Set yourself a challenge this year and volunteer

New forest nightstop at volunter fair

Published Wednesday 17 January 2018

Volunteer rangers, emergency responders and gardeners - these are just some of the roles on offer at the 2018 New Forest National Park Volunteer Fair.

The fair is organised by the New Forest National Park Authority and brings together dozens of local groups to help budding volunteers find their perfect role. 

This year organisers are asking existing and potential volunteers to #pledge10000 and help achieve a target of 10,000 hours of volunteering in 2018 to help preserve and protect the National Park and support local communities.

Volunteers can fill out a survey on the day to pledge their hours and an online version will be published after the fair. There will be no minimum requirement for hours, with people able to pledge as few or as many hours as they like with any number of organisations operating within the National Park.

Jim Mitchell, fair organiser and New Forest National Park Authority Interpretation and Outreach Manager, said: ‘The New Forest wouldn’t look the way it does and many organisations wouldn’t be able to run without the help of volunteers. Volunteering is also a great way to discover new parts of the Forest and make friends.

‘Pledging hours to volunteer this year is a great way to motivate yourself to stick to any goals you may have set, whether it’s to learn a new skill, spend more time outdoors or help others. You can pledge anything from one hour upwards as it’s about setting yourself a challenge and helping us carry out the important work we do to protect and preserve the Forest.’

Volunteer Tim Wilding took part in a scrub clearance event at Lepe Country Park in November with the National Park Authority, Hampshire County Council and Friends of Lepe. 

He said: ‘I’ve learnt so much, even though I’ve lived here for over 40 years and I’ve never learnt as much as I have in the last five years volunteering. I like getting out and about and exploring, and getting to know the environment better. I’m very interested in history, especially the Roman period, and I can always find something of interest to me.'

To find out more about the New Forest Volunteer Fair visit www.newforestnpa.gov.uk/volunteerfair 

-ends-

The organisations signed up for the New Forest Volunteer Fair are:

• Blackwater Conservation Group 
• Bumblebee Conservation Trust
• Butterfly Conservation
• The Brendoncare Foundation
• Christchurch and East Dorset Countryside Team
• Community Speedwatch
• Countryside Education Trust
• Exbury Gardens
• Forestry Commission 
• Friends of Lepe Country Park
• Friends of New Forest Airfields
• Friends of the New Forest (New Forest Association)
• Green Island Holiday Trust
• Girlguiding Foxlease 
• Hampshire Scouts
• Hampshire Swifts
• Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance
• Hampshire County Council Access Team
• Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust
• Hampshire Scouts
• hArt
• Lyndhurst Community Centre
• Lyndhurst and District Community Responders
• Lyndhurst and Minstead Bellringers
• Milford Conservation Volunteers
• Minstead Trust
• National Trust
• New Forest Area Conservation Volunteers
• New Forest Centre
• New Forest Community First 
• New Forest Disability Information Centre
• New Forest National Park Authority
• New Forest Nightstop
• New Forest Mencap
• New Forest Rotary
• New Forest Transition 
• Oakhaven Hospice Trust
• Pedall Inclusive Cycling 
• Patrick’s Patch at Fairweather’s Garden Centre
• Pondhead Conservation Volunteers
• Ringwood and Fordingbridge Footpath Society 
• RSPB
• SS Shieldhall
• Woodlander Hoburne Bashley.

Notes to Photo Editor:

New Forest Nightstop at New Forest Volunteer Fair 2017.

Notes to Editor:

About the New Forest National Park Authority

Protect - Enjoy - Prosper

The New Forest National Park Authority’s statutory purposes are to:

  • Conserve and enhance the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the Park - Protect.
  • Promote opportunities for understanding and enjoyment of its special qualities – Enjoy.

We also have a duty to:

  • Seek to foster the social and economic well-being of local communities within the Park – Prosper.

The New Forest National Park was designated in March 2005. Its unique landscape has been shaped over the centuries by grazing ponies, cattle and pigs which roam free. Majestic woodlands, rare heathland and a spectacular coastline provide fabulous opportunities for quiet recreation, enjoyment and discovery.

Visit www.newforestnpa.gov.uk to find out more.

Media Contact
Beki Mole, Communications Assistant 
New Forest National Park Authority 
Tel: 01590 646639 
Email: beki.mole@newforestnpa.gov.uk

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