Female forestry volunteer laughing at work

Shadow Volunteers programme

Shadow Volunteering at Forestry England

Our Shadow Volunteer scheme puts successful applicants into the heart of the work we do by placing them into teams where they will learn from Forestry England colleagues as they carry out their day-to-day tasks.

Shadow volunteers are given training and will develop on-the-job skills and experience during their placements, which run one to three days a week for a period of six months.

The scheme runs twice a year in a selection of the nation’s forests. Watch the video below to find out more.

Could you be a Shadow Volunteer?

We are looking for individuals who want to gain practical experience in the forestry sector and who are also interested in pursuing a career in conservation, community engagement, recreation, site management, or working with volunteers and the public.

Recruitment for March 2023 has now closed.

Recruitment for September 2023 will open in June 2023.

Community Ranger Tim, at Bellever Forest

Why does Forestry England run the Shadow Volunteer scheme?

We are proud to be able to offer the shadow volunteer programme to individuals with an interest in pursuing or considering a career in the forestry sector.  

Not only does it give valuable experience for those taking part in the scheme, but it also provides the nation's forests with an extra pair of hands to support their forest habitats, timber resources, trails, recreation facilities and community engagement. 

We have the opportunity to reach out to a diverse range of people and give them a taster of what it means to manage our magnificent forests, and through decision-making and management of the environment, to make a positive impact at a local and global level.

'The Shadow Volunteer scheme has offered me amazing experiences to further my goals of becoming a recreation ranger.'

- Jacob Goodier, former Shadow Volunteer

Discover more stories in our Shadow Volunteer video playlist.

Two Forestry England volunteers working

Keep exploring...

Volunteering group sat on a bench

If you enjoy the outdoors, want to learn new skills, meet new people and be part of our team, why not get involved with your local forest?

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At Forestry England we are passionate about having a diverse and inclusive workplace. As an equal opportunities employer, we welcome applications from everyone.