We love our Junior Volunteers

Working alongside our Humane Educator, Volunteer Coordinator and a mentor, youth learn procedures, policies and safety in working with and caring for animals throughout the 6-session JV program.

Next Sessions

  • The next sessions of our JV program will be held in September/October. Please see below for dates and times. Registration for these sessions will open August 21st at noon and is done online only. For questions, please contact volunteers@hshv.org

September M/W Classes 4-6pm

September 9th, 11th, 16th, 18th, 23rd, 25th

September T/Th Classes 4-6pm

September 10th, 12th, 17th, 19th, 24th, 26th

October M/W Classes 4-6pm 

October 7th, 9th, 14th, 16th, 21st, 23rd

October T/Th Classes 4-6pm

October 8th, 10th, 15th, 17th, 22nd, 24th


Our JV program is expanding! Coming in the fall of 2019, we will be offering a JV program exclusive to the Tiny Lions Lounge and Adoption Center. Please check back soon for dates and registration information.
Participants must be able to attend all 6 dates of the selected class. Make-up dates are not available, and a missed class will prohibit completion of the program. We’re sorry, but all program fees are non-refundable and cannot be transferred to other class dates.

About the JV program

HSHV invites animal lovers between the ages of 12-17 to join our JV team! Through this program, youth will have the opportunity to learn more about animal welfare, work with shelter animals and form new friendships with others in their age group. Each session consists of a humane education activities, mentoring and training by humane education staff and volunteers and hands on volunteer time to give back to the homeless animals in our shelter.  Though this program is so much more than volunteering, registered youth who join our JV team will receive volunteer hours for their work, which can be used towards required community service hours.


Frequently Asked Questions about the Junior Volunteer Program

1. How old do youth have to be to participate in the program?

All youth need to be between the ages of 12-17. We require that youth are at least 12 years old prior to registration. Youth who about to turn 18 within 6 months of our program may wish to wait and attend our adult volunteer orientation.

2. Can I register ahead of time?

Registration is done online only and can only be done after the day and time that registration opens. Registration typically fills up quickly, so we recommend being on the website right when registration opens to secure a place in our program. Registration links will appear on this page.

3. When will your next class be held?

The program is offered throughout the year, monthly. Registration occurs 1-2 months prior to the start of class, and the dates/times are updated on our website accordingly. We typically know the dates for upcoming sessions about 90 days ahead of time.

4. Is there a fee for the program?

The fee is $185 per student. This includes 6 training classes (12 total hours), a T-shirt, continuing education classes and programs and educational materials and supplies. Limited scholarships are available for families who demonstrate financial need as we do not want finances to be a barrier for those who wish to complete the program.

5. Can I miss a class and still complete the program?

We require youth to attend all 6 classes of their scheduled program. If they miss a class, students will need to make it up with the next group, which would mean waiting 2 months or more to complete the program. We do not offer individual make-up sessions at this time. If you are unable to attend all of the scheduled classes, we suggest waiting for the next session.

6. What happens after the program has been completed?

After JV’s successfully completes all six training classes, they will be able to come back to the shelter to volunteer independently (without a parent/guardian present). JV’s will be able to volunteer as often as they like, based on our provided schedule of available volunteer times. Volunteer opportunities are available 7 days a week and are typically 2-hour shifts. Some JV volunteer assignments include cat comforting, dog visitation, shelter cleaning, humane education support (e.g., working as a camp counselor), and manning a table at offsite events. JV’s are asked to make a 4-6 hour per month commitment after completing the program.


Registration is done online only, so please do not call or come up to HSHV to register. The links to register will appear to the left, and you may need to refresh your page at the time registration opens to see them.  Spots do fill up very quickly—sometimes within 10 minutes of registration opening.

All youth must be age 12 or older prior to registering. The fee for the program is $185 per participant, due at the time of registration. Please read the consent form for information regarding allergies, details, etc. prior to registration.  A limited amount of scholarships are available—please see the information on this page.

Youth are required to attend all 6 classes of their scheduled program.  Program fees are non-refundable and cannot be transferred to other sessions should a conflict arise.


When a session is full, you can add your name to our wait list. Wait lists are not carried over to different sessions. Once classes are full, you can add your name to the wait list. While there are currently no sessions to be wait listed for, we will add a link to the September/October waitlist sessions after registration has been completed.

Scholarship Information

Limited scholarships are available for students in financial need and would not otherwise be able to participate in the program. Applications can be submitted via email to volunteers@hshv.org, dropped off in person, or mailed to ATTN: Humane Education, HSHV, 3100 Cherry Hill, Ann Arbor, MI 48105. The deadline for the September/October scholarship application is Friday, August 9th at 4pm. Unfortunately, late submissions cannot be accepted. Our scholarship application can be found here: JV Scholarship Application