Volunteers are the backbone of our organization. From animal care to data entry, volunteers keep the Wildlife Center and our animals alive! Whatever volunteer opportunity you choose, your contribution of time makes a BIG difference and helps give wildlife a second chance. The Wildlife Center is a great place for people who are passionate about wildlife conservation, and for those interested in gaining experience toward an animal-related career. Even if you’re not working directly with the animals, watching as they are returned back to the wild is a powerful and extremely satisfying experience. In a variety of ways, volunteers help care for roughly 5,000 sick, injured and orphaned animals that come through our Center each year. Most animals arrive during April through September, the “baby season.” Over 150 volunteers are needed to help with the enormous task of caring for them. During the remainder of the year, we continue to rehabilitate animals that are sick, injured or orphaned.
How do I Volunteer?
Requirements for becoming a WCSV volunteer:
- You are at least 16 years old.
- You attend one Orientation and one Introduction to Wildlife Rehabilitation (for animal care volunteers)
- You work within the Center’s guidelines.
- You volunteer at least four hours per week for two months (Note: We are not able to offer community service credit for animal care.)
- You begin with the knowledge that WCSV is a wildlife hospital, with the goal of successfully releasing our wild patients.
- You should be willing to work hard, have fun and learn a lot!
Training you can expect:
- Orientation and Overview Meeting
- Introduction to Wildlife Rehabilitation: Basics of wildlife rehabilitation including health and safety
- Other classes throughout the year on specific topics including animal care, diseases and species identification.
Photo by Elizabeth Kricfalusi
Volunteer Orientation Classes:
How You Can Help
Photo by Elizabeth Kricfalusi
The Wildlife Center is a medical facility and our animal care volunteers are crucial in meeting the needs of the wildlife in temporary residence. Birds and mammals must be fed, medicated and kept in clean surroundings. Volunteers must be willing to do laundry, dishes and a variety of other cleaning jobs. At our busiest, we have 3, 4-hour shifts per day and volunteers sign up for at least one shift per week and make a commitment to remain through October.
Home Care (A commitment of 3 months of In-Center Care and staff approval is required.)
Do you have room in your home to care for injured and orphaned birds and mammals until they are ready for release? If your living situation and lifestyle allow you to join our home care team, we need you! Different species require different time commitments and housing requirements. You provide the food and some supplies and we provide the training. A truly rewarding experience!
Photo by Jen Constantin
Education and Community Outreach
One of the most important missions of WCSV is to inform and educate the public about wildlife issues and how people can co-exist with the wildlife around them. Do you enjoy talking to and sharing information with small to large groups? Join the team and visit community groups, outreach programs, summer camps and schools in an effort to encourage people to live harmoniously with wildlife. Training provided—all you need is enthusiasm. For more information on the different volunteer opportunities within our Education and Outreach Department Click Here.
We often need help in the office with data entry, mailings, filing and other general office duties. Do you have administrative skills you’d enjoy putting to work for a great cause?
Help us with fundraising events that encourage the community to support WCSV. We need help with mailings and are also looking for volunteers to help with grant writing.
Lend your professional skills or the skills of your firm to one of our events or projects! From legal advice and accounting oversight to catering, we can put your skills to great use!
Photo by Dave Constantin
Share your writing talents. We are looking for volunteers who can provide articles for our Tracks newsletter.
Volunteers with a valid California Driver’s license and a vehicle large enough to hold 1-2 large animal carriers are needed to transport animals. Transportation could be to a vet appointment, or assisting with a pick-up of an injured or orphaned animal.
In addition, The Humane Society of Silicon Valley receives injured, orphaned or trapped animals each day. These animals need to be transported to our Center so that we can provide the medical, rehabilitation and release services that they require. Volunteers sign up to be on-call (mornings and early afternoons) to transport the wildlife from the Humane Society to our Center.
Gardening, Center Maintenance and Repairs
If you prefer the outdoors, we have many new aviaries and enclosures to build as well as existing structures that are in need of repair. If you have a penchant for gardening, we can always use help beautifying our outdoor area.
The Internship Program for Spring / Summer 2014 is CLOSED! Thank you to those of you who applied. We are excited that we received more applicants than anticipated this year and are in the process of contacting and interviewing applicants. If your application was received after the application deadline (end-of-day on February 28), your resume will be kept on file for the following season. If you were not able to be considered this year, please register above for an orientation class to begin volunteering and gaining valuable wildlife experience today!
Interns are responsible for providing care to the orphaned, sick and injured wildlife admitted to WCSV. Interns will get to experience the examination process of incoming wildlife, learn different treatment techniques, capture and release wildlife, go out in the field to reunite over-rescued animals with their parents, perform basic animal housing, provide enrichment for patients in our enclosures and assist staff in training new and current volunteers. Interns will also learn how to do basic diagnostic techniques such as avian and mammal fecal testing and blood work.
This is an unpaid internship with a minimum commitment of 20 hours per week for two months. Please, no phone calls regarding the status of your application. Deadline to apply for 2014: February 28
OR mail your cover letter and resume to PO Box 360048, Milpitas, CA 95036
Second Step: WCSV will contact you for an interview. You will need to provide us with a start date and end date at the time of your interview.
Third Step: Once you are accepted, WCSV will contact you and sign you up for two required training classes: Orientation and Introduction to Wildlife Rehabilitation.
Final Step: After you have successfully completed the required training classes, we will add you to the schedule.