Its National Volunteer Appreciation Week (April 10-16) and in recognition of our amazing volunteers I have been doing Volunteer Features throughout the week. Many of the animals have traveled long distances to come to saints. And many of our volunteers also travel from outside of Mission to come help and care for them. These volunteers help take the message of SAINTS--that senior and special needs animals have value--back to their own communities.
Zoe sees the world thru different eyes than the rest of us at SAINTS...we are down home, small town folks and Zoe is from the Big City. She brings something special to us, the artistic and polished view of the urban world and somehow she manages to connect the two so that SAINTS can travel in bigger and wider circles. The really funny thing is Zoe can come out here, looking classy and beautiful in her big city scarves wrapped with such sophistication around her neck and shoulders and grab a wheelbarrow and a pitch fork and head out into the field to shovel manure for a few hours. Then she heads inside to goof with the animals while shifting thru load after load of stinky laundry, folding it and putting it away for use on the next busy incontinent day. Zoe works to ensure that SAINTS is not limted by barriers, accepted norms and geographical location (like being stuck way out in the boondocks!) She has represented us on the nightly news (and did a GREAT job!) been our spokesperson in several newspaper articles and has promoted us and fundraised for us while presenting us through various musical , theatre and art venues.-And Zoe is totally and completely in love with Percy...the City Girl has a deep and secret love for our very special Cow-boy!
Zoe and Jack
Zoe and the mountain of laundy
I started volunteering at SAINTS three Christmases ago. My mum saw the article about SAINTS that was featured in The Province Christmas series, and I was out there the next week.
When I had a vehicle, I was able to do more on-site volunteering, so I see my position as unique in trying to think of other ways to do SAINTS outreach within the city. That is where I see the fundraisers/concerts/art events functioning efficiently, as something that is reasonable for me to facilitate within the city, and also a means to use other mediums such as music and art to present info about SAINTS and explore the issues within it.
My memorable animal stories will always go back to Codi, how could they not. She was such a unique dog, and I always said if I could meet the former "mother" who left her behind, I would have a few strong worded things to say to her. Codi, to me, was an example of (one of the reasons) why SAINTS exists. She was, essentially, abandoned because of some minor health issues that someone didn't want to deal with. In spite of that, she was "lucky" enough to end up at SAINTS, which is where I met her. When Codi came home, she not only became a completely different dog, but she ended up living for over a year, when we thought she would last a few months. She got an extra year of life- a ridiculous, indulgent, year of life.
When someone else decides they can't extend any more compassion or love, SAINTS takes over- and doles it out two-fold.
Zoe and her beloved Codi
That Province Christmas article was one of the best things to happen to SAINTS giving wide exposure, bringing in many donations and most of all bringing Zoe to us. Zoe you are such a creative and talented individual, your art and your event planning has and continues to help present SAINTS to a larger audience across multi medias. For bringing the saints to the Big City and for bring the Big City to SAINTS we thank you.
Zoe in The Province
In case you missed them check out the preceding Volunteer Features:
Volunteer Feature 7: Kathy O (KO)
For information about volunteering please see http://www.saintsrescue.ca/helping/volunteer.htm