Small Animal Care

Join the team cleaning out the cats, rabbits, ducks, chickens and other small animals. All our animals have their accommodation cleaned daily, litter trays emptied and water refreshed. You will start at 9am and finish somewhere between 11am and noon. We ask you to commit to a regular day if that is possible, or let us know when you are available. You will be working alongside other volunteers and staff, and have the opportunity to socialise with them over tea and a biscuit once the hard work is finished. Some experience with cats or other animals is an advantage, but you will receive full training and we will make sure that you feel comfortable with the jobs that you are doing. You must be over 16 years old. APPLY HERE

Equine Care

You will assist a member of staff with our equines, starting at 9am and finishing around noon. We ask you to commit to a regular day if that is possible, or let us know when you are available. You will help with mucking out, filling hay nets, grooming and poo picking - tasks vary depending on the time of year. Once you have finished there will be an opportunity to socialise with the other volunteers and staff over a cup of tea and a biscuit, or lunch. Previous equine experience is essential and you must be over 16 years old. APPLY HERE

Cat Socialising

Become a cat socialiser (or cat cuddler as we call them!) and help our cats get the play time and attention that they need. We get various types of cats of all ages coming to the sanctuary. Some have been much loved pets and are used to being handled, picked up and cuddled. They will be missing their owners and all the attention that they previously received. Others have come to us as strays or having had very little interaction with humans. These cats require a lot of patience as they gradually learn to trust us. Some are kittens and need plenty of play time, especially if they don't have any brothers or sisters to romp around with.  All our cats require some human contact whilst here, and the shyer ones really benefit from time spent with them. Our socialisers come in any time between 11.30am and 3.30pm, spending as long as they like working with the cats. You must be over 16 years old. APPLY HERE

Placements

Graduate placements

We are delighted to have veterinary college and university students come to us for their placements. During their time with us students will work with all the animals that we care for and experience every aspect of life at the Sanctuary. The hours are 9am–4pm Monday to Friday.  Places are limited, so if you are interested in joining us apply as soon as you can. APPLY HERE

Work experience for young people

During a week of work experience students work with all the animals at the Sanctuary.  Mornings will be spent feeding and cleaning out the animals, while in the afternoon there will be opportunity to socialise the cats, groom the horses etc. The hours are 9am–4pm Monday to Friday.  School work experience weeks usually take place during the summer term and we can only accept one student per week.  Applicants MUST have some animal experience and perhaps be thinking of having a career working with animals. Places are filled on a first come first served basis.  The relevant paperwork must be provided by the school. APPLY HERE

Duke of Edinburgh scheme - CURRENTLY NO VACANCIES

We take a limited number of D of E students to work with our animals. The hours are 9am–11am each Saturday morning for the 3 or 6 month block. Potential applicants MUST have some animal experience and be willing to get hands on with the cleaning tasks whilst they are with us. We are always heavily over-subscribed and suitable applications are successful on a first come first served basis. APPLY HERE

Volunteering in other areas

Fundraising

There are a variety of different ways in which you can help with fundraising. None of them involve cold calling or approaching people in the street, and all of them are fun! So come and join us for:

  • Events off-site, such as the Artisan Market and the Wilmslow Show.  We normally run a tombola at these events and you would be working for two hours with at least one other volunteer.
  • Events on-site such as the annual Fun Day and the Easter and Halloween events. At these events we need help getting everything ready as well as serving refreshments, looking after children's games, manning stalls etc during the event. And then of course it all has to be dismantled at the end of the day! Our events are hard work but also a lot of fun, and you would be part of a very friendly team.
  • Street and store collections. Several times a year Teabag (one of our Shetland ponies) or Daisy (our donkey) make an appearance in Wilmslow or at a local Pets at Home store. Our manager and an equine volunteer take responsibility for the animal while other volunteers hold collecting buckets, hand out leaflets and chat to people about the Sanctuary and what we do.
  • eBay sales. The local community are very generous and donate not only items for the animals, but also clothes, toiletries and household goods, many of which are designer brands and/or new. One amazing volunteer takes responsibility for sorting these donations and then there is a very small team that sells the best of them on eBay. We are always in need of new recruits to the eBay team. It doesn't matter if you have never sold on eBay before as you will be fully trained. All you need is to be moderately good with a computer and to have the time to photograph items, list them and then pack and post them. We have raised over £50,000 through eBay sales and it is so satisfying watching the bidding on an item you have listed.
  • Your own fundraising idea. There are so many fun things that you can do to raise money for us that there isn't room to cover them all here.  You could run a raffle at work, host a coffee morning, raise sponsorship for running a race, organise a pub quiz, sell unwanted items at a car boot sale or ask family and friends to donate to us rather than giving you birthday presents. You are limited only by your imagination.  So get your thinking cap on and you may just come up with something truly unique. Whatever you decide to do, please let us know so that we can support and thank you.

Office Administration

Every day between 11am and 4pm there is a volunteer on duty in the office. The work these stalwarts carry out is very varied and requires a good working knowledge of the Sanctuary, our procedures and the animals that are available for adoption. It includes answering the phone, showing visitors around the site, filling in adoption paperwork, receiving donations and helping our manager and the trustees. The office volunteers come in every week on one or more specific days, and at present all the slots are covered. However, holidays and illness sometimes mean that there is no-one in the office. If you would be interested in joining the office team do please fill in a volunteer form.

Home Visits

All the homes that our cats and larger animals go out to are visited to ensure that the location and living conditions are suitable. We have strict regulations regarding proximity to major roads and railways, and one of the main purposes of the home visit is to ensure the safety of the adopted animal. New home visitors are trained 'on the job' by accompanying an experienced colleague on several visits until they feel comfortable going solo.

Gardening and Maintenance

A huge amount of work goes into keeping the Sanctuary looking beautiful and maintaining everything in good condition for both animals and humans. If you love gardening or have DIY skills and some time to spare why not join our team of "Monday Men" at the Sanctuary on Mondays from around 9.30am to 4pm. You don't have to be an expert (or even a man!) but you will be part of a great team carrying out repairs, decorating, lawn mowing and getting involved in building projects.

Other skills?

Are you an expert at something you think we need or haven't thought of? We would love to hear from you.

We currently have opportunties for:

  • Cat socialisers
  • The fundraising team
  • Gardening and maintenance
  • Home visitors
  • Office staff to cover holidays and illness