Work experience opportunities

Secret World Wildlife Rescue offers work experience placements for students aged 18 years old and above on Animal Management and Conservation related courses. We can also arrange work placements for students looking to work with our other departments including fundraising, business administration, retail or finance.

These placements are usually organised as a ‘block’ where students attend for 3 or more weeks.  Block placements are available from April to September.

For University students completing a placement year (6, 9, or 12 months) please contact volunteer@secretworld.org to discuss options.

Work Experience placements with Animal care enable students to gain experience and increase their knowledge of the following areas:

  • Animal Handling – From small birds and hedgehogs to large water birds such as swans, birds of prey and mammals including foxes and badgers. This can be at the centre or as part of a rescue using specialised equipment.
  • Food preparation and feeding – Every April through to September we have hundreds of baby birds admitted to the centre that need hand feeding or tube feeding as well as young mammals who can require syringe or bottle feeding (orphan rearing training required). Volunteers also assist with food preparation for adult birds and mammals too.
  • Diseases and treatments – Learn more about specific diseases affecting certain species, how to identify these and how to treat them.
  • Assessing injuries – Learn how to recognise breaks, wounds and other injuries and how these are treated.
  • Enrichment – See how enclosures are designed for different species in order to create an environment suited to a particular species and encourage natural behaviours.

We rely greatly on volunteers and student, especially from April to September when admissions reach over 75 a day.  Therefore, we require that students are reliable and punctual and attend all shifts that they have committed too.  In cases of absences due to illness or other reasons, students must notify us as soon as is practically possible to enable us to arrange cover.

Work experience placements working alongside our fundraising, finance or charity shop team will help students gain experience and confidence in a variety of areas as well as learning about the day to day running of a Charity. Students can learn or improve on a number of transferrable skills including communication, filing/paper management, IT, customer service and research. 

Students will gain the most from these placements if they are able to attend their work placement one day a week for at least 8 weeks but this can be flexible. To discuss options email volunteer@secretworld.org or ring 01278 783250.

Block Placements - Available from March to September

Block placements are for a minimum of three weeks working 40 hours per week over five days.  This may involve weekend or evening work to cover all our animal care working hours.  Due to the fluctuation of admissions, block placements are available between April and September when admission numbers are at their highest.  Students on these placements will have the opportunity to work on all four animal care sections and also to shadow our reception team to learn more about the rescue and admissions process and the reasons behind casualties being brought to the centre.  These placements are suitable for all students studying both locally and further afield.  We do not have accommodation on site but there are several accommodation providers within easy reach of us that we can put you in contact with.