NRVP Background

Natural Resource Volunteer Program

The Natural Resource Volunteer Program (NRVP) assists the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) by providing enhanced public service to the community while offering opportunities for citizens to make a definitive contribution toward protecting California’s wildlife resources.


The mission of NRVP is to provide conservation and enforcement education in public service, through community outreach, State lands monitoring, habitat and pollution awareness, animal welfare and CDFW administrative assistance.


The purpose of NRVP is to improve efficiency and productivity statewide by using the skills of talented volunteers. These volunteers will perform tasks which support the CDFW’s operations and mission.

While CDFW will make maximum effort to utilize the skills of volunteers, it is not the intent of this program to supplant any sworn or non-sworn personnel.


Volunteers are the eyes and ears of CDFW enforcement personnel, biologists, managers and public officials. Trained to observe and report, Volunteers increase field time for warden patrols and investigations. They additionally free up more time for biologists to do scientific management and research. Volunteers add value to the CDFW through their maturity, wisdom and life experience. They exemplify patience and understanding in a competitive world of consumptive and non-consumptive resource users. Volunteers are empowered by their ability to give back their talents to the community, not by the position they are entrusted with.


The objectives of NRVP are:

  1. To assist CDFW in providing enhanced public service to the community.
  2. To provide an opportunity for citizens to make a definitive contribution toward protecting California’s fish and wildlife and their habitats.

Applying to be an NRVP Volunteer

Thank you for your interest in the Department of Fish and Game Natural Resource Volunteer Program (NRVP). NRVP began operations in San Diego County in 2002 and was expanded to Orange County in 2003 and has already had a positive impact on the communities they serve.

Currently we are recruiting for both the Northern Enforcement District, North Coast District and Southern Enforcement District

We are looking for people who enjoy working with people and enjoy the outdoors.

The selection process for the NRVP applicant will be based on successful completion of an application, interview and background check. Selected candidates will be required to attend and complete an 80-hour training course. We are currently recruiting for academies based out of CDFW offices in Los Alamitos, San Diego, Rancho Cordova, Yountville and Redding. We anticipate holding these academies this fall and winter.

A 6-month probation period including in-service training with experienced Volunteers will follow.

The application packet contains the following forms:

  1. Confidential Personal History Statement
  2. Authorization to Release Information Statement
  3. Incompatible Activities Statement
  4. NRVP Questionnaire


Mail application to applicable office:

  • Northern California
    CDFW Attn: Lt. Liz Gregory
    1701 Nimbus Road
    Rancho Cordova CA 95670
  • Humbolt County to San Luis Obispo County and the Bay Area
    CDFW Attn: Lt. Jeff Heitzenrater
    20 Lower Ragsdale Road, Ste.100
    Monterey, CA 93940
  • Southern California
    CDFW Attn: Lt. Kent Smirl
    4665 Lampson Avenue
    Los Alamitos, CA 90720

(Updated May 27, 2015)

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