Voluntary Animal Keeper Internship Programme 2023

About us:

The Ventura Wildlife Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to protecting wildlife and habitats on an international scale. At the heart of all that we do lies our vision of creating a sustainable world where all wildlife can flourish for future generations to appreciate and enjoy.

We operate from a 15-acre wildlife conservation centre which home to over 60 different species of wild animal, many of which form part of important breeding programmes. The centre also contains a ‘World Farm’, containing a variety of unusual and rare domestic farm breeds. The Foundation works to maintain rare domestic breeds that can help to create sustainable farming opportunities.

Internship Programme:

Our internships provide an excellent opportunity to gain valuable real-world experience and knowledge of working with a variety of different animal species. Interns will obtain both practical and theoretical training which will provide a significant insight into the zoological industry.

Our internships consist of two main elements:

1) Practical animal keeping- An opportunity to work alongside our keepers to learn all aspects of successful animal husbandry including animal feed, cleaning protocols and general site upkeep.

2) Classroom-based teaching- This element provides some of the theory-based knowledge and understanding required for successful animal husbandry as well as a greater insight into our conservation and educational work.

Interns will also have the chance to take part in educational talks along with private tours and animal experiences gaining confidence and professionalism.

Our internship programme has been carefully designed with the goal of promoting future employability in a career within animal husbandry. It is ideal for those studying or have recently finished an animal related course. Candidates must be over 18 years old and have a good level of fitness as this type of work can be physically demanding.

The programme is open to UK and EU citizens as well as anyone else with a status that allows them to work/volunteer in the UK. We are unable to offer any wages or salary as part of our internship programme.  Interns will receive uniform, discounted food & drink, and several private guest passes for friends & family to visit the centre. No other financial benefits are offered. Candidates will need to be able to financially support themselves and arrange their own accommodation for the entire length of the internship.

Length of Internship & Intake Dates

Our next internship intake beings on Monday 3rd April 2023

Currently we have two main intakes per year.

1st April

1st September

Our standard internships are based on 5 days per week and last a minimum of 6 months. The internship programme is very popular and can fill up fast so please apply as early as possible to avoid disappointment.

We also offer a limited number of:

  • 9 to 12-month internships/placements.
  • Start dates outside of our main April & September internship intakes.

Opportunities Available:

For each intake we can accommodate interns on the following sections:

  • Paddock Section – A focus on larger species including zebra, ostrich, camel, bison, reindeer, llama, alpaca & Hungarian steppe cattle.
  • Middle Section – A focus on animals from our Australia, Island and South America zones. Species include kangaroo, dingo, kookaburra, emu, macaw, lemur, binturong, and fossa.
  • Lodge Section – A focus on some of our smaller and more delicate animal species from around the world as well as some of our most iconic birds. Species on this section include, tamarin, meerkat, porcupine, zorilla, giant tortoise, armadillo, hutia, agouti, flamingo, pelican and more.

How to Apply:

Please email a copy of your CV as well as a cover letter outlining why you wish to be considered for out internship programme to: careers@venturawildlifefoundation.org

Please note your preferred intake dates and section in your application.