Illustration by Brendan O'Connor
Describe in one word: Warm-and-fuzzy
The best part: Helping animals find permanent homes
Info: Orange County Animal Services, 2769 Conroy Road; 407-836-0311; ocnetpets.com, email@example.com; next orientation is Sunday, Oct. 5
It lasted: Minimum of two hours' volunteering at a time
People often say they don’t volunteer at animal shelters because they “just can’t.” It’s too sad to see the dogs and cats in cages and to know that many of them will never be adopted at all. That’s the sad reality of an open-admission animal shelter – but even sadder is the thought that, without volunteers to walk the dogs, socialize the kittens and help potential adopters connect with the pets of their dreams, even more animals are going to be put to sleep at the end of each day. Which is why I started volunteering at Orange County Animal Services this summer. Once volunteers have completed orientation and training, they become an integral part of the adoption process – they answer questions for the public, take animals out of their cages to introduce them to people and staff booths at adoption events. Most of all, they give the animals a chance to (hopefully) make a love connection and get homes. Yes, it can be sad. It can also be hard, sweaty work. But every time you send a family up to the front desk to fill out the adoption paperwork for a dog or a cat that you just helped them get to know, it all becomes worth it. Orange County Animal Services is in desperate need of volunteers right now, during the week and on weekends. Email Crystal Kincaid at firstname.lastname@example.org to get involved.