Ways to Get Involved

Whether you want to further conservation, learn more about nature or share your love of the outdoors, you’ve come to the right place. National wildlife refuges provide many opportunities for you to help your community and fish and wildlife by doing what you love. 
National wildlife refuges partner with volunteers, youth groups, landowners, neighbors and residents of urban and coastal communities to make a lasting difference. 
Find out how you can help make American lands healthier and communities stronger while doing something personally satisfying. 
Volunteers: Gain new experiences and meet new people while helping to advance wildlife conservation. 
Friends: Join neighbors in helping refuges restore habitat and expand access to green space. 
Landowners: Learn how you can partner with the Fish and Wildlife Service to voluntarily restore land. 

Local Groups: 
Find out how communities can work with refuges better for wildlife and people.  
Youth: Explore paid and unpaid opportunities to learn and develop leadership skills.


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. Master new skills. Meet new friends. Enjoy a sense of accomplishment from doing your part to further wildlife conservation for the pleasure of generations to follow. Check out our station's latest volunteer opportunities on volunteer.gov.  

Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge would not be in existence were it not for the countless hours of dedicated efforts from volunteers who saved the swamp from becoming a major jetport in 1960. From 1982 to 2012, over $3 million worth of volunteer time has been donated to the refuge, representing over 150,000 hours - the equivalent of 75 full-time staff members working for one year. Every year, volunteers make programs like wood duck nest surveys, duck banding, and staffing of the Wildlife Observation Center and Helen C. Fenske Visitor Center possible. The refuge also sponsors some community service projects every year.

We invite you to get involved in the work that we do. Share your knowledge of the refuge and natural history with visitors and the general public; get hands-on experience with our wildlife monitoring teams, or share your administrative talents and skills. Opportunities are available in public use, natural resource management, administration, and service projects.

Individual volunteers must commit to a minimum of 36 hours of volunteer service per year after completing a series of training sessions. To learn more about volunteer opportunities that may be available at the Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, please watch this video. If you are interested in volunteering at the Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, please fill out this volunteer application in full and email it to Jared_Green@fws.gov

Our Partners

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.  Learn more about our local partners.

Friends of Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge

Friends of Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, Inc. is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization as defined under the laws of the state of New Jersey and the United States Internal Revenue Service under section 501(c)3.

The Friends of Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1999 in partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Our focus is refuge-centric; we support the goals, projects, and mission of the Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge. Our operations and activities are managed by an all-volunteer board of directors and committees.

The Friends is part of a network of more than 200 friends groups nationwide, each associated with one or more national wildlife refuges, all committed to improving and protecting our unique refuge resources.

Many of our volunteers are also members of the Friends of Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge. The 'Friends' are an independent, non-profit volunteer organization dedicated to supporting refuge goals and projects. Members receive the quarterly ""Swamp Scene"" newsletter, a 10% discount in the bookstore and gift shop, notification of coming events and access to ""Members-only"" events held on the refuge.

Funds to support refuge projects and activities are received from memberships, Nature Shop sales, donations, and grants. Visit their website at www.FriendsofGreatSwamp.org