What are the requirements to volunteer at BHS?
For most positions, we ask for a minimum three month commitment and hope you’ll stay longer. Many of our volunteers have been with Berkshire Humane Society for 10 to 20 years!
Because of safety and liability concerns, volunteers must be at least 17 years of age and very reliable, prompt, and courteous.
However, we offer three opportunities for younger volunteers:
- Our Junior Volunteer Program is open to 12 to 16 year olds who must be accompanied by an adult willing to share the responsibilities while working at the shelter.
- During the summer months, we look for enthusiastic and dependable 14 to 17 year olds to be counselors at our Camp Humane. This is great introduction to Berkshire Humane Society as well as other aspects of animal care and welfare.
- Our Humane Hero Program invites 10 to 14 year olds to attend monthly meetings and learn about ways to advocate for animals.
How many hours do I need to commit to?
Hourly commitments depend on the volunteer position. Some positions require a weekly commitment of one to four hours. These include animal care providers and front desk receptionists. Other positions, such as event workers, mailers, or bakers, are on an on-call basis. For these positions, we’ll contact you well in advance to inquire about your availability.
Will training be provided?
We train our volunteers for all positions. For example, our dog walkers attend a certification class, receive an informational handout, and shadow a staff member. On the other hand, front desk receptionists and special events assistants, learn from staff and other seasoned volunteers.
Can I fulfill Community Service requirements at the shelter?
We do offer some Community Service opportunities for churches, schools, and other local groups. However, we ask that you contact our volunteer coordinator well ahead of your deadline requirements, and we cannot always guarantee that an appropriate project will be available.
How do I apply to volunteer?
It’s easy! First fill out and sign an application. You can download a volunteer application or stop by the shelter to pick one up. Next contact Terry Bissaillon, our Volunteer Coordinator, to schedule a meeting. You can call Terry at +1 (413) 447-7878, ext. 137, or email her.