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Volunteers fixing a footpath Photo by Stephen Garnett

Volunteering Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions you may have on volunteering.

Is there an age limit?

We do not have an upper age limit for our Dales Volunteers, however, we do ask everyone to complete an annual ‘Fitness to Volunteer Declaration’. We ask volunteers to consider whether they are sufficiently fit and healthy to undertake the role and if anything changes to let us know, so we can work to resolve it.

To become a Dales Volunteer, you must be over 18 however we do have volunteering options for younger people. You can start in our Young Ranger programme from 11 and some of our Dales Action Days may accept young volunteers if accompanied by a parent or guardian.  

What are the basic requirements?

A passion for the outdoors, enthusiasm, motivation, and a desire to make a difference. Plus, a willingness to learn new skills. Some roles will require specific skills and/or training to develop those skills, this will be outlined on the specific role profile. If the role is manual, then any necessary kit will be provided by us.   We always ask people to dress for the weather but can support those who may not have the right kit.

How much time do I need to give?

This depends on the role. We have a vast number of roles to suit a volunteer’s interests and skills. Currently, we have over 340 Dales volunteers and roles vary from Dales Countryside MuseumHistoric EnvironmentLearning and Engagement, Meet and Greet, Rangers VolunteersTees SwaleTrees and WoodlandsWildlife ConservationYoung Rangers Each role requires a number of days, ranging from 15 days per year for a Ranger Volunteers or some roles where it’s just a few hours!. Normally if a role requires a lot of training then it’s likely that the minimum time commitment will be higher.

Is there any training?

Yes, all our Dales volunteers are given an admin induction, basic health and safety and National Park Awareness. Then, depending on the role, there may be additional training provided. Some training is done internally and some by external providers, some will need to be refreshed periodically though most is one-off. We try and offer courses at a variety of venues and on both weekend and weekdays to make it as convenient as possible.

Is accommodation provided?

We do not offer accommodation as volunteers need to live within a 35-mile/40-mile radius of the park.

Do you have a recruitment boundary?

Yes, in order to help reduce carbon emissions we recruit from within 35/40 miles of one of our bases.  Dales Volunteers Applicants should live within 35 miles of Grassington (BD23 5LB) or Stainforth (BD24 9PN) or within 40 miles of Aysgarth (DL8 3TH) or Hawes (DL8 3NT).

I live outside the radius, can I still volunteer?

If you are outside our recruitment boundary you can still volunteer in one of our Dales Action Days which are open to anyone.

How do I apply?

If you’ve taken a look at the role profile and think it suits, check you meet the age and recruitment boundary requirements and can commit to any training needed. If so then we’d love to hear from you!

If you want to apply you will need to do so via our MyVolunteerPage here. Please note if you don’t have one already you’ll need to create a account first.

What if there isn’t a role available at the moment?

We do have a waiting list and people on there will be the first to know about new opportunities we can’t fill with our existing Dales Volunteers.  So if you want to make a speculative application apply as per the instructions above, select ‘speculative enquiry’ when promoted and we’ll be in touch if something comes up in the future.

Will I get paid?

No, all roles are voluntary. However, we currently do pay for a volunteer’s mileage and out-of-pocket expenses in accordance with our mileage policy.

I don’t have time to commit, can I still get involved?

No problem, you can still get involved by micro-volunteering. LookWild is a free nature identification app that is fun and accessible for everyone. You can identify plants and animals, learn more and contribute to scientific research. We also have Dales Action Days which are suited for anyone who can’t commit but just want to spare a few hours volunteering.  

Do you offer any work placements?

On occasions we offer a very limited number of placements to students in higher education or people looking to gain work experience. Please contact . We do also run a yearly volunteering programme for anyone aged 18-29 who are looking for a career in the green sector, please see our Up skill Down Dale programme for more details.

Do you offer any corporate days?

We currently do not offer any corporate days, however, please contact YDMT who may have opportunities. Alternatively please see the authority Facebook/Twitter page for any Dales Action Days where corporate groups are welcome to sign up alongside other people.

Can I still volunteer if I receive benefits?

Yes, but please tell your job centre about your volunteering. For more information please visit: Directgov website.

Can I bring a dog to a volunteering activity?

For everyone’s safety we do not allow any dogs to accompany a volunteer on an activity.