Please Consider Volunteering
By Phil Snyder, Executive Director Suncoast Humane Society
We are at the end of what us year rounders call “Season.” What this means to Suncoast Humane Society is that many of our regular volunteers will be leaving us for the summer. Humane Societies in SW Florida find themselves in a unique but not welcomed situation. As the number of volunteers decrease (almost 50%), the number of homeless animals coming into our shelters increase (again almost 50%). “In Season” means something entirely different to dogs and cats, especially in the spring and summer.
If you would like to help homeless animals find permanent loving homes, now is the time. If you want to help enrich the lives of the many animals waiting to be adopted, Suncoast Humane Society would welcome your enthusiasm. Jackie Elliott, Volunteer Services Manager says, “You will find volunteering both fun and rewarding. It is exciting to be volunteering along-side people with the same passion as yours. We realize that you can volunteer elsewhere with many wonderful and important non-profit organizations, however, if you are an animal lover, and want to help us reduce the number of homeless animals, and improve the quality of life, we may be the fix you need.”
There are many varied and rewarding volunteer opportunities available, such as dog walking, cat cuddling, foster parenting, customer service, laundry specialist, and clerical/office support. Volunteers also help with fundraising projects and events, including our three thrift stores. The pet therapy program welcomes those who meet the qualifications with appropriately trained pets.
Dog Walking and Cat Cuddling help to keep the shelter animals socialized and exercised while they await that special home. These positions give the volunteer hands-on experience with the animals. Our Foster Home Program also allows direct contact with the animals. These volunteers provide special, at-home care, for sick, injured and under-aged animals, helping to restore their health and well-being while preparing them for adoption.
If you would like to help welcome some of the 15,000 annual visitors to Suncoast Humane Society’s Adoption Center and Preventive Health Care Clinic, the Customer Service or Visitor Assistant position may be just the thing. Imagine the thrill of knowing you have helped play match-maker by introducing someone to their next life-long four legged companion.
If you are a creative type and a good sales person, you may be well suited to volunteer at one of our three thrift stores located in Englewood, Port Charlotte and Venice. These stores provide desperately needed funding for the care of our animals through the sales of gently used household and other items, donated by the public. Volunteers help price, display and sell the donated merchandise. Other fundraising activities needing volunteer help include distribution of flyers and newsletters, monitoring critter banks placed in businesses, and/or helping with the planning, marketing, and success of major fundraising events.
Individuals interested in volunteering complete a volunteer orientation followed by training for the assigned position. Again, it is very rewarding to know you are helping homeless animals by becoming a volunteer. If you are interested in learning more about volunteering for Suncoast Humane Society, please contact Jacqueline Elliott at 941-474-7884 or firstname.lastname@example.org, and join the excitement.