Volunteer Program

Chimps Inc. has benefited from


volunteer hours so far in 2017!

Thank you to our amazing team for donating their time to help care for the chimps and lynx that call Chimps Inc. home!


Chimps Inc. has expanded our volunteer program and now have openings on our team!  If you want to make a difference in the lives of the chimps and lynx that call our sanctuary home, you need to check this out!

•   Must be at least 18-years old if working on-site at the sanctuary.
•   Must have a current tetanus shot, Hepatitis B series shot, and a tuberculosis test with proof of negative results.
•   Must successfully complete a Skype interview, attend an orientation, and submit all pertinent paperwork prior to starting.
•   Most volunteer opportunities require a minimum of 4 hours per week but there are some special positions where volunteer time is flexible.

Please be advised that Chimps Inc. maintains a strict no-physical-contact policy for all volunteers and interns due to the wild and dangerous nature of the animals.
If you are interested in becoming a sanctuary volunteer, please fill out our Online Application Form.

Volunteer Application

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Volunteer Opportunities:

Volunteers participate in an array of duties which may vary from day to day including:

Animal Care:
Volunteers commit to a minimum of 4 hours per week to assist our caregivers with cleaning indoor and outdoor enclosures, food preparation, processing laundry, organizing supply rooms, general grounds maintenance, and creating daily enrichment for the animals.

Weekly volunteers work at home or at the sanctuary creating and building stimulating enrichment items and toys, building and hanging platforms, swings, puzzle feeders, fire hoses, hammocks, etc. for the animals.

Maintenance Member:
Weekly or as-needed volunteers participate in a large number of activities that will help beautify and improve the sanctuary grounds. Skilled carpenters, welders, plumbers and electricians are also needed. If you have services that you would be willing to donate as needed but cannot commit to regular volunteer hours, please contact us to be added to our supporters list!Volunteer pin

Occasional volunteers pick up produce donations for the chimpanzees, drop off recyclables, deposit cans and more.

Special Events:
Volunteer duties may vary, from behind-the-scenes planning and organization to preparing things on the actual event day.

Questions about our volunteer program?  Contact us at volunteers@chimps-inc.org

Off Site Volunteer Opportunities for Minors
Though we are unable to have minors volunteer on sanctuary property due to safety restrictions, there are still ways for young people to get involved and help the chimps!
Host a car wash, bake sale, or lemonade stand to benefit Chimps Inc.
Toy Drive
Clean out your room of old toys and ask friends and classmates to do the same. The chimps are always in need of new toys to keep them busy.
Making Enrichment at Home
You can help keep the chimps entertained by making enrichment at home to send to the sanctuary! Check out these
enrichment ideas! Contact us for questions and more info!

Testimonial from a Volunteer:

Everyone was excited for me when I told them I was moving to Bend, Oregon to volunteer with chimpanzees. They knew it was a dream of mine and sent me off with well wishes such as, “After working in this restaurant, chimpanzees should be no problem!” In my first few weeks volunteering at Chimps Inc. I have been excited, nervous and hopeful about how the chimps would react to my presence. For those of you who haven’t had the opportunity to volunteer with chimpanzees, I’d like to share with you how it feels getting to know them.  The wonderful thing about Chimps Inc. is that the chimps get to know you on their own terms. The caregivers do not train the chimps to come say hello or perform, and with all of the tunnels and different enclosures that these chimps have the option to move through, you know that when a chimp chooses to be near you, it is because they want to be there. To have a chimp acknowledge you because they themselves are interested is thrilling and nothing short of an honor. The first chimp I had the privilege of getting to know was Topo. It was so exciting to hear the caregiver say, “Topo wants you to have this present” as he shoved a baseball cap through the fence that separated us. With all the hope that I brought with me to Chimps Inc., it was a relief to receive my first indication of acceptance into the group. My first experience with Jackson was being spit on as he tried to make the introduction a little more exciting. By the end of the week though, he had decided that I was worthy of a game of chase. Jackson appeared to be laughing as he instigated me into following him along the fence line, then quickly outran me. Sometimes while working at Chimps Inc., I get the feeling that I am being watched. That’s how I got to know Emma. While cleaning the kitchen one day, I looked up and was surprised to see that Emma had quietly approached and was watching my actions intently through the glass window in the kitchen that looks into an indoor chimp enclosure. I smiled as she then grabbed a rag of her own and began scrubbing. Herbie is the most recent chimp that I have been honored to get to know. During some down time this week, I blew bubbles for him as he sat across from me. As tiny bubbles floated into his enclosure, Herbie blew some out of his way and swatted at others. Once dozens of bubbles had accumulated on the ends of his hair, he let out a shudder, then brushed them all away as if they tickled. Spending such a quiet, serene few moments with such a large, grand, male chimpanzee was surreal to me and I am thrilled that he chose to spend that time with me. I feel as if some of the chimpanzees are still sizing me up and haven’t made their decisions yet, but that is an equally exciting prospect to me. Chimps Inc. has provided these chimps with enough autonomy to make this decision for themselves. Every glance, gesture or minor acknowledgement of my presence feels like an honor, and I am so grateful that the chimps and caregivers at Chimps Inc. have allowed me the opportunity to be a part of their world.

– Kaleigh R., Volunteer