Volunteer Placements

Membership Development Volunteer Placement

Our Purpose: The Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust (HWDT) is the leading voice for the conservation of Hebridean cetaceans; dedicated to enhancing knowledge and understanding of Scotland’s whales, dolphins and porpoises and the Hebridean marine environment through education, research and working within local communities towards lasting conservation.

About the Placement: HWDT operates a vital cetacean monitoring programme in the Scottish Hebrides, conducting research into the distribution, abundance and habitat use of whales, dolphins, porpoises and basking sharks. Our research programme is well established, running for over 20 years.

This is a fantastic opportunity for an enthusiastic individual, keen to gain experience in supporter
engagement and scheme development. HWDT is based in the colourful and picturesque harbour town
of Tobermory, on the Isle of Mull; where we have our office, Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Centre
and the mooring for our research vessel Silurian.

During the placement you will work with our Volunteer Coordinator and Engagement Officer to
engage with our current supporter base and deliver updates. You will also be involved in reviewing
and developing the current schemes.

Placement Dates: We are offering a 3-month volunteer placement running from Monday 3
rd October 2016 – Friday 23rd December 2016, with a possibility of a short extension at the discretion of HWDT. The successful candidate will work between 3 - 4 days a week and must be able to commit to the full placement length. Working hours can be flexible.

What you will get out of it:

  • Experience in outreach and engagement with HWDT supporters
  • Opportunity to develop your skills in database management
  • Useful workplace experience for a career in marine conservation
  • Opportunity to live and work on a beautiful, remote Scottish Island!

Accommodation and living expenses: The Trust will not be able to cover any accommodation or living
expenses during the placement. Accommodation can be arranged for you through our team. Typically,
accommodation in a shared house in Tobermory will cost between £60-£100 per week (inclusive of
bills). Tobermory is the largest town on the Isle of Mull with a good range of facilities including a small
co-op, pharmacy, pubs, gift shops and cafes. Other amenities you may require i.e. large high street
chains, supermarkets, train station etc. can be found in Oban; a 45 minute ferry journey away. Please
be aware that Mull is a remote island; only accessible by ferry links from the Scottish mainland.

Role description:

  • ­Produce the year-end sightings update for current sponsors of our minke whales (Kasey, Nick and Knobble) and the West Coast Pod of orca
  • Develop the HWDT supporter/membership pack
  • Issue supporter packs and update the database with new members and renewals
  • Help to develop new fundraising campaigns
  • Explore and implement a more effective, automated database management platform to
    replace the existing manual databases
  • Investigate different supporter scheme promotion online, highlighting ‘good practice’ to feed
    into the development of a new HWDT website

Person Specification:


  • Friendly, confident open communication style
  • Experience with data entry – basic excel skills
  • Passionate about marine conservation
  • Ability to live and work with colleagues as part of a small team


  • Fundraising experience
  • Knowledge of Scottish cetaceans and conservation issues

To apply: Please email a current C.V. and covering letter outlining why you are applying for the opportunity to volunteercoordinator@hwdt.org. For more information, please contact Morven Russell on 01688 302620.

Application deadline: 12 noon 21st September 2016. Successful candidates will be invited to a Skype interviews in the w/c 26th September 2016.