Are You Looking For A Campground Host Position in Florida? Summer time is the best time to find campground host positions all over Florida. If you are looking for a winter placement you might want to consider being a Residential Host instead. We have been offered 3 different winter time assignments in Northwest, Central and South Florida as a Residential Host. The difference being that a campground host takes care of the campground area and campers while a residential host, usually by themselves, will take care of the whole park. Most of these are smaller memorial parks with limited facilities and area to manage. And the larger ones might have more than one Residential Host(s) that you can share the responsibilities and have days off.
We took one of those with Dade Battlefield Historical State Park in Bushnell, Florida. We will be opening and closing the front gate, keeping the bathroom facilities clean and stocked, participating with events held in the park, cleaning the Lodge and working in the Visitors Center when needed. We still get a “Full-Service” campsite and access to a washer/dryer. Which is always nice. There were two more historic state parks that may still be looking for Residential Hosts:
Orman House Historic State Park
April thru October 2013
Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park
September thru December 2013
We have over 200 parks, trails, historical sites, Archaeological sites and museums in the Florida State system. And we are hoping to get more. That is over 780,000 acres with over 25 million visitors in a year. That is a lot of area to take care of. And with the budget crunches that most government departments are having to deal with a lot of those parks are creating more and more volunteer Residential Host positions that are supervised by a Ranger in the area and getting their supplies from a central location for all the parks in a zone. This makes fiscal sense and opens up more opportunities for reliable, physically active and retired individuals to have a place to stay for a few months at a time in a beautiful setting. The state only has to provide one or two Full Service Campsites in exchange for 20 or more hours of labor a week for FREE. The state already has to provide some electric, water and sewer facilities per park anyway. For a small added expense in one year they potentially have a full year of some responsible person(s) taking care of the park for them who is able to keep an accurate accounting of the number of visitors, keep the place clean, report any potential problems before the public does and have someone always available to give “Good Customer Service”. This is a definite win-win situation for the State Park System and us RVers.
If you have never Volunteered for the State of Florida Park system before it is very easy to apply. Just go online, fill out the application, specify the “REGIONS” you would prefer and check all of your Areas of Interests as well as all the Skills that apply to you. DO NOT click on something you do not have a skill in nor any interest in. Your “VOLUNTEER GOALS” may be a good place to specify that you would be interested in being a Residential Host rather than a Campground Host because you would enjoy learning more about history, teaching others about the park, etc. Your initial application will be forwarded to ANY of the parks that fit your criteria and for the regions you specify. Actually naming a particular park will limit you in being selected. The parks that need you the most may not get your application. And you are looking for experience first and to prove that you are reliable, trustworthy and hard-working. The more experience you can get as a Volunteer the more choices will open up to you for future assignments. And if you like that particular place you could be invited back the next year.
CAMPGROUND HOSTS & RESIDENTIAL VOLUNTEERS
Campground hosts are volunteers who aid park staff in the maintenance and care of state park camping areas. They answer campers’ questions, help with maintenance and are available for late-night emergencies. In return, campground hosts get a campsite at no charge and the satisfaction of performing an important and much-needed job.
Campground Host positions are highly coveted, so keep the following in mind:
- If you are interested in becoming a campground host you should inquire as early as possible. Most Florida state parks book winter volunteers as far as a year in advance.
- Parks in north Florida are more likely than south Florida parks to have campground host volunteer positions available in the winter.
- Most parks, regardless of location, need campground hosts in the summer.
- In exchange for a campsite, a campground host must volunteer a minimum of 20 hours a week.
Parks without formal campsites may still require the use of an onsite volunteer. These volunteers are typically referred to as residential volunteers. Their duties differ from campground hosts but they still receive the benefit of a campsite at no charge.
We wish you luck this coming year with getting fun and interesting campground host and residential host assignments. Who knows we may even meet you along our way!