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 January 5, 2017)

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

Posted: 11/4/16

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.

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: 11/4/16

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.

Horticulture Volunteer (Tuesday and/or Thursday 8:30am–12:00pm)

Posted: 1/5/17

Duties: Work with our professional horticulture staff in the Zoo and/or Botanical Garden. Assist with horticultural duties for the purpose of beautifying and maintaining gardens, exhibits, animal habitats, plant collections, and/or public displays. Must be eager to learn about our collection and have the ability to demonstrate creativity and teamwork. Works outdoors year-round, in all weather conditions. Reports to the Director of Zoo Habitat Horticulture and the Botanical Garden Director.

Requirements: Must be at least 18 years of age with a HS diploma or equivalent. Be able to bend, stoop or stand for long periods of time and lift up to 50lbs. Horticulture volunteers work outdoors in all weather conditions. It is recommended that Horticulture Volunteers have an up-to-date tetanus shot. Proof of a current Tuberculin skin test is also required.

Apply today! Submit an online volunteer application.

Mammal — Farm Volunteer (Farm and Education Area: 4 hours a week, 6 month commitment)

Posted: 1/5/17

Duties: Under general supervision is responsible for the cleaning of animal enclosures and back up areas (sweeping, shoveling, rinsing and disinfecting) and removing trash barrels. May assist with food preparation, washing dishes, behavioral enrichment, and other special projects as needed. 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. Limited interaction with our Education animal 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.

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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