At the Greenwich Wildlife Network, volunteers are responsible for all aspects of the day-to-day running of the charity, from feeding, cleaning and administering medication to animals, to rescuing them from high-risk situations, to transporting them to "rehabbers" or rescue centres, to fundraising for their myriad care costs.
Volunteers are often ordinary people who balance their duties around families, jobs, and busy lives. At times, volunteering in the field of animal rescue can be stressful, time-consuming and physically or emotionally draining. In spite of these challenges, our team are committed to their roles because they are committed to bettering the lives of animals, to preventing suffering, to protecting the environment, and to serving their community. Volunteers are ordinary people, yet they’re also extraordinary people.
There are a multitude of different voluntary roles at the charity. These vary widely, with some requiring a greater time commitment or more animal care experience than others.
Transport & Rescue Volunteer - Collecting and dropping off animals, sometimes assisting with rescuing animals in high risk situations
Daily Care Volunteer - Helping to clean, feed and medicate animals for one four hour shift per week in SE18
Aviary Upkeep Volunteer - Topping up food & water & cleaning at our aviaries in Charlton or Dartford
General dogsbody - Interested in helping where ever there is a need
Most Needed Right Now - Transport Volunteers
A flexible role that requires that you own a vehicle and a valid UK driving license. A small amount of animal handling is involved. An introductory training session is available on various dates throughout the year. Apply here.
Transport Volunteers are among the most active and important members of our team. They are responsible for collecting injured, orphaned or unwell animals and dropping them to our volunteer rehabbers, or transporting them to rescue centres further afield.
To be a transport volunteer for the GWN, you must own your own vehicle and be willing to have live animals in your car, safely contained in animal carriers or secure boxes, of course. You will also need to have WhatsApp installed on your phone, as this is how we communicate amongst our volunteer team.
We generally ask that animals are contained in secure boxes before our transport volunteers collect them. Sometimes, however, members of the public are unwilling or unable to capture and contain animals. In such cases, we often send volunteers with rescue experience to safely contain the animals, ready for transport. Whether you want to assist in these cases and gain rescue experience yourself is entirely optional.
The majority of our transport requests are also spontaneous as we cannot predict when an animal will be in need of help locally. Transport runs are therefore allocated on the basis of which volunteers are available and willing to make a trip when requests for help come in.
However, we do also organise some transport runs in advance - these tend to be longer trips to wildlife rescue centres outside of London that regularly accept animals from the GWN.
The length of the journeys vary, from very short, local journeys of ten to thirty minutes, to those of a considerable distance - from Greenwich to Greater London, and parts of Kent, Essex, Norfolk, and Yorkshire. We are particularly in need of volunteers willing to take on longer trips.
As a member of our transport team, you choose which trips you would like to volunteer for and when, dependent on your availability and what you are comfortable undertaking. It's also important to check with your insurer that you are covered for voluntary activities whilst driving.
If you are interested in becoming a transport volunteer, please complete the following form.