We try to work with work experience placements for anyone from the age of 14 years upwards. There are a number of different types of volunteering;
Placement; (generally for a minimum of a week to build work experience) The placement can be a block placement with the days running consecutively or can be one day a week over an extended period.
Duke of Edinburgh; Generally a minimum of an hour a week for an extended period. You need to be able to manage your own record keeping and get the books signed off on each volunteering occasion.
Regular rescue volunteering; This would be for over 18s who would like to support the rescue dogs. This is generally a regular commitment of anything from an hour a week upwards.
Fostering; We do work with fosterers, see the RSPCA Westmorland branch page for more information. Fosters generally handle dogs that have significant behavioural or medical needs. Dogs that are ready for re-homing, generally re-home more quickly from the kennels. Fosters need to be able to foster for a minimum of two weeks and up to three months.
All volunteering requires a health and safety induction and support in the early days to ensure your safety and the safety of the pets in our care. This includes the need to complete forms and training material depending on which type of volunteering you would like to do.
If you are older than 14 years old, we are happy to have a chat about what you hope to do. We always like to meet volunteers before they start to help prepare and manage expectations. We are a busy workplace and safety is important to us. The safety of our people and our animals.
For this reason we need to be sure that you are able to follow instructions and are able to ask for clarity if you don't understand. You need to be old enough to conduct yourself in a professional manner and be able to communicate issues clearly. Sometimes having a job (even if not initially in the animal care sector) can help to build these skills.