Young at Heart can always use big-hearted people with some time to spare. We need people to help in every aspect of the organization, from fundraising to soliciting donations for auction events, to caring for the senior dogs and cats in our adoption center.

If you’re in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago, you can make a tremendous contribution to Young at Heart’s wonderful work by volunteering as little as couple of hours a week. At Young at Heart, volunteers must be at least 18 years old to work in the adoption center.   Junior volunteers are welcome with a parent/guardian. Please check out the volunteer opportunities below. 

Volunteer Opportunities

Smokey's Haven

Volunteer opportunities at Young at Heart's adoption center include:

  • Dog and cat socialization

  • Enrichment activities for dogs and cats

  • One-on-one family room time

  • Dog walking on property trails

  • Indoor/Outdoor beautification


Our foster homes are the heart of our organization, where senior pets get the love and comfort of being in a home while waiting for adoption. All of our senior animals are rescued from shelters where they have as few as 3 days to get out or they will be euthanized. Foster homes, whether long term or short term, help us rescue these senior pets from a very sad fate. Without them, we would not be able to rescue the senior pets that we do. The more foster homes we have, the more lives we can save!

Learn more about becoming a Young at Heart foster parent here.

If you are interested in pursuing this opportunity, please complete a foster application, so we can match a foster pet to you, your home, and your lifestyle.

Outreach / Adoption Events (On Hold)

Young at Heart holds many adoption events throughout the Chicago suburbs where we bring our available dogs to meet the public. We need volunteers who enjoy working with people and are enthusiastic about promoting animal adoption to help set up, talk to the public about our organization, care for the dogs during the event, and promote adoptions.


Members of this team will be on call to transport our dogs & cats to and from adoption events, vet appointments, shelters, and foster homes. On occasion, team members may be asked to perform a home-safety check. 

Special Event Planning

Young at Heart holds a number of special fundraising events throughout the year that are a major source of our revenue. We need volunteers to help in every stage of planning and facilitating these special events.

Marketing & Promotions - Online / Print / Merchandise / Media

If you have an interest and skill in social media networking, graphic design, production, web or app development, copywriting, photography, videography, or online marketing, Young at Heart could use your talents for the creation of print/web marketing collateral (flyers, posters, ads, merchandise, web banners/mini-sites, dog profile descriptions, photos, videos), and social media networking (writing/posting to our Twitter, Facebook, blog). 



Got other skills that Young at Heart can use? Tell us about them and we'll put you to work!

Interested? If you’re in the Northwest suburbs of IL and can help out on a regular or on an as-needed basis, drop us a note at

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