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New volunteers sought for Curraghs Wildlife Park

Do you have time to volunteer at one of the Island’s leading attractions?

The Curragh’s Wildlife Park is recruiting volunteers ahead of the busy summer season.

An open day on Sunday 5 March will allow potential volunteers and Friends to visit the Park, learn about its work and meet staff and current helpers. If you would like to attend, email liz.brunswick@gov.im or phone +44 1624 693582 for more information.

The Park, in Ballaugh, is home to 75 species of mammals, birds, reptiles, fish and invertebrates. It is open daily from April to October and last year attracted 55,000 visitors.

Among the many roles that volunteers can undertake are feeding time talks, presentations in the Rainforest Theatre, running the Discovery Hut, and hosting craft activities. They can also help with practical work parties and fundraising events.

Volunteers are enrolled as members of the Friends of the Curraghs Wildlife Park, a charity founded to support the work of the Park.

David Cretney MLC, Member of the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture responsible for the park, said:

‘The Park is an important part of our visitor economy and popular with local families, too.

‘Our volunteers and Friends play a key role in helping us show off this excellent facility to those who come to see us.

‘We have a number of stalwart volunteers and Friends on whom we rely but numbers inevitably dwindle over time and we are looking to boost the numbers to allow us to maintain and enhance the activities visitors experience.’

Liz Brunswick, the Park’s Education Officer, continued:

‘Volunteers don’t need any qualifications or experience of working at a wildlife park or zoo, as we will train them in the areas they’ll work in.

‘We are looking for people who like animals and are friendly, enjoy meeting people and have some time to spare. We would also love to hear from people with DIY skills or who have experience of marketing and fundraising as these are new areas where volunteers would be especially useful.'

Liz added:

'It’s important to point out that volunteers are not directly involved in animal care, as these are specialised roles, filled by our keepers.

‘There is no minimum commitment in terms of hours, but it’s important that people are reliable once they commit to attend, so advertised activities happen as scheduled.’

Those keen to volunteer after attending the open day will be invited back to an initial training day on Sunday 19 March, when they will learn in more depth about how they will contribute.

Volunteers are provided with a Wildlife Park polo shirt so visitors recognise them.

Several times a year, volunteers meet for further training and to stay updated on the Park’s activities.

‘Volunteers must be 18 but there’s no upper age limit. Volunteering is a good addition to a CV for a young person but is equally fulfilling for someone with time to spare during the daytime, someone newly retired etc.’

To find out more about the Park or book tickets, visit www.curraghswildlifepark.im and follow the Park on facebook and Twitter @lizwildlifepark

The Park’s current (winter) opening hours are Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, 10am to 4pm (last admission 3pm). It switches to summer hours on 1 April.

Volunteer Poster 2017