Perhentian Turtle conservation Internship

Join the Perhentian Turtle Project as an intern and learn about turtles conservation, nesting behaviour, facial photo ID, foraging behaviour and assist with awareness talks and presentations.

Location: Perhentian Kecil, Malaysia
Category: Turtle Conservation internship
Job Type: Internship
Contract Length: 3 to 9 months  
Application Closing Date: Ongoing
Start Date:  22nd June 2020 but can be flexible

Love turtles and committed to starting a career in marine conservation? Join the Perhentian Turtle project team on this Turtle Conservation Internship as a Volunteer Coordinator where you’ll pick up vital field skills, collect data on a daily basis and patrol nesting beaches at night. Plus develop your people management skills as you’re responsible for small groups of volunteers who you’ll educate about turtles and marine conservation each week.

What’s in it for you?

What more could you want other than working with these magical creatures on a daily basis? Well let us tell you, there are a whole lot of additional benefits plus you’ll gain and develop a whole range of skills that will be great for your future employability, particularly in the field of conservation.

During the turtle conservation internship you’ll mainly be in charge of leading volunteers on project-related activities. In order to do so, you will receive training on the nature and activities of the project as well as sea turtles and marine conservation. Consequently, you will develop your leadership and communication skills. This means that the Volunteer Coordinator should expect to frequently be around and interact with people.


  • Have a more holistic understanding of sea turtle and marine conservation by experiencing the wonders and challenges in the field from multiple perspectives including the environmental, social, and legal aspects
  • Develop better leadership and communication skills.
  • Free accommodation – you will live in the project house, sharing a room with at most 3 other people and have access to communal food shared with team members and volunteers.
  • Free food – You’ll get access to communal staff food at the PTP House where you’ll be expected to muck in and help cook. Plus treat yourself to some delicious local cuisine from around the village or when attending Malay dinners with our volunteers.
  • For international interns, visa cost will be borne by the intern. FE can help with the visa application process for a fee.
  • Free Wifi available in the Turtle House.
  • 1 day off per week with an additional block of 7 days off every 90 days during project season (Mar to Nov).
  • All work-related expenses within the islands (Unfortunately this doesn’t include your travel to or from Malaysia)
  • Allowance of RM250 per month from the 7 months onwards if you are able to commit to a longer-term internship.
  • Reference letter upon request after the completion of the internship period.

What we need from you for turtle conservation internship

To apply for this role you’ll need to meet a few requirements and be committed to ensure our volunteers have a fantastic experience. You can also find out a bit more about the role itself by reading about the duties you’ll be completing throughout the internship.


  • Must have an interest and passion for sea turtle and marine conservation.
  • Must be open-minded, willing, and determined to try and learn new things, skills,  languages, and cultures
  • Must be flexible and quick to adapt to new surroundings – especially humid tropical climates and changes in sleep schedules –  and sudden changes in schedules
  • Experience living in basic and rustic conditions preferred
  • Must be comfortable communicating in English on a regular basis
  • Must be able to swim and tread water
  • Experience in public outreach and engagement preferred
  • Knowledge of marine conservation in Malaysia and the work of Ecoteer preferred
  • High level of water safety awareness preferred
  • Ability to free dive preferred
  • Must be a team player but able to work individually when required
  • Strong leadership skills preferred
  • Must have a strong sense of responsibility and discipline in conducting and completing tasks as well as in managing volunteers
  • Must possess efficient time management and organisation skills to meet set deadlines
  • Must be competent in Windows OS and Microsoft Office
  • Fluency in social media, especially experience making engaging and professional posts preferred – please provide example(s)
  • First Aid training desirable but basic training can be provided upon arrival

Key duties and responsibilities of turtle conservation internship

  • Coordinate and facilitate volunteers to engage in daily project activities including kayak surveys, beach cleans, snorkel tours, Malay dinners, night beach patrols at Tiga Ruang etc
  • Provide a programme introduction and training for volunteers,  outlining key aspects of our activities, objectives and expectations
  • Complete relevant safety briefings and ensure all applicable forms are signed and recorded
  • Guide volunteers through a water confidence training session where you will assess their abilities in the water to identify the necessary safety precautions for each volunteer in future water activities(some of whom may or may not be able to swim)
  • Educate volunteers about important conservation issues by leading them to conduct awareness campaigns, beach cleans and snorkel tours
  • Introduce the volunteers to the local communities and cultures through village tours and Malay Dinners
  • Interact with and assist the local Department of Fisheries rangers in nesting beach and hatchery management, and encourage volunteers to do the same, to maintain our relationship with them
  • Ensure all safety precautions are taken whilst in the water and make sure all volunteers are accounted for during water-based activities
  • Collect and record feedback from volunteers and regularly review the programme to maximise volunteer experience and produce reports when requested by the project manager
  • Ensure the project house is kept clean & tidy with the help of our volunteers through daily chores on a rota basis
  • Assist in collecting and analyzing photo-ID and nesting data when necessary – this includes conducting kayak surveys (1.5-2 hours) and nightly beach patrols on a 400m beach.
  • Identify and implement ideas to increase the diversity of project and/or conservation-related activities to increase volunteer engagement
  • Complete projects and reports as required by the project manager such as producing informative displays and research impact reports to share with tourists
  • Follow agreed timetables to deliver work in a timely fashion
  • Be a professional example of a leader and marine conservationist to local community members, volunteers and colleagues
  • Adherence to all safety measures, protocols, procedures and budgets as directed by Fuze Ecoteer
  • Any other duties that may be required including helping with group events, cover for colleague’s leave and illness, shop for project supplies (e.g. food and cleaning supplies), and participate in local/island events

How To Apply

Please submit your CV, and Cover Letter to

For more information or if you have any further questions about the role please email

If that’s not enough to convince you, check out this video of the project. It’ll give you a pretty good idea about where you’ll be staying and what you’ll be up to.

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