Our Young Rangers programme is an ideal way for people aged between 14 and 18 to get involved in practical conservation volunteering. Young Rangers activities take place every month on a Sunday and are led by experienced Rangers from a range of organisations such as the National Trust, Fix the Fells, Cumbria Wildlife Trust, West Cumbria Rivers Trust and the John Muir Trust, supported by dedicated and knowledgeable adult volunteer leaders.
We take part in a range of activities, from tree planting to footpath maintenance, at sites across the Lake District National Park.
Many of our Young Rangers use their experience as part of the volunteering element of the Duke of Edinburgh Award, but you don't need to be completing the DofE award to take part. If you'd like to apply to be a Young Ranger, then please read the FAQs below and then click 'Apply to be a Young Ranger' - you'll need a parent or guardian to give their details as part of your application.
Young Rangers work on a wide range of practical conservation tasks. In summer we are often up in the fells repairing and maintaining upland paths. At other times of year we could be involved in a variety of other conservation tasks such as dry-stone-walling, hedge-laying, woodland work, tree planting, invasive species control and wildlife surveys. Most meetings are outdoors although we sometimes get together for indoor training or social events.
We meet once a month on a Sunday, from 10am - 4pm throughout the year. We usually meet on the third Sunday of the month, but dates will be sent out with as much notice as possible. Please note June 2024 will be the fourth Sunday to avoid Father's Day.
We try to organise a varied and interesting programme of activities and also offer some social events and training opportunities such as First Aid and Navigation courses.
In return, we do ask that you commit to attend regularly (although we understand that people may be away or unavailable on the odd occasion.)
All over the Lake District National Park, locations can vary from high fells to valleys and woodlands depending on what is required by different organisations and the time of year. We have some capacity to help with transport and may occasionally have a minibus that runs from Kendal to the volunteering sites. However we do require that you can either make your own way to Kendal or to the volunteering site.
We really do go out whatever the weather - all year round, and as this is the Lake District we often experience all four seasons in one day! While we prepare with the right clothes and equipment, it can sometimes be challenging working outside. We tend to keep our sessions on the high fells to the summer months, so you wouldn't be expected to be out up high in the worst winter weather.
The days are led by our volunteer leaders and the practical work is supervised by a Ranger or other member of staff. The Fix the Fells sessions are run by a National Trust Ranger, along with support from specialist Fix the Fells volunteers. All leaders have experience in working with young people and are fully trained in First Aid and Risk Management. Young people do not need to be accompanied.
You will need to bring full waterproofs and warm clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty. You will also need to bring food and drink, sun cream and insect repellent according to the season. All other equipment, such as gloves and safety boots, is provided. We can lend work waterproofs given enough notice.
No previous experience is necessary, but conservation work, particularly upland path work, can be strenuous and tiring - so you will need to be physically fit and able, keen to learn and willing to listen and follow health and safety guidance. It can be messy and dirty too but it is great fun, and we do stop for regular rests. The days are planned specifically with young people in mind.
Please contact our Volunteer Outreach Coordinator, Alice Chivers by email. Alice will be happy to answer any questions you or your parent or guardian have about the Young Ranger programme.