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Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Working for the New Forest down under

Melissa McVee doing conservation work in Australia.
The New Forest National Park Authority has recruited its first international volunteer. However they will not be found at the Authority’s headquarters but behind a laptop in Perth, Western Australia.

Thanks to the ingenious powers of technology Melissa McVee is working on mapping walks in the New Forest from the other side of the world.

‘This is a really interesting project to undertake,’ said Andrew Bell, Geographical Information Officer. ‘We were approached by Melissa who was really keen to gain some mapping work experience before heading to the UK next year. She has previous experience doing map work in an Australian National Park.

‘We’ve found technology such as remote working and Skype work well together  and the time difference means that lunchtime meetings fit in with Melissa’s work in the evenings.’

Melissa added: ‘I’ve been working in mapping for the last five years and I am especially passionate about National Parks.’

‘The work I am doing is enjoyable and I can see how it is going to benefit walkers in the New Forest, hopefully I will do one of the walks I helped design next year. I’m looking forward to visiting the New Forest, I already feel like I know so much about it.

For more information about walking in the New Forest visit www.newforestnpa.gov.uk/walking

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