Around Our Towns: Volunteering
by Eileen Teufel
I have always done volunteer work, usually at a local hospital where I lived. One time, I even volunteered when the Ramses the Great exhibit came to Dallas when I was living there. I did “crowd control” in a long hallway while people waited to get into the exhibit. I got to tell people they couldn’t take pictures and they had to get rid of their gum. We did have a few people still try to take a picture, but I can report that we did not find one wad of gum on any of Egypt’s greatest artifacts. We are lucky Around Our Towns to have great volunteer opportunities. The Stanwood-Camano Food Bank can always use help. Meals on Wheels. Church groups. Beach Watchers. The Stanwood and Camano Chambers of Commerce. And, of course, CASA and NOAH. You can guess my favorite is NOAH. Where else can you play with dogs and cats, puppies and kittens and get to pick up poop and clean out little boxes. All in a good days work! If you have some spare time and would like to volunteer, consider NOAH. You will not regret it. Some of the jobs are hard work. The whole building is scrubbed out daily, litter boxes are cleaned and sanitizer as they are used, poop is picked up almost immediately, and laundry is piled high. But you will be part of a wonderful experience. Whenever one of our animals is adopted, we have a mini celebration. The new parents are congratulated on their new family member and we thank them for adopting. Not just words, we really are grateful each time an animal goes to its “forever home”. And as a volunteer, you would play an important part in each adoption. Whether it is maintaining a clean, order free environment for the dogs and cats, making it more inviting for potential adopters, taking the dogs for walks to get them used to walking on a leash, or petting a scared cat recently arrived from a shelter. All that helps in the adoption process. Like our adoptions, becoming a volunteer is pretty easy — attend a volunteer orientation, take a tour, have an interview with our Volunteer Coordinator and you’re ready to start. You will be given training on working with the dogs and cats and how to properly clean and sanitize the rooms, littler boxes, dishes, toys (if it moves, doesn’t meow or bark, we sanitize it). And don’t be afraid that you will get sad and upset about the animals. The average stay for an animal at NOAH is about 8 days. Eight days to their forever homes. Not bad. And while they are there you, and the other volunteers, will make it a good experience for them. Call — 360/629-7055 — and register for an Orientation. Call on Tuesday or Saturday afternoons and I will answer the phone and help you with any questions you may have. And if you’ve never been to NOAH, stop by. I guarantee you will like what you see.