Youth/Student Volunteer Agreement
Thank you for your interest in volunteering with Special Pals! Our volunteers are a very important part of our shelter and we couldn’t be successful without their dedication to providing a better life for animals in need.
Children ages 12-15 are welcome to volunteer at Special Pals Shelter, but must be accompanied by a parent or guardian when on shelter premises. Volunteers 16 and 17 years of age must be accompanied by a parent or guardian for the first volunteer shift, or until they are comfortable to volunteer on their own (unless program rules state otherwise).
As a volunteer for Special Pals, Inc., you will make a direct, positive impact on the lives of rescued animals. We want to ensure you are properly trained to work safely, efficiently, and humanely with every animal you come in contact with. All volunteers are required to attend a Volunteer Orientation session. This orientation session will inform you on Special Pals, Inc. policies and procedures. Once this agreement is signed, you will be expected to abide by its rules. Failure to do so will result in your release from volunteer duties. There will be no exceptions. This form is not valid until signed by both the volunteer and their parent or legal guardian.
Volunteers are expected to abide by the following statements:
- I agree to treat all customers, staff, volunteers, and animals with respect and kindness.
- I understand that I may not bring friends or family to volunteer with me until they have completed the proper paperwork and training.
- As a volunteer of Special Pals, Inc., I am a representative for the shelter and agree to act in a responsible and thoughtful manner.
- I agree to work in a team environment with staff and other volunteers. I agree to be supervised during my time at the shelter.
- I will address any concerns or complaints directly to Special Pals, Inc. staff members.
- I understand that I will only participate in tasks or events that are approved by Special Pals, Inc. staff members.
- I agree to adhere to a pre-planned volunteer schedule and, in the event, I cannot attend a scheduled shift, will call a Special Pals, Inc. staff member before my assigned shift to report any tardiness or absence.
- I acknowledge that any animal rescued by Special Pals, Inc. is solely their property until such time an adoption application has been received and approved, and new owners pick up the animal.
- I will abide by all policies, procedures, and rules set forth by Special Pals, Inc.
- I understand I will not be reimbursed for any expense incurred while volunteering for Special Pals, Inc. unless I obtain prior approval from the Executive Director.
- As a volunteer of this organization, I understand that I may have access to confidential information, both verbal and written, relating to clients, donors, volunteers or staff, and the organization. I understand, and agree, that all such information is to be treated confidentially and discussed only within the boundaries of my volunteer position at this organization. I also agree not to discuss these same matters after I have left my volunteer position at this organization. I further understand that breach of this agreement shall constitute grounds for and may result in termination of my volunteer status with this organization.
- I understand the possibility of risk of transferring disease-causing microorganisms during animal handling activities from Special Pals, Inc. animals to myself and to my personal animals or vice versa (examples: distemper, giardia, toxoplasmosis, and other parasitic or fungal conditions such as ringworm). I agree to take all precautions to avoid such transfer, and I agree to the importance of having myself and my pets up to date on all current vaccinations, and that I should be up to date on my tetanus vaccination. I understand that Special Pals, Inc. will not be responsible to pay for any vaccinations, for my pet or myself.
- I agree to provide a copy of my tetanus vaccine at or before the mandatory training class or sign a tetanus waiver.
- I understand that although Special Pals, Inc. will make every attempt to ensure the safety of their volunteers and animals, rescue animals are by nature unpredictable in their behavior. Therefore, I assume the risks of being bitten, scratched, injured, or frightened by cats, kittens, dogs, and puppies in connection with my volunteer work for Special Pals, Inc. Neither Special Pals, Inc., or any of its Directors, volunteers, fosters, or other affiliates are liable to me for any injuries, damages, liabilities, losses, judgments, costs, damage to property or expenses whatsoever that I might suffer or sustain in connection with the performance of my volunteer activities for Special Pals. I will indemnify, defend, and hold the Special Pals, Inc. Board of Directors, volunteers, fosters, or other affiliates harmless from and against any claims, lawsuits, injuries, damages, losses, costs, or expenses whatsoever sustained by any foster animal or any person in connection with my intentional misconduct or grossly negligent performance of volunteer activities for Special Pals, Inc. or my breach of Special Pals, Inc. rules, regulations, policies, and programs.
- I authorize Special Pals, Inc. volunteers to seek emergency medical treatment for me in case of accident, injury or illness.
- I agree to grant Special Pals, Inc. rights to all photographs, images, videos, and audio recordings made during volunteer activities for advertising, marketing, public relations, and social media use.
- I understand that failure to abide by the terms in this agreement and waiver form, or if I am unable to meet the requirements of the volunteer program, I can be removed from the volunteer program. Removal will take place only after the staff has tried working with me to remedy the situation and has been unsuccessful.
I certify that all info supplied to Special Pals, Inc. in my application and agreement is truthful and accurate.
I, , certify that all info supplied to Special Pals Shelter, Inc. in my application and agreement is truthful and accurate.
Signed and agreed on this .
I,certify that I am the legal guardian for the above signed youth volunteer.
Signed and agreed on this .
Tetanus Vaccination Waiver
A tetanus shot is required before direct animal contact at Special Pals, Inc. By signing this waiver, I affirm that I have had a tetanus shot within the last 10 years.
I understand the requirement of a tetanus vaccination and I agree that on behalf of myself, my heirs, personal representatives and executors, I release, discharge indemnify, and hold harmless Special Pals, Inc., its agents, employees, directors and board of directors from any and all claims, causes of action, or demands of any nature of cause, including costs and attorney’s fees incurred by Special Pals, Inc. in connection with the same, based on damages, or injuries which may be incurred or sustained by me in any way connected with my services for Special Pals, Inc., including but not limited to animal bites, accidents or injuries.