The main purpose of a collator is to produce blocks and support block liveness on the network. From there, collators offer up blocks to validators on the relay chain for finalization.
This is similar to the role of miners in Proof of Work networks but, unlike miners, collator nodes do not contribute to the safety of the network and are critical to liveness, decentralization, censorship resistance, and security. Essentially, collators work to produce state transition proofs for validators based on the Polkadot and Kusama relay chains and maintain a full node on both the relay chain and parachain in which they operate.
This is an opportunity to support the Moonbeam project and gain specialized knowledge while also earning real network rewards, such as Moonbeam’s native utility token, Glimmer (GLMR), and Moonriver’s native utility token, Moonriver (MOVR).