GVI: Volunteer in Seychelles

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About

Volunteer in the Seychelles with GVI and discover endemic flora and fauna, unspoiled beaches and beautiful coral reefs!

With 14 Marine Protected Areas, you can help play a critical role in preserving these areas and protecting the country’s unique biodiversity. Seychelles offers a variety of options to help you make a real impact!

Top Volunteer Projects in Seychelles:

  • Marine Conservation Expedition in the Seychelles: Get your PADI Advanced and PADI Coral Reef Research Diver qualification when you join critical marine conservation programs on this expedition! Be an active member of the GVI Marine Research team in the Indian Ocean, on the beautiful Seychelles Islands.
  • Island Conservation Expedition to the Seychelles: Volunteers will contribute directly to marine and terrestrial data collection in the area. You will not only live in one of the most beautiful coastal locations in the world, you will also perform critical research within a national park while working with endemic fauna and flora and helping endangered species.
  • African Marine and Wildlife Conservation Expedition: Experience two amazing locations, while volunteering on critical terrestrial and marine conservation projects. Travel to South Africa and the Seychelles and learn how to track animals, study their behavior, conduct mangrove surveys and more while living amongst some of the most beautiful scenery in the world.
  • Marine Conservation and PADI Divemaster Internship in the Seychelles: This 22 week scuba diving internship in the Seychelles starts with a 10 week marine conservation expedition. Gain a professional diving qualification combined with work experience and marine conservation training.
  • Marine Conservation Short-Term Internship in the Seychelles: Interns get to work on tortoise conservation programs, seasonal turtle nesting research, conduct water turtle surveys, and do seasonal endangered endemic bird monitoring.
  • Lemon Shark and Turtle Conservation in the Seychelles: Help to conserve two of the Seychelles' most important marine species - lemon sharks and turtles. Spend time on the stunning island of Curieuse while you contribute to vital conservation efforts and enjoy living at a remote research station on one of the world’s most beautiful locations.

Questions & Answers

For the Marine Conservation Expedition on Mahé, all volunteers require a current PADI Open Water. No additional skills are required, but it certainly helps if you’re already familiar with diving safety protocol and marine / boating experience. You will study either fish, coral or invertebrates and be taught survey methodology. Writing on a slate underwater would be a good activity to practice...

Reviews

94%
based on 18 reviews
  • Impact 9.2
  • Support 9.4
  • Fun 8.7
  • Value 9.3
  • Safety 9.3
Showing 1 - 15 of 18
Picture of Gemma Bassett
Gemma
10/10

Changed my life!

My name is Gemma, I’m from a small town called Skipton in the UK. I studied at college Art and Design and I work now as a Marketing Manager for a stationery company. I’ve always been interested in volunteering and making a difference so being able to volunteer abroad on a variety of projects was a natural next step for me. I came across GVI on the internet whilst searching for a project that both myself and my boyfriend could do together. I then met with a GVI ambassador who really helped me to choose a project right for us and talk me through the process of applying – I already felt part of the GVI family before I got on the plane to fly to the Seychelles. The flight was long with a change in Dubai so we had a couple of days to relax in the Seychelles before being picked up and taken to the gorgeous island of Curieuse. We really didn’t fully understand what to expect by this stage and was going with the flow, meeting new like minded people and getting welcomed into island life. The first day was by far the hardest on the island, taking all the briefing tasks in and trying to understand everything you’re going to be a part of for the next two/three weeks! The GVI team on Curieuse were amazing and their energy was what kept me going. My favourite part of the experience was being able to release a lemon shark back into the sea after an examination – truly beautiful creatures. I learnt from my trip to the Seychelles that I’m a lot stronger than I thought I was and also some things that I am good at that I didn’t think I would be. It has raised my awareness of my inner self and made me realise that I need to do more for myself in giving back to the natural environment and wildlife as the experience in the Seychelles changed my perspective for the better. We both felt completely safe and supported throughout our time on base and made some amazing new friends who we still see now we are back home in the UK – and even some of them have flown over to the UK to see us!! I feel this project got me on to a new path in my life, a more conscious living journey and something that is moving forward day by day. I would love to do more work of this nature in the future and I do believe this opportunity has helped me massively! I want to say a special thank you to Alan, Morgan, Catherine and Pete who each supported me on the island and gave me some amazing advice in my short time there. I’m very sad to have left and I hope to see them all again one day on Curieuse island.

How can this program be improved?
We got a lot out of being on the island but the two weeks was probably not long enough and the team on the island could probably find longer term volunteers most useful. Perhaps looking at intake scheduling and planning volunteers applications may support them more!
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Amy
10/10

Unforgetable experience

My volunteering with GVI on Curieuse was what pushed me into following my passion for conservation. I felt relaxed going on my first solo flight/trip because of the amazing support from GVI before and during my time in the Seychelles. The hands on learning and variety in the volunteers programme makes everyday exciting. The staff were like a second family and I made some life long friends. I would recommend it in a heartbeat.

How can this program be improved?
More interaction with the local communties during projects would be great!
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Leigh-Anne
10/10

GVI marine expedition

My first week with GVI Mahe, Seychelles at Cap Ternay was a very busy one, the amount of information I learnt in such a short period of time was astounding, and yet I thrived at wanting to learn more. The days are long and tiring but in the best way!

Helping the marine environment and learning more about it is something I hold dear and it wasn't just about having fun it was serious and to know the work we were doing was making a substantial difference.

If more people can do what we have done all around the world then there is a slight hope in saving some of our coral reefs and marine life which have nearly been lost. Also being able to teach this to the local school in Seychelles was another an amazing experience, they want to listen and knowing they will grow up with this knowledge from GVI staff already makes the world a better place.

Everything about the program was inspirational. Plus scuba diving every day, well who wouldn't!!

Yes, I recommend this program
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Vanessa
8/10

Curieuse Island Conservation Project

Although the base camp is very basic you do quickly adjust to that, helped by great staff and a brilliant group of international co-volunteers who gelled into an amazing team. The routine and simple life, free from technology (unless you want to invest in a local SIM) leads to great conversations, learning new card games - from Russia to Australia, joining an impromptu yoga class, discovering the delights of Exploding Kittens, or reading on a beautiful beach close to camp in your down time. I was there outside of the main turtle and shark monitoring periods but this gave me the opportunity to participate in a wide range of projects including beach profiling, Giant Tortoise measuring (hatchlings and ancients), Coco de Mer studies as well as monitoring the beaches for Green Turtle nesting and continuing the Juvenile Lemon Shark monitoring. It is worth finding out what you will be involved in and an idea of the size of your group, but whatever it is you will be trekking over beautiful, if rugged, terrain most days and getting to enjoy the simplicity of island life. Added to this we snorkelled every week and got to see so many wonderful marine species. GVI seem to be very age inclusive, which was important to me as a mature person. There are opportunities to explore other islands at weekends and Bird is highly recommended.

How can this program be improved?
Match the number of volunteers to the requirements of the survey/data collection projects running in the relevant season where every possible.
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Melanie
10/10

Big blue ocean.

My entire life I’ve been curious about the ocean and all that it has to offer. Volunteering with GVI really gave me a front row, hands on experience in marine conservation. Spending the last 7 years as a paramedic has been great, but spending 1 month working in marine conservation has really opened my eyes to a whole new world and is now a career path that I would like to explore further.

To anyone considering volunteering abroad, GVI is definitely the organization to go through!

How can this program be improved?
Less base duties and an increase in the grocery budget.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Sebastian
10/10

Curieuse Island - 12 weeks of working in paradise

The seychelles are a truly magical places for volunteering. Especially Curieuse Island - with just the day visitors you life almost alone on the tropical island. No hotels, no shops, no cars or streets. Living on base is basic: no hot water, simply toilets and no air conditioning ;) . But after my three month experience I have to say that you do not need those things. The advantages of the island life are superior. In the right season you can see turtle laying at the beaches, you can work very close with baby lemon sharks (and by close I mean you definitely will thouch them if you want) and of course you will see the over 100 giant tortoises on the island. But you should have in mind that this is still a conversation project and not a 5 star luxury vacation! Be prepared for sweaty manual work, to develop the base, so it is a benefit for all.
But this is just a side note all in all I can totaly recommend joining this project, it is truly an experience I will never forget!

How can this program be improved?
I was thinking a lot about if there is something to improve. But I have not found anything, so my answer to this question is „I don’t know“
Yes, I recommend this program
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Jamie
8/10

4 weeks on curieuse island

I spent 4 weeks out in the seychelles on a tiny island called curieuse. The GVI base and seychelles national park authority rangers are the only groups living on the island which in itself is difficult to comprehend. With this came huge benefits. It developed you as a person, not just the surveys but the lifestyle and routine of things, and because there are very little seasonal changes to daylight your body clock switched to 6am starts followed by dinner at 7 and most in bed by 8. Likewise, the whole ecological and biodiversity side of things was surreal, the species you saw were something I didn't comprehend until I got home and likewise with the beaches- you don't expect them to be like they are in the postcards, but they're even better. Overall this is an experience I'll take away with me when it comes to finishing my final year at university and as I begin to look for jobs abroad.

How can this program be improved?
Further engagement from the staff and offering alternative activities as most surveys are seasonal, focus on surveys that are weekly or monthly and make them more frequent to aid the enjoyment of volunteers and increase the applicable skill set different volunteers may be able to use for different surveys
Yes, I recommend this program
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Leigh-Anne
10/10

GVI Seychelles

My experience of travelling to the Seychelles through GVI was one of the most exciting I have done in my life, and I have travelled extensively across the world. The reason this trip was so special to me is because I was volunteering and contributing to a cause I am passionate about, marine conservation; I think if more people volunteered it would help many more of the world in need across a variety programs GVI offer. I did this trip on my own and was nervous at first but soon became like part of the family with the GVI staff and volunteers on Mahe island, scuba diving daily and undergoing vigorous training in fish identification and scuba diving made this whole experience more enjoyable. Don't go to just relax and do nothing, this course needs people that are determined to learn and become part of something that is vital to the Seychelles marine eco environment, but of course have fun at the same time. Wish I could have stayed longer, it really, truly is a chance no one should miss.

How can this program be improved?
Possibly expand the base and equipment, boat, diving gear etc for chance of doing more diving in the day when it's a really busy month for volunteers
Yes, I recommend this program
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Alison
9/10

Island Conservation Seychelles

I took part in the gvi Island Conservation programme in Seychelles in August 2015. I loved living on the uninhabited island, Curieuse with the gvi staff and my group of volunteers. Seychelles has to be one of the most beautiful and unspoilt places on earth and the wildlife is unique. I loved the deserted beaches! I loved working with the giant tortoises and the green turtle hatchlings. I flew to Bird for part of my programme to spent 4 days exploring this wild and remote private island. Standing on the edge of the sooty tern colony on the North Point, listening to 800,000 pairs nesting was incredible! The remoteness and beauty of Bird is a recommended experience. Snorkelling with a green turtle on Praslin was unforgettable. I had a lot of fun making new friends and having new experiences out in the field. It was physically challenging at times, due to the heat and humidity so I would make sure you have increased your fitnness levels before you go! The camp is well equipped you don't need to take half of what you would expect. The gvi staff were really firiendly - very professional and loads of fun. I would recommend this conservation project with gvi - it may be expensive but it is definitely worth it.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Lovisa
10/10

Coral Paradise

This is truly one of the best things I've ever done. I improoved a lot in diving, independence and so on. The one thing you have to know as a participant is that this is not vacation. This is an actual job you are about to shoulder. It's hard work but so much fun! Diving 1 or 2 dives a day, making the base go round. You will also work with children from the President's Village Childrens' Home and represent GVI in several occasions such as local festivities. You are free to do as you please friday and saturday, there is so much on the islands to explore!

Only the best people choose to go here, by the obvious cause that participating is a really generous thing to do.

How can this program be improved?
more dives! :D (and cheaper so that I could afford to go several more times)
Yes, I recommend this program
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Christin
7/10

Its fun more for fun

People who love diving and international parties, this is the volunteering you want to do.
You have 1-2 dives and a lecture per day.
You have to fill tanks, clean the bathroom and cook for your mates.
Food supplies are limited.

No, I don't recommend this program
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Nipper
10/10

Conserving paradise

Early starts made the most of each day in the sunshine, beginning with duties then breakfast and the first of up to 4 dives kitting up. Or for new starters - off to coral or fish lectures! You never stop learning while on expedition; how to perfect your bouyancy, which coral is that, how to bake fresh bread from scratch, how to husk and grate a coconut, how to fill a dive tank... Even so, it's a stress-free world in one of the most popular tropical holiday destinations in the world. And while you're busy having fun, you're also learning about the impact of human activity on the health of our oceans - food for thought when you return home to 'reality'. Fridays and Saturdays spent in town or touring the island provide the chance to catch up with family and friends back home, discover local markets and cool cafes to escape the heat, stock up on luxury food items and top up your phone credit.

Yes, I recommend this program
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carltoyer
9/10

Under the sea

I arrived in the Seychelles feeling very excited and apprehensive about what the next 3 months would hold. When I arrived I had never dived in my life but as soon as I put on my cylinder on my back and got in the water it just felt right. I can’t explain in words how beautiful and calming diving in the Seychelles was. Before I arrived I looked at the sea and saw it as a vast mass of water but now I appreciate it for what life it holds. Sharks that make your heart race , the chilled out turtles , the graceful rays and the masses of colourful fish .What makes it more rewarding was the fact that I was able to identify the fish (through the science training we were given and exams we took) and start to notice their behaviour which made diving far more enjoyable . Furthermore it’s good to know that the survey dives that we conducted were creating valuable data and were giving us an insight into the health or the reef. It’s a great feeling knowing that our surveys are increasing the knowledge of the local reefs and thus helping to conserve these delicate ecosystems. I can now say that I am totally hooked on diving and can’t wait to get back in the water
GVI Seychelles was an amazing experience and I couldn’t have wished for a better 3 months, it far outstretched my expectations. The GVI staff were very professional and you could easily see their passion for the ocean, there knowledge was extensive and they were always there to help with any problems whether it being personal or in regards to the science training. The staff were also very friendly and made you feel very welcome especially in the 1st few days, when everything was new and a little overwhelming. As expedition life is so different to normal life, but you soon get used to it and never want to give up the simple way of living, who needs a TV when the ocean is a 10m walk ?!?

Top Memories
Island Hoping
Making new friends from around the world
Helping turtle hatchlings to the sea
Going to the local beach knowing know one else will be there , what more could you ask for ?
Hearing the waves from our huts
Watching the world go by in the hamocks
Diving

Yes, I recommend this program
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Charlotte
10/10

Paradise Above and Below the Water

If you're looking for a diving experience that takes your breath away then this is the project for you. I am not going to tell you all about the island as a whole as i think this is not something you can get across to people in a letter, instead all i will say is this place is paradise both in and out of the water and everyone has different experiences there but i haven't met anyone yet who hasn't fallen in love with both the island and the project:)
Instead i will give you some advise on what to expect and some advise if you are thinking about joining this project.
Firstly make sure you understand what you are signing up for. I attended Cap Ternay and You have to remember that you are not going to be living in a hotel this is an expedition with shared dorms and bathrooms. There is no hot water (which you wouldn't want anyway as it is very hot here)You work in duty groups which cover cleaning, kitchen, Boat duties and operating the compressor these are done on a daily basis except for weekends. And you are living a fair distance from any local shops / bus stops etc. I personally enjoyed all of these aspects as i was aware of what to expect before i left.
My second piece of advise for anyone going on this project is to read through the training manuals which are given to you in advance before you leave. You will be allocated either fish or coral which will be the subjects you will survey during your time on camp. My main piece of advise is to revise this as much as possible before you leave and if you have time make up some flash cards for them, as i found this the easiest way to learn. The reason i advise this is because when you arrive in this paradise you are taken away by all the beauty of the island and get caught up in meeting new people and learning new skills that it makes revising more difficult than you think. The staff are very helpful in teaching you everything you will need to know but if you can arrive already prepared then it will make the first few weeks on camp alot less busy.
After the first few weeks of getting used to all the duties, getting signed off on your coral or fish spots and once you have passed all your exams you are set to be let loose into the ocean to start you surveys. After this point your days become more free so you have alot more free time during the day. I think personally that 4 weeks is not enough time to really enjoy this program as the first 4 weeks are the busiest and so you don't get the chance to appreciate or put to use all the training you have been given. I was originally on the program for 8 weeks and then extended to 12 weeks when i was out there as i enjoyed the program so much.
I would defiantly recommend this program to anyone wanting to get involved in marine conservation, this program allows you to not only have first hand experience in biological underwater surveys, it also allows you to spread your newly gained knowledge to the next generation of people though weekly teaching sessions with one of the schools on the island. You meet every Wednesday on the local beach with one class and you get to put together your own lessons with them to teach them the importance of saving our oceans.
I have only mentioned a few key aspects of the program as to be honest there are far to many to list. From the whale sharks, dolphins, sharks, scenery and amazing friends you meet i could not have picked a better expedition to go on.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Emma
10/10

GVI Seychelles Marine Conservation Internship Curieuse Island

I was extremely fortunate to take part in the GVI Seychelles Marine Conservation Internship - a fantastic opportunity to expand my knowledge, diving experience and contribute to a truly important cause while having a great time, meeting new and wonderful people, and experiencing another part of the world, it's people and culture.

The experiences on Curieuse are difficult to compare to others. Located in the heart of a marine park, the island is virtually uninhabitable except for GVI, a handful of locals, many giant tortoises and the endemic Coco de Mer. Without electricity, generated power, showers every other day and bucket-flush toilets are easy to become accustomed to, especially when surrounded by forest, beach and reef at the doorstep and the ocean to send you to sleep at night. Days are typically filled with fish and coral identification study, id spot and survey dives, and plenty of time to relax and enjoy the surroundings. The reefs are absolutely stunning, supporting phenomenal marine animal and plant diversity and abundance - some of the most beautiful diving I've done!

The staff at GVI, both in the office and the field, are very supportive and helpful. With regards to the office, they assist in keeping program details in order, while in the field, the staff are not only knowledgable, but conduct themselves in a professional matter, while also having fun.

But this experience extends far beyond the internship itself, with many opportunities to become further involved through Ambassador programs, Scholarshis and the Charitable Trust. I encourage you to find out more, google GVI!

Yes, I recommend this program

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About Global Vision International (GVI)

GVI is an award-winning organisation that tackles critical local and global issues by operating education and training programs on sustainable development projects around the world.

Formed in 1997, we have been operating our award-winning...