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Campus Volunteers

Campus Volunteers are a critical part of the Guiding Eyes community

Join us on Campus!

From providing kennel assistance, to working in our offices, many dedicated volunteers support the Guiding Eyes mission by working on our Yorktown Heights and Patterson, NY campuses. All potential volunteers will undergo a screening, training and evaluation process prior to placement.  As our needs change, so does the availability of specific volunteer opportunities at our two campus locations. Not all positions are open at all times.

To be considered for a position as a Campus Volunteer, applicants 18yrs or older must live locally and meet the minimum requirements listed for the position.  We ask that campus volunteers commit to volunteering consistently for a period of at least one year and have reliable transportation. 


All volunteers must adhere to our Code of Conduct.

Our Volunteer Opportunities

Kennel Volunteers

Kennel Volunteers do hands-on work with puppies and adult dogs that are temporarily housed in our kennels.  These positions are perfect for dog lovers in good physical shape, who don’t mind getting their hands dirty and can commit to a long-term schedule. Volunteers work alongside Guiding Eyes staff to ensure that our puppies and dogs live in a happy, healthy and stimulating environment. 


With over 200 dogs housed temporarily in our kennels, it is of the utmost importance that our facilities are hygienic and sanitary, and so cleaning is a critical aspect of every Kennel Volunteer position.

  • 75% of every Kennel Volunteer’s time is spent cleaning and disinfecting living areas and canine equipment, food and treat preparation, and other necessary tasks relating to the care and feeding of our puppies and dogs.
  • 25% of a Kennel Volunteer’s time is dedicated to enrichment tasks such as exercising adult dogs, bathing puppies and perhaps providing additional socialization which ensures a positive, enjoyable kennel experience for the puppies and dogs.

Kennel Volunteer shifts in Patterson, NY:

Breeding Kennel, 7:00–11:00 a.m. or 3:00–6:00 p.m.;  Puppy Kennel, 7:30–11:00 a.m. or 1:30–4:30 p.m.

Kennel Volunteer shifts in Yorktown Heights, NY: 8:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m. or 12:00–4:00 p.m.


To be considered for a position as a Kennel Volunteer, applicants must:

  • be 18 or older.
  • be able to make a long-term commitment of at least one year with typically one shift per week.
  • live within easy commuting distance of our Patterson, NY or Yorktown Heights, NY locations.
  • be able to lift, push, pull and/or maneuver up to 40 pounds (the typical weight of a bag of dog food) easily.
  • be able to bend, stand, and stoop repeatedly for up to four hours without difficulty.
  • be able to kneel repeatedly on hard surfaces without difficulty.
  • sit on a low chair for up to 20 minutes at a time without difficulty.
  • be comfortable handling and interacting with large dogs.
  • be comfortable performing tasks on wet, slippery, uneven flooring.
  • easily tolerate loud barking.
  • ability to work independently and as part of a team.
  • perform cleaning tasks with industrial cleaning agents.
  • clean up poop, urine and vomit as necessary.
  • tolerate dog hair and dog slobber on your clothes and skin.
  • be able to read, write, listen and communicate verbally in English.
  • precisely follow written and/or verbal instructions.

Running Guide Volunteers

The Running Guides program is the first of its kind and unique to any other guide dog school in the world. In addition to being trained as a guide dog, running guides are trained to guide blind athletes on exercise runs. With the mission of creating greater independence for blind and visually impaired athletes, graduates of the Running Guides program will receive a dog specifically selected, trained and evaluated to safely run while guiding. Running Guide volunteers will work closely with a Running Guide Specialist and guide dogs that have been accepted into the Running Guides program. Running Guide volunteers will run with guide dogs in training, introducing them to new running routes and building their endurance, speed and training.


Running Guide Volunteers must:

  • Commit to a minimum of two hours per week on a consistent and reliable basis.
  • Successfully complete Running Guide training sessions, before running on their own with dogs.
  • Be physically able to run with dogs (7:00 min/mile-13:00 min/mile pace for 1-6 miles).
  • Be able to physically interact with and clean up after dogs, (includes kneeling, squatting, bending over).
  • Be able to meet at running routes in surrounding areas of either Yorktown Heights or Central Park.
  • Be 18 years of age or older.

Volunteer Drivers

Our Volunteer Drivers assist the staff of both our Training School in Yorktown Heights, NY and our Canine Development Center in Patterson, NY by transporting our puppies and dogs between facilities and the regions we serve, using vehicles provided by Guiding Eyes. Trips are usually two to eight hours in duration (although some may be longer), and include destinations such as regional airports, veterinary specialists, and designated pick-up or drop-off locations.


This volunteer opportunity is perfect for someone who enjoys driving and is comfortable in a van-sized vehicle, can comfortably lift up to 75 pounds, and enjoys meeting new people. Guiding Eyes provides a vehicle outfitted for the safe transportation of animals, directions to and from your destination, and a cell phone, gas card, and E-ZPass for use during trips.


To be considered for a position as a Volunteer Driver, applicants must:


  • be 21 or older and able to make a long-term commitment.
  • have a clean driving record (Guiding Eyes will conduct a DMV check at its own expense).
  • be able to lift up to 75 pounds.
  • reside within the geographical area of Yorktown Heights, NY or Patterson, NY.

Administrative Volunteers

Our Administrative Volunteers assist the staff of Guiding Eyes with tasks including database entry, preparation and collation of informational kits and bulk mailings, and special projects. This volunteer opportunity is ideal for individuals with computer skills and an interest in learning new things. Knowledge of Microsoft Word, Excel, Office and Salesforce is a plus. Guiding Eyes staff provides all necessary training.


To be considered for a position as an Administrative Volunteer, applicants must:


  • be 18 or older and able to make a long-term commitment
  • have familiarity with computers; knowledge of Microsoft Word, Excel, and Office is a plus
  • be able to work at the Yorktown Heights, NY or Patterson, NY locations

Student Services Volunteer

Student Service Volunteers assist our blind and visually impaired students while they train with their new guide dog in Yorktown Heights, NY. Local residents are needed to support the students in a number of ways, including escorting students to local malls and/or events; shopping for personal items with, or for, the students; driving students to medical appointments, church services, etc.; and assisting with lunchtime meal service.  We do not have a need for volunteers to read to the blind, thanks to the wide variety of audiobooks and adaptive technologies available.


These volunteer opportunities are a perfect fit for someone with a warm and outgoing personality and a genuine interest in meeting new people from varied backgrounds. Student Service Volunteers receive Blindness Awareness training so they can interact confidently and comfortably with our students, and ongoing staff support is always available.


To be considered for a position as a Student Service Volunteer, applicants must:


  • be 18 or older and able to make a long-term commitment.
  • successfully complete our Blindness Awareness training.
  • be able to work at the Yorktown Heights, NY location.

Volunteer Videographers

Our Volunteer Videographers assist staff in creating a visual record of our puppy testing, dog evaluations, and other training sessions. Videographers capture key developmental moments in the lives of our puppies and dogs, and may also be asked to tape staff training sessions and special events. This volunteer opportunity is perfect for someone who wants to get an insider’s look at how we raise our puppies to become successful guide dogs. Guiding Eyes provides all the required equipment − camera, tripod, copying supplies − as well as simple instructions on how to use the camera.


To be considered for a position as a Volunteer Videographer, applicants must:

  • be 18 or older and able to make a long-term commitment.
  • be able to sit, stand, and bend for extended periods of time, usually within indoor settings
  • be able to work within the geographical area of Yorktown Heights, NY or Patterson, NY.

* Persons under 18 years of age may consider participating (with their family) as a: