Volunteering is a great way to get involved in the community, help out the shelter, and be around animals that need your love and attention!

Being a YVAS volunteer doesn’t just mean cuddling puppies and kittens all day- although that can be part of it! Our YVAS volunteers help around the shelter by taking on tasks that staff would never have time to complete all by ourselves. Volunteers help with shelter “housekeeping”, cleaning outside yards, sorting donations, laundry, sanitizing wild boxes, making adoption packets & goody bags, preparing enrichment, and much more. 

Know that every task is important to the health and well-being of the animals and makes a huge impact on our ability to care for these animals.

Volunteer Age Requirements

All YVAS Volunteers must be at least 10 years old. Volunteers under the age of 16 must be accompanied during all volunteer activities by an adult who is also a trained YVAS volunteer. Volunteers under the age of 18 must have a parent or guardian signature in order to participate in shelter activities.

How to Become A YVAS Volunteer

Step 1 - Attend a Volunteer Orientation

During this one hour orientation, we will give a tour of the shelter, explain what all we do here, and point out areas of need for volunteers. View our calendar of orientation dates by clicking here.

Step 2 - Mentoring

Complete one hour of one-on-one or small group mentoring with an experienced YVAS volunteer mentor. They will help teach you general housekeeping tasks and show you where supplies are kept. Sign-ups will be provided following completion of Volunteer Orientation. After mentoring is complete you may come and volunteer on your own time; however, you will be limited to general shelter tasks until cat and/or dog classes are completed.

Step 3 - Complete Feline Friends or Canine Companions Trainings

These classes are required to interact directly with shelter animals. Training teaches volunteers about animal behavior, ways to socialize them, health & safety while volunteering, etc. We often don’t know much about the history of the animals that are brought to us, so we want to help our volunteers be as prepared and safe as possible to handle different situations while handling animals.

Feline Fan Club

Feline Fan Club is a program designed especially for those kiddos that are too young to be a regular YVAS volunteer. Once a month we offer an opportunity for kids to come and read books to shelter cats for half an hour.  Feline Fan Club participants must be between ages 5-9 and must be accompanied by a parent at all times.  Space is limited so pre-registration is required.

Special Events Volunteering

We often have volunteers help out at special events such as adoption events, booths at festivals, shelter holiday events, our low-cost spay & neuter clinics, and more! Volunteers assist staff by answering questions about the shelter and the adoption process, transporting animals, and creating positive interactions in the community.  Volunteers will be notified of upcoming events and have access to sign-ups. 


All YVAS volunteers will be asked to sign a liability and photo release. Understand that there are always risks involved in working around live animals, especially when we don’t know the backgrounds on most of the animals that are in our care. 

Get Involved