Our sanctuary offers Volunteer Program for those who wish to come to Greece, help us, gain experience in working with animals and contribute to a good cause.
Let's be S.M.A.R.T. is a non-profit organization and in order to cover all costs associated with running of our rescue facility we rely on private funding and donations. Volunteers are therefore important for our mission to keep on going and they are wholeheartedly welcomed.
Apart of the practical aspects and help offered by volunteers, we strongly believe - and it is our vision as well - that through the act of service the volunteering helps to promote compassion, love, care for animals and their well-being.
Make a difference, become a S.M.A.R.T. VOLUNTEER!
By volunteering in our sanctuary you will:
Make a difference
Receive lots of love from our furry friends and have fun with them
Gain valuable knowledge about animal care and running the animal sanctuary
Gain work experience in animal care if it is your professional field
Be part of our Let's be S.M.A.R.T. community and gain new friends & contacts
Get a sense of achievement, self-confidence and motivation
Receive a volunteer certificate and letter for your contribution to our organization
Experience living in Greece for a while, have a chance to discover Athens and enjoy lovely places and beaches very close to our sanctuary
If you would like to register for our Volunteer Program, please fill in our "Application Form".
Our Let´s be S.M.A.R.T. organization has partnered with NATUCATE - a conscious travel platform offering nature tourism and voluntary service abroad with the focus on animal and environmental protection and nature conservation.
Animal welfare volunteer experience in our Greek cat sanctuary is now being offered within their VOLUNTEER ABROAD category and we are proud that our sanctuary has been chosen as Natucate´s first project in Greece!
Click here to visit our profile & book your volunteer experience in our Greek cat sanctuary.
Our shelter is a 2 floor modern house, situated in olive grove and surrounded by greenery and hills.
In our main house there are three comfortable bedrooms & two private bathrooms, fully equipped kitchen with a large dining space and living room, laundry room, sitting area at the balcony, internet access, TV in a living room and all bedrooms and parking space.
Please note that our shelter cats are living freely in the house and volunteers coming to stay with us will most likely have one or more kitties sleeping with them in their bedrooms (also, some cats need to be isolated at times due to the health reasons and may be staying in the rooms for certain time periods).
The facility is about 15 minutes by car from the Athens International Airport. We have a shelter car for running errands, but given the location of our shelter (Kouvaras area, off Leoforos Lavriou), volunteers might want to rent a car for personal trips in order to move around more freely.
Inquire within for all the details and benefits of our Volunteer Program at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Volunteers in 2018-2020
Out Let’s Be SMART cat sanctuary welcomed in 2018 - 2020 number of wonderful volunteers and dedicated animal lovers from all over the world, who came to help us in our sanctuary. Majority of our volunteers came through the Workaway project. We had also volunteers from our local Athens community.
Check our photo gallery and read below what some of our volunteers said about their volunteering experience with us!
We are grateful to our volunteer Isabelle from Canada for writing a wonderful article on her website Coeur de Nomade about her experience of staying and helping in our Greek cat sanctuary💗🐾 The article is accompanied with many amazing photos of our rescue kitties and life in our sanctuary. To read Isabelle's article, please click here.
Here is what some of our volunteers wrote about their volunteer experience:
"What I loved about volunteering at Let's Be S.M.A.R.T. cat shelter is seeing so many happy cats in the one place. As soon as I walked in, I knew I was in a positive environment. The cats have a lot of space in a lovely big home, comfortable areas to relax and play and they are all well fed but most of all, well loved by their main caretaker, Diana." ----Lisa/Australia
"I loved my experience volunteering for Lets Be SMART. It truly was a highlight for my trip and I would recommend it for anyone travelling to Greece who wants a unique experience and to improve the lives of animals. The cats at the shelter are treated like royalty in a clean, contemporary space outside of Athens." ---- Renée/USA
"Staying in Let's be S.M.A.R.T. shelter was the best decision! Everybody here is so nice and they will accept you as a member of family, so you know you can always come back. Cats in the shelter are lively and playful and they are very lucky to have such an amazing place to live". ---- Zuzana/Czech Republic
"I was staying in the shelter for 2 weeks with my friend Zuzana. At first, taking care of 40 cats and living with them sounded like a crazy idea to us, but we immediately felt in love with the job. Watching the cats, playing with them and getting to know their personalities was such an interesting and fun experience. I would like to thank Diana, Marketa and Julie for making our stay possible and also for giving the best care they can to all the kitties. We hope that one day we will come back again". ---- Iva/Czech Republic
"Let's be S.M.A.R.T. is such a great organization run by such an amazing and compassionate team. Whilst volunteering at the Greek shelter, I was shown extraordinary hospitality and made to feel so welcomed..... there is great work being done here and it has been great to be part of it!" ---- Rebecca/Australia
"I was in the shelter for two weeks and it was an incredible and cuddly experience. The shelter is very big and comfortable. I met fantastic people like Diana, Julie and Marketa. If you love animals, especially cats, this is a perfect place for you!" ---- Simona/Italy
"I had a wonderful time at the Let's be S.M.A.R.T. sanctuary, the cats are happy and well cared for and the work gives you a fair amount to do but also allows you to have your own time..... It was great to meet all of the team and hopefully I will be able to come back soon". ---- Lucy/UK
"It was a pleasure to volunteer in the shelter, I always wanted to do that and it inspires me to create a good shelter back in my home country"
"The work that's being done at the shelter is nothing short of incredible. With no shortage of strays in and around Athens, it's easy to see the passion that those who run or work at the shelter have for the cats. Personally, I greatly enjoyed my time in the shelter. The work is not difficult and doesn't take long, and if you're a lover of cats, this place is perfect to get away from it all and just enjoy some quality snuggles from roughly 40+ kitties. The shelter itself is kept quite clean, but of course with this many cats, you have to be prepared for a bit of a mess in the morning. However, Diana knows how to keep the shelter clean and will instruct you exactly on what to do. Athens is a beautiful city, and it's easy and cheap to get to by bus. The surroundings around the shelter itself are also gorgeous for hiking or cycling. I highly recommend this shelter for anyone who's looking for some peace and quiet (and possibly adopting a cat)" ---- Kristie/The Netherlands
"Working at the shelter is more soul therapy than it is work. The cats are brimming with energy and affection, ready to chase a string or curl up on your lap at all hours. Coming in with a mindset to give something of yourself for this cause contributes to the level of enjoyment. Not only are the cats bursting with love, the shelter is also set on the serene mountains, away from the annoyance of a busy city, which contributes a great deal to the peaceful atmosphere. The house is well run and clean, but you may get your hands dirty (and scratched) sometimes. Overall this has been an incredible experience, both for a wonderful cause, but as an internal journey. I am immensely grateful for it all, thank you!" ---- Giselle/South Africa
"I truly enjoyed my time at this shelter. Simply put, it's lots of pet therapy, good times with genuinly good people, and the possibility to enjoy the peace and quite of the area outside Athens. All while doing actively something good! The work itself is pretty easy and straightforward: it mostly consists of keeping the house clean and tidy (this means, vacuming, steam cleaning, mopping) and being there for the cats. Because the house is big and the cats are free to roam around, I was never overwhelmed by them: you'll never see 40+ cats at once! Some of them are more shy and reserved, while others truly enjoy people's company, which means that you will most likely have at least one cat on you, at all times. This was, in my opinion, the best bit. Outside of the working hours, you are free to visit the area nearby, or you can just stay in the house and relax. Of course, even when you are not working, you still have to keep on eye on the cats and be sure they are fed, that they have water, and that they are ok. Your hands might get dirty sometimes, but it's never too much work and besides, these cats will absolutely reward you for your hard work! The only risk you run here is getting too attached to them, which makes going back home much harder... In other words, this was one of the most fulfilling experiences I ever had and I can't wait to be back and help out some more!" ---- Corinna/Italy
"Such a fantastic work away experience. I was part of the kitty team for one month and got to have a lot of fun with the cats. I had the chance to assist with giving medicines, grooming and general care. Some of the cats require extra attention if they are not well or recovering and it's so rewarding to make them feel better during this process, having cats and kittens in the room with you is something I actually found to be a positive, as lone traveler it was some entertaining extra company:) Diana runs the shelter day-to-day and is a great host making sure you know all the best places in the local area to eat and buy food and sweet treats. The food is excellent and there is so much choice for vegetarians and vegans. In my spare time, as I am a keen runner I could take routes into the hills or to the beaches. By bike the beach is about 10-12 km and worth cycling if you don't want to go by foot. Julie's dedication to this shelter is amazing, the quality of care is excellent and the accommodation for work awayers is very high. 100%"
"We highly recommend volunteering at the cat sanctuary. We really enjoyed our experience and found it highly rewarding looking after the cats and being part of giving them their medication.
The house Is very clean and there’s so much space for them to run around and play. Our room was also a nice size and we enjoyed sharing it with 5 beautiful cats (who we really miss). The daily tasks were straight forward and quite laid back. In our breaks we had time to go for walks or simply just play and cuddle with the cats.
The people that we met were so lovely and so caring. You can see the dedication they put in. We definitely want to come back again soon!"
---- Dylan & Amy/ UK