Explorer volunteer families

Family days out with a difference. Help look after the National Park while doing fun activities to understand more about the environment and the special landscapes of the North York Moors.

Interested in visiting different areas of the North York Moors? Would you like to learn new skills as a family? Are you keen to help look after special places and habitats? Most of all, do you want to come and have fun and be active outdoors as a family?

Our Explorer Volunteer families meet twice a month (usually on a Sunday), undertaking tasks to help look after the National Park. This could include tree planting, footpath maintenance and vegetation control. All training and PPE is provided and we have a wide range of both adult and child tools.

Through the Explorer Volunteers, we aim to create ‘ambassadors’ of all ages to promote the special qualities the North York Moors and the benefits of spending time outdoors in nature. We achieve these aims by exploring, with children and adults, the different habitats and features within the National Park. Alongside this, the families can choose to work towards gaining the John Muir Discovery Award. You can find out more about this on the John Muir Award website.

By giving families opportunities to take part in a range of practical work tasks, we aim to encourage them to consider volunteering regularly in the North York Moors National Park in order to help sustain it for future generations.

Tammy Andrews has been involved with family volunteering at the North York Moors National Park Authority for the last ten years. Tammy said:

"The benefits for families are numerous. There’s the quality time spent together learning new skills, the social interaction with others, the physical exercise and the immersion in the natural world. All of these things can have a positive impact on people’s health and wellbeing."

Who can join Explorer Volunteers?

Explorer Volunteers is perfect for families with children aged between about four and 11 years old, but we can be flexible as we know some members of your family may be younger or older. Extended members of your family such as grandparents are also more than welcome to join in!

Do we need to commit to every session?

The number of sessions you attend is entirely up to you as we appreciate that family life can be very busy. In order to achieve the John Muir Discovery Award, your family must attend a minimum of four sessions and complete four challenges over a year.

Is there a cost?

As volunteers for the North York Moors National Park, there is no cost for families to take part, however you will need to be able to travel to different locations.

Find out more

If you and your family are interested in becoming Explorer Volunteers, please email volunteers@northyorkmoors.org.uk for more information.

Kerry-Anne has been volunteering with her husband and two daughters since 2019. Dan’s mother and father also take part. Kerry-Anne said:

“It’s time together as a family, outdoors and usually without a phone signal. It gives the girls a bigger view of the world and helps them appreciate what’s around us. We’ve made new friends who we see outside of our volunteering activities and it just has a really positive impact on our mental health. Good for the children but also good for us.”

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