CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department's Animal Care and Control helps to find furry friends forever homes, but while they're at the shelter they depend on caring volunteers to love them. At the beginning of a new year, they're always looking for more help.

“You get back tenfold what you give when you come here, because you're here and you're helping animals,” said CMPD Animal Care and Control spokesperson, Melissa Knicely.

Knicely is on staff here at CMPD Animal Care and Control, but she knows how important volunteers are to the health and care of the animals. In 2016, the shelter adopted out just over 3300 animals. All of that was made possible by generous and loving people. From cleaning cages, to walking dogs, and yes, even feeding adorable baby kittens.

“When we put out the call to feed the baby kittens that are orphans, that would not survive unless they were bottle fed, the outpour from the community was just tremendous,” Knicely said. “It was overwhelming. We had over 2000 people call to want to volunteer.”

The work is crucial and could be a game changer for a lot of these furry friends.

“There's so many options, and all of the efforts from every single volunteer is lifesaving,” Knicely said.

To volunteer, head to