Home » Get Involved » Volunteering


Mayhew relies on over 1,000 hours of volunteer time per month. From dog walking and kitten socialising to administration and adoption home checks, our volunteers are essential to everything we do.

Volunteering is also a great way to make you feel good! From getting together with like-minded people or getting active, to learning a new skill or giving something back to your local community, we have something that you can get involved in!

In return for your time, we’ll provide the training you need for your role to make sure you get the most out of volunteering with us. Giving your time, skills and creativity can make an amazing difference.

Please note we will not accept applications for roles in kennels or cattery unless these roles are advertised on our website. 

So, why should you volunteer? Just ask our current Mayhew volunteers.

To view our current volunteer opportunities and apply for a role, please click here.

For further information, please see our FAQ below.

Why does Mayhew need volunteers? Mayhew employs a minimum level of staff to keep outgoing costs down, so we need volunteers to support our staff. Any money saved goes towards the running of Mayhew.

How much time do I have to commit? This is very much determined by the vacancy you are interested in. Hands-on volunteering with animals requires a commitment to a weekly rota, with each session lasting at least 3 hours. An events volunteer may only give 3 hours per month, depending on availability and where the events are taking place. The job description for each vacancy includes the commitment required.

Can I volunteer with the animals? Our volunteers help out in kennels and cattery with cleaning, socializing and walking dogs.  It is really important for us to have the help of volunteers, who are able to spend time with individual animals and increasing their chances of being adopted. Unfortunately, we will not be able to accept spontaneous applications unless the roles are advertised on our website.

I work a shift pattern and want to be a volunteer; can I volunteer at different times each week? Unfortunately not. We are currently looking for volunteers who can work to a rota and this will require each volunteer working the same time each week.

Do I need experience to volunteer? Experience is advantageous, but not essential as basic training will be given.

Will I need to provide references? Yes, we prefer two professional references. Mayhew is dependent on the generosity of the public and so we have a responsibility to protect the money and goods donated to Mayhew and the safety of staff, students, other volunteers and the animals in our care.

What is the application process like?The application process varies a little depending on which role a volunteer apply for, but it includes an application form, an informal interview and an induction.

Can I try out volunteering before committing long-term? We offer our volunteers a chance to come in for a trial day before committing to a certain role. IF you are interested in trying out volunteering first please let the Volunteer Coordinator know.

What if I’m taken on as a volunteer but decide I don’t like it? For most roles volunteers start on a month’s trial to make sure both they and Mayhew are happy with the arrangement. At the end of the month the volunteer will have an informal review with the Volunteer Coordinator to discuss how the first month has gone, and to address any issues that have arisen. At this stage the volunteer may decide volunteering is not for them, or indeed Mayhew may feel the volunteer doesn’t suit the role.

If you are interested in taking on another role or change roles after your first months trial, please let the Volunteer Coordinator know.

Does Mayhew offer short-term work experience placements? Yes, Mayhew does offer limited work-experience placements which are typically full-time placements for a minimum of two weeks.

I’m under 18 years old, can I volunteer? We are unable to take volunteers younger than 18 years old.

I have a criminal conviction, can I volunteer? A criminal offence will not usually automatically prevent anyone from volunteering with Mayhew, and each applicant’s case will be considered individually.

Can I claim volunteer expenses? Regretfully Mayhew does not provide expenses for volunteers at present.