Volunteer your time

volunteers building 24 foot cage

We are very demanding of our volunteers at the refuge. We have to be.  The people working with us are responsible for the life and death of our birds.  We take that very seriously.

Aside from working with the birds there are dozens of things that need to be done we need volunteers for schedule work, web work, and phone work items that are constantly behind. 

Click HERE to access our volunteer application

*  Transport Personnel-  This is a very important job.  Transport personnel are the ones we call to help take our birds back and forth to the vet, or other facilities.  They also help us pick up food for the birds, materials and supplies, and other items.  There is very little to no actual animal handling in this type of work. 

Animal Pickup Personnel- Part of the rehab side of our refuge is the on site rescue.  Most of the rescues are simply walking up to the injured animal and placing them in a carrier.  Some are even just meeting people who have already gotten the bird and put it in a box.  Some are more active.  This type of volunteer is the most active and physically demanding part of our work, but also the most important to the rehab side.  We train our volunteers in animal capture to do this work.  

Cage Maintenance- Yes, it is cleaning cages and feeding animals, but this is the way all caretakers starts. It actually takes training to even be in a cage with the animals long enough to clean it. If you do not go through cage cleaning and maintenance first, you will not be a rehabber or educator. ALL rehabbers and educators do cage maintenance work for at least 6 months before we allow them to go further. Our main rehab/bird care facility has 22 flight cages, 4 rehab cages, and 11 isolation areas. It gets extremely dirty. Cleaning up after these birds is more than a full time job. In our peak season, there is no way to care for the birds and keep the area clean without several people helping. We do not allow unskilled people to work with the birds. You will most likely be cleaning up messes and repairing damaged perches and cage parts. (The birds need something to do; and they really like to eat perches) We are very picky about who we let come and work at this site. We do not publish its location, and we screen all volunteers before they visit it. Volunteers for this area will be doing mostly clean up and minor repair work. They will occasionally assist the rehabbers in various ways.

Construction- Just like it sounds.  It is building new cages and helping to repair old ones.  Construction also helps us build displays for our educational shows. 

* Farming-  We have a farm.  we can use help with all sorts of farm tasks to keep our location as a farm. keeping the land safe and worth visiting is part of our primary needs right now.

Office Help -  

Paperwork- We are a 501c-3 nonprofit corporation, and we have to maintain federal migratory bird license requirements. The federal paperwork is pretty amazing. On top of the federal paperwork, we have the normal business needs of organizing, advertising, and accounting. If you are good at paperwork, excel, and spreadsheet and would like to help us out, please let us know. 

Schedule work- We often just have no time to schedule public appearances. It happens when you have a busy schedule, you stop being able to call people, and then you get a period with no appearances. Since our appearances are our main source of income and public exposure, schedule lulls can cause problems. 

Web work- We are very particular about what goes up on the web page. If you are willing to do things our way, and you are good at facebook for our dynamic web work, you might be able to help. 

Phone work- 

This is probably the most important thing we have to do that we are not doing. We really need to call businesses and solicit corporate sponsors. To do this, we will need to make sure you know exactly what the refuge is all about, so there is some training involved. Bottom line, we need people to help us beg for money! 

Donations Coordinator- We need someone to help us bring in money. These birds want to eat every day... 

* Volunteeer Coordinator- We have t make sure all our volunteers know about events and   we have enough people to  actually do events all throughout the year 

*  Rehabber- After time in cage maintenance and training with one of our rehabbers, volunteers can become rehabbers.

Educator- After time in cage maintenance and training with one of our educators, volunteers can become educators themselves.

We require all our volunteers to either take our course or show equivalent experience before working with the birds.  We also require they visit our public presentations and see exactly what we do several times before they are allowed to visit  our facility.

Volunteers Must be trained.  All volunteers must have some training before we will let them do anything on our grounds.  Each volunteer for bird handling has to go thru our 5 week WTCC training class  (see the web page).  Volunteers for constructing and gardening, but not working in public or bird areas must take a basic info class on our refuge and how and why we do things the way we do and watch our public presentations several times .

You cannot handle birds right away and until you are licensed, only with supervision

Always Remember:

*It's dirty work.

*These birds do not want our help.

*You have to feed cute animals to them for them to survive.

*Birds die. 

click here to  download our  Volunteer Packet

Mailing Address:

American Wildlife Refuge

4501 New Bern Avenue #130-333

Raleigh NC 27610

Physical Address:

4 Owls Farm

1000 McLemore Rd 

Clayton NC 27520


Main phone: 919-862-7637

Event Scheduling phone : 919-771-9779

Email:   Awrefuge@aol.com


Main:  http://awrefuge.org

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/American-Wildlife-Refuge-339030704534/

Meetup:  http://www.meetup.com/American-Wildlife-Refuge-Raptor-Center-Meetup/

2022 American Wildlife Refuge.  www awrefuge.org.  email AWRefuge@aol.com)