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Animal Care Volunteer Project in Split - Croatia

Pet shelters play an important role in Croatia, helping to rescue a high number of cats and dogs that are abandoned by their families for a number of reasons. Animal shelters are often overcrowded, and volunteers play an important role in giving time and love to animals, promoting their health and wellbeing and giving them the best chance of being adopted.

As a volunteer you’ll help with all manner of cleaning, feeding and playing with the dogs. Playing with the animals each day is considered a key part of your role, as it helps them to both get along with people and stay active. You can also help to develop online profiles for the animals, recording videos and building an ID book to help promote their adoption.

Animal Care volunteer in Croatia with IVHQ

This is an ideal project for those who want to volunteer with animals. You’ll be helping to give these dogs a better future, and can supplement your time by improving the shelter itself and by raising community awareness about animal abandonment.

This project is well suited to those passionate about animals and animal rights. You’ll have the opportunity to learn about animal welfare in a different country while being part of a team that shares the same passion as you. All animals housed in the shelter are fully vaccinated.

Apply now
Apply now
Project Highlights
What you need to know
  • Affordable fees from $549 for 1 week
  • Volunteer in a animal shelters for abandoned and rescued dogs

  • Help to keep the animals fed, active and clean

  • Suited to enthusiastic volunteers who like working with animals

  • Volunteering for up to 4 hours per day

Destination Highlights
Croatia at a glance
  • Based in the coastal Croatian city of Split

  • Program fees include airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support

  • Accommodation in a dormitory-style volunteer hostel

  • Between 5 and 15 volunteers start in Croatia each month

The IVHQ Croatia volunteer program is based in Split, a vibrant hub on the Mediterranean coast and the second largest city in Croatia. ​This is a golden opportunity to volunteer in Europe in a place that’s high up on every traveller’s bucket list. Split is a popular tourist town because of its scenic ocean views, rich culture and authentic Croatian feel. In recent years it’s become a hot spot for tourists on sailing trips in particular due to its iconic harbour setting and vibrant atmosphere. This is where orientation and general administration is carried out by our local team.

Volunteer placements are located in and around Split. While Split is a well developed city, it does have pockets of under-served communities, social and environmental issues and local initiatives that need volunteer help. A portion of the local population live on the edge of poverty, and this reality particularly affects vulnerable people. By choosing to volunteer here, you’ll be supporting community-led projects that focus on providing opportunities to improve the livelihoods and wellbeing of the people that call Split home.

Volunteer Croatia programs start on the first and third Monday of every month. Volunteers can choose to volunteer for between 1 to 12 weeks.

The Croatia volunteer program begins on the first and third Monday of every month, and you need to arrive in Split on the Sunday before your chosen start date.

After you have registered for the program, please book your flights to arrive at Split International Airport (SPU). The cost of your airport pick-up is included in your Program Fee.

When you arrive, you will be greeted at the airport by a member of the local team and transported to the volunteer accommodation which is about a 20 minute drive. Your accommodation is covered by your Program Fee and includes the night before your program orientation.

If you are travelling in Croatia prior to your volunteer program, we can arrange for you to be picked up from a meeting point in Split on the Sunday before your program start date or alternatively, you can make your own way to the volunteer accommodation.

On Monday, orientation is hosted by our local team in Croatia and runs for a full day. Orientation covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program in Croatia – Introduction to Croatia, Croatian Customs, Rules and Expectations, Safety, Travel Opportunities in Croatia, Introduction to your Project and Placement. The orientation will also give you a chance to meet other volunteers and swap contact details for weekend travel and socialising.

​A volunteer day is subject to change depending on your specific project and placement. ​A typical daily schedule​ might be as follows:

8:00 AM Breakfast at the volunteer accommodation.

9.00 AM Volunteers with a morning shift travel to placement to join local placement staff and begin work on your project.

12.00 - 2:30 PM Lunch is served at the accommodation.

2:30 PM Volunteers with an afternoon or evening shift travel to placement to join local placement staff and begin work on their project.

7:30 - 9:00 PM Dinner at the volunteer accommodation. After dinner you will have the remainder of the evening free to relax and use as you wish.

Please note this schedule will vary depending on the needs of your particular project.

Volunteers are accommodated in a dormitory-style hostel located in Split, about 30 minutes from the city centre. You can expect to share a room with up to six other people. Rooms will usually be arranged by gender, however at busy times they may be mixed gender. Every volunteer will have access to their own locker to store valuables and other personal belongings. Volunteers also have access to several common indoor and outdoor spaces, a TV with free Netflix and a small kitchen with basic utensils. The hostel has shared bathrooms equipped with western toilets and showers. Bedding and towels are provided for each volunteer. Local staff do clean the accommodation throughout the week, though volunteers are required to keep their rooms tidy.

WiFi is available in the volunteer accommodation and can be accessed from many cafes and restaurants in the area. A local SIM card with data can also be purchased for unlocked phones.

Private rooms in the hostel with shared or private bathrooms can be arranged by request for an additional cost, subject to availability.

Volunteers are provided with breakfast, lunch and dinner every day. Breakfast is self-served at the volunteer accommodation and includes cereals, eggs, butter, marmalade, cream cheese, ham, milk, coffee, juice and bread. Lunch and dinner are provided in the accommodation according to a fixed menu. Meals will include pasta, rice, meat, seafood, vegetables and salad dishes as well as some typical Croatian dishes.

Tap water is safe to drink in Croatia and while we encourage volunteers to bring a reusable drink bottle to minimize the consumption of single-use plastics, bottled water is readily available if you prefer. You should budget approximately US$5 (approximately £5) per week for this.

Croatia

Length of Program Program Fee $USD
1 week $549
2 weeks $819
3 weeks $1,089
4 weeks $1,359
5 weeks $1,629
6 weeks $1,899
8 weeks $2,439
10 weeks $2,979
12 weeks $3,519
  • All programs attract a Registration Fee (from US$299) on top of the Program Fee (partially refundable until 60 days before your program start date*). A 5% international banking fee is added at point of payment.
  • To see prices in your local currency, use this currency converter.
  • Discounts on language lessons
  • * Terms and Conditions do apply
What extra costs will I have?
  • Visa, flights, travel insurance, vaccinations, criminal background check, souvenirs, in-country trips or tours, transport to and from your placement if required.
  • Transfer back to the airport at conclusion of the program
  • Spending money - Volunteers in Croatia generally find US$80 to be sufficient for basic weekly expenses

Croatia: Marine Conservation Project

Length of Program Program Fee $USD
1 week $905
2 weeks $1,515
3 weeks $2,130
4 weeks $2,675
  • All programs attract a Registration Fee (from US$299) on top of the Program Fee (partially refundable until 60 days before your program start date*). A 5% international banking fee is added at point of payment.
  • To see prices in your local currency, use this currency converter.
  • * Terms and Conditions do apply
What extra costs will I have?
    Registration Fee
    What it covers
    • Most affordable program fees
    • Expert support from a program specialist
    • Full MyIVHQ account access
    • Online volunteer training
    • Comprehensive preparation tools
    • IVHQ alumni rewards
    Program Fee
    What it covers
    • 24/7 in-country support
    • Airport pick-up
    • Program orientation
    • Volunteer placement
    • Accommodation
    • Meals
    • Discounts on language lessons

    During the weekends, volunteers have spare time to relax or ​explore other parts of Split and Croatia. You can explore the old town of Split - situated in the Diocletian Palace, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and has many landmarks to observe. Take a stroll along the seafront promenade and hit the beach to soak in the refreshing water of the Dalmatian coast.

    If you want to head further afield, make sure to include the remaining six UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Croatia and to take a sailing trip along the coast. With so much on offer, it’s a great idea to do your own research before you go to get an idea of what you may want to see and do once you are in Croatia. When it comes to booking excursions, we find that volunteers prefer to get together once in-country to organise travel and tours.

    Capital Zagreb
    Population 4.15 Million
    Languages Croatian
    Currency Croatian Kuna (HRK)
    Time zone UTC+02:00

    Weather and climate: Croatia can be divided into three climatic regions. The Pannonian Plains in the north have a continental climate of cold winters and hot summers, the mountainous Dinara Region in central Croatia has an alpine climate and the Adriatic coast, where our volunteer program is based, enjoys a Mediterranean climate of cool, rainy winters and hot, dry summers. Temperatures in Split, where our program is based, range from 41°F to 50°F (5°C to 10°C) in winter and 79°F to 86°F (26°C to 30°C) in the summer, which runs from June to August.

    Volunteers aged under 18 years old are able to volunteer in Croatia, but will be required to provide IVHQ with two separate parental/guardian consents from each of their parents/guardians and two character reference letters in order to participate on the program. They may also be asked to provide additional documentation to the local team.

    Independent volunteers (those travelling without their parents or guardians) under the age of 18 years will be required to provide additional waivers and documentation, which a guardian must complete.

    Volunteers under the age of 18 can only participate on the Animal Care project.

    Volunteers must speak fluent English. Volunteers must have adequate volunteer travel insurance and provide a recent criminal background check.

    Free Interactive Volunteer Training - All volunteers are encouraged to complete our interactive pre-departure training, which is available exclusively to registered IVHQ volunteers. The training is designed to build an understanding of important aspects that need to be considered before embarking on an IVHQ program. It helps volunteers to prepare in the right way by providing advice on what it takes to be a safe, responsible and valuable volunteer. Try a sample of the training here.

    How to get started

    Pick a destination + project and apply for free
    Meet your personal volunteer travel expert
    Pay the registration fee to secure your place and upgrade your MyIVHQ account
    Get ready to volunteer abroad, we’ll support you every step of the way!