Tuesday, June 15, 2010

V is for ....


I volunteer at the reception desk at our church once a week.  There I type, prepare mailings, answer the phone, answer questions of those who come into the office etc.

Another part of this task is to give food to the homeless.  We probably have at least three requests for food, transportation tickets etc. each day.

This is the food pantry which the congregation keeps well stocked.  As well as food we give hygiene products and in the winter we give blankets.

This is the food pantry:

My second volunteer job is to go into the the Animal Shelter once a week.

This is a new VENTURE for me.  I have been through all the training and spent one afternoon as a "CAT-CUDDLER"!!  What could be better than that?  That is mainly my task -- to socialize the many new kittens coming in (it's kitten season) and to encourage the older cats to socialize too.  This shelter is only three years old and is state of the art.

As well as many individual cages, there are two large rooms like this which hold 4 or sometimes 5 cats. Lots of beds, toys, houses and kitty climbing furniture.

This is Twyla.  She is a beautiful cat .  Quite self assured and well adjusted, but she is not a lap cat.  She loves to be petted and will sit beside you, but does not want to sit on your lap.  Sadly people just overlook her because they want a lap cat. She would make a very sweet pet.

I spent a half hour in this room trying to coax Miss Swan, a dainty black cat, out of her house.  She is VERY shy but I did eventually get her to come out and managed to pet her.  Lots of soft talking, scratching on wood, moving slowly and a couple of bits of kibble that made my hands smell of kibble so then she was quite happy to be stroked and scratched behind her ears.  I'm mad at myself because I got a good photo of her and then accidentally erased it. Did you know that black cats are usually the last to be adopted? Superstition!

Lots of tiny kittens, but I couldn't get good photos because of glass reflection, and today is not my day to go in behind the scenes.

For those of you who are dog lovers, (I am too), just look at these two:

I can choose to work with the dogs after a couple of months, but nearly all of them are far too big for me to handle.  Now if they decide they want dog cuddlers .... 
 The dogs are taken out on long walks each day.  There is quite a large area around the compound that is good for that.  They need dog walkers too.

The adoption rate from this shelter is 75% for dogs and just 34% for cats  :( 

There is just one possible problem arising from my cat cuddling job.  I had an asthma attack after my first experience there last week!  I do have mild allergies and it may be just too many cats! 
 OH NO!  That would be VERY disappointing!


Sylvia K said...

Great place to volunteer! I do hope your allergies don't make it impossible to continue! I know that would be disappointing! Terrific post for the V day! Have a wonderful week!


photowannabe said...

Great choice for V. I love volunteering. its great that you have a food pantry. Its a blessing to those that need it.
We have a truck that comes to our church for the 5 services every weekend. Its called Fill the Truck. The food is distributed every week to the various food banks in the area and places like Loaves and Fishes and local homeless works. Its amazing how generous our congragation is and how much goes to feed those less fortunate.

Wanda said...

Chris, you are such a good volunteer.

Love all the pictures at the Animal Shelter... I would be in love with all of them.

Volunteering at your church office is so helpful to your church staff. I bet people just call to talk to you.

Wonderful "V"s.

Morning's Minion said...

Oh dear. I'm reminded that I became involved with the Pet Connection at our last home.
I should have simply donated food, litter, funds, when I could spare them. The reason we have Charlie and Maizie and their "kittens", Jemima and Chester, is because I got too emotionally vulnerable in my efforts to "help." There were such appealing cats at the shelter.
Dogs can tug at the heart also, but I am better able to resist.
"Volunteer" is a good "V" word--I can only come up with "violin" or "violet." Of course there are "voles." This could be addictive.

Unknown said...

Sorry to hear you had and attack cat allergie! That is terrible, I hope you will still be able to contuined with your Cuddling Job, sounds like that would a very interesting volunteer job to have. you are giving me some ideas here at what to do with my spare time. :)

When I gotten my cat Lucy from the Shelter one of the first rule was that if I am allergic cats then it be a no go for me. Well, I am allergic to Cats, always have been since a child but I didn't tell them that. And I still have Lucy yet, she been with me for four years now and plan on keeping her til it is time for her to go to cat heaven, she is mostly black by the way.

The letter V for Vounteer was a very good one to pick.

magiceye said...

superb takes on the theme!
you indeed are doing a splendid job volunteering!

mrsnesbitt said...

What a fascinating, worthwhile way to volunteer Chris!
We will be heading over to Flamborough soon, apparantly rumour has it that the 60's cafe is open again in Bridlington so we must go and check it out!

Thanks for your contribution, as ever so interesting!

ABC Team

jingle said...

that's touching and loving v post.

Mara said...

That sounds like a fantastic volunteer job. I have four cats myself and one of them loves being near but will only sit on my lap if I have a towel on it. Which I don't usually have.

I hope you will be able to continue volunteering.

Autumn Leaves said...

Chris, you are amazing. I know that I couldn't volunteer at an animal shelter. I would be bereft at the end of each and every day.

Anonymous said...

I have asthma and emphysema and COPD and still hug this black panther of cat we got when the youngest daughter moved back home.

If I could i would adopt the dog on the bottom as it looks like our old Cuddles who lived with us 23 human years. That made her the oldest dog our vet hospital ever had as a patient. She was a saint with four feet.

Roger Owen Green said...

What a good soul you are!

BTW, I'm glad you actually CHECKED the posted thing on McKlinky; everyone should do that!

ROG, ABC Wednesday team

kaybee said...

You are an awesome volunteer, Chris! You KNOW I couldn't help out at the kennels, but check out this little fellow:


(no, it's not a bird)

If he was there,I just might be persuaded to volunteer once in a while!

Carol said...

I have often thought about volunteering at the animal shelter, but I'm far too much of a softie. My home would soon become a shelter, and my husband would start getting short on patience.
The two dogs in your photos look like our Bailey and Shasta. Both came from our local shelter, Bailey at 8 weeks (black lab/border collie mix) and Shasta at one year (yellow lab).
Your volunteering fills great needs - more power to you!

Gayle said...

Oh, I so hope you can find happy homes for all those dogs and cats. I'd find it hard to leave each day without tucking one under my arm to take home! What a great place to volunteer.

Cheryl said...

Awesome to choice to share your volunteer experiences today. I'm praying this is a no-kill shelter. If it's not, please don't tell me. I already want one of those dogs.