AWLQ Volunteer FAQ
At the Animal Welfare League of Queensland, we rely on our volunteers who make a huge contribution to the work we do. Our volunteers readily offer their time, love and compassion to the welfare of the animals in our care. They make such a difference to the AWLQ and we are delighted to recognise the incredible help they offer. Thank you for considering becoming one of our volunteers!
WHO CAN VOLUNTEER?
Anyone can volunteer. At the AWLQ, we genuinely encourage volunteers from all parts of the community. We find value in diversity and understand all members of the community can make a difference.
Unfortunately, due to legal and insurance regulations, there are limited opportunities for anyone who is under 18 years of age. Instead, perhaps you could consider collecting donations of food and bedding, fundraising, fostering, or asking AWLQ to come to your school to raise awareness.
WHAT COMMITMENT IS INVOLVED?
Volunteering with the AWLQ is a fantastic way to make a difference in the lives of the animals in our care. There are 2 types of commitment when volunteering:
- Rostered Volunteers– Expected commitment: rostered and regular 1 x 4hr shift / weekly (for minimum of 3 months). These types of volunteers are the core of our Volunteer Program – regular and reliable we can count on these wonderful individuals each week.
- Casual Volunteers – Expected commitment: casual (unrostered) 1 x 4 hr shift / weekly (for a minimum of 3 months). After you have volunteered for 3 months on the roster, you can drop back to casual hours. These types of volunteers might not be able to commit to a specific day, but are able to come once a week for a 4 hour shift. These wonderful volunteers might not know what day they can come, but when they do, they make a difference.
Some of our volunteers do more than 1 shift per week, whilst some are not able to lock into a set commitment. If this is the case, we can talk to you about the opportunities that are available when you can come.
WHAT AGE LIMIT APPLIES?
Volunteering Program: You can start volunteering at AWLQ if you are at least 18 years of age, due to public liability and insurance regulations. There are limited opportunities for younger volunteers (see below). After you reach the age of 85, we will require additional medical assessments if you wish to continue volunteering. If you are outside of this age bracket, instead, perhaps you could consider collecting donations of food and bedding, fundraising, fostering, or asking AWLQ to come to your local club to raise awareness.
Teen Volunteering Program: If you are aged 13-17 and would like to volunteer, we host a Teen Volunteering Program during the school holidays subject to the availability of teen volunteer positions. This is an intensive 1 day course where you will learn what it takes to be a volunteer, learn activities relating to the role, and discover the joy of caring for our animals. Once teens have completed the course they can make an application to our volunteer department to become a weekly volunteer. This process includes an interview by our volunteer department staff with both the teen and at least one of their parents.
WHAT EXPERIENCE IS NEEDED?
Whilst no formal experience is needed, we do require all volunteers to have:
- Good communication skills.
- High fluency in English – spoken and written
- Good level of physical fitness
- Willingness to learn.
- Regular and reliable.
- Love of animals and an understanding of the purpose of the organisation.
Position descriptions are available online and provide a full list of the responsibilities of, and requirements and capabilities necessary for volunteering with AWLQ. We supply training and instructions for each position. Many positions are entry-level which the majority of new volunteers will start in. Other positions are more advanced roles. For our advanced volunteer positions, we require a strong background from the entry-level as a prerequisite for stepping up into these roles.
As a volunteer you can gain important transferable skills in animal handling, team work, fundraising, campaigning, management, data entry, administration, customer service and many more.
HOW DO I VOLUNTEER?
Volunteering at AWLQ is a 4 step process. Read the Position Descriptions carefully and decide which position you would like to volunteer in, then:
- Complete the Volunteer Application Form for the chosen shelter location.
- Book and pay for a scheduled Volunteer Induction at the chosen shelter location.
- Attend and participate in our Volunteer Induction at the chosen shelter location.
- Be assigned on the roster for your First Shift, commencing volunteering and training.
WHAT HAPPENS IF I AM SICK / CAN NOT ATTEND?
We recognise that life doesn’t always go to plan. If you are sick, or have another commitment on your rostered day, simply contact us to let us know you won’t be in… that way we can plan accordingly.
VOLUNTEERS WITH MENTAL HEALTH CONCERNS / ASD / ANXIETY / DEPPRESSION OR OTHER MEDICAL CONCERNS:
Please note that while the shelter is a wonderful place to visit, sometimes working in a shelter environment may cause stressors to certain individuals, namely those who have either a history of / or are predisposed to: anxiety, depression, mental health issues, are in physically poor health or have been diagnosed as being on the ASD spectrum.
If you fall into these categories please feel free to contact our Volunteer Department for more information.
Thank you for your kindness and compassion.