Today is Power of Youth day, and we’re shining a light on the amazing contribution young volunteers make here at the zoo and in their local communities.
As part of Volunteers’ Week, Power of Youth Day celebrates the volunteering and social action from young people that makes a huge difference in society. Our youth volunteers work throughout the year at the zoo and on our local conservation projects.
Through volunteering, youth volunteers explore conservation issues with zoo visitors, helping them understand ways they can act for wildlife in their daily lives. They’re also stationed at some of our animal habitats in the zoo, ready to tell visitors interesting facts and help people spot some of our more elusive wildlife!
Hear our youth volunteers share their experiences of volunteering at the zoo.
We are firm believers in how utterly brilliant youth volunteering is. It’s a chance for young people to try something new, have fun and develop new skills. Volunteering gives young people a place to belong, enabling meaningful social action and supporting them in creating positive relationships.
“The best thing about volunteering is feeling like I’m contributing to conservation and having amazing encounters with equally passionate and interested people. It’s a place I can geek out about my passion every week, working with people of all ages and making friends. I find it an honour to represent Chester Zoo.”
Ioan, Youth Volunteer
During their time with us, youth volunteers also get involved with various projects. This includes planning and delivering educational activities at our annual Wildlife Connections Festival, creating campaign videos for their peers or delivering talks and presentations. In addition, youth volunteers design and deliver social action campaigns, helping visitors to identify sustainable palm oil products in their shopping or reduce plastic waste.
Lindsay Marston, our Volunteer Manager, comments…
“Since 2018 we’ve created opportunities for young people to volunteer at the zoo, giving them the chance to develop personal skills, become confident ambassadors for wildlife and make a positive difference.
“Youth Volunteers join our team from age 14 and above through the Duke of Edinburgh volunteering scheme or community organisations such as Ancora House and Youth Federation. It’s fantastic to see their personal journey as they grow in confidence and develop the skills to communicate complex conservation issues in an accessible way. Youth volunteers become role models for children and young people visiting the zoo; you can see this in the ways our younger visitors engage with them.”
As a charity, volunteers provide vital support to the life of the zoo. Our award-winning volunteers contribute to our success by supporting the zoo’s education, scientific and conservation mission.
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