Be a FRAs Volunteer

Helping us help animals

Volunteer Information

Friends of Rowlett Animals could not exist without volunteers! As a private, nonprofit organization, we rely on the assistance of caring, devoted, and hard-working volunteers. All of us at Friends of Rowlett Animals are very excited to start working with you to promote pet-friendly environments, services, and activities in Rowlett and surrounding communities.

You must complete our Volunteer Application prior to completing our online orientation and participating in our hands-on animal handling training.. Once you submit the application, you will receive an email with more information.

I’m under 18, can I volunteer?

The following rules apply to minors (under 18) interested in volunteering for Friends of Rowlett Animals:

  • 16-17 years old – be supervised by a parent/guardian unless parent provides a parent waiver after youth and parent complete the online orientation and both participate in the animal handling training (youth and parent must each submit an individual online application)
  • 12-15 years old – be supervised by a parent/guardian at all times after youth and parent complete the online orientation and both participate in the animal handling training (youth and parent must each submit an individual online application)

For any minor volunteer, a parent or legal guardian must also fill out the online application and complete the online orientation and both participate in the animal handling training.

Are there any ongoing requirements for volunteers?

Volunteers are required to:

  • Submit an online application – includes a Volunteer Agreement and a Release and Waiver of Liability
  • complete the online orientation and participate in the animal handling training session
  • Commit to a minimum of 48 hours per year, or an average of 4 hours a month
  • Work as a team member with all volunteers
  • Treat animals in our care with kindness – “It’s all about the animals”
  • Represent Friends of Rowlett Animals and themselves in a professional manner and be an advocate for the organization and the shelter
  • Treat shelter staff, other volunteers, and community members/visitors with respect
Can I just come play with the dogs and/or cats?
Only oriented and trained volunteers may handle the animals. It is all about the animals (and your) safety.
What can I do as a Friends of Rowlett Animals Volunteer?

Opportunities for volunteers are always changing as we grow and introduce new programs. Below is a list of current opportunities. You will receive more details and learn about our latest needs when you attend orientation.

At HOME opportunities:

  • Social Media/Online Marketing – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media sites have proved to be invaluable when trying to reconnect a lost pet with its owner. Sharing this information can reach immediate area as well as out of area/state rescues and communities.
  • Adoption Life Writing – Do you have a flare for the written word? Newsletters, articles, Pet of the Week bios, and other communications can always benefit from the creative writer.
  • Return to Owner Searching – Can you find the needle in the haystack? If you ever have, you know the feeling of accomplishment. We need people to search social media (Facebook, local lost and found sites, Craigslist, etc.) and connect those dots to reconnect owners and their lost pets.
  • Fundraising and Development – Our organization is completely dependent on donations. Finding sponsors, researching and writing grants, and other donation boosters is always a need.
  • Fostering Animals – We have been rescuing cats since mid-2016, saving over 200 lives of cats that were completely adoptable but just out of time in kill shelters.  To learn more, please click here.

AWAY from home opportunities:

  • Offsite Adoptions – Adoption events occur regularly as we try to put the shelter animals in front of as many potential adopters as possible. Working the events include many different shifts.  To learn more about event shifts, you can contact the Volunteer Coordinator at volunteer@friendsofrowlettanimals.org to see where you might enjoy your time.
  • Fundraisers – Whatever the event is, you have the opportunity to get friends and family to join you in your fundraising efforts to support Friends of Rowlett Animals.
  • Local Marketing – Getting the word out to local businesses about the shelter animals and programs.
  • Media –
    • Photography – Do you own the camera that people envy? Do you have those skills to capture the perfect picture? Taking weekly pictures of the shelter animals that tell their story and show their personality is a way to make a difference.
    • Photography Facilitators/Assistants – Photographers only have two hands so an assistant makes capturing the perfect picture much easier.
    • Videos – A picture is worth a thousand words but a video is worth a million! Showing potential adopters how a dog chases a ball, sits for a treat, walks on a leash or how a cat plays and purrs can truly make a difference in being adopted or not.
  • Transporting – Transport shelter animals to offsite events, vet appointments, out of area rescues/adoptions, etc. via your own vehicle. These events can happen only if we have volunteers that can get them to the right place.
  • Socialization – Do you want to make an animal more adoptable? Walking, exercising, and playing with the shelter animals at the shelter is one way to do that. Each time you socialize with them and give them some TLC, they become more comfortable with humans and/or other animals and friendlier – more adoptable.
Does it cost anything to volunteer?

There is no fee to complete the online orientation, participate in the animal handling training, or to volunteer. We do, however, once all training (Orientation and Animal Handling) is completed and you are approved to move forward, require all volunteers to purchase a t-shirt (and a leash if you are volunteering with dogs) that is to be worn when volunteering at the shelter and off-site events. This helps identify you as a trained volunteer and helps market our group to the community.

I need to fulfill court ordered community service hours, what do I do?
You will need to email the shelter manager Maria Martinez at mmartinez@rowlett.com.
Can I receive documentation of my hours for a requirement of a school program or organization I am in?
Yes, you can get documentation of your volunteer hours. When you complete your online application, orientation, and training you will be able to log in your hours through the portal. You will be in charge of tracking and printing a report of your documented hours through our volunteer portal. You may request that a board member or senior lead volunteer sign your printed report.
How do I become a Friends of Rowlett Animals volunteer?

Follow these steps to become a FRA volunteer:

  1. Complete the Volunteer Application
  2. Complete a city application (directions given once volunteer application is approved)
  3. Register and Complete the Online Volunteer Orientation
  4. Register and Attend Animal Handling Training
  5. Volunteer and Have Fun!
I completed the online application, now what?

Shortly after submitting the online application, you will receive an email prompting you to complete a city application and complete the online orientation. As soon as your application has been approved, you will receive an email with instructions on how to register for the New Volunteer Orientation. We usually have one Sunday afternoon session a month and one weekday evening session a month.

I’m having problems with the volunteer application. How can I get help?
Some common reasons an application fails to submit is if required fields are left blank. You also must have a unique username. If you continue to have issues submitting your application, you can email volunteer@friendsofrowlettanimals.org for assistance.
How long will orientation take and what will we discuss?

New volunteer orientation is online and generally takes about 20 minutes to watch the video and take the online quiz. We go over our organization and the goals we have, policies and procedures, and volunteer opportunities and current needs. There will be a Q & A at the end to answer any questions you may still have.

I attended New Volunteer Orientation, now what?

After you complete the online orientation, you will receive an email explaining how to register for Animal Handling training. We typically have two Saturdays a month for this training. One training is in the morning (10:15am), and the other training is held in the afternoon (1:00pm).  After orientation you will receive an email with directions on how to register.

After Animal Handling training —- you are ready to volunteer but will be supported with seasoned volunteers until you feel comfortable and confident. We are in this together!

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