Merseyside BioBank would not exist without the support of hundreds of volunteers and the support of the naturalist community. From enthusiastic members of the public to university students and expert amateur naturalists they have a variety of background including volunteer membership of natural history organisations and professional bodies. Whoever they are and wherever they are from we simply could not function without them.(anyone can submit a sighting!)
Volunteering with us can also be an excellent way to develop career skills, pursue your interests and take the first steps towards joining the extensive network of naturalists and naturalist groups locally and nationally.
Beyond the support of local and naturalist groups and individuals, there are several established ways people can volunteer directly with Merseyside BioBank. These include;
Volunteer Biological Records Officer (VBRO)
The key office based role. The VBRO team is the primary way by which biodiversity information in North Merseyside gets digitised. The role consists of two main subsections but VBR Officers undertake a variety of other office based roles (including the production of the MBAN Newsletter). Generally, volunteers will pick to tackle either 'Records Harvesting' or 'Habitat Digitisation'.
Office based volunteers are also generally the first to hear about upcoming LRC projects or site surveys and are also encouraged to take an interest in the running and function of the LRC as well as develop their own learning through LRC resources and the wonderful Court Hey Park in which we are based.
Merseyside BioBank Active Naturalist (MBAN)
This is a network of local naturalists, enthusiasts and volunteer recorders based in and around Merseyside who recognise the value of working with the LRC to promote the sharing of knowledge and skills among the membership, to enhancing learning around their own specialist interests and develop excellent recording skills. By working with the LRC, the MBAN network ensures that their wildlife records are put to immediate use locally.
The MBAN membership was founded in late 2012 by the then Merseyside BioBank LRC Manager Dr Richard Burkmar and is now the main contact list for LRC or other wildlife recording events and has led to the production of the MBAN Newsletter.
Membership of the group is free but we do ask that people submit a number of records to maintain their membership (this can be directly or via their membership of naturalist groups).
Volunteer Projects Officer (VPO)
The VPO role has been developed to accommodate individuals or groups that want to carry out biological recording or related projects in North Merseyside and in association with the LRC. To date this has included people carrying out PTES funded projects, Shoresearches and most often university dissertations or projects.
The main consideration for a VPO is that they come to us with a project already in mind and thought out.