Rangers are the stewards of the outdoor environment. They provide practical protection, restoration and preservation of all aspects of natural areas, historical and cultural sites. Rangers provide or enhance the opportunity for positive human interaction with the outdoors through interpretation of sites, and recreation. Rangers provide links between local communities, protected areas and area administration.
NZRA is recognised by the International Rangers Federation (IRF) as the NZ body representing park rangers. NZRA has a strong network of parks managers and operational staff, many of whom are current park rangers. NZRA works with ranger groups with regard to training and vocational needs. Promotional work is undertaken around World Park Ranger Day celebrations held throughout the country.
NZRA has been accepted as an Associate Member of the International Ranger Federation. NZRA joins over 50 worldwide associations from national, state and territorial entities affiliated with the IRF. The IRF was founded to support the work of rangers as the key protectors of the world's protected areas. The goals of the IRF are to provide a forum for rangers from around the world to share their successes and failures in protecting the world's heritage and to promote information and technology transfer between countries.
Areas such as New Zealand where protected area management enjoys broad public and government support are able to share knowledge with each other and with countries in which protected area management is less well supported. On the International front, this membership recognises that the NZRA represents New Zealand's rangers and wardens offering voting privileges at International level.
It also entitles NZRA members are entitled to attend the IRF's World Ranger Congress which is held every three years. The role of ranger in New Zealand covers a number of differing career opportunities. Key areas are in recreation provision, historic site management, ecological management and community information (visitor sites). For the first time here in New Zealand, rangers and wardens will have the opportunity for a unified voice and forum for professional development, recruitment and advocacy.
Visit the International Ranger Federation (IRF) website to find out more.