Volunteer Opportunities

Riverbanks is recruiting enthusiastic individuals to join our growing volunteer team.

Each year, volunteers contribute more than 23,000 hours to Riverbanks Zoo and Garden. Volunteering is a very important part of the mission and daily workings of the Zoo and Garden.

“Discover the Adventure” and volunteer with Riverbanks.

It takes an incredible team of talented people to operate one of America’s best zoos. By volunteering you can be a part of what makes Riverbanks Zoo and Garden so remarkable!

Current Volunteer Positions (last updated on August 22, 2016)

Avian Research Assistant/Data Analyst Volunteer (4–8 hours a week (6 month commitment))

Posted: 7/12/16

Duties: Assist Curator of Birds in analyzing animal collection data. Participate in collection management research by helping to format/analyze data and generate reports. This exciting research project helps AZA zoos to monitor animal collection sustainability and to adaptively manage animal collections. This is a high level research project and requires attention to detail, familiarity with computers, ability to work independently once trained, and an interest in the scientific management of zoo populations. Participation can be considered an academic internship (Riverbanks Level 2 Internship) and credit could be earned depending on your University’s policies. This is also a great volunteer project for a professional with data handling experience and an interest in zoo science. Reports to the Curator of Birds.

Requirements: Must be at least 18 years of age with a HS diploma or equivalent. Upper classmen and college graduates preferred. Must be comfortable with computers and proficient in Microsoft Word and Excel. Proof of a current Tuberculin skin test.

Apply today! Submit an online volunteer application.

Mammal – Hoof stock Volunteer (Giraffe, Elephant and some Primate barns: at least 4 hours a week (6 month commitment))

Posted: 7/25/16

Duties: Under general supervision is responsible for the cleaning of animal enclosures and back up areas. Assists with cleaning barns, which includes but is not limited to, sweeping, shoveling, raking, hosing, disinfecting, scrubbing, and trash barrel removal. Assist keepers with maintaining animal exhibits by cutting browse, distributing substrate, removing leaves/debris, cleaning pools and moats, as well as, removing animal waste material. Volunteers will also be responsible for lifting and carrying 50 pound grain bags and multiple bales of hay/straw, washing dishes, diet preparation, and various projects around the area. We are looking for people who love to work outdoors in all weather conditions and who are not afraid of a heavy workload. Interacts with Riverbanks guests and cooperates within a team setting. Volunteers do not have direct contact with some of the animals in our collection. Reports to the Senior Keeper and the Assistant Curator.

Requirements: Must be at least 18 years of age with a HS diploma or equivalent. Must be able to bend, stoop or stand for long periods of time and lift up to 50lbs. Must be able to work outdoors in all weather conditions. Commit to volunteering a minimum of 6 months for 4 hours a week. Proof of a current Tuberculin skin test.

Apply today! Submit an online volunteer application.

Aquarist Diver Volunteer (2 hours a week or every other week) (Needed shifts - Monday, Thursday, Saturday & Sunday 3:00pm - 5:00pm)

Posted: 7/27/16

Duties: Under general supervision, is responsible for the proper care of Riverbanks' fish, aquatic invertebrates, and aquarium plants. Performs diving duties and demonstrations. Assist with husbandry duties including diet preparation according to departmental guidelines, feeding aquarium life, and cleaning exhibits. Interacts with Riverbanks guests and cooperates within a team setting. Reports to the Senior Aquarist and the Aquarium Manager.

Requirements: Must be at least 18 years of age with a HS diploma or equivalent. Must hold current SCUBA, First Aid, CPR, AED, and Oxygen Provider certifications. All necessary paperwork and credentials must be submitted before start date and prior to getting in any tank. Commit to volunteering a minimum of 2 hours a week or every other week.

Apply today! Submit an online volunteer application.

EdZoocation Guest Engagement Guide

Posted: 8/5/16

Riverbanks offers a unique volunteer opportunity for those who are interested in sharing their love of wildlife and wild places. As an EdZoocation Volunteer, you will enhance visitors’ knowledge and appreciation of the Zoo by providing answers to general questions and communicating information about Zoo programs and exhibits.

The EdZoocation Volunteer Program is a community of dedicated individuals who have an appreciation and passion for the natural world and the desire to make a difference. We invite you to join our team, where you will have the opportunity to experience, understand and appreciate the importance and impact of environmental and wildlife conservation on our future.

New EdZoocation Volunteer Recruits will enter the program as a Guest Engagement Guide that will be expected to:

  • Educate guests about wildlife and environmental conservation.
  • Enrich visitor experiences.
  • Interact with visitors through exhibit and biofact interpretation.
  • Assist with education events.

No experience is required, but we do ask that EdZoocation Volunteers meet these requirements:

  • Be 18 years or older.
  • Support the Zoo and its mission.
  • Adhere to all Riverbanks Zoo general policies and operating procedures.
  • Are comfortable with speaking in public and interacting with different ages and cultures.
  • Can commit to at least 8–10 hours a month and at least one education/zoo event annually.
  • Provide proof of negative TB test results annually.
  • Complete Online Application (Deadline September 16, 2016)
  • Complete Orientation, Training and Program Requirements Annually. Mandatory Training Workshop Series will begin Saturday October 1, 2016 and will run for four consecutive Saturdays through October 22, 2016.
Apply today! Submit an online volunteer application.

Small Mammal and Gorilla Volunteer (Gorilla, Kangaroo and the Riverbanks Conservation Outpost: 4 hours a week, 6 month commitment (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday openings) )

Posted: 8/12/16

Duties: Under general supervision is responsible for the cleaning of animal enclosures and back up areas. Assists with cleaning exhibit windows, washing dishes, cleaning barns (sweeping, shoveling, rinsing and disinfecting) and removing trash barrels. Maintains animal exhibits by cutting browse, removing waste material, mixing or rotating mulch, adding substrate and watering plants. Interacts with Riverbanks guests and cooperates within a team setting. Volunteers do not have direct contact with some of the animals in our collection. Reports to the Senior Keeper and the Assistant Curator.

Requirements: Must be at least 18 years of age with a HS diploma or equivalent. Must be able to bend, stoop or stand for long periods of time and lift up to 50lbs. Must be able to work outdoors in all weather conditions. Commit to volunteering a minimum of 6 months for 4 hours a week. Proof of a current Tuberculin skin test.

Apply today! Submit an online volunteer application.

Boo at the Zoo needs YOU (This year’s event runs from Friday, October 21st through Sunday, October 30th)

Posted: 8/17/16

Riverbanks Zoo and Garden is currently seeking volunteers for our annual Boo at the Zoo Halloween Spooktacular!  This year’s event runs from Friday, October 21st through Sunday, October 30th. Boo at the Zoo is a safe and not-so-scary pre-Halloween festival that attracts thousands of guests and little goblins for 10 nights in October. Boo Crew members work at trick-or-treat stations throughout the zoo, handing out candy or treats to kids along our Trick or Treat Trail.  Some volunteers may work in other capacities such as guiding guests through a haunted maze or taking photos at key locations. 

 

We need approximately 90 volunteers per night, so we can easily accommodate large groups or individuals that want to join in on the fun!  Volunteers who work the event will receive 4 hours of community service credit and one free Zoo pass for each night of volunteering!

 

If you would like to volunteer, please email me at thughes@riverbanks.org , let me know the date you would like to volunteer and how many people will be participating. Once I ensure your date is available I will respond back with the 2016 Boo application and instruction sheet. Space is limited and this event fills up fast!  Volunteer requests will be accepted on a first come, first serve basis.
Apply today! Submit an online volunteer application.

Volunteer Requirements

  • Be at least 14 to volunteer with the ZooTeens program, age 16 to volunteer with special events and age 18 for other areas.
  • Complete an online Volunteer Application.
  • Pass a criminal background check.
  • Follow the Riverbanks Appearance Policy, which includes wearing khaki shorts or pants, closed-toe shoes, socks, Riverbanks uniform shirt, and ID Badge. Uniform shirts range from $6–$20 depending on size and style; Riverbanks nametag and ID are $10.
  • Show proof of a tuberculin (TB) skin test–a TB test is required annually for most volunteer areas.
  • Commit to volunteering a minimum of six months for 4 hours a week (although you are welcome to volunteer more). We will gladly accommodate any time you need to take off.
  • All associated costs are covered by volunteers and not reimbursable by Riverbanks Zoo & Garden.
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