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Coastline Conservation and Education Volunteer Project in New Zealand - Auckland

Coastline Conservation and Education Volunteer Project in New Zealand - Auckland

Protect nature from plastic pollution
Start dates
Programs start every first and third Monday of the month
Choose from 2-12 weeks
Volunteer hours
Up to 5 hours a day
Volunteers aged 18+ and families
Dormitory-style hostel
Program fees
From CA$1809 for 2 weeks
What's included
Find out here
Apply for free
'Who is going' users image
Who is going?
Group video calls

Once you have secured your place, join regular video calls to meet your Program Manager and other volunteers before your trip.

This program is ideal for:

Fit and active volunteers who are willing to work hard and don’t mind getting dirty in the name of helping the environment.

Project details

Interested in protecting New Zealand’s beautiful beaches from plastic pollution and other litter? International Volunteer HQ’s Coastline Conservation and Education Project enables volunteers to spend time outdoors assisting with a wide range of activities that help to make a real difference to the issues facing New Zealand’s incredible coastal and marine environment. Volunteers gain experience and knowledge in running large-scale beach clean-ups and awareness-raising events and campaigns, facilitating education programs and training workshops, and providing important support for local initiatives that work to keep New Zealand’s coastlines and marine wildlife healthy.

What to expect and how you'll make an impact

Coastal and marine litter negatively impacts our environment, the health of our wildlife, and our own well-being. New Zealand holds the undesirable global ranking of 15th highest generator of plastic waste per capita. Waste escapes from our rubbish bins, and gets washed into stormwater drains and rivers, and ultimately ends up on our beaches and in our ocean. The beautiful country is also the most dangerous place in the world to be a seabird when it comes to plastic ingestion, with a 2015 study predicting that 99% of our seabird species will be ingesting plastic by 2050. To address the litter challenge long-term, we need to influence widespread behaviours around the production, consumption and disposal of waste.

As a Coastline Conservation and Education Project volunteer, you’ll be working with a local team to:

  • Facilitate nature-based learning experiences for schools, community and corporate groups
  • Lead litter data collection activities and litter data collection training workshops
  • Plan and run large-scale beach clean-up and awareness-raising events
  • Facilitate behaviour change workshops with schools, corporate and community groups
  • Train and support a network of citizen scientists to run New Zealand’s only nationwide beach litter monitoring program

You’ll meet and work with a diverse range of audiences and participants including school, corporate and community groups, and in a variety of settings, mostly outdoors and at the beach, and in some of New Zealand’s most beautiful coastal environments within the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park. You’ll be part of an amazing team of local facilitators and will have opportunities to develop your facilitation, outdoor leadership, data collection and event management skills as you help the project achieve its intended impact of a 60% reduction in coastal litter in New Zealand by 2030.

Contributes to United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal #4: Quality Education

Contributes to United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal #4: Quality Education

More than half of all children and teens do not meet minimum proficiency standards in reading and mathematics. Quality education provides an opportunity to learn and grow in a safe environment and is key to preventing poverty, securing long-term employment and improving quality of life.

Why do Coastline Conservation and Education volunteering in Auckland with IVHQ?

When you volunteer in New Zealand you’ll be adding value to the local community, while also developing personally and professionally by:

  • Supporting local initiatives that protect the coastal and marine environment
  • Developing your communication and facilitation skills
  • Gaining conservation experience
  • Immersing yourself in the New Zealand way of life
  • Exploring New Zealand’s untouched natural environment

Volunteer requirements

  • Volunteers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to participate in this program and may be asked to provide additional documentation to the local team
  • All volunteers aged 13+ are required to provide a criminal background check to IVHQ prior to departure. Those aged 13-17, if unable to obtain a criminal background check, can provide two character reference letters instead
  • All volunteers are required to have adequate volunteer travel insurance
  • All volunteers must speak fluent English.
Are you eligible to volunteer?

Submit a free application so we can confirm your eligibility and check availability for your preferred dates.

Apply for free

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'Who is going' users image
Who is going?
Group video calls

Once you have secured your place, join regular video calls to meet your Program Manager and other volunteers before your trip.

What recent volunteers said about their IVHQ experience

Arnold Wan
05 Jun 2024

I am more aware of the impact our everyday actions have on litter that end up on beaches, especially our plastic consumption.

Don’t be afraid of the social aspect of it, as there are many solo volunteers in the exact same situation. Everyone is sharing the same experience and that makes it fun to meet people and share a meaningful journey with them.

Lauren Ewen
25 Mar 2024

I came into this experience feeling uneasy about how it would go and if this was something I could handle. It has changed me in so many positive ways; from learning more about how I can make an impact on the environment, to meeting new friends from across the world, learning a new culture, and to learning more about myself. I have come home a stronger person with so many new perspectives. I highly recommend volunteering with IVHQ in New Zealand!

Sandra Parker
20 Mar 2024

The local team were absolutely professional, welcoming, caring, supportive and wonderfully fun! We were issued with detailed schedules every two weeks, with instructions on how to reach our destination. We learned so much about ‘sustainability’ in every sense of the word. We could see the positive care and impact this team was making, through information sharing in schools, businesses and the local community. The work at times was quite hard, but rewarding. I was proud to be part of the team and volunteers. This team has set a bar for me, and given me a positive reason as to why I could confidently go to another destination in the world, and expect any other team to set the same high standards.

Volunteering in this way, gave me a much better understanding of how different thicknesses of plastics impacted on the environment and how both could be recycled (some having more positive uses than others). Knowing, seeing, and helping to remove, bottles, glass and all kinds of waste from in and around the environment, I was making a positive impact. Locals who saw and asked what we were doing, would thank us which was appreciative and nice to hear.

Although I was not completely ignorant about this area. I gained a great learning and understanding of sustainability. I met many people of different cultures and made some lovely friends. If you are given the same professional, kind and respectful treatment, with lots of shared knowledge (with fun times thrown in), you will have no reason for hesitation about joining this program. Just a great happy experience!

Donna Brown
20 Mar 2024

My two weeks volunteering with IVHQ and the local team in Auckland was a truly life-changing experience! I am still in awe of how much I learned in such a short time about marine and coastal conservation efforts in New Zealand and the small changes we can each make to protect our oceans, waterways, wildlife, and our planet. The local team staff are all wonderful to work with; particularly the volunteer coordinator, who is extraordinary at her job and a genuinely lovely individual. Auckland is a stunningly scenic and vibrant city, and as a volunteer, I was able to visit many beaches and areas around the city. This was my third volunteer experience with IVHQ, and my absolute favorite. What an incredible way to experience amazing New Zealand, and to make friendships with other like-minded individuals from around the world!

Else Strong
20 Dec 2023

I would definitely recommend volunteering with Sustainable Coastlines and IVHQ!

Zachary King
07 Dec 2022

I learned so much more than I thought I would about the different types of trash that litter the New Zealand beaches. I think it is really cool how the program addresses the issue by collecting and entering data into a global database on the types/amounts of trash we find on the beaches, so that the most impactful environmental laws/regulations can be proposed and supported using data that we have contributed to. I feel that I am actually doing really important work and not just picking up litter. One of my first days on the program, we had gone to one of the beaches and collected an astonishing 600+ firework casings and shells. The program is very engaging and inclusive and I found myself eager to start working each day. There is also plenty of time on the weekends to visit some iconic New Zealand tourist attractions, like Hobbiton and Glow Worm caves. I am very happy that I decided on the New Zealalnd program and I highly recommend it to anyone who is looking to do environmentally impactful volunteer work and have a fun adventurous time doing it!


To read all reviews, visit our reviews page.

Academic course credit

Academic course credit through International Volunteer HQ and Intern Abroad HQ.

Academic course credit

Gain course credit from your college or university and meet your academic requirements when completing a volunteer abroad program with International Volunteer HQ!

Learn about course credit


Volunteer Abroad in New Zealand with IVHQ


Set in the middle of the South Pacific ocean, New Zealand is a small island nation with a big reputation for its breathtaking scenery, cultural diversity, unique wildlife, adventure sports and relaxed lifestyle. It’s also known for being clean and environmentally conscious, but with continued development and a booming tourism industry it needs volunteers to help the country live up to its pure, green image.

The IVHQ New Zealand Program is located in Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city, which is home to roughly one quarter of the country’s population. Auckland is a modern, multicultural city with a wide range of attractions and activities to take part in, and is a great place from which to explore the rest of New Zealand. Volunteer placements are located throughout the wider city area of Auckland.

Arrival and orientation

The program orientation begins on the first and third Monday of every month and volunteers need to arrive in Auckland on the day before orientation.

After you have registered for the program, please book your flights to arrive at the Auckland International Airport (AKL).

When you arrive, you will be picked-up from the airport by a shuttle bus and transported to the volunteer accommodation in Auckland central. Your accommodation is covered by your Program Fee and includes the night before your program orientation.

If you are in New Zealand prior to your volunteer program, you will need to arrange your own transport to the accommodation in Auckland the day before your program orientation.

Orientation is hosted by our New Zealand team in Auckland. It begins the morning of your chosen start date and lasts for a full day. The orientation covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program in New Zealand – an introduction to New Zealand, culture and customs, rules and expectations, safety, travel opportunities, an introduction to project and placement as well as a tour of the local area. The orientation will also give you a chance to meet other volunteers with whom you can swap contact details for weekend travel and socializing.

Volunteer schedule example


Aside from the initial orientation day, you will have a variety of different projects that run throughout the week and you are expected to work for approximately 4 to 6 hours per day, though this may vary depending on the needs of your particular project.

An example schedule is as follows:

7:30 AM Wake up and make/grab your packed lunch and have breakfast.
8:30 AM Travel to the local office or join local placement staff at accommodation and begin work on your project.
12:00 PM Eat a packed lunch at your placement and then resume your volunteer work.
3:00 PM Work at the placement usually ends. Plan for the following day’s activities or use your free time as you wish. This could include sightseeing and exploring Auckland’s beautiful surroundings.


With your weekends free in New Zealand you could find yourself relaxing on a beautiful, remote beach; swinging through a cavernous gorge; touring plopping geothermal mud pools; learning about the indigenous Māori culture; hitting the slopes or diving the depths of the country’s crystalline waters.

For the adventurous, there’s a plethora of excellent surfing spots, bungee jumping, white water rafting, parasailing, mountain biking, kayaking, swimming and snorkelling opportunities as well as a host of glaciers, rainforests, mountains, coastlines, fjords, waterfalls and rolling hills to explore.

Auckland is an extremely advantageous base for travel to other parts of New Zealand, and most places can be reached with a short flight, or car or bus trips of varying lengths. Just a quick ferry ride away from Auckland, volunteers can spend their day in wineries on Waiheke Island or tramping up an extinct volcano on Rangitoto Island.

Accommodation and WiFi

Volunteers stay in a dormitory-style lodge in the heart of Auckland. The hostel is comfortable, modern, safe and has super friendly staff. The offices of the local team are a 25-30 minute walk or a 15-minute bus ride from the hostel.

You will be sharing a room with five to ten other people of both genders. Please note all rooms have communal, co-ed bathrooms equipped with western toilets and hot showers. Bedding is provided, but you’ll need to bring your own towels and toiletries. There are staff who clean the accommodation throughout the week, including your sheets, however volunteers are required to keep their rooms tidy. Lockers are available but you must bring your own padlock.

Accommodation upgrades to private rooms can be arranged at an additional cost and female only dorms can also be arranged (no additional cost) - all upgrades will be subject to availability and can be arranged once registered onto the program.

WiFi is available at all times, at no extra cost. To keep connected, you can also purchase a local SIM card with data for an unlocked mobile phone.


On Mondays, volunteers start the week with a relaxing sit down breakfast and hot drink at a local cafe, and pick up groceries to prepare lunch for the week. During the remaining weekdays, volunteers are provided with ingredients for continental-style breakfasts, which can be made in the communal kitchen area of the accommodation. This typically includes coffee and tea, granola, yoghurt, seasonal fruits, breads, a selection of spreads, eggs, and avocados.

You will make your own packed lunch to eat during your lunch break at your volunteer placement. This is prepared at breakfast, or the night before if preferred. Ingredients provided for these packed lunches include bread or wraps, salami or chicken, hummus, seasonal salads, sauces, and a sweet treat for afterwards.

Volunteers are responsible for purchasing their own dinners, either taking advantage of the nearby restaurants or purchasing groceries to prepare themselves in the accommodation’s communal kitchen.

On weekends, volunteers are responsible for purchasing their own meals, either taking advantage of the nearby restaurants and cafes or purchasing groceries to prepare themselves in the accommodation’s communal kitchen.

Tap water in New Zealand is safe to drink in most areas but we strongly recommend bringing a reusable water bottle with you to cut down on plastic waste.


  • USD

Spots are limited. For a Registration Fee of just US$329 (approximately CA$474) you secure your spot and unlock all our preparation and training tools.

You don't need to worry about paying your Program Fee until you get closer to your start date.

Program Fee
Due 30 days before you start, or within 48 hours if you register inside of 30 days. Covers the cost of hosting you.
  • USD
2 weeks $1,255 Equivalent to $90/day
3 weeks $1,830 Equivalent to $87/day
4 weeks $2,400 Equivalent to $86/day
5 weeks $2,965 Equivalent to $85/day
6 weeks $3,525 Equivalent to $84/day
8 weeks $4,630 Equivalent to $83/day
10 weeks $5,725 Equivalent to $82/day
12 weeks $6,815 Equivalent to $81/day
  • All programs attract a Registration Fee of US$329 (approximately CA$474) in addition to the Program Fee. This covers all pre-departure support services.
  • A 5% international banking fee is added at point of payment.
  • Recommended spending money: Volunteers in New Zealand generally find a weekly budget of US$150 for dinners, weekend meals, transport and other miscellaneous expenses to be sufficient.
  • Any changes or cancellations between 5-14 days of arrival are subject to a US$280 late change/cancellation charge.
  • If changing or cancelling inside 4 days of arrival, this is subject to a US$425 late change/cancellation fee.
  • Breakfast and lunch (Monday to Friday)
  • Airport pick-up
  • Accommodation
  • 24/7 in-country support
  • In-country program orientation
  • Pre-departure support from your Program Manager
  • Personalized preparation tools, guides and check lists
  • Access to IVHQ’s preferred insurance and flights partners
  • Certificate of International Volunteer Service

Learn more about what's included in your IVHQ Registration Fee and Program Fee.

  • Dinner everyday
  • Meals on the weekend
  • Transport to and from your placement each day
  • Return to the airport when your program finishes
  • Flights
  • Visa (if required), travel insurance (mandatory), vaccinations, criminal background check.
  • Personal spending money for snacks, laundry, public transportation, drinks and leisure activities during your free time.

Check what's required to visit New Zealand

Safety and support

Safety and support with IVHQ

Safety and support

IVHQ follows best practice and industry-leading health and safety procedures, which are regularly reviewed and optimized as part of the B Corporation recertification.

  • All volunteers encouraged to complete our interactive pre-departure training.
  • All local teams trained on best practice volunteer management & First Aid.
  • All IVHQ programs are required to adhere to IVHQ's Risk Management Policy.
  • All volunteers have access to 24/7 in-country support from our local team.
Learn more about IVHQ's safety

Essential country information

Essential country information

Capital Wellington
Population 5 million
Languages English, Māori
Currency New Zealand Dollar (NZD)
Time zone UTC+12:00

Weather and climate

As a whole, the climate is considered to be maritime temperate, but New Zealand’s climate is quite varied due to its diversity in geographic features and the severity of weather patterns coming off the Pacific Ocean and Tasman Sea. Weather in Auckland, where the IVHQ volunteer program is based, has a breezy, mild and humid temperate climate with warm summers and no dry season. Winter temperatures in Auckland (June through August) range between 8°C and 16°C (46°F and 60°F). Summer temperatures in Auckland (December through February) range between 15°C and 24°C (59°F and 75°F). Clouds and rain are relatively common in Auckland and New Zealand as a whole, with moderate to light rain occurring at some point in the day roughly 50% of each year.

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