Want a job with no pay, lousy hours and stinky? Jourdan Giron, 21, of Lawndale, Calif., is a shelter volunteer at the Los Angeles SPCA. "I'm just happy being here and I don't want to leave," Giron said (AP photos)
Want a job with no pay, lousy hours and stinky?
Lexile

lp Wanted: No pay, hours can be lousy, and sometimes it stinks.

That plea from animal shelters and rescues across the country doesn't sound very appealing, but thousands of volunteers answer the call every day.

"I don't know how we could function without volunteers," said Robin Starr, who is in charge of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Richmond, Virginia.

Jobs include that often smelly cleanup chore, but every facility also needs people to feed, walk, groom, train, play with and show animals. They also need office and other help.

Karen Gammon, 58, donates her art for auctions and the gift store at Starr's shelter. She used a charcoal-smothered canvas and then an eraser to peel away the charcoal.

"One year, the bidding got to $11,000, so she agreed to do two drawings at that price, making $22,000 for the shelter," Starr said.

At Florida's Humane Society of Vero Beach and Indian River County, Cornelia Perez, 72, started volunteering 60 years ago when she rode her bike to a shack by the railroad tracks and they let her walk the dogs.

She was away for a while, at boarding school, college, an early career but she returned in 1984. She put pails in supermarkets for food donations and coordinated the building campaign for the shelter that replaced the shack. She now volunteers at the state-of-the-art shelter that replaced the building.

Jourdan Giron, who turns 21 this month, signed up in February for eight hours a month at the SPCA in Los Angeles and has put in over 325 volunteer hours, well over the 64 promised.

"I'm just happy being here and I don't want to leave," she said.

Usually shy, she is comfortable when talking to customers about animals. Giron does those smelly jobs too, but she sees it as a matter of faith.

"I know," she said, "it's because they trust me to go in the kennels."

Critical thinking challenge: Why must shelters depend on volunteers who work for no pay? Why are people willing to work for no pay?

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COMMENTS (30)
  • r2000soccer
    10/01/2014 - 08:41 a.m.

    shelters depend on volunteers who work for no pay because they have no money to pay and to feed the animals and they have no job accept to do this one

  • sl2000soccer
    10/01/2014 - 08:43 a.m.

    Shelters must depend on volunteers who work for no pay because they don't have the money to spare to pay the volunteers, they have to use it to buy food and liter and other things for the animals that don't have homes to stay in. People are willing to work for no pay because it is a fun job to help those animals who need it the most and to play with them and take care if them pretty much as their own. They want others to adopt the animals so they can be happy, but the shelter is pretty much their home for the people who take care of them. Others are willing to work for no pay knowing they are helping animals who need it and wouldn't survive if there were no people there to take care of them and the animals deserve it.

  • klai
    10/01/2014 - 10:19 a.m.

    Volunteer work. No pay. "Lousy hours" And it can stink.Volunteer work is a good thing, for shelters and your community. I did it once and enjoyed it. It was outside during the summer and really hot, after a while people started doing it to. Just random strangers.

  • NashMcComsey-Ste
    10/01/2014 - 11:10 a.m.

    The volunteer work that goes into animal shelters is always something that is delightful to see. Thank you, to anyone who can help these animals live happy, healthy lives within the shelter. You're doing good work.

  • colleenl-Ste
    10/01/2014 - 01:00 p.m.

    I would love to work in an animal shelter. I know that there are lousy hours and no pay, but its for a good cause so I think its worth it in the long run. Spending time with all the animals there would make me never want to leave.

  • ws2001wrex
    10/01/2014 - 01:01 p.m.

    People are willing to work for no pay because they fell sorry for the animals in the shelter and they don't want them to die. Also, theses animals are like orphans, they need a loving home to have people take care of them, so people work there so they can have the chance.

  • Jajuane
    10/01/2014 - 01:33 p.m.

    Volunteers That Want To Have Comunity Service Hours So They Can Go To College Or To Help The Animals With The Help They Need. Also So They Can Be A Blessedful Person.

  • SH2000Lovie
    10/02/2014 - 08:46 a.m.

    Volunteers must depend on people who work for no pay because they probably don't have enough money to pay the people that work there for the money. And the people are willing to work for no pay because they are kind hearted and actually care about animals.

  • JSteven-Sti
    10/02/2014 - 10:18 a.m.

    i think the way she volunteers he should get paid alot. You know cause she works so hard. But of course that is my opinion.

  • JSteven-Sti
    10/02/2014 - 10:19 a.m.

    i think the way she volunteers he should get paid alot. You know cause she works so hard. But of course that is my opinion.

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