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This email marks the final week of Volunteer Appreciation Month at the SF SPCA. Thank you for going on this journey with us every week for the last four weeks through the everyday lives of many volunteers from across the organization. I hope you have enjoyed reading about the activities of our fantastic volunteers. If you feel inspired to add a new volunteer job to your repertoire, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will do our best to set you up in that program. Whether it’s on campus or out in the community, we know that each and every one of you is extraordinary for the time, effort, and dedication you put in to supporting the mission and work of the San Francisco SPCA. This month is dedicated to all of you, the 1,382 volunteers who make it happen every day.
Animal Assisted Therapy
Shari Marks and Rebekah Davis
If there were a "frequent visitor card" in AAT, these two would have filled several to take the grand prize! Shari and Rebekah combine to average five visits a week--that's about twenty visits a month just between the two of them! Shari and Rebekah do General AAT and Puppy Dog Tales and both visit several locations. They manage to combine breadth with depth by committing to weekly or alternating week visits at each of their sites. Thanks to Shari and Rebekah for being two powerhouses of AAT!
Community Cares Program
Sundays should be a day of rest, but not for the Community Cats of San Francisco! By 8am the lobby of Community Cats fills up with trapped cats that need to have traps cleaned, paper work done and pointed towards surgery. Zelda has taken on the role of Sunday morning feral cat volunteer and we can’t remember what it was like before her. Zelda has approached this job with aplomb, no task is beyond her, no cat too difficult, no trap too stinky. Recently Zelda has begun to help us with trapping projects, adding another aspect to her Community Cats volunteer work. Zelda is an amazing volunteer and we are thankful she decided to give her time to us and the Community Cats of San Francisco.
All Fospice Parents
Fospice parents are an extraordinary group of people who provide hospice care for our terminally ill shelter animals. It’s too difficult to acknowledge just one or two of these amazing people, so we want to recognize and thank ALL our fospice parents for the remarkable work they do. The SF SPCA Fospice Program is the first of its kind in the country; and only exists because these foster parents were willing to open their hearts and homes to this population of animals who would have been prematurely euthanized otherwise. We are so grateful to all our fospice parents for giving these shelter animals the most generous gift of all; a home where they can spend their last days in dignity and surrounded by love. Thank you so much, fospice parents!
Shelter Cat Program
Viviane Sweetland and Kitty Brody
Cat volunteers find support and guidance in a common place: the volunteer instructors and mentors. One instructor with a fantastic record of supporting new volunteers is Kitty Brody. Kitty has been volunteering with the SF SPCA for the past seventeen years and spends Wednesdays in Maddie’s Adoption Center teaching First Shift Support; she welcomes new cat volunteers and ensures that their first cat visits are successful. Many of these volunteers go on to train in our Shelter Medicine department where they will cross paths with Viviane Sweetland. The “Purr Posse” depends on devoted mentors like Viviane to guide volunteers. Viviane, a mentor since 2012, travels the hallways every Tuesday consciously prepping the equipment to make it simple for volunteers to spend time with the cats.
Shelter Dog Program
Kia Arteche, Althea Karwowski, Mike Mallon, Gladys Chan
Kia Arteche, Althea Karwowski, and Mike Mallon, recent graduates of the behavior department's Volunteer Internship Program, are just now catching up on their sleep. For six months they've spent a part of almost every day volunteering at the shelter. To fulfill the requirements of the program they've had to demonstrate mastery of a complete understanding of dog learning and behavior and to apply that knowledge while helping the dogs find homes. Along with program instructor Gladys Chan --graduate of The Academy for Dog Trainers and a volunteer herself--the interns provide the extra behavioral support that shelter dogs need to stay healthy and thrive. Once rested again, all the interns plan to continue supporting the dogs of the San Francisco SPCA. And while asleep, they will dream about training happy dogs.