Do you want to be a part of something truly amazing?
If this sounds like you, then we want you to join our awesome team of volunteers at Ten Lives!
Volunteers are an essential part of our operations at the Ten Lives Cat Centre as we are 100% self-funded. We receive no government funding to assist with the costs of running such a large not-for profit feline shelter and rely on the generosity of the community. Volunteering is a great way to learn about cats and their behaviours, while meeting like-minded people and giving back to the community (and cats).
Our range of volunteer roles are listed below. For more information read the position description for each one. If we’re recruiting for a volunteer role the “Apply Now” button will appear under the description. To apply, click “Apply Now” to express your interest.
As the largest cat shelter in Tasmania, we’re pretty busy at Ten Lives! There’s heaps to do behind the scenes to help our kitties find their forever home, so we need people with general administration skills to help us with our marketing and communications, foster care program, Edu.Cat program and general office duties. The role involves printing and collating materials, helping with mailouts, laminating and general administration tasks. This is a great role for those who would like to gain some office-based experience or just give back to a cause close to their heart.
The role of Adoption Assistant requires team work, customer-focused skills and some experience in feline health care or the ability to learn about feline husbandry, behaviour and health. This would be a great role for those interested in gaining experience in the animal care industry or those who just love caring for cats. The role involves providing advice to potential adopters, comforting and re-assuring those kitties who are nervous and finding things a bit frightening in their new environment, playing, brushing, socialising, writing personality profiles and some feeding and cleaning. It may include looking after kittens as well as adult cats, as the little ones need volunteers to keep a close eye on them as they can get themselves into all sorts of mischief. It’s a bit like being a child carer but caring for little busy bundles of fur instead!
Animal Care Assistant
As the largest cat centre in Tasmania, we take care of thousands of cats and kittens every year. There is heaps to do every day to take care of our them, to give them their best chance at finding their forever home. We need cat lovers who can donate their time in the mornings and/or afternoons to help feed our kitties and keep their environments clean and comfortable. The role requires some experience in feline health care or the ability to learn about feline husbandry, behaviour and health. This is a great role for those interested in gaining experience in the animal care industry or those who just love caring for cats.
Cat Cuddler/Boarding Assistant
Is this the best volunteer job in the world? Many cats and kittens come into Ten Lives scared, overwhelmed or needing some TLC, regardless of whether they are stray, surrendered or just boarding for a short period. The cat cuddler role provides care, attention and stimulation for both shelter and boarding cats to make their stay with us as comfortable as possible. Be part of the daily rounds of feeds, trays and cleaning then spend time pampering these loving guys with pats, cuddles, play time and brushing.
Keeping our Centre clean and inviting for our kitties and human visitors is an essential part of our operations at Ten Lives. We need people who can donate their time in the mornings/afternoons to keeping the Centre in tip top condition, inside and out, through general grounds maintenance. Perfect for a retired handyperson or tradie, the role involves general grounds maintenance such as sweeping, plant care, watering, weeding etc. For those with handy skills there’s plenty of general maintenance and small building projects to keep you busy!
We need to spread the word far and wide about what we do at Ten Lives and our kitties looking for their forever homes, so we need creative people to help us produce social media content along with printed marketing materials. We need all types of creative skills – photography, videography, editing, graphic designing and writing. You don’t necessarily need to be on-site to volunteer – you could be part of a team where you edit photos and videos or do design work from the comfort of your office or home. The role is perfect for corporate volunteering, students or graduates. We’re always open to new creative ideas – let us know how you might be able to help!
Foster carers volunteer to care for cats and kittens in their own home until they are ready for adoption, at which point they are returned to the Centre. Foster care benefits all cats, including adult cats who have been in the shelter for more than four weeks, mothers and kittens, unwell kitties, cats that are timid or shy or have behavioural issues, and young feral kittens that can be socialised and rehabilitated.
Margate Op Shop Assistant
Do you love rummaging around in Op Shops? Then this could be a role for you. The Ten Lives Op Shop at Margate is a thriving, traditional op shop which raises much-needed funds for the Centre. We need people with great interpersonal and customer service skills to give their time to assist our incredibly dedicated Op Shop team with sorting donations, customer service and retail sales.
Reception and Retail Assistant
Reception is the nerve centre of Ten Lives! It gets extremely busy as all Centre enquiries, retail sales, incoming calls, visitors and adoptions are processed here. This is a very diversified role where you’ll meet and great fellow cat lovers visiting the Centre, assist with shop sales, answer phones and take messages, assist with adoptions and surrenders, help educate the public about the importance of desexing, microchipping and general feline care, assist with bookings for our boarding facility and other administrative duties.
Can I just come and cuddle cats?
Of course! Everyone is welcome to give our kitties in Adoption some love during our operating hours. You don’t need to be a volunteer for this, just come into the Centre and get your feline fix.
If you are interested in a more formalised, regular volunteering role we need you to be aware that our volunteer roles are extremely important to the operation of our Centre and need to be undertaken in a professional manner. Volunteers must adhere to the duties outlined in the Position Description for their role and follow direction. There are plenty of opportunities to get some cuddles in during your shift, tho!
I'd like to volunteer for just one day. Is that possible?
We’re unable to take volunteers for just one or two days, due to the amount of orientation and training required with each position. In general, we ask for an ongoing commitment of at least three months. However, there is some flexibility with creative volunteering as we’re always after people with creative skills such as video or photo editing and who can work on projects. Check out the Creative Assistant role.
What is the process to become a volunteer?
First go to our Volunteer page to view our volunteer roles and read through the Position Descriptions. You can call the Centre for more information about any of our roles. If you find a role you’re interested in, click Apply Now and submit your Expression of Interest. You’ll be contacted for a brief phone interview and if you’re a good match, you’ll be booked into an Induction session. This will go over everything you need to know before you start your first shift.
Can I volunteer on Christmas Day?
Thank you for offering, but Ten Lives is closed on public holidays including Christmas Day. Look out for our Christmas donation drives though, as we’re always super grateful for donations of food or toys during the festive season (and all year round).
Do I need to have experience working with animals to volunteer at Ten Lives?
No, you don't! Most of our volunteers have no formal experience, just a love of cats and a passion to improve the welfare of cats and help the community. Training is provided for those volunteer roles that involve cat handling.
Can I volunteer if I’m under 18?
Unfortunately, children under 18 can’t volunteer at the Centre but there are lots of other ways they can get involved, such as:
• visiting the cats in the Adoption Room
• fundraising for the Centre
• asking their teacher to arrange and Edu.Cat session for their class/school
• collecting donations for the Centre such as old newspapers, woollen blankets, jumpers and towels
• running donation drives at school for items like copy paper, toilet tissue, dish liquid, washing powder, hand wash, paper towels, garbage bags and stationery
• asking their parent(s) to become a foster carer
Can I bring my children with me when I am volunteering if I supervise them at all times?
Unfortunately children are not permitted to accompany volunteers during their service.
I am allergic to cats; can I still volunteer?
This depends on the severity of your allergy. We have staff who are allergic to cats (including our Centre Manager!) as they are able to manage their reactions. If you are highly allergic the Centre is probably not the best location for you, but there are lots of other ways you can get involved. See our Creative Assistant role and Donate page.
Can I do Work Experience or Prac at Ten Lives?
Yes! We offer work experience to a limited number of high school students, which is organised by the school. We also provide pracs for students studying Animal Studies. This is arranged by the educational institution.