

The volunteer role will involve working alongside our Forest of Dean Nature Reserve Manager and assist them with the following duties and responsibilities:

  1. Undertake practical site management work across the Trust’s nature reserves to maintain and develop their quality both for wildlife and visitors
  2. Be taught how and assist staff with tree safety inspections
  3. Assist with the production of reserve management plans, budgets, funding and work programmes.
  4. Support our volunteer work parties
  5. Help with the maintenance of vehicles, machinery, equipment and tools used for reserve management.
  6. Assist staff with the management and handling of livestock belonging to the Trust including cattle ponies and sheep

We are looking for a volunteer to start in January 2019 but we can be flexible on start date. Ideally you would be available 2-3 days per week (Tues/Wed/Thurs) as this ensures a comprehensive experience of seasonal reserve work. Hours are 9am – 5pm, days and times are negotiable according to your circumstances. This volunteer role will be based from our Forest of Dean Workshop near Chepstow working on nature reserves across the Forest with some closer to Newent.

So that you can gain a true understanding of what it is like to manage nature reserves the volunteering lasts between 6 to 12 months. This time frame is not compulsory but recommended for those seeking to gain skills for a career in the sector.

Skills and Knowledge

We always provide training to our volunteers but some volunteer roles do require previous experience and skills.


  • Interest in Wildlife and Nature Conservation career
  • A positive approach to challenges
  • A willingness to work in all weather
  • Has own transport (to get to remote workshop)


  • Good communication skills and networking
  • Chainsaw certification
  • Brushcutter certification
  • Herbicides certification

What training and equipment is provided

  • Full induction to the role;
  • Appropriate support and mentoring
  • Training in tool use 
  • Task specific training 
  • Uniform and Personal Protective Equipment provided
  • Travel expenses covered for up to 20 miles each way


  • Volunteering will provide you with an understanding of wildlife, ecology and nature conservation
  • A knowledge of countryside/land management techniques for habitat and species management
  • Knowledge of health and safety legislation relevant to the conservation sector
  • Gain practical experience in conservation management across a range of habitats
  • Team working and working alongside other volunteers in sessions
  • Experience in conservation grazing and livestock management
  • Learn how to install and maintain all built infrastructures on reserves (stock pens, steps, paths, fences ect.)
  • Event coordination
  • Communication skills – both written and oral
  • Introduction into how charities budget, set work programmes, deliver projects and work to contractor specifications and contracts
  • Experience of 4x4 driving, trailer towing and reversing
  • A chance to develop and tailor your CV (We cannot guarantee employment with the Trust after the volunteering)


Please contact our Volunteer Coordinator, Donna Cavill at or call 01452 383333.

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