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Volunteer at the zoo

volunteer speaking with zoo visitors near bontebok

Looking for pika? Visit Cascades Pika Watch

General volunteer program

Recruitment for 2024 is now closed. Please check back for future opportunities.

We recruit a limited number of volunteers in the spring for a summer-focused program that will participate solely in our habitat roving role, sharing information, stories and conservation messages while at a designated habitat.

About this opportunity:

  • A once-weekly commitment of 3.5 hours from June to September
  • Available as a family or individual volunteer experience
  • A chance to make a difference and help the zoo
  • Open to youth ages 10 to 13 years when participating with a consistent adult volunteer
  • Open to anyone aged 14 to 114, participating individually or with friends/family

Please note:

If you're between 10 and 13 years old, you must volunteer with one consistent adult, such as a parent, relative, or close family friend. The adult must actively participate in the summer volunteer program alongside the youth, including completing a separate volunteer application and attending orientation, training and actively participating in the volunteer program alongside the youth.

Please note that all 18-year-old and older volunteers must complete a background check.

The Oregon Zoo is a community of animals, staff, and volunteers. Volunteers play an important role in supporting the zoo's success by engaging with guests, communicating conservation messages, and supporting the zoo's evolving needs.

The benefits of being a zoo volunteer include free zoo admission for some positions, acquiring new skills, and having fun working with great staff and other volunteers.

Oregon Zoo wildlife leaders: 2024 teen volunteer pilot program 

Oregon Zoo Wildlife Leaders is a 10-week summer program for teens ages 13 to 15 with a passion for animals and conservation. Learn more. 

Volunteer animal behavior monitor

Oregon Zoo animal behavior monitoring volunteers primarily assist with various monitoring projects designed by the Oregon Zoo research staff and animal care staff. Learn more

Volunteer dive program 

Make a splash at the zoo! Certified SCUBA divers are invited to support marine life keepers with diving tasks in the marine area. Learn more. 

For current volunteers

Zoo volunteer's Better Impact 

Related links

Volunteering with Metro's wildlife monitoring program
Volunteering at Metro's Native Plant Center
Volunteer restoration in Metro's natural areas
Volunteer opportunities at the Portland Center for the Performing Arts
Volunteer opportunities at the Oregon Convention Center