The National Aviary is America's only independent indoor nonprofit zoo dedicated exclusively to birds. Located in West Park on Pittsburgh's historic North Side, the National Aviary is home to a diverse collection of more than 400 birds from around the world, many of them threatened or endangered in the wild. In our large walk-through exhibits, visitors get up close and personal with our free-flying flock. Through our staff and volunteer-led daily programs, guests learn the importance of avian life in the natural world.

If you would like to help inspire a respect of nature through an appreciation of birds, consider joining our team of dedicated volunteers!

How to join the Adult Volunteer Program at the National Aviary:

1) Learn about volunteering at the National Aviary by attending our next Volunteer Opportunities meeting! In 2014, our Volunteer Opportunities will be Saturday, February 1st and Saturday, October 11th from 1:00 - 3:00 pm.
Contact Tammy Frech, Manager, Volunteer & Intern Programs at 412-258-9455 or tammy.frech@aviary.org to register.

2) Complete a volunteer application at the Volunteer Opportunities meeting.
The application includes the authorizations for your criminal record and child abuse investigations. We will need the background investigation authorization and the ORIGINAL child abuse investigation authorization back for processing. We must have satisfactory clearances on both of these investigations in order for you to volunteer at the National Aviary. Please note that prospective volunteers are asked to pay for the investigations which are then submitted by the National Aviary once you have satisfactorily completed step three.

3) Interview with National Aviary staff and volunteer leaders. 
There are many opportunities to volunteer and many skill sets needed to effectively run our Aviary programs. This interview helps us to assess your interests and compatibility with our expected needs, along with your schedule of availability.

4) Attend the National Aviary’s formal Volunteer Orientation and Training Programs (February 22nd and November 1st). You may be invited after a satisfactory criminal records check.
These meetings are a requisite prior to your first volunteer experience at the Aviary.

Acceptance into the National Aviary Volunteer Program is dependent upon satisfactory completion of all four steps as determined by the National Aviary.  Initial and ongoing volunteer status is always at the sole discretion of the National Aviary of Pittsburgh, Inc.


Teen Volunteer Program

The teen volunteer program is open to students who will be 14-17 by June 1, 2014.  Teens typically volunteer one day a week during summer break. They serve as docents, summer camp assistants and do some cleaning but do not have direct contact with the birds during their first season. Summer camp assistants will be assigned to work one full week of camp. Applications are available in early March.  

Currently, we only accept teen volunteers to start in the summer.

There are two required meetings as well. One is a teen volunteer opportunities meeting on June 7th from 1:00 – 3:00 pm. A parent or guardian must attend with the teen. At this meeting, we will discuss teen volunteer duties, requirements and responsibilities. This is a time for both of us to decide if this is a good fit.

For those who are accepted into the program, the teen volunteer orientation is June 20th from 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. This is a required day of training to prepare for volunteering. The volunteer session runs from June 23 to August 15, 2014.


If you are interested in becoming a teen volunteer, please complete an application by May 1, 2014.