Volunteer at Hunting Island
Friends of Hunting Island State Park was founded in 1993 to help preserve and enhance the unique bio-diversity of South Carolina’s Hunting Island State Park. Friends of Hunting Island offers its members an effective and fun way to assist Hunting Island State Park in conserving the natural wonders and promoting the educational opportunities that exist on the island. Since its founding, membership has swollen from a handful of individuals to hundreds of active families.
Membership in Friends of Hunting Island makes you a champion of the park and an environmental steward. We work in partnership with the paid staff to maintain and improve the 5,000-acre barrier island. We often have programs and projects that require volunteer support; watch our newsletter for opportunities and check in on our Social Media pages for ad-hoc projects that pop up.
HOW YOU CAN HELP:
Lighthouse —Trained volunteers conduct scheduled lighthouse tours. Currently the Lighthouse is closed for climbing due to renovations but we still offer complex tours. Also, cleaning the Fresnal Lens is always a favorite and assisting visitors with a friendly smile and navigation of the complex is a delightful way to interact with family visits. If you are interested, please visit Lighthouse Volunteer or contact our Lighthouse Director at email@example.com
Sea Turtle Conservation Project—Walk the beach once a week in the early mornings looking for turtle tracks to help protect them. Season runs from May through October and volunteers must report one day a week at the Visitor’s Center at 6:00 am. For more information, please visit Sea Turtle Conservation Project or contact FOHIseaturtleproject@gmail.com
Shorebird Stewardship Program —The Friends of Hunting Island has been working with Audubon South Carolina since 2019 to protect the sanctuary on North Beach. Since then, we have been witness to the preservation of a wonderful nesting area that has become a natural and undisturbed habitat, removed from most beach goers, allowing shorebird and seabird parents to safely forage for food and raise their young with minimal human disturbance. This nesting area has grown over the years and was especially protected, for development, during covid restrictions in 2020 and 2021. North beach has also become home to migratory birds which stop to rest and refuel. Federally threatened Piping Plovers and Red Knots have all been seen here at Hunting Island due to the protection of this sanctuary, as well as Wilson’s Plover, American Oystercatchers, Least Tern, Black Skimmers, Snowy Egret and Willets. For information on how to be part of this exciting new team, visit Shorebird Stewardship at Hunting Island, or please contact our Director at FOHIbirdstewardship@gmail.com.
Environmental Project — Trails has expanded to include our Adopt-a-Stream Project and various other volunteer opportunities around the 5,000 acre State Park. A new initiative - Adopt-a-Stream Project has been introduced at Johnson Creek and is sponsored by Clemson Extension and DHEC. FOHI will be a reliable steward tasked to measuring and observing water pollution for these organizations in our water ways including fresh water, salt marshes and the tidal creeks of Hunting Island. Trails development, improvement and maintenance are other examples of getting involved in this highly popular conservation effort at Hunting Island. To join our Environmental Team, please contact our Director at FOHIenvironment@gmail.com. Visit Environment at Hunting Island for more information.
Education—Assist the Park's Interpretive Ranger with educational duties as needed and requested. Volunteers may be asked to act as chaperones or station managers during field trips, or to deliver talks about Hunting Island ecologies. A brief training will be required for volunteers who wish to assist with field trips. For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Construction Projects—From time to time, Friends of Hunting Island takes on construction projects that can range from painting, repairing, and upkeep to top-to-bottom construction jobs. One of our favorite projects was building the Playground at the Lighthouse Complex in 2021. We had a great team of volunteers assist and they had fun making it happen. When help is needed, these jobs will be advertised in the monthly newsletter or contact FOHIconstructionproject@gmail.com for more information.
Special Events—Friends of Hunting Island runs Beach Sweeps, the annual Pelican Plunge, and attends events of other organizations such as the Beaufort Oyster Festival representing Friends of Hunting Island and our organization of members and volunteers helping to preserve and protect this soul of an Island. When help is needed, these jobs will be advertised in the monthly newsletter.
Photo courtesy of Alexis Brinker
Photo courtesy of Amanda Trimpey
Photo courtesy of Randal Brown
Photo courtesy of Alexis Brinker
Photo courtesy of Mary Shriner