We often say that we couldn’t save Scotland’s red squirrels without the hard work and dedication of our volunteers, and we mean it!
Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels is a pretty big team. We have 19 full-time members of staff, rising to 27 during the summer months. Whether we’re carrying out grey squirrel control work, engaging with local communities or making sure the bills get paid, there’s always plenty to be getting on with.
Often it feels like there’s too much to do! We are a large team, but we cover vast areas up and down the country – anywhere where Scotland’s core red squirrel populations are threatened by the spread of grey squirrels. Our staff are always running around and running out of time; and without the help of volunteers, things would very quickly turn to chaos.
To celebrate Volunteers’ Week, here’s some numbers that demonstrate just how valuable our volunteers are to us.
182 volunteers participated in this year’s spring survey, visiting feeder boxes multiple times between April and March to collect hair samples for analysis.
208 trained volunteers have carried out grey squirrel control work since 2017, helping ensure Scotland’s core red squirrel populations are fully protected.
Since 2017, volunteers have spent 416 hours engaging with the public, helping to raise awareness of red squirrel conservation issues and inspire more people to get involved.
In the past two years, volunteers have donated an incredible 710 days of their time to Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels. That’s nearly a whole two years’ worth of work, more if you exclude weekends!
But it’s not just about the numbers. The knowledge, enthusiasm, determination and generosity of our volunteers is what inspires us to keep going. Whether you are someone who dutifully checks traps multiple time a day or someone who just pops into the office occasionally to help out with some admin, it all makes a difference and we are incredibly grateful for your support.