My Volunteer Experience with Toronto Humane Society
I have spent my whole life surrounded by cats and dogs- caring for them and loving them. I was an animal lover way before it became the norm as fostered by social media platforms like Instagram and Twitter where cuddly fur-babies have their own pages, gaining followers like celebrities and influencers.
Thus, when I stumbled upon the Toronto Humane Society’s website and saw that they were looking for volunteers for an upcoming Mega-Adoption Event, which was slated for three days (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday), I jumped at the chance, submitting my application on the same day. Apart from the fact that I adore animals, ultimately, I strongly believe in promoting awareness for the humane treatment of animals and giving pets the love and care they deserve; this was a good opportunity to volunteer for an organization that’s dedicated to the cause.
A few weeks later, I received an email about the training for the various volunteer positions for the event, including greeters, checkout admin, retail, and dog loading. I was assigned to the checkout admin duties for Saturday and Sunday, which meant I was one of those who would verify the adoption documents and ensure everything is in place—the required forms are all complete and filled out properly, the adoption fee was duly paid, and others. I could not be more excited.
In the streetcar on my way to the event, I overheard a couple talking about adopting a pet, and they were set on getting a dog. I had no idea how huge the event was going to be (although the Mega in the title should have tipped me off), so when I stepped into the Queen Elizabeth Building, I am sure my jaw dropped open. The volunteer coordinator welcomed me and I then proceeded to the checkout admin desk, wore my volunteer shirt, exchanged pleasantries with fellow volunteers, and went right to work. The first few minutes were not busy, and the idle time allowed us volunteers to exchange stories about our own pets.
The chitchat was temporary though, as soon enough, there were hordes of people who could not wait to get home and spend time with their newly adopted adorable canines and felines. As they were headed out, I got to pet some the furry creatures before they go to their furever home. Some had interesting names like Galaxy, Luna, Fawzi, Panther, Monterey, and Chaplin. It was so heartwarming to see so many dogs and cats get adopted. When my shift was done and I had to leave, there were still a considerable number of cats waiting for their future pet parents, but I was hopeful they would find homes by the end of Sunday, and I couldn’t wait to help out again.
By Saturday evening, I got a Thank You email from the Toronto Humane Society from the volunteer coordinators, who shared with us that the Mega Adoption Event was a huge success, and in a big way. It turned out that all of the 600 furry creatures up for adoption found loving homes to call their own. What was supposed to be a three-day event was cut down into two days because they ran out of animals up for adoption! It was heartwarming news indeed, and I feel proud that I got to help out in my own little way.