Learning Team Voluntary Internships

Applications for Voluntary Learning Internships for 2022 will open 4 January 2022 and close 31 January 2022. Interviews will take place in the weeks beginning 7 and 14 February 2022. Internships begin 7 March 2022 - 9 September 2022. 


Application Form

Recruitment Pack

Take a look at Hannah's 1-second-a-day video for an insight into life as an intern

I just wanted to say a massive thank you for the experience and opportunities you have given me. They openly said at the interview that the experience from my internship and voluntary work with yourselves was what got me the interview and ultimately the job! I cannot thank you enough for that.
Charlotte McMorran - Intern 2016
Are you looking to develop your knowledge, skills and experience to gain future employment in the Outdoor Learning sector?

Many talented people want to pursue a career with a conservation organisation but lack the necessary skills and experience. Our voluntary internships provide essential skills and experience required through work based learning and training. The hugely successful voluntary internship scheme has been in a place for a number of years and we are proud that so many of our interns have gone on to develop their careers in conservation. 

About the scheme

The scheme provides seven internships across Suffolk at our learning centres, in Ipswich parks and green spaces. Voluntary interns generally attend three days a week for six months from 7 March to 9 September. They undertake practical experience and training that will boost their chances of successfully gaining paid employment on completion.

Experience Provided

The mix of activities varies, depending on the voluntary intern's placement and location. The placements vary significantly and the intern may be based at a learning centre on a nature reserve or at our head office covering sites across Ipswich.

Experience gained will be relevant to the nature and location of each internship.

Interns will assist the Wild Learning Officer in:

  • Planning, developing and delivering high quality, inspiring learning opportunities for children young people, adults and families, including schools.
  • Developing and delivering an activity-based family learning programme at weekends and throughout the school holidays
  • Developing relevant learning activities for organisations working with individuals and groups with special interests
  • Planning, developing and delivering a programme of meaningful learning activities and extended learning opportunities for schools from Early Years to A level
  • Harnessing social media networks to promote and celebrate activities and reach beyond our current audience
  • Supporting and supervising volunteers to assist with developing and delivering learning opportunities at our reserves and other local sites

Interns will play a full and active role in the Trust’s learning team, attending meetings and undertaking Continuing Professional Development (CPD) as appropriate. Delivering activities at large events at other centres and at county events, including the Suffolk Show and Latitude.

During their placement, interns are expected to maintain and promote the high standards of Suffolk Wildlife Trust and deputise for the Wild Learning Officer, where necessary.

What training is on offer?

In addition to the skills acquired through work based learning, the scheme also develops skills through training. All voluntary interns have a two day induction programme at our head office near Ipswich.

Training opportunities include:

  • Induction days: 7 March 2022 (SWT Head Office, Ashbocking, Ipswich)  & 14 March 2022 (Redgrave & Lopham Fen, Diss)
  • Level 3 Award in Outdoor Curriculum Coordination  (OCN West Midlands Accredited)
  • Level 1 Award in Forest School Principles
  • Level 2 Food Safety and Hygiene and Allergy Awareness
  • Safeguarding, including PREVENT training
  • Choice of one Suffolk Wildlife Trust Wild learning course
  • 20% discount off other SWT accredited training courses

Individual Personal Development Plan

At the start of the voluntary internship each intern will meet with their mentor to agree objectives in line with their personal development plan. This process provides interns with the opportunity to set relevant objectives for the six month placement. These are reviewed and updated regularly during one to one meetings with their mentor. An appraisal and exit interview at the end of the programme will offer career guidance and support. On completion interns will receive a certificate and references as required.

What you will need

A commitment to three days per week for six months is essential.
Qualifications and experience

A levels or equivalent
Current driving licence and own transport
Experience of working with children and young people
Experience of outdoor learning

Knowledge and skills

Knowledge and understanding of natural history and nature conservation
Ability to inspire, excite and enthuse people of all ages about nature
Good communication and interpersonal skills
Ability to work on own initiative and cooperatively as part of a team
Administration and IT skills, including competent use of Microsoft Office

Personal qualities

Enthusiastic and self-motivated
Eager to learn and to try new things
Conscientious with a careful attention to detail
Reliable and responsible
Flexible approach to weekend and evening working, where appropriate
Committed to the vision and values of Suffolk Wildlife Trust

A Suffolk Wildlife Trust uniform appropriate to the role will be provided. Travel expenses will be reimbursed for travel over and above your normal home to placement location commute.

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