Living on Statia
Volunteers and Interns visiting Statia to work for the parks stay in a house in town rented by the foundation. The house boasts 3 bedrooms with bunk beds, bathrooms, full kitchen, laundry facilities, wifi, cable TV and is within easy walking distance of town, shops, bars and restaurants.
Volunteers prepare their own food usually eating as a group. Volunteers are provided with a budget for food, which can be used to buy supplies at the local grocery store and local producers.
Working in the Botanical Garden
Volunteers will be working on the phase II development
of the garden including the creation of a fruit garden
and children’s garden. In addition they will be
working on maintenance of phase I including removal
of invasive exotic species which choke and kill young
plants, pruning, weeding and mowing.
2-3 days per week will be spend at the Botanical Garden.
Daily activities at the garden will include team work
on large projects (early morning) and also personal
projects in later morning, such as building benches,
artwork, sign painting, making bird feeders, etc. You
will receive training on gardening in the tropics and
use of equipment during orientation upon your arrival.
Working on trail maintenance
Volunteers will be working on trail maintenance in
the Quill national park in order to keep the quill crater
accessible to hikers and protect the fragile ecosystem.
The Quill is a 600 metre dormant volcano that dominates
the landscape of the island of St. Eustatius and is
home to many unusual and endangered species of plants
and animals. There are 10 trails within the park, the
crater trail is the most popular and needs the most
Volunteers work 1-2 days per week on trail maintenance
in the Quill National Park. They will be mainly working
on the Round the Mountain Trail and Crater Trail and
also on minor maintenance on other trails. Trail maintenance
will involve building steps, rainwater channels, reinforcing
the side of the trails and clearing the trails of vegetation.
Working in the marine park
Volunteers can assist with the work in the marine park
including the turtle conservation project and marine
park maintenance. Turtles nest on Zeelandia beach from
mid-March to October, including greens, leatherbacks
and hawksbills. Volunteers may have the opportunity
to assist on night monitoring patrols of the beach to
search for nesting turtles so they can be tagged and
also sometimes assist with excavations of nests once
Volunteers will rotate in teams of two to complete
the monitoring patrols and will receive training on
track and species identification, patrol methods and
recording during the orientation. Volunteers can learn
all about current turtle research and learn more about
the satellite tracking project that is currently underway.
Volunteers who have sufficient diving experience (10
dives) can help at the marine park in the afternoon
with mooring maintenance. [go up]
Volunteers on the working abroad programme usually
work five days a week until noon and have the afternoons
free for relaxing, diving, snorkelling, swimming, shopping,
Statia is a very peaceful and relaxed place and there
are not many organised activities, but there is still
plenty to do if you are willing to organise it yourself.
Statia is an amazing location for snorkelling and diving,
it’s possible to see sea turtles, octopi, sting
rays and coral reefs. The hiking on Statia is also really
varied and interesting, you can hike inside the crater
of the dormant volcano, around the mountain or into
the Boven national park. [go up]
Comments from past volunteers
"Statia is a place that the people I’ve
talked to either love or hate. You have to be prepared
for a wholly different way of life, particularly living
in a tent on the wrong side of the mountain from town.
Personally I loved it. It’s a very beautiful island,
and the whole way of life is relaxed and laid back.
There isn’t a huge tourist industry, and so there
are no McDonalds, no big chain stores, and no cruise
ships stop there. There’s great hiking, diving,
snorkelling, or just sitting out on the pier in the
sun; and the night life is pretty good too, as long
as you’re not looking for multiplex cinemas or
"I felt that the involvement of volunteers
in almost all aspects of the projects STENAPA is undertaking
is a great thing as to feel involved when working as
a volunteer is very important."
"I learned a lot about trail, garden and mooring
maintenance. Living in a tent and sharing a kitchen/bathroom
with 7 others was an interesting experience showing
me that I don’t really need a T.V. and all that
"I learned a lot more about the inner workings
of a national park, got to see a world very different
from my own and overall had a great time."