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 Volunteer Opportunities for Teens (Ages 14-18)
Love dogs and looking for a volunteer opportunity? Join the Save A Dog Teen Program!

At Save A Dog, high school students ages 14 and up can learn responsibility while receiving unconditional love! Teen volunteers help to socialize the pups and learn responsibilities related to animal care such as feeding, training, and bathing. Supervised by the Teen Coordinator and shelter staff, volunteers develop life skills and explore possible career paths in the animal care and rescue fields. Teens have a choice of two programs: one that runs during the school year and one that takes place in the summer.

School Year Program

Starting in September and running through the end of each semester, teens can volunteer after school from 3-5 p.m. Volunteering involves not only playing with the dogs but also cleaning kennels, bathing the dogs, and rotating the dogs in and out of their kennels for playtimes outside. Please note: once you have been to a Teen Volunteer Information Meeting and are selected for a time slot, you must be able to commit to that slot every other week for the Fall, Winter, or Spring programs. Fall program runs from the beginning of the school year, in September, to the end of December. The Winter program runs from January 2nd to the end of March. The Spring program runs from April 1st to the end of June.

Summer Program

Starting in late June and running through July and August, the teen program functions much like a summer camp. Teens sign up for a given week at a time and volunteer a two-hour shift every day, Monday through Friday, during that week - either 12-2 p.m. or 3-5 p.m. (For example, if you sign up for the week of July 8-12, you would volunteer every day Monday through Friday of that week either from 12-2 p.m. or 3-5 p.m.)

The cost to the shelter for the summer program is $150 per student for the given week, which covers the cost of supervision by experienced staff and all supplies, including snacks, drinks, and a Save A Dog Volunteer t-shirt. We're asking for a donation of $150 for new students and $100 for returning students. If this donation presents a hardship to the student's family, we can consider several scholarships as we anticipate fund-raising and sponsorships will help offset this cost to the shelter. A letter explaining the hardship is appreciated. We welcome help with fundraising for this important program!

Note: Neither the school-year nor the summer teen program has weekend shifts available - they both run on weekdays only.

Requirements and Application Details In order to apply, you must:

  • Be at least 14 years or older and either already be in high school or be entering high school in the fall
  • Provide proof of parental permission (form provided)
  • Be physically and emotionally capable of caring for dogs of all sizes
  • Have some prior dog experience - if your family doesn't own a dog, you should have cared for dogs on some level (e.g., pet sitting or dog walking)
  • Supply one adult reference other than a relative (guidance counselor, teacher, youth pastor, etc.) which can be emailed to teens@saveadog.org
  • Attend the initial volunteer information meeting
  • Be a Massachusetts resident, preferably local to Sudbury
  • Have transportation that will get you to your shift on time and pick you up promptly at the end of your shift

To apply:

The Save A Dog Volunteer Orientation Coordinator will contact you once your application is received, and you will receive an email invitation to an Information Meeting within a few weeks! Information meetings are by invitation only, as our training space has limited seating.

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