Mentor to At-Risk Youth while Training Shelter Dogs

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Pawsitive Impact

  • 150 people are interested
Pawsitive Impact

Currently we are looking for volunteers who are interested in working with troubled youth in our ALPHA program at the Sacramento county juvenile detention center and also enjoy working with shelter dogs. Our volunteers are being asked to commit to our entire 5 week program that will meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the detention center from 5:00-7:00 pm.

The purpose of ALPHA is to improve the social-emotional health of at-risk youth by developing skills to become resilient, compassionate, responsible, and successful members of the community through training shelter dogs to become more adoptable. Communication, responsibility, goal setting and leadership are the main areas of focus in our program. Volunteers will be partnered with two teens and one dog to work together through our curriculum. Volunteers act as mentors, as well as supervisors of the teens and dogs. We will train the volunteers before the program begins. The program also meets on Saturdays, but volunteers will not be required to come on those days. On Saturdays, the youth will be exposed to numerous guest speakers that currently work in animal related fields that they may be interested in, such as shelter workers, veterinarians, vet techs, animal intake officers and dog groomers. Overall, we want these at-risk youth to feel successful.

Since we are working with the Sacramento county probation department, it is required that all volunteers must be able to pass a background check and pass a medical TB test.

Prior experience working with youth and/or dogs is beneficial, but not required.

More opportunities with Pawsitive Impact

No additional volunteer opportunities at this time.

About Pawsitive Impact


2443 Fair Oaks Blvd. #231, SACRAMENTO, CA 95825, US

Mission Statement

Our mission is to help bring awareness to the power of the human-animal bond through humane education. We provide animal therapy as an intervention to at-risk youth, where both can connect and together learn patience, trust, empathy and success.


Pawsitive Impact focuses on the human-animal relationship by providing animal therapy as an intervention for at-risk youth. We are now rolling out our latest program, Adolescent Learning Powered by Humane Advocacy (ALPHA).

ALPHA's purpose is to help at-risk teens develop skills to become resilient, compassionate, and responsible members of the community by training shelter dogs to become more adoptable. Throughout our therapeutic program, at-risk youth and shelter dogs connect and together learn patience, trust, and empathy. Our curriculum combines humane education with character development. Communication skills are a large part of our program, both with dogs and other humans. The youth are taught to understand dog behavior and body language. This understanding can then be related to understanding themselves and others better. The youth are partnered up to encourage them to collaborate and cooperate. Leadership is another area of focus. Once participants have completed our program, they are allowed to return to following sessions as mentors. Throughout our program, participants listen to guest speakers that expose them to animal-related careers. Our hope is that they will be exposed to a job that they could pursue and learn the skills necessary to become productive members of society. The final goal of our organization is to help at-risk youth feel successful. Our program encourages participants to set goals for themselves and their dogs. Reaching those goals may not always be easy, but they develop patience, perseverance and a sense of self worth along the way.
Children & Youth


We'll work with your schedule.


9601 Kiefer Blvd.Sacramento, CA 95827



  • Counseling / Mental Health
  • Youth Services
  • Mentoring
  • Animal Therapy
  • Animal Care / Handling
  • Teaching / Instruction




  • Background Check
  • Must be at least 21
  • Orientation or Training
  • Tuesdays or Thursdays 5:00-7:00pm for 5 weeks

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