Taking a gap year is a great way to travel, try out new things, meet new people, and enjoy a variety of experiences that will help you figure out who you are and what you really want out of life. And if you love animals and the environment, you can take advantage of myriad opportunities to assist in wildlife conservation during your time off from school and work.
Focusing all of your efforts on helping non-profits save endangered species and conserve the environment is a great way to give back. Continue reading to learn more.
If you really enjoy being beneath the waves and you really like to scuba dive, consider spending your gap year with a marine conservation group. These organizations are located all over the world and they work on maintaining coral reef systems, studying the wildlife that lives in the sea, and rehabilitating and releasing injured animals.
And don’t worry if you do not yet have your scuba diving certification, as some groups will even train you and give you your diving qualifications so that you can fully participate in all of their exciting activities that are focused on keeping the oceans clean and thriving.
Wildlife Rehabilitation, Tracking, and Conservation
Those who want to travel and live in a completely different place during their gap year can find a variety of exhilarating opportunities in places like Africa, Australia, Madagascar, and Asia, to name a few. There, you can volunteer with groups that work with a variety of species, from the tiniest insects to the great apes.
You’ll study these animals, understand their needs, help conserve their habitats, track their numbers, and maybe even help rehabilitate them and prepare them for release back to the wild. So if you want up-close-and-personal encounters with some of the most beautiful creatures on the planet, this is definitely the way to go.
Animal Welfare and Animal Rescue
In addition to volunteering with conservation groups that are helping to heal and study wildlife around the world, you can also volunteer with groups like Dancing Star Foundation. These are focused on animal rescue and animal rights issues that impact the freedom and happiness of animals around the world.
You can work on important campaigns that educate the public on important issues that include hunting, overfishing, factory farming, fur farming, animal testing, animal entertainment, and much more. All of this is done to raise global awareness about the plight of animals all over the planet, and to help bring positive change that will allow these animals to be freed and finally be able to live out their lives as nature intended.
You can also volunteer with rescue groups that take animals, including wild animals in places like circuses or zoos, out of horrifying conditions to give them a second chance at freedom and happiness.
Whether you choose to spend your gap year volunteering with an environmental conservation group or an animal sanctuary, take the opportunity to learn new things and truly give back in a big and meaningful way.