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OUR MISSION

To improve the lives of the animals in our care, be timely and compassionate in our responses, educate the public through community outreach and, provide for the health and safety of the citizens and animals of Ventura County.

Help Save a Life - Become a VCAS Volunteer Today!

      
  Next Volunteer Orientation:

    Now Online! Fill out an Application HERE

    Get started on your own schedule!
   
Already a Volunteer?  
Sign In Here (VicNet)


Volunteer!
 

Volunteers play a vital role in all we do for the animals and pet owners in our community. We simply wouldn’t be able to sustain our programs that help thousands of pets each year without volunteer support. Volunteers are involved in almost every aspect of our organization, from daily animal care and medical support to marketing and fundraising, they do it all.

Volunteers are required to:

·         Submit an online application, which includes signing a Volunteer Agreement and a Release and Waiver of Liability form
·         Complete an online general volunteer orientation session
·         Sign up for your “First Day” Shift using VicNet and/or complete training videos online to get started with Shelter Support Tasks right away!
·         Be able to work independently
·         If you are interested in training to handle our dogs, cats, or rabbits, you must meet the essential capabilities of volunteers requirements
·         Attend additional training sessions as required to handle animals at our shelter
·         Treat animals in our care with kindness and concern for their welfare
·         Represent themselves and VCAS in a professional manner and treat clients, staff, and other volunteers with respect

Age Restrictions:
If under 18: VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES COMING SOON!! STAY TUNED FOR UPDATES ON OUR YOUTH PRORAM. 
Meanwhile, visit https://www.facebook.com/rescuereadersvcas/ for youth volunteer opportunity.

·         16-17 years old – both youth and parent/legal guardian must each submit an individual online application, complete an online general volunteer orientation, and sign a Youth Waiver prior to volunteering. Youth may volunteer without a  guardian once the above steps are completed. Youth volunteers MAY NOT handle animals without parent present.
·         13-15 years old – both youth and parent/legal guardian must each submit an individual online application, complete an online general volunteer orientation, and provide a parent waiver prior to volunteering. Youth will need to volunteer with said parent/legal guardian at all times after the above steps are complete. Some activities are limited for safety.
·        under 13 years old – check out this page for ideas and ways to help!

Volunteer Application

You must complete our Volunteer Application prior to being able to sign up for volunteer shifts. After submitting the application, you will receive an email with the link to your VicNet portal where you will sign up for your First Day Training Shift. You can also click the link next to the orange kitty at the top of this page! 

Volunteer Application - 18+ only

Volunteer Orientation

Completing a general volunteer orientation is mandatory before you can volunteer at VCAS. Orientation will cover the goals and policies of the organization, as well as explaining volunteer opportunities.
Our general volunteer orientation is an online class, so you can complete your orientation on your own schedule! After you complete your application you will receive an email containing the next steps to becoming a volunteer for Ventura County Animal Services!
VCAS volunteer t-shirts are available for purchase at your First Day Training Shift or at anytime at our front desk. If you do not wish to purchase a t-shirt, blue volunteer aprons are always available to borrow for the day. 

·         Short Sleeve T-Shirt: $10
·         Long Sleeve T-Shirt: $15

Frequently Asked Questions about Volunteering

What can I do as a VCAS volunteer?

How do I become an VCAS volunteer?
Are there any ongoing requirements for volunteers?
I need to fulfill community service hours, what should I do?
I’m having problems with the volunteer application.
I completed the online application, now what?
Can I just come walk dogs?
I attended an orientation, now what?
I want to take a dog for a walk/run/hike.
Can my group set up a service day?

What can I do as a VCAS volunteer?

Volunteer opportunities are constantly changing as we grow and develop new programs. Below are the categories for our opportunities. Click each to see a listing of current opportunities available to volunteers. Please note, many programs may require trainings to get started or have age limitations.

View Our Volunteer Opportunities Directory Here

How do I become an VCAS volunteer?

Follow these steps to become an VCAS volunteer:

  1. Fill out our Volunteer Application
  2. Watch our Online Orientation.
  3. Log into VicNet to schedule your "First Day" Training
  4. Volunteer!


Are there any ongoing requirements for volunteers?




Essential Shelter Support



Dog Handling



Cat Handling



Rabbit Handling



Minimum Number of Hours Suggested Per Month

No Minimum!

8 hours/mo

4 hours/mo

8 hours/mo

 

There is no minimum hourly commitment for Essential Shelter Support Tasks. However, we ask that all volunteers who handle dogs or rabbits commit to at least 8 hours per month of service. Those interested in handling cats should commit to at least 4 hours per month. Our volunteer management system (VicNet) has a licensing fee for each user, so we regularly remove volunteers who do not actively volunteer each month. Volunteers who have not volunteered within a year will be asked to re-complete an orientation.

Additionally, we require all volunteers to adhere to the VCAS Volunteer Policies. You must agree to these policies in order to submit a volunteer application.
Any questions or concerns about the policies may be directed to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


I need to fulfill community service hours, what should I do?

At this time we have limited capacity for those seeking community service hours for a pending or completed court case.  Please email our Volunteer Coordinator at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to find out if we can accomodate!

If you are seeking community service hours for school, an organization, or personal pleasure, please follow the steps above for How do I become an VCAS volunteer?. You will be in charge of any documentation, including tracking your volunteer hours on your own time sheet. You may request that an VCAS supervisor initial your time sheet at the end of your volunteer commitment. If you require other documentation of your volunteer hours including VCAS letterhead, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. before beginning your service.

I’m having problems with the volunteer application. How can I get help?

A common reason that an application fails to submit is if required fields are left blank. All items with a red asterisk must be completed.

After submitting your application, you will receive a confirmation email with information on attending a First Day training session. This is a very important email, as it contains pertinent details relating to your First Day. If you don’t receive the email, that doesn’t necessarily mean your application wasn’t received. In most cases, if you don’t find the email in your regular inbox, it will be in your spam filter or junk mail folder because your email settings are not allowing email from Ventura County Animal Services.

If you continue to have problems submitting your application or finding the email about getting started, please let us know by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

I completed the online application, now what?

Shortly after submitting the online application, you will receive an email prompting you to sign up for your first shift. This is a very important email, as it contains a link to the volunteer portal, our volunteer handbook, and pertinent details relating to your first shift. Please see the question above if you are having trouble with the application or the confirmation email.

Our orientation is now online! You may watch the orientation video on your own schedule! Once you submit your application, you will have 90 days to to get started as a VCAS Volunteer. If you do not log any volunteer hours during this time, your account will be deleted and you will need to re-apply.

Can I just come walk dogs?

Only trained VCAS Dog walking volunteers may walk dogs. You will receive instructions on how to become a trained VCAS dog walker when you attend your first shift.

I attended an orientation, now what?

Log into your account at VICNET to look for volunteer opportunities. At any time, whether a week or a year after orientation, you may email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for information, direction, or other assistance related to VCAS volunteering.

I want to take a dog for a walk/run/hike offsite, do I need to be trained to do that?

Yes, our “Hound on the Town” program allows you to check a dog out for a few hours or the day. Only approved dogs are permitted out on field trips and you must first attend a Foster Orientation, also online and schedule a matchmaking appointment! (vcas.us/foster) If you would like to be able to choose your own hiking buddy on your own schedule, you must complete a Dog Handling Training as a VCAS Volunteer.

Can my group set up a service day?

We strongly encourage groups to become fully oriented volunteers by participating in our regular volunteer orientation process. Groups that are requesting regular scheduled shifts must proceed with the general volunteer orientation process.

Because of safety concerns for both people and pets, Group Volunteering is limited and will not involve animal handling. If you are seeking a one-time group volunteering opportunity, please contact our Volunteer Programs Manager at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

VCAS depends on the generosity of our community. We encourage groups to set up a fundraising drive in place of a service day, as we are always in need of funds to run our operations and are limited in our capacity to host groups. Visit https://animalservicesfoundationofventuracounty.org/ for information.