Ways to Get Involved
Volunteers are valuable members of Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge. They provide their skills and energy to the reforestation effort, clean-up projects, school programs, maintenance of public facilities, trail construction, office work and wildlife monitoring. By volunteering, individuals will gain knowledge about the refuge, learn from first-hand experiences and become involved with the conservation and restoration of a valuable natural resource in southern Illinois. Be a part of the effort. Become a volunteer!
Discover for yourself what tens of thousands of volunteers have learned: Volunteering for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is fun and rewarding in many ways. Learn new skills, meet new friends and enjoy a sense of accomplishment from doing your part to further wildlife conservation for the pleasure of generations to follow.
Volunteers are valuable members of Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge. They provide their skills and energy to the reforestation effort, clean-up projects, school programs, maintenance of public facilities, trail construction, office work and wildlife monitoring. By volunteering, individuals will gain knowledge about the refuge, learn from first-hand experiences and become involved with the conservation and restoration of a valuable natural resource in southern Illinois. Check out our station's latest volunteer opportunities on volunteer.gov.
Land of Lincoln AmeriCorps
AmeriCorps is a national service program that was initiated to work with citizens and local communities through service-oriented projects that focus on education, public health, human services and the natural environment. Since 2001, Southern 7 AmeriCorps members have filled an important role at Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge. AmeriCorps members are involved with many aspects of refuge operations and visitors services. AmeriCorps members assist staff with restoration and resource management activities within the refuge while providing visitors and residents with educational and recreational opportunities that include school programs, special events, volunteer recruitment and public outreach.
Contact the refuge for position availability and visit the AmeriCorps website for more information.
RV Resident Volunteers
Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge provides opportunities for volunteers to live and work on site. The refuge offers two full hook-up recreational vehicle sites for seasonal volunteers. Volunteer work includes assisting with routine maintenance, greeting visitors at the refuge office or helping with special public events and educational programs. The refuge requests volunteers serve a minimum of 3 months for 32 hours per week (40 combined for a couple) in exchange for water, electricity and RV pad hookup. For more information, please contact the refuge at 618-634-2231.
General Volunteers and Internships
Volunteers work on the refuge in many capacities. At Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge, volunteers are always needed to assist with a specific project, program or special event. This may include a few hours per week or month or even just a day each year to assist with an educational program in the schools or a restoration project such as tree planting in the spring. In addition, the refuge works with local colleges and universities to provide intern opportunities. These opportunities are typically associated with resource management or education careers. For more information on volunteering on the refuge contact the office.
Nature does not recognize human-made boundaries. In order to conserve our natural and cultural resources effectively, we must work with others to bridge these boundaries. Partnerships foster creative solutions to challenging situations and often the results are greater than the sum of the parts.
Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge works with a variety of organizations to protect and restore the Cache River wetlands. The National Wildlife Refuge System is committed to building partnerships which encourage conservation and protection of our natural and cultural resources. Partners include the Natural Resources Conservation Service, Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Ducks Unlimited, The Nature Conservancy, Audubon organizations and other non-for-profit groups in addition a host of colleges and universities.
Individuals can get involved with the refuge and restoration of the Cache River wetlands by joining the Friends of the Cache River Watershed. This organization is a non-profit citizens group devoted to protection, restoration and enhancement of natural communities on the refuge and within the Cache River watershed. Friends also promote outreach and environmental education through a variety of special events during the year.
Open the door to a potentially life-changing experience. If you land a student internship, a fellowship or a volunteer opportunity at a, fish hatchery or other U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service site, you’re bound to come away with new insights and excitement about conservation. The following youth opportunities are available at Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge: Youth Conservation Corps and Land of Lincoln AmeriCorps.