Volunteer Activities

A volunteer talking to a group of teachers at an educator open house.

Volunteers play a vital role in promoting responsible stewardship of Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary. Without volunteers, we wouldn't be able to accomplish as much as we do in the surrounding communities.

Calls for volunteers go out through our Volunteers email list as opportunities arise.

Events

The sanctuary participates in many different kinds of public events by setting up an information booth or display. We also host three annual events of our own, which require volunteer assistance--Seaside Chats, Ocean Discovery Day and Get Into Your Sanctuary Day. Volunteers help us staff the exhibits, share information and conduct activities with visitors.

Program Prep

For those who prefer to work behind-the-scenes, we often need assistance in preparing for programs, workshops and events. This may involve cutting, pasting, laminating, making copies, room set-up, and other miscellaneous duties.

A sanctuary booth under a pop up tent at an outdoor community event
Some events are indoors and some are outdoors. (Image: FGBNMS/Drinnen)

Turtle Tours

The sanctuary works in conjunction with NOAA Fisheries to train volunteers who do presentations and lead tours of the NOAA Sea Turtle Facility in Galveston. Tour guides must be willing to commit to one day a week throughout most of the year (schedules can be swapped to accommodate vacations, etc.). Opportunities for this are very limited and have specific recruitment periods.

Diving

We often hear from divers who would like to assist us with research efforts in the sanctuary. While we appreciate the enthusiasm behind these offers, we are unable to accept most of them.

Dive volunteer opportunities at the sanctuary are limited to individuals who are part of the NOAA Diving Program or another dive program that shares reciprocity with NOAA.

However, if you are planning a recreational dive trip to the sanctuary, we welcome your observations and photos of manta rays (belly view), whale sharks (side view), sea turtles or anything spawning. Recreational divers can also contribute to sanctuary databases through the Reef Environmental Education Foundation’s (REEF) fish survey program.

An Andrea selfie
A diver enters the water from R/V MANTA. (Image: FGBNMS)