Become A NEW Zoo Volunteer

Volunteer driving train

Regular Zoo Volunteer Program

Why become a volunteer?

Watch the video below to learn from NEW Zoo volunteers about what they love about our program!

What do Zoo Volunteers do? 

The opportunities available will depend on the season and weather, but possibilities are nearly endless!*

  • Help with the zoo’s special events, such as Zoo Boo, EggStravaganZoo, and more
  • Assist with special projects around the zoo, including cleaning, maintenance, art projects, etc.
  • Assist with education programs, such as Summer Zoo Camp and Zoo Snooze overnights
  • Help with clerical tasks and record keeping as needed
  • Help in the Mayan Restaurant and Visitor Center
  • Drive the Train or run the Carousel
  • Supervise the Giraffe Feeding Experience
  • Supervise the feeding experience in the Children’s Zoo
  • Connect our guests with wildlife and nature
  • Animal observations
  • A variety of other tasks!

*Please note that the majority of NEW Zoo volunteers ARE NOT able to work directly with zoo animals, for safety and other reasons.  We have many opportunities that are not directly related to animal care.  Individuals who are more interested in working directly with zoo animals should consider an Internship instead.

Volunteer Requirements

  • Children aged 8 to 14 can volunteer with adult supervision.  We are unable to accommodate volunteers younger than age 8
  • Volunteers 15 or older can assist without adults on-site
  • Volunteers must serve a minimum of 20 hours per calendar year to be considered Active Members of the Volunteer Program
  • Scheduling is flexible

To become a Regular Zoo Volunteer

Complete the Online Application
  • Complete the Application*
    • Fill out this online form or download and print the PDF version of the application to submit through US Mail
  • Complete the Online Training
    • After your application is received, you will be provided with additional information about online training
  • Attend an on-site New Volunteer Tour and Orientation
    • After your online training is completed, you will be provided with additional information about scheduling the Tour and Orientation
  • You must pay a fee for a Volunteer t-shirt  (unless volunteering only for a special event)
  • Please add the email address newzoo.education@browncountywi.gov to your safe folder in order to ensure you receive our volunteer invitations and correspondence

A background check will be completed on volunteer applicants. Applicants with a history of violent or other reckless offenses, or crimes against animals or children, may not be able to participate in the regular volunteer program. All cases are reviewed on an individual basis; additional information may be requested from an applicant before a decision is made.

*Please note:  it may take up to two weeks for your Application to be processed.  If you do not receive an email response from us within two weeks of submitting your application, contact the  Volunteer Coordinator at volunteer@newzoo.org.  Volunteers must be able to communicate with the Volunteer Coordinator via email.  Due to the large number of volunteers that pass in and out of our system, we are not able to keep volunteers without access to email updated on the NEW Zoo’s volunteer needs, opportunities, and policies.

**Volunteer Applications submitted during September and October generally WILL take longer than the average processing time, due to our Zoo Boo event and the time dedicated to preparing for the event.  You can volunteer for Zoo Boo event before becoming a regular volunteer; just send a quick message to our volunteer coordinator with the subject title: Interested In Zoo Boo Volunteering.  Thank you for your understanding.

Special Event Volunteer Program

Zoo Boo Treat Station

Individuals interested in assisting ONLY with special events (such as Zoo Boo, Easter EggStravaganZoo, etc.) can do so without completing the online application and attending an Orientation Session.  For more information, contact the Volunteer Coordinator.  We can also accept corporate groups for team-building volunteer activities during certain times of the year.

Contact The Volunteer Coordinator with Questions

Our Volunteer Coordinator is a member of the Wisconsin Volunteer Coordinator’s Association!  That means we’re up-to-date on industry standards and dedicated to providing truly quality experiences for volunteers who serve our organization.  Thanks for your interest!



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