Workplace Health and Safety for Community Groups
Coastal land and water management activities, such as beach clean-ups, seagrass monitoring, tree planting and weed management, have various levels of risk associated with them such as sun-burn, cuts, falls, heat stroke, dehydration, back injury, etc. The risks must be assessed and managed by either avoiding the activity or taking all possible measures to minimise the risks involved (e.g., hat, sunscreen, gloves, water, boots, work early in the morning, etc.).
You are responsible for the safety of your volunteers, so it is vital that you have adequate procedures in place to manage this, and that your volunteers are well-versed in these.
Conservation Volunteers Australia (CVA) has produced an excellent toolkit – Safety Management Toolkit for Community Groups in Practical Conservation which is the CVA safety policy, and should guide safety management of other NRM volunteer groups (see Governance section). Available at:
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