Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea

Connecting the public with the Salish Sea Bioregion and its ecosystems through engagement, knowledge and awareness, the Centre offers an interactive and informative experience of science and culture to young and old – welcoming 80,000 visitors a year. It is the only year-round aquarium and cultural centre on Vancouver Island dedicated exclusively to the Salish Sea Bioregion.

The Centre is operated by the New Marine Centre Society and its volunteer Board of Directors. As a not-for-profit organization, the Centre relies on community support through admission fees, partnerships and donations. The Centre is operated by an Executive Director and a team of highly dedicated staff and over 100 volunteers. Click here for the Centre’s organizational chart.

The Centre’s key partnerships include the Town of Sidney, Shaw Communications, Sidney Pier Hotel & Spa, Marker Group, W̱SÁNEĆ First Nations, and the Government of Canada.


9811 Seaport Place
Sidney, BC V8L 4X3


Contact name: 

Leah Thorpe

Phone number: 



Organization theme: 

Region of focus: 

Volunteer opportunities available: 


Description of volunteer opportunities: 

Volunteer Naturalists

Greet our visitors and help them explore the habitats and marine life of the Salish Sea. We provide the training you need to answer questions about our marine life. It’s the knowledge and friendliness of our volunteers that inspire our visitors to return again and again.

We usually require a commitment of one year, working at least 5 hours per month. Each shift is 2.5 hours and includes a short enrichment/briefing session so you can learn something new, or update your knowledge on our animals and their habitats.

Click here to submit an online application.

School Programs

If you love working with children or adolescents and are available during school hours, consider becoming a School Programs volunteer. Help our Education staff  deliver  curriculum focused school programs from preschool to grade 12.

You choose the level of instruction at which you are comfortable  – we are flexible and all training is provided.

Contact to express interest.

Year-round Youth Program

If you are thirteen years or older, you can apply to work as a volunteer naturalist, talking to visitors in the aquarium. Learn and have fun, all while gaining volunteer hours for school and future work references! We provide all the training.

Click here to submit an online application

Aquarist Assistant

Assist our Animal Care Team and ensure we showcase our live exhibits and marine creatures to the best standards at all times. You will be trained to assist our well qualified aquarists in caring, feeding and cleaning habitats for all the animals in our care.



Support for the Eco Learning Hive generously provided by: