Thank you so much for your interest in volunteering for the Animal Rescue League of Berks County! Our volunteers are such an important and vital part of our organization and allow us to enrich the lives of the animals in our care, as well as to further the ARL’s mission throughout our community. Volunteers are truly the backbone of our organization and are needed for various opportunities, including:

To read more about these opportunities, please click HERE.

Frequently Asked Questions:


How old must I be to volunteer at the ARL?
To interact with animals, volunteers must be at least 18 years of age. Minors must be accompanied by a parent or guardian for select opportunities that typically do not involve direct animal contact.

Do volunteers mostly cuddle with the cats and walk dogs?
While we do offer plenty of opportunities for people to walk dogs and socialize cats, volunteers are needed for so much more! Please take a look at our volunteer opportunities listed HERE to learn more about all of the different ways your time and talent can help at the ARL!

How many hours per month at minimum would you like me to volunteer?
We ask that you volunteer with us for a minimum of 6 hours per month. While it’s preferred that your schedule is somewhat predictable so our staff and other volunteers know when to count on your help, we can also accommodate a flexible schedule. We are grateful for your help whenever we can have it!

Can I bring a friend with me when I volunteer?
Volunteering with a friend is a wonderful way to spend time together! As long as your friend has gone through our orientation and training program and is approved to volunteer in the same area as you, absolutely!  If not, friends and family are not able to accompany you while you are volunteering.

I have to complete a certain number of community service hours for work, school or a service organization. Do I still need to go through an orientation program?
For people who are looking to complete community service for school or work, we offer a 30-45 minute orientation and training session on the second Saturday of every month at 2PM. Please note that opportunities in this program do not involve direct animal handling or care, but we can use your help in a variety of areas, including:

  • Laundry
  • Dishes
  • Maintenance and cleaning
  • Grounds upkeep
  • Administrative tasks
  • Organizing
  • Events assistance

Participants are asked to track their own hours and will be able to begin their service hours after they have completed the orientation and training session. Participants under 16 years of age will need to be accompanied by a parent at all times while at the shelter, and all volunteers under 18 years of age will need to provide a waiver signed by a parent, which can be picked up at the orientation and training session. Service hours are available 9AM – 5PM every day. To learn more about these opportunities, please email us at at least 2 months prior to your community service deadline.

I have to complete court-ordered community service. Is that a different program than the volunteer program?
Yes it is; however, our court-ordered community service program is currently closed to new applicants. We will resume taking new applicants at a later time.

What are the steps to becoming a volunteer?


  1. Attend a volunteer orientation. Volunteer orientations are held at least once a month. To view and register for an orientation, please visit our events calendar. If you are interested in volunteering to complete community service requirements for school or other projects, our process is different. Please see below for more information. 
  2. Submit an application. You will be given the application at the orientation session and can turn it that day or anytime afterwards. We will keep applications on file for 3 months following your orientation session.
  3. Attend training. Each volunteer will receive hands-on training in the department where he or she would like to volunteer.
  4. Begin volunteering! All volunteers will receive access to VOLGISTICS, our volunteer software that provides a daily snapshot of volunteer opportunities and needs.

Volunteer Registration Now Open!

To learn how to become a valuable member of our volunteer team, please view our events calendar to register for an orientation. Orientations are held the education room at the shelter and will last approximately 90 minutes for a presentation, questions and a tour. 

Thank you so much once again for your interest in volunteering at the ARL! We look forward to welcoming you to our incredible and dedicated volunteer team!

Meet our Volunteer & Outreach Coordinator!

Hello, my name is Jen Raney. I have loved animals all my life, but animal welfare became my passion when I started as a volunteer with Delaware Valley Golden Retriever Rescue. I eventually moved onto the Board of Directors, which then led me to my current role as the ARL volunteer coordinator.

In addition to my life-long love of animals, you’ll find that I’m also a dedicated adopter and foster mom, beginning in 2004 and hopefully continuing for many years to come. Volunteering is such an important part of this organization; we truly could not do it without you! I’m excited for the opportunity to move the ARL’s volunteer program to the next level.