Junior Volunteers

HSWC Jr. Volunteer Program: Anyone under age 18 must have a parent or legal guardian attend the New Volunteer Orientation with them and is responsible for signing all waivers.  Any Jr. Volunteer between the ages of 10 and 15 MUST be accompanied by a parent/guardian at all times while working in the shelter or at outside adoption/fundraising events. Paws to Read volunteers come to the shelter on the first two Wednesdays of each month from 5:30pm to 7:30pm, unless otherwise instructed by the Community Outreach Coordinator.


  • Paws to Read

Junior volunteers can spend time reading to a cat in the cat playroom.  If the cat wants attention he or she will come to you. If the cat does not seem interested in the reading, KEEP READING!  This s a great way for a cat to get use to different voices, which will ultimately help them adapt to a new home.  You may also read to the small animals.  Please leave the animals in their cages, you can pull up a chair and sit next to the cage.   If there are no small animals to read to you may get a cat and read to.  I have books on my shelf for you to choose from or you may bring your own book to read.  Reading to the dogs will be done in front of the dog’s kennel door.  You may sit on a blanket while you read.  Please do not put your fingers through the kennel door or put your face up to the kennel door.  The dogs my not want to listen to you read and may go to the back of the kennel, KEEP READING EVEN IF THE DOG WALKS AWAY.  It’s important to give him or her a chance to get to know the sound of your voice.  Cats and dogs find the rhythmic sound of a voice comforting and soothing.  This can be a much needed distraction from the chaos of the shelter.  It is also helpful for animals to get use to the sound of different voices; this can help them when they find their forever home.  Juniors (and parents if they would like) will start the session with reading to a pet of your choice.

  • Toy Making

It is very important for our animals to have toys in their kennels.  This is called kennel enrichment.  We will be making both cat and dog toys and I encourage our volunteers to bring toy ideas.  It is helpful if the toys are made out of inexpensive items.

  • Treat Making

We will be making treats for both dogs and cats.  I welcome everyone to bring recipes.  We do have a working oven at the shelter so during the colder months we will make treats to bake. In the hot months we will be making frozen treats in ice cube trays, I have plenty here at the shelter.  PLEASE LET ME KNOW IF YOU HAVE ALLERGIES TO ANY FOODS.  If you have allergies to a particular ingredient we are using we will find an alternative for the next meeting.  Foods that we will be working with include, but. are not limited to: peanut butter (no light peanut butter) whole oats, plain yogurt (in a tub), and chicken stock (low sodium or sodium free).  If there is a particular ingredient that is required for your treats please let me know.  It will be helpful if we decide on the treats we are going to make the session before.

  • Fundraising

We’ve found the Jr. Volunteers are often very effective fundraisers.  As you have probably guessed, it is very expensive to run a shelter.  The Humane Society of Warren County relies on donations from the public.  We would like for the junior volunteers to come up with some ideas that we can do as a group or you can do on your own. Monetary donations can be made or donations can be made in the form of supplies; dog and cat food and treats, kitty litter, laundry soap, dish soap, and bleach.

  • Off -Site Adoption Events

These are very important events and we need dedicated volunteers to help.  Off-site events are usually held on weekends.  If you are interested, we will provided the training and have you spend a couple of events with our seasoned Adoption Specialists.

  • Other duties

There may be other chores that need to be done that would greatly help the staff.   This may include, dishes, laundry (folding only), and cleaning windows.

  • Saturday Duties

Starting in December 2018, we will schedule junior volunteers in shifts, please remember that an adult must accompany you for your shift.  Shifts will be assigned on a first come first serve basis.  One youth volunteer and one parent per shift.  Shifts run 10:00 am to 12:00 pm; 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm; 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm. Youth volunteers and parents can do any of the above activities as well as greet potential adopters.