Humane Education

Virtual Summer Camp

Animal Allies Club

Shelter Tours

Paws and Read

At-Home Activities


AWLA Unleashed: Virtual Summer Camp

Welcome to AWLA Virtual Summer Camp, where we bring the learning and fun from our organization straight into your home. Our one-of-a-kind virtual camp pairs together an immersive online curriculum and customized take home backpack filled with crafts and enrichment for your child to create. The online curriculum will be an interactive website filled with informative presentations about the different aspects of jobs being done at AWLA, a virtual behind the scenes tour, interviews with our staff and other individuals who work alongside animals (K9 officers, zookeepers, wildlife rehabilitators, and more). The website will also give kids access to worksheets, virtual games, and instructions for crafts and enrichment. To ensure your child also gets direct contact with our camp counselors and other kids, we will also be doing daily interactive virtual meetings that will engage the group in craft projects, meeting animals, group exercises, competitions, and games. Please scroll down to read more about each of the two programs and sign up now. 

Destination AWLA – Children aged 10-13 years old

Session 1: Monday, July 6th – Friday, July 10th – Registration closed

Session 2: Monday, July 13th – Friday, July 17th – Registration closed

Session 3: Monday, August 3rd – Friday, August 7th – Registration closed

Session 4: Monday, August 10th – Friday, August 14th – Registration closed

Does your child have an interest in the animal field and/or want to help our local wildlife? Well, the place to be this summer is online with the AWLA! This 5-day virtual camp immerses your children in the day-to-day activities of the AWLA. From understanding the jobs of animal care staff and shelter veterinarians to the science behind fundraising and marketing, this camp program will be sure to involve your children in a variety of fun lessons all about the different areas within the animal shelter. Highlights of this virtual camp experience include a unique behind the scenes tour of our entire facility, backpack filled with crafts and enrichment items,  personalized interviews with AWLA staff, virtual visits from animals, and more. Destination AWLA also includes participation in a variety of service projects, understanding disaster preparedness, learning about our community programs such as Trap-Neuter-Return, and more. To ensure virtual participation, it is recommended that your child have access to a device that connects to the internet and the ability to use Zoom. More information about daily zoom meeting times and ways to personalize your child’s take home craft backpacks (color preferences, types of enrichment items, etc.) will be sent out to families prior to the start of camp. Space is limited for each session, so be sure to pounce on this opportunity and sign your child up for Destination AWLA.

Click here to register for our Destination AWLA Summer Camp

Click here to download AWLA’s Summer Camp Policies

Welfare Rescuers – Children aged 6-9 years old – SOLD OUT

Session 1: June 29th – July 1st – Registration closed

Session 2: July 27th – 29th – Registration closed

Does your child want to make a difference in the lives of dogs, cats, and small furry animals? This 3-day virtual summer camp lets your children dig into the roots of AWLA’s beliefs and understand how we help find the best home for each animal to make sure they receive the care they need. As Welfare Rescuers, your children will learn all about behavior, animal care, how to respect wildlife, safety around animals, and more. Highlights of the camp experience include a virtual behind the scenes tour of the shelter and animal care area, a unique take-home backpack filled with crafts and enrichment specifically for your child, online lessons on reading animal behaviors and care with our counselors, creating enrichment for animals, meeting some of our star animals that are on-view for adoptions, and helping with service projects. To ensure virtual participation, it is recommended that your child have access to a device that connects to the internet and the ability to use Zoom. More information about daily Zoom meeting times and ways to personalize your child’s take home craft backpacks (color preferences, types of enrichment items, etc.)  will be sent out to families prior to the start of camp. Don’t spend too much time sniffing at this opportunity, sign your child up now to be a welfare rescuer!

Click here to download AWLA’s Summer Camp Policies

AWLA Summer Camp Registration Fee Refund Policy

AWLA will refund the camp registration fee (not including the 5% service charge + 0.50) up to 21-days prior to the start of the summer camp session for which you have registered your child.

Scholarships for AWLA Camps

For all of our camps, we offer scholarships to cover the cost of registration for a small number of families. If you would like to learn more about our scholarships, please email our Humane Educator, Karyn Orth at  

AWLA Animal Allies Club

Animal Allies Club is currently suspended. Read more here.

The Animal Allies Club is a unique club that meets throughout the year for children aged 10-13 to learn about the positive impact AWLA is making for animals in our community and how they, themselves can make an impact for animals. Our goal at AWLA is to educate your children on how to best live harmoniously with animals through a variety of activities that encourage collaboration, creative thinking, and a fun learning environment.

Each program session is packed with educational guest speakers, fun service projects, crafts, games, and personal meetings with star residents who are up for adoption. Topics covered this year will include animal behavior, veterinary care, companion animal ownership, wildlife care, and more. This is a great learning opportunity that is stress-free and fun for all participants.

Both Animal Allies club groups will meet once a month, for a total of 10 club meetings between February and November of 2020. This year, we are offering two sessions that meet monthly during the first week of each month on Monday or Tuesday evening from 5:30pm-7:00pm.

Club membership is $100 per child + a 5% processing fee, and registration includes a club t-shirt!

Note: If your child has allergies to peanuts, cats, dogs, or small companion animals of any kind (bunnies, ferrets, guinea pigs, birds, etc.), this may not be an appropriate club for your child.

Click here to register!

If you have any questions about AWLA 2020 Animal Allies Club, please reach out to Karyn Orth, Humane Educator at (703)931-9241, ext 277 or

Tours of AWLA

Would your group like to learn more about how AWLA provides for animals and services our community? Come schedule a virtual tour of our facility for groups between 5-20 people. Our virtual tours are hosted on Zoom, and last between 30 to 45 minutes.  We take the group through both our public viewing areas, some behind the scenes areas, and end with enough time to answer everyone’s questions. Tours can be customized to school aged kids as young as kindergarten to adults. There is also an option for a pre-recorded tour to better fit your schedule. Each stop on our virtual tour is paired with an informative lesson suited for the age group of the participants. 

During the tour, groups learn about:

  • Services that the League provides on site

  • The types of animals the League houses

  • The different ways that animals arrive at AWLA

  • How to adopt from AWLA

  • Animal control services in Arlington

  • Other services/programs that the League offers the community

  • How the League is funded

  • Ways that they can help the League

  • Fostering/Adopting

Virtual Tours can be scheduled on Monday through Thursday 11:00am – 6:00pm (latest tour starting at 5:00pm), however, other times outside of this range can be arranged by appointment. At this time, we do not schedule virtual tours for weekends.

Suggested donation for virtual tours of AWLA:

  • Small groups of 5-8: Sponsor a parakeet adoption fee for $25
  • Medium groups of 9-12: Sponsor a rabbit adoption fee for $65
  • Large groups of 12+: Sponsor a senior cat adoption fee for $100.

If you have any interest in setting up a virtual tour, please email our Humane Educator, Karyn Orth at

Paws and Read Program

Paws and Read

Paws & Read is currently suspended. Read more here.

School children in the Northern Virginia and Washington, D.C. metropolitan areas are invited to improve their literacy by reading books to cats through the Paws and Read Program. The Paws and Read program is mutually beneficial for the shelter cats as well. Annually, AWLA receives approximately 900 cats with an average length of stay of 35 days. With no time limit for any of its animals, some cats may live at the shelter for as long as a year before finding permanent homes.

Children in kindergarten through eleventh grade are invited to participate in walk-in 20-minute reading sessions with shelter cats and small companion animals on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays from noon-6:40PM, and Saturdays and Sundays from noon-3:40PM. For the safety of our animals and your children, there must be one parent or guardian present to supervise each child at all times. 

Children are able to choose a book from AWLA’s selection of stories or bring one of their own. Cats participating in the program are identified with a “Purrfect Reader” sign on their kennel. All small companion animals can be read to.

There is no fee or sign-up required to participate in the Paws and Read Program. Simply visit AWLA anytime during the hours listed above, sign a liability form, and start reading!

If you have any questions about the Paws and Read program, please contact Ashley Hay, Community Support Director at (703) 931-9241, ext. 213 or

At-Home Activities

Birdwatching Bingo: I.D. sheets & bingo cards
DIY Twister Puzzle Feeder