Wilderness Volunteer Program

Work on wildlife rehabilitation or environmental conservation projects as a Wilderness Volunteer in Canada

These hands-on volunteer placements will allow you to experience Canada like never before, immersed in nature and wilderness, working with other volunteers for common animal and environmental causes.

wilderness volunteer in canada lake shore
wilderness volunteer in canada raccoon
wilderness volunteer in canada baby owl
volunteer in canada

What is the Wilderness Volunteer in Canada Program?

Wilderness Volunteer in Canada program is an hands-on educational experience in Canada. Young adults get to do volunteer work in wildlife rehabilitation or environmental conservation. Placements are available with a registered charitable organization, NGOs, parks and First Nations organizations in Canada.

Through this program, you will live in a rural or remote area and get to experience the incredible nature of Canada. Volunteers work hands-on with plants and wildlife and gain valuable career experience.

Why take the Wilderness Volunteer in Canada Program?

  • Guaranteed wilderness volunteer placement before you come to Canada.
  • Work on wildlife or conservation projects
  • Make a difference and contribute to the preservation of nature
  • Meet other volunteers from around the world
  • Easy work permit / visa process
volunteer in canada

What is like to take part in a Wilderness Volunteer in Canada Program?

Wilderness Volunteer program provides guaranteed placement with a registered charities. You’ll be working on projects focused on wildlife rehabilitation or environmental conservation. This program provides structured, full-time and hands-on meaningful work. Therefore, you will contribute to the environment while also building your skills set and improving your English and French skills too.

Through this program, you can also meet your university internship requirements in the areas of natural science. For example, if you study biology, geology, forestry or animal science, this is an ideal program for you.

Other internship programs might require an IEC work permit. However, this program only requires a C50 work permit that you apply for when you arrive. As a result, this is an excellent alternative to Working Holiday or Internship Co-op permits.

What are the requirements for Wilderness Volunteer in Canada Program?

This program is ideal if you are:

  • 18 and above (no upper age limit)
  • Motivated and passionate
  • In good physical and mental health
  • Able to lift at least 15 kg
  • Able to maneuver over rough terrain, where there are sometimes no roads or walkways
  • Healthy and don’t have a medical condition that requires frequent care (as placements are far from cities or emergency treatment)
  • Willing to live in a remote location without regular access to facilities such as internet or shops
  • High intermediate level of English or French
  • Willing to commit to minimum 20 hours per week
  • Able to financially support themselves for the duration of the placement

The C50 Permit is available now, with no uncertainty, waiting periods, or long application process. The C50 Charitable Worker Permit is available at the airport upon your arrival to Canada. We will provide you with the necessary documents to support your request for the C50 Work Permit.

wilderness volunteer in canada placement options

What are my placement options in the Wilderness Volunteer Program?

Environmental Conservation placements at organizations involved in:

  • Repairing rivers and streams,
  • Cataloging invasive and native plant species,
  • Clearing wilderness areas and restoring trails

This is physical work, typically done with wilderness organizations, environmental research organizations, public or private parks or wilderness areas adjacent to recreation areas. Participants can, for example, stay in cabins or tents since they participate in strenuous work as part of a team of volunteers.

Wildlife Rehabilitation placements with animal recovery centres involved in:

  • Hands-on work with animals,
  • Animal feeding
  • Cleaning cages,
  • Collecting related data,
  • Documenting animal behavior,
  • Maintaining information and visitor centres,
  • Help promote the organization to the wider community

Participants get up close with animals such as owls, eagles, wolves, and bears.

volunteer in canada

Where can I be a Wilderness Volunteer?

Wilderness Volunteer placements are done in rural and wilderness areas in 4 regions – each of roughly equal population:

British Columbia (English Speaking)

Westernmost province of Canada, located between the Pacific Ocean and Rocky Mountains. The Coast Mountains and Inside Passage’s inlets provide renowned and spectacular scenery. Therefore, outdoor adventures are guaranteed. And most importantly, because of its mild climate, Wilderness Volunteer placements in BC are available year-round.

Destination airport: Vancouver

Western Canada (English Speaking)

This region includes the provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. It includes the Rocky Mountains, Great Plains, and sub-arctic. Because of this, Western Canada hosts the greatest diversity of placements. Thus the placements are most remote, and isolated from urban centres. Volunteer work is availabe year-round, hence to the moderate climate in the western most portions the region.

Destination Airports:, Calgary, Edmonton, Regina, Winnipeg.

Central Canada (English Speaking)

This region is contained within Canada’s most densely-populated province – Ontario. Placements are concentrated in the region stretching from Ottawa to Windsor. Many placements are near small towns and cities. Because of this they focus on restoring green areas, or helping animals at the outskirts of settlement. Volunteers in this region are closer to major centres – therefore making this the ideal setting for volunteers that want to combine work with travel and sightseeing.

Destination Airport: Toronto Pearson International Airport.

French Canada (French Speaking)

This region is primarily contained with the province of Quebec, but also includes French-speaking areas of New Brunswick and Ontario. Similarly to Ontario in, placements are often closer to urban centres. However, this region is distinct in being French-speaking, and for this reason has a different culture, and way of life than in the rest of Canada.

Destination Airport: Montreal Trudeau International Airport. WVP participants can purchase this ticket at time of registration, as placement in the region is guaranteed.

Travel times from major cities average 6 hours by car or bus. Because these placements are remote, participants will not be able to combine their Wilderness Volunteer work with simultaneous studies.

Wilderness Volunteer in Canada Accommodation

Wilderness Volunteer participants receive accommodation as part of their placements. Accommodation can be in cabins, hostel-style dormitories or even tents for placements at more remote sites. Homestay accommodation maybe available for placements near urban centres. Past WVP participants have stayed in:

  • Shared cabins
  • Tents
  • Tipis
  • Yurts
  • Trailers/Caravans
  • Homestays

All non-tent accommodation is furnished, heated, and comes with self catering and washroom facilities. For tent accommodation at more rustic sites, tents and bedding are provided, as is access to cooking and washroom facilities.

Fees for accommodation are included in the price of the program.

Important note: meals are not included in WVP placements. All accommodation is self-catering, however hosts ensure that participants have regular weekly access to shops in nearby communities in order to purchase food. In some placements meals may be included and participants will be informed prior to arrival.

Each type of placement may also include ‘Communal Living Duties’ for Wilderness Volunteer Program participants who are living at the work site. These can include: cooking, cleaning bathrooms, kitchen duties and laundry.

Want to volunteer in the city instead?

If you would like to complete a practical volunteer internship in the areas of: Marketing, Accounting, Events planning, etc in the city of Vancouver, Montreal, Toronto, Ottawa or Calgary, read about our Charity Internship in Canada Program here.

wilderness volunteer in canada program fees

How can I apply for the Volunteer in Canada Program?

Apply for this program at any time, year-round and your placement will be confirmed within 4 weeks. If you wish to receive information regarding the Wilderness Volunteer in Canada Program fees, please Contact us.

This fee includes:

  • Confirmed volunteer placement
  • Work permit documents,
  • Local one-way transportation to the volunteer site from the city of arrival,
  • Support and reporting during the program
  • Letter of reference upon completion

Latitude International provides additional services including arrival packages, airport reception, medical insurance and more. We are here to help you and advise you so please do not hesitate to ask us your questions!

Andreas – Barista

“I was placed at a coffee shop in North Vancouver. The location was just amazing. From the counter we had a great view over the ocean and the mountains in the horizon. It was, more or less, always busy and the customers were so nice and polite and were always interested in knowing where you were from. What I like most about Vancouver is the diversity of people and the beautiful surroundings. We went hiking a couple of times, had a Halloween party, saw the Chinese New Year Parade, celebrated Canada Day and much more. Besides that I visited Whistler, Bowen Island, Sunshine Coast, Toronto and Victoria.” – Andreas, Denmark

Anne – Barista

“My adventure started off in Rocky Mountains where I worked at a mountain resort. During my time there I got to see wonderful nature and magical views when I was hiking. It was also a lot of other fun things to do including mountain biking, horseback riding, white water rafting and canoeing. After the summer season was over I decided to move to Vancouver and now I live in an apartment in beautiful Yaletown. I work in a coffee shop downtown as well so that fits me perfectly.” – Anne, Norway

Faith – Internship

“Coming to Vancouver has really been a learning experience. I saw myself mature in ways I thought I had been. Learning from the pros and seeing the difference between learning at university and mentoring/ learning at work. The ability to stand my own and explore this great city. Since coming here I have found my confidence and passion of product design. Whether it’s from presenting or talking to clients I know I saw myself improve. Thank you, Canada.” – Faith, United Kingdom

Ilse – Hospitality

“My first job was at a coffee shop chain. I worked there for 2.5 months as a Barista. I also got a job as a server in the restaurant at a private tennis club. During this work abroad experience my English improved a lot. That’s mainly because I use different expressions than I learned in school. I can use a broader vocabulary now. Also, I met new people that have different cultures. All the Canadians here are really kind and helpful.” – Ilse, Germany

Shiny – Internship

“I have had a great experience coming to Vancouver. Within the 2 months I have gained so much experience in life and at the workplace. I see myself being more independent and confident, which was one of my main goals. I’m so happy I found Latitude, they worked so hard to make sure I get an internship.” – Shiny, United Kingdom

Rasmus – Barista

“I started to work as a Barista at one of the many coffee shops here in Vancouver. I pretty much worked all summer except for going on two trips, one to Seattle and the other to Toronto. I usually went to the weekly pub nights which were a really fun time. All these events helped me meet so many new awesome people.” -Rasmus, Sweden

Alex – Internship

“As part of my International Business Management studies, I was required to complete an internship so I decided to go to Toronto as I have family there. I learned a lot about the marketing industry and about Canada as well. I have benefited a lot from the work and from the cultural experience during my stay in Canada.” – Alex, United Kingdom

Borbala – City Volunteer

“My volunteering is definitely off to a good start, all the people I met today were super nice and I think I’m going to like the work, too! I’m also settled in with my host family and I think I hit the jackpot with them because they are truly super welcoming.” – Borbala, Hungary

Hannah – National Parks Volunteer

“I really enjoyed the nature with all the mountains and the unique lakes. And besides that I loved it to spend time with people from all over the world and to form friendship with the other volunteers, which will last for a long time.” Hannah, 18, Germany

Participant – National Park Volunteer

“I learned a lot of things about nature, wildlife and myself . I loved all the hikes and also spending time to help Parks Canada. The grizzly bear research allowed me to improve my English during the survey. I strongly recommend this experience!” P., Switzerland

Natsumi – National Park Volunteer

“I had great time and good experience in Lake Louise. I learned about environment system, process, plants, animals etc. They became my new knowledge. Thank you so much.” Natsumi, Japan

Ready? Apply now for the Wilderness Volunteer in Canada Program!