The Department of Forestry, Fisheries, and the Environment (DFFE) is proud to announce its Internship Programme for 2024-2026, focusing on biodiversity and conservation internships. This initiative is designed to provide unemployed graduates with crucial hands-on experience, fostering the next generation of environmental conservationists dedicated to the stewardship of South Africa’s rich biodiversity.

Biodiversity and Conservation Internships Overview

  • Company: Department of Forestry, Fisheries, and the Environment (DFFE)
  • Location: Various, including key conservation areas across South Africa
  • Closing Date: 12 April 2024
  • Stipend: R7 142.00 per month

About The Department of Forestry, Fisheries, and the Environment

The Biodiversity and Conservation branch within the DFFE stands as a guardian of South Africa’s rich natural heritage. This program is crafted to immerse interns in the critical work of protecting diverse ecosystems, managing conservation projects, and contributing to sustainable environmental practices.

Internship Objectives

Interns in the biodiversity and conservation internships will gain invaluable experience, contributing to impactful projects that aim to safeguard South Africa’s environmental assets. This program prepares participants for successful careers in environmental conservation, offering a deep understanding of ecological preservation and management.


    • National Diploma: Nature Conservation
    • B Tech / B Degree: Environmental Sciences, Natural Sciences
    • Environmental Management & Biodiversity Conservation
    • Ecology
    • Honours Degree: Environmental Management & Biodiversity Conservation, Ecology

Key Responsibilities:

  • Participating in Conservation Projects and Research:
    • Engaging actively in fieldwork and data collection efforts that contribute to the conservation of diverse ecosystems and species.
    • Collaborating with a team of experts to conduct research that informs sustainable conservation practices and strategies.
    • Analyzing data and contributing to scientific papers and reports that enhance the understanding of environmental and conservation challenges.
  • Assisting with the Development of Biodiversity Management Plans:
    • Supporting the creation and implementation of comprehensive management plans that aim to preserve biodiversity and promote the sustainable use of natural resources.
    • Contributing to stakeholder consultations to ensure that management plans are inclusive and effectively address the needs and concerns of local communities, industries, and other relevant parties.
    • Monitoring and evaluating the effectiveness of biodiversity management plans, providing recommendations for adjustments as necessary.
  • Contributing to Policy Development and Environmental Assessments:
    • Participating in the drafting and review of environmental policies and regulations that aim to protect natural habitats and biodiversity.
    • Assisting in conducting environmental impact assessments (EIAs) and strategic environmental assessments (SEAs) for proposed projects and developments to ensure compliance with environmental standards and mitigate potential negative impacts.
    • Engaging in interdisciplinary teams to provide input on environmental sustainability issues, influencing policy decisions at local, regional, and national levels.
  • Promoting Environmental Education and Awareness:
    • Developing and participating in educational programs and workshops that aim to raise awareness about biodiversity conservation among various stakeholders, including schools, community groups, and the general public.
    • Creating informational materials and utilizing social media platforms to disseminate knowledge about conservation issues, initiatives, and best practices.
  • Supporting Community Involvement and Collaborative Conservation Efforts:
    • Facilitating community engagement in conservation efforts, recognizing the importance of local knowledge and participation in achieving conservation goals.
    • Building partnerships with non-governmental organizations (NGOs), community groups, and other entities to foster collaborative approaches to biodiversity conservation and sustainable development.

Skills Required:

  • Analytical and Research Proficiency:
    • Strong capability in collecting, analyzing, and interpreting data related to environmental science, which is crucial for making informed conservation decisions.
    • Proficiency in utilizing various research methodologies and tools, including GIS (Geographic Information Systems) for spatial analysis, and statistical software for data analysis.
    • Critical thinking skills to evaluate research findings, solve complex problems, and contribute innovative solutions to conservation challenges.
  • Effective Communication and Teamwork:
    • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, enabling clear and persuasive sharing of research findings, conservation plans, and policy recommendations with diverse audiences, including scientific communities, policymakers, and the public.
    • Ability to work collaboratively in multidisciplinary teams, demonstrating flexibility, respect for others’ ideas, and a willingness to contribute to shared goals and outcomes.
    • Competency in preparing comprehensive reports, grant proposals, and scientific papers, as well as delivering presentations that effectively communicate the significance of conservation efforts.
  • Familiarity with Environmental Legislation and Conservation Strategies:
    • In-depth understanding of local, national, and international environmental laws and regulations that govern biodiversity conservation and natural resource management.
    • Knowledge of contemporary conservation strategies, such as protected area management, species recovery programs, and ecosystem restoration projects, and the ability to apply this knowledge in practical settings.
    • Awareness of the socio-economic, cultural, and political contexts in which environmental legislation and conservation strategies are implemented, including the challenges and opportunities for achieving conservation goals.
  • Technological Proficiency:
    • Skills in using technology and software applications relevant to environmental science and conservation, including remote sensing, environmental modeling tools, and database management systems.
    • Ability to leverage technology for effective data management, project monitoring, and communication with stakeholders.
  • Interpersonal and Cultural Sensitivity:
    • Strong interpersonal skills to engage effectively with communities, stakeholders, and team members from diverse cultural and professional backgrounds.
    • Cultural sensitivity and the ability to navigate and respect different perspectives and traditions related to natural resource use and conservation.
  • Adaptability and Continuous Learning:
    • Willingness to work in various environments, from office settings to fieldwork in diverse geographic locations, under different weather conditions.
    • Commitment to continuous learning and professional development in the rapidly evolving fields of environmental science and conservation.

How to Apply

Interested candidates are invited to submit their applications for the Department of Forestry, Fisheries, and the Environment (DFFE) Internship Programme.

Application Submission Addresses:

    • Postal Address: Director-General Internship Programme, Private Bag X447, Pretoria, 0001
    • Hand Delivery: Environmental House, 473 Steve Biko Road, Pretoria

Reference Numbers: 

  1. GP/B&C/01/24
  2. GP/B&C/02/24
  3. : GP/B&C/03/24
  4. GP/B&C/04/24
  5. GP/B&C/05/24
  6. GP/B&C/06/24
  7. GP/B&C/07/24
  8. : GP/B&C/08/24
  9. GP/B&C/09/24
  10. GP/B&C/10/24
  11. GP/B&C/11/24
  12. GP/B&C/12/24
  13. GP/B&C/13/24
  14. GP/B&C/14/24

Important Notes:

  • Applications must be filled out on a new Z83 form. Alongside this form, applicants must attach a detailed Curriculum Vitae (CV), which includes a list of subjects studied relevant to the qualification.
  • Shortlisted candidates will be asked to submit certified copies of their ID document, qualifications, and recent academic transcripts/records. This step is critical for further consideration in the selection process.
  • Please be aware that incomplete, emailed, faxed, and late applications will not be considered. It is crucial to ensure that your application is complete and submitted through the proper channels by the specified closing date.

Biodiversity and conservation internships offered by the DFFE represent a cornerstone opportunity for graduates to engage with critical environmental challenges. By joining this program, interns will not only contribute to meaningful conservation efforts but also lay the groundwork for a rewarding career in environmental protection.