How Animal Volunteer Programs Help the Environment
The world we live in has become so complex, with challenges that we, as humans, have never been faced with before. The effects of climate change and environmental degradation is testing us all, and the headlines are filled with the politics of whether or not the time or effort is worth saving our planet. There are even the disbelievers who won’t recognise or acknowledge that the earth is in peril, and would rather focus on how we can achieve more ‘economic growth’ as opposed to building a more sustainable planet.
Sadly, environmental and animal issues are last on the list of policy and decision makers, and are seen as non-pressing items, usually standing in the way of what many call ‘progress.’ I mean, how can you have hardwood timber without felling the oldest forest trees? And how can you even think about saving animals if the destruction of forests is imminent? Humans have encroached upon nature since the beginning of time, but our unsustainable demand for our natural resources will take its toll on all of us, if the problem is not recognised in all its seriousness and more is not done.
But how do we make a difference when we feel so powerless? Well we can. The power of many, of course, but what about that power of one? Environmental and animal welfare projects, including marine conservation programs around the world rely largely on individuals that devote their time and skills to undertake a variety of activities that aim to have significant positive impacts on the environment and in turn, the life within it. Without people, less animals are rescued or cared for, and less trees are planted.
People who sign up to volunteer opportunities gives them the power to make change, and many not for profit organisations can connect you with fantastic and unique experiences that will bring you one step closer to playing a greater role in wildlife and habitat conservation across the globe. They also provide great opportunities to raise awareness about the multitude of pressing issues that affect the welfare of animals and the environment. Regardless of the project you get involved in, the experience you will gain and the memories you will take with you, both happy and sad, will provide you with a unique chance that most will never know. When working with animals, and especially wildlife, it surprises people that they can build relationships with the animals. Do you ever think you could know 30 joeys by name? To be able to look at their markings or face and know who they are and what their story is.
Unfortunately, there isn’t many opportunities available to individuals to work with animals, and that is especially the case with Australian wildlife volunteering, so a volunteer sending organisation is a great way to find a safe, meaningful project that has been created to cater for international volunteers. Such organisations and initiatives that offer volunteer opportunities in animal care, do a great job facilitating people's awareness of the grave impacts of animal tourism and trade as well as human intervention on the sustainability, welfare, and general health of both domestic and wild animal populations, while also directly involved in the rescue and care of animals.
About the Author:
This article is written by Tracy Leske. She is the Director of oceans2earth.org. It is a website of a non-political, non-religious organisation that provides opportunities for individuals to interact with people of diverse cultures. They offer amazing volunteering and adventure travel experiences for ethically minded animal and conservation lovers looking for the trip of a lifetime.