Join the TEAM
As a volunteer with Coral Restoration Foundation™, you have the chance to play an active role in the world's largest reef restoration effort.
Volunteers are an integral part of what we do, supporting every aspect of our work,
on land and at sea.
This is a unique, exciting opportunity to help out with reef restoration in the Florida Keys. If you are considering joining us as a Dive Volunteer, here is some basic info...
We are thrilled that you would consider donating your time to the mission to restore coral reefs.
Our volunteers are a critical part of our team at Coral Restoration Foundation, so we are always
excited to welcome new team members.
Volunteers must be based in South Florida, or plan to be in the area for three weeks or longer. We have provided some answers to some other frequently asked questions, below. If you have more questions or would just like to talk with us, feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (305) 453-7030.
Work on the water
As a recreational diver, you could help with nursery work, outplanting on the reef, or monitoring the health of previously corals that have already been outplanted.
We provide structured training for in-water volunteers so that you can develop the skills you need, step by step.
A role for everyone
There are opportunities for you to help us out at our warehouse and Exploration Center in Key Largo.
These could be anything from helping to build Coral Trees™ to providing outreach at our Exploration Center. Every volunteer adds incredible value to our mission.
For you to be able to work with us on the water, you will need to meet the following requirements:
18 years of age
Open Water dive certification (minimum)
Completion of 30 open water dives (preferably ocean dives)
Divers will need to show proof of dive insurance (DAN insurance is a great option!)
Divers will need to show proof of First Aid/CPR and Oxygen Administration training
Personal gear is maintained, proof of gear service within the last year
Once we have obtained all the important information, then divers go on to complete a Volunteer Orientation.
This includes a session at our Education Center and a pool session:
Divers will be asked to complete a few basic dive skills
Divers will complete hands on training for coral nursery and outplanting dives
Upon completion of the Volunteer Orientation, you will start receiving emails about scheduling.
You can choose which days you have available, and which activities you want to learn more about.
The learning doesn’t stop after Volunteer Orientation – volunteers learn many more skills in the field when diving with Coral Restoration Foundation staff and interns.
If you want to help us with activities at our warehouse, our Exploration Center, and our headquarters, this is what you need to know to get started...
For you to be able to work with us on land, you will need to meet the following requirements:
16 years of age
Reliable transportation to and from Education Center or warehouse
Good interpersonal skills
Completion of a short orientation
As a land-based volunteer, there are a variety of activities you can help us with:
Office Volunteer: Help us at the Education Center to greet visitors or answer calls.
Outreach Volunteer: Attend special events with us and conduct community outreach/education
Warehouse Volunteer: Help us construct our Coral Trees (requires the use of power tools)
We've got you covered...
I am interested in volunteering with Coral Restoration Foundation™ as a diver, what are the next steps?
The next step is to identify how much time you would like to donate to Coral Restoration Foundation™. Are you planning to be around for 6 months, 1 week, or do you live here?
If you are only planning to be here for a few days or a few weeks, the Recreational Dive Program might be a better fit. If you are going to be here for a longer period of time or are a South Florida resident becoming a regular volunteer might be the best option.
What is the difference between a Dive Program and the Volunteer Program?
A Dive Program is a one or two-day immersive experience that involves a lecture, hands-on training, and dives on a charter boat with a local dive operator of the group's choosing. The dives are facilitated by Coral Restoration Foundation™ staff or interns. Dive Programs are organized by a group who arrange the charter. The cost involves the price per diver as charged by the dive operator, as well as $50 per diver, per day that comes to the Coral Restoration Foundation™. There is a discounted price for student groups of $35 per diver, per day.
The Volunteer Program is for divers who want to be involved on a regular, long-term basis. These volunteers participate in a half-day training event and then dive off the boats that belong to Coral Restoration Foundation™. These divers usually participate in longer days on the water, sometimes up to eight hours a day working alongside Coral Restoration Foundation™ Staff and interns. These divers are required to have their own dive equipment.
What are the requirements if I want to be a dive volunteer?
Volunteers must be based in South Florida, or plan to be in the area for three weeks or longer.
We ask all new dive volunteers to complete a dive release, fill out a medical evaluation, and if necessary obtain a dive physical with a physician’s signature.
Additionally, we ask for copies of dive certification cards, proof of at least 30 dives (15 in the ocean, 5 from a boat, and 1 in the last year), dive insurance cards, First Aid/CPR certification cards, and an O2 administration card.
New volunteers also participate in a half-day training event with the Coral Restoration Foundation™ staff. The training involves time at our Exploration Center and time at the pool.
Do I need my own dive equipment?
Yes, volunteers will need to provide their own dive equipment. This means BCD, regulator, weights, mask, fins, snorkel, wetsuit, gloves and dive computer. We will provide the tanks and tank fills.
If you are diving between October and April we suggest a 3-5mm wetsuit.
We ask that volunteers provide a receipt showing their gear has been serviced in the last year. If your gear is less than a year old, an itemized receipt showing the date of purchase will be sufficient
What will I do as a volunteer diver with Coral Restoration Foundation™?
When you volunteer as a working diver, you will work alongside our staff and interns in the coral nursery and on the reef. You will be given a basic working knowledge during your training on how to work with corals in the nursery and how to outplant them on the reef. Your first day on the water, you will receive a boat/ safety orientation and be introduced to our warehouse facility.
How does the scheduling work? What is a typical daily schedule?
Currently, we use an online scheduling tool called Doodle. This is an online survey that will be emailed to you weekly.
In the email, you can choose what days you are available and for which events (nursery dives, monitoring dives, outplanting dives). This gives the volunteers more ownership over what they do with their donated time.
Once you become a volunteer, we ask that you give us 24 hours notice if you will need to cancel a dive.
We confirm with divers by phone before each dive day and give as much notice as possible if we have to cancel the dives.
THE CORAL CHRONICLES
Follow our mission as it evolves, with news that comes straight from the heart of the
Coral Restoration Foundation™!
Through CRF’s volunteer and education sign-up portal CRF™ will collect specific information that you enter in order to acknowledge your interest in our programs, and periodically reach out to you with news and opportunities at CRF™.
This information will be used exclusively by CRF™ to communicate with you regarding your interest in the programs you signed up for; CRF™ will not sell or disseminate your information to any third party.
For participants under 13 years of age, all entered information will be viewable by the parent and require the parent’s review and consent before any information is collected.