Your work will focus on the following areas:
Get your PADI diving certification
We offer PADI certifications as part of this project because diving is central to the work you’ll do. If you’re a beginner, you’ll complete the PADI Open Water Dive Course during your first two weeks. If you already have diving experience you’ll complete the PADI Advanced Course or PADI Rescue Diver Course.
You’ll then complete the specialised PADI AWARE Shark Conservation Diver course. You’ll also receive plenty of training on fish identification, research, and survey techniques as part of the PADI Projects Abroad Survey Diver Distinctive Speciality Course.
During the project you’ll help staff collect data from survey dives and Shark dives (twice a month). When sightings are referred to us by the villagers and species are found next to river mouths; we do BRUV drops, survey and count the number of juvenile sharks and wedge fish in the area. We share data with global monitoring platforms such as eShark and SharkBase. In 2016, our marine biology research projects was one of the top five most important contributions to these databases.
You’ll collect data by:
- Going on survey dives and recording details about different species
- Doing bi-monthly shark dives to gather important information about behaviour on individual sharks.
- Conduct surveys in the villages around the area of Pacific Harbour to find hot spots for sharks and Wedge fish. Once hot spots have been confirmed, we will be deploying BRUVs close to the river mouths to survey the number of species.
As well as your core work with sharks, you’ll help care for mangrove seedlings in our mangrove nursery and replant mangroves along the coast.
Mangroves are one of the most important ecosystems in this region and help marine life conservation. They act as nurseries for many different fish species and help reduce carbon emissions. We’re working in partnership with local businesses to work out their carbon emission levels and plant enough mangroves to neutralise them.
Awareness and sustainability initiatives
Help reduce the 73 million sharks killed by humans each year through the campaigns you run. With workshops and outreaches, you’ll raise awareness of the importance of sharks, the impact they have on the ecosystem, and sustainability. You’ll help make sure that local people are involved in shark conservation work. You’ll also help ensure that younger generations continue to protect sharks in the future.
These are some of the activities our volunteers are involved in:
- Conducting workshops to teach local people about the importance of marine conservation and living sustainably
- Holding classes with school children on recycling, climate change, and sea creatures
- Collecting plastic bottles from partner restaurants and resorts and repurposing them as pots for the mangrove nursery
Our partners in Fiji
Projects Abroad works to make the biggest possible difference to shark conservation efforts. Also, to provide the best experience for our volunteers, we make sure you have unparalleled support when you’re working on our projects. In Fiji, we work with many great partner organisations to achieve this.
An important aspect of protecting endangered marine life is diving to collect data. To make sure every volunteer can fully participate in this valuable work, we’ve partnered with PADI and Beqa Adventure Divers.
We’ve also partnered with major conservation organisations like WWF, Project AWARE, SharkBase, and Friends for Sharks. We share our data with them and, with their support, the work you do can have an even greater impact on shark protection policies.
Where in Fiji will I work?
On this project, you’ll be based in Pacific Harbour, known as the ‘adventure capital of Fiji’. This popular tourist area is on the south coast of Viti Levu.
You’ll spend most of your time contributing to marine biology research projects during scuba dives off the coast of Pacific Harbour, in the renowned Beqa Lagoon and the Shark Reef Marine Reserve. You’ll also be helping with conservation and awareness efforts of marine wildlife in coastal communities.
In your free time, there’s plenty to do. Seeking more adrenaline? There’s kayaking, ziplining, and white water rafting. The island also has great hiking among breathtaking waterfalls and lush rainforests. If relaxing is more your thing, Pacific Harbour has some of the finest, white-sand beaches on the island.
We set out the aims and objectives of our projects in documents called Management Plans. We use them to properly plan the work you’ll do. They also help us measure and evaluate our achievements and impact each year.
Ultimately, our Management Plans help us make our projects better. This in turn means you get to be part of something that makes a real impact where it’s needed. Read more about our Management Plans.
Measuring our impact
Our projects work towards clear long-term goals, with specific annual objectives. Every volunteer and intern we send to these projects helps us work towards these goals, no matter how long they spend on our projects.
Every year we take a step back and look at how much progress we've made towards these goals. We put together a Global Impact Report, which documents our achievements. Find out more about the impact our global community of volunteers, interns and staff make, and read the latest report.
Leisure activities and free time
Experience the beauty of the South Pacific while volunteering with us in Fiji. This tropical island country has plenty of activities and must-see sights for you to enjoy in your free time.
We can’t talk about Fiji without mentioning the beaches. With their soft, white sand and clear, blue seas, they are the ideal place to relax and wind down after a day of volunteer work. With the beaches come a bunch of other exciting activities, like water sports and snorkelling.
For a culture-rich experience, you can explore the bright, rainbow-coloured Sri Siva Subramaniya Temple. You can also spend time wandering through art galleries or browsing through stunning handmade pottery in Nadi.
The Kula Eco Park gives you the opportunity to see local plants and animals. For thrill seekers, they also have a zipline going through the park!
You can explore all these different sights on your own or with a group. With so many volunteers joining us in Fiji each year, you’re bound to make some new friends to travel with.
Safety and staff support
Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have the support you need to enjoy your trip with peace of mind. Our Projects Abroad staff are available 24 hours a day to help, and will be on-hand to make sure you settle in well at your accommodation and placement. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.
Find out more about safety and backup.
Meet the team in Fiji
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