10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Thank you for your interest in volunteering! The Detroit Zoological Society (DZS) recruits volunteers in the spring and fall each year. The minimum age to volunteer is 18 (14 for Volunteens) and volunteers will not come in direct contact with animal residents.
You can become a volunteer in just three easy steps:
Our most intensive training prepares these dedicated volunteers to be educators and interpreters at animal habitats throughout the Zoo. In addition, they provide tours and assist with a variety of educational programs both inside the Zoo and in the local community all year long. See Application Packet for full description (PDF).
Kangaroos and wallabies call the Australian Outback Adventure home. In this popular Detroit Zoo attraction, guests are able to walk through the habitat and get a closer view of the animals. Volunteers called the “Mob Squad” interact with visitors along the winding pathway inside the habitat. Volunteers are critical to this experience and the habitat cannot be opened without a team of volunteers. See Application Packet for full description (PDF).
These volunteers are based in the Wildlife Interpretive Gallery and spend their time talking about butterflies. A special projection system called Science On a Sphere and art exhibits are housed in this building and volunteers also interact with guests in these areas. See Application Packet for full description (PDF).
Throughout the year, the Zoo offers fun and interesting themed events to encourage guests to visit. These events could not happen without the helping hands and smiling faces of Zoo volunteers. From temporary tattoos to craft assistants, story readers to wine pourers, costume wearers to registration helpers, each event has its wish list of specialized assistance. This is a terrific way to be involved with the Zoo without a big commitment of time. See Application Packet for full description (PDF).
This is the ultimate “people person” position. Spend half of a three-hour shift greeting guests as they enter the Zoo, helping them get oriented to the map, the facilities and any special events. The rest of the time is spent walking the Zoo looking for ways to help guests. See Application Packet for full description (PDF).
This is one of the most critical positions in the Zoo. While helping with crowd control in the busy Frederick and Barbara Erb Polar Passage, these volunteers enjoy quality time with the polar bear and seal residents of this award-winning habitat. See Application Packet for full description (PDF).
Greeters assist primarily in two locations: Ford Education Center Exhibit Hall and Science On a Sphere. Greeters provide a friendly invitation to guests to come in and view these exhibits/shows. Seasonal greeters are also needed at the National Amphibian Conservation Center. See Application Packet for full description (PDF).
Clerical skills, phone experience and weekday availability on a regular schedule would be assets to volunteers interested in offering their services in this program. Short-term as well as long-term projects may be available. See Application Packet for full description (PDF).
These volunteers assist with crowd control and answering questions about the four species of penguins that reside in the Polk Penguin Conservation Center. See Application Packet for full description (PDF).
The Belle Isle Nature Center Assistants are a group of dedicated individuals who have a particular connection to Belle Isle as well as to the mission of “bringing the wilds of Michigan to the heart of Detroit” at the Belle Isle Nature Center. Volunteers assist the staff with projects, greet visitors or field trip groups and help with public feedings at the Deer Encounter. There are monthly opportunities to support nature programs with craft activities for young children, or seasonal opportunities to share gardening skills around the Belle Isle Nature Center grounds. Belle Isle Nature Center Assistant volunteers also answer questions about the frogs, salamanders, turtles, bees and fish that live in the facility. See Application Packet for full description (PDF).
There are three steps to becoming a volunteer at the Belle Isle Nature Center.
The Detroit Zoological Society is looking for energetic youth ages 14-17 to be part of our Zoo Corps. This is an opportunity to earn community service hours while working with a team from the Education Department at the Detroit Zoo. Benefits include leadership experience, customer service training, learning and practicing communication skills, and a professional work setting. Opportunities to volunteer stretch throughout the year, including weekdays, evenings and weekends.Apply Now
Counselor-in-Training program matches teen volunteers ages 16 and 17 with paid camp counselors to assist during the Zoo’s Summer Safari Camp. Responsibilities include assisting with groups of 10-12 youth (kindergarten-eighth grade) on tours through the Zoo, administering craft projects and interacting with staff and guests. Camp is held Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. and is held mainly outdoors.
Applications are now closed
Nature Center Counselor-in-Training volunteers support paid camp counselors and assist with activities throughout the camp at the Belle Isle Nature Center. Teen volunteers assist camp groups with outdoor play, nature immersion, games and crafts. Nature Camp is held Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m., and is held mainly outdoors.
Applications are now closed
Are you a part of an organization, company or group of friends that is interested in donating your time to the Detroit Zoological Society (DZS)? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to find out about our group volunteer opportunities!
Upcoming group opportunities:
Just as we value and celebrate biodiversity, the Detroit Zoological Society celebrates the diversity of our human community. We are committed to ensuring that our programs and facilities are fully accessible to our diverse communities and audiences and that our staff and volunteers reflect the multicultural fabric that is the strength of southeast Michigan.