Volunteer

exhibit guide teaching children at the touch tank

Florida Oceanographic Society needs your help! Whether you are looking to volunteer, donate, become a member or business partner, your support is vital to both Florida Oceanographic and to our mission. Get involved today!

The volunteer program at Florida Oceanographic is successful because it attracts dedicated, enthusiastic and passionate people who live our mission.  We currently have over 250 volunteers integrated into every aspect of our organization. Volunteers take ownership and pride in working with Florida Oceanographic and contribute thousands of hours each year.
 
A variety of volunteer opportunities exist at Florida Oceanographic Coastal Center for individuals 15 and older. We also have family and group opportunities with project specific activities that take place throughout the year. Please take a minute to browse through our Volunteer Opportunity Descriptions (below), fill out our online application and plan to attend an information session to learn more about our Coastal Center and how you can contribute to our mission.

If you have questions about our volunteer program or would like to attend an information session please contact Rosemary Badger, Volunteer Coordinator, at 772.225.0505 ext. 109 or email rbadger@floridaocean.org for more information.

 

Complete Our Online Volunteer Application 

* If you are between the ages of 15 and 17 you must fill out an essay (located on the volunteer application) and submit 2 teacher recommendation forms. Download the teacher recommendation form here. 

 

 Current Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteers cleaning the beach
Volunteers cleaning the beach

The Ocean DREAM Project provides the opportunity for families, individuals and groups to participate in beach clean-ups and report data back to Florida Oceanographic which will be forwarded to the county and to the state.   Every one of us can do something to help our environment.  Ocean Debris Removal Eliminates Accidental Mortality. Take action today and everyday by removing trash and manmade debris from areas where it doesn't belong.  Please download & print the Ocean DREAM data card and when your clean-up is done, return the completed card to Florida Oceanographic attn:  Rosemary Badger.  Please note:  All minors must be accompanied by an adult during beach/waterway clean-ups. Thank you for participating!

Exhibit guide at the touch tank
Exhibit guides at the touch tank

Are you passionate about the environment?  Do you enjoy working with children and adults?  If you are a people person and aren't squeamish around sea creatures, then consider joining the team of volunteers helping to inspire environmental stewardship among the 60,000+ guests that visit Florida Oceanographic Coastal Center each year.  Initial training will help you get started, additional training opportunities are available and independent study is encouraged. Shifts range from 3.5 - 4 hours per week and volunteers must make a minimum commitment of 4 consecutive months.  Exhibit guides must be at least 15 years old. Youth volunteers applying to work with exhibits must submit a 500 word essay on the volunteer application and submit 2 teacher recommendations. 

* Download the Exhibit Guide Volunteer Job Description 

Green team volunteers working in the garden
Green team volunteers outside of the greenhouse

If you have ever taken a stroll through the butterfly garden, you have no doubt seen skippers and other butterflies flittering about and sipping sweet nectar from the many flowers adorning an abundance of green foliage. Each week, volunteers and staff work together to create harmony and balance in the garden.  They prune, transplant, propagate, nurture and remove invasive weeds that could otherwise choke out our beautiful garden.  It's a labor of love!  If you are interested in joining our Friday morning garden crew, please contact Rosemary Badger, Volunteer Coordinator, at rbadger@floridaocean.org.

Volunteers bagging oyster shells
Volunteers deploying oysters

Improving the health of the St. Lucie River and the Indian River Lagoon is an important endeavor.  Did you know a single adult oyster can filter up to 50 gallons of water per day?  The FL.O.O.R. (Florida Oceanographic Oyster Restoration) program actively engages the public in restoring oyster reef habitat. With the aid of thousands of volunteers, FL.O.O.R. restores oyster habitat by recycling shell, constructing reefs and growing oysters. We need volunteers to help us with monthly shell bagging and reef construction. Keep an eye on our calendar and Facebook for exact dates and times or contact Rosemary Badger, Volunteer Coordinator, at rbadger@floridaocean.org for more information.

Seagrass matting
Seagrass deployment

FOSTER’s goal is to restore seagrass populations into our estuary impacted by fresh-water discharges and algal blooms. Seagrasses are vital to the health of Florida’s waterways as it provides habitat, nurseries, and food for a variety of estuarine species. In Florida, we have the highest seagrass biodiversity of the continental USA with seven species! The FOSTER program relies on community-based restoration efforts to restore seagrass habitat. With a growing volunteer base, FOSTER restores seagrass by collecting and growing seagrass fragments in nurseries, constructing seagrass planting units, and transplanting living seagrass into the estuary. Keep an eye on our calendar and Facebook for exact dates and times or contact Rosemary Badger, Volunteer Coordinator, at rbadger@floridaocean.org for more information.

Water quality tester
Water quality tester

Water quality is a much talked about subject on the Treasure Coast and something very important to area residents and our quality of life.  With the help of dedicated volunteers, Florida Oceanographic has been closely monitoring water quality in our area since 1998.  Collected data is reported and published in the newspaper and on our website on a weekly basis.  We are currently looking for volunteers (minimum age of 18) water quality testers in these areas of the St. Lucie River: 1) the North Fork of the St. Lucie River including River Park Marina and 2) between the Roosevelt and Evans Crary Bridges.  If you are interested in volunteering for this program contact Rosemary Badger at rbadger@FloridaOcean.org.