It’s a new year, and many of you might have written resolutions for 2017, like lose weight, pay off bills, or get in shape. Here’s a thought for you. How about adding some volunteering to that list? The only thing it costs you is your time, and what it gives back is absolutely priceless.
If you’re parents, what a great gift to give your kids. If they’re old enough, they can volunteer too, and learn a lifetime of lessons. Just an hour a week playing with the cats (we call it socializing), means that we have information to give a prospective adopter, like does it get along with other cats? Is it a lap cat? Playful, or a ‘sit in the sun’ kind of cat?
At The Marshmallow Foundation in Detroit Lakes, our volunteer needs are many. There always seem to be folks that want to work with the dogs, but the cats struggle, as they do in shelters all over the country. There’s the manual labor of cleaning the kennels of course, but there is so much more needed. For example, we need a list of foster parents, who are willing to take a kitty home with them that otherwise won’t survive in a shelter environment. Someone that we can teach to administer fluids if necessary, syringe feed, or just give love and warmth. When we get a cat that has been injured or is obviously sick, we seek out a rescue to take them, and have transported as far as Wisconsin to get them the necessary care. But this time of year, the rescues are as full as we are, and sometimes have to say no.
Maybe you want to help, but are afraid of getting attached, or have an allergy. Another volunteer opportunity that we struggle with is grant writing. We miss out on thousands of dollars simply because we don’t have the time to research the available grants and apply for them.
Maybe you’re a sales person – how about helping us fund raise? We are ALWAYS raising funds. It might be as simple as selling raffle tickets or calendars, or more involved like organizing one of our fundraisers or putting together our annual calendar for 2018.
Are you creative? We’d love to sell t-shirts, but again, who has the time? I took a stab at designing one, using the Bonfire.com service. I KNOW you can do better than I can!
Now see, I just gave you a bunch of great New Year’s resolutions, and none of them cost a cent. If you’re in the Detroit Lakes area, please check out the website for The Marshmallow Foundation, and fill out a volunteer application. Call or Facebook us to set up a time to have a tour of the facility, or talk about volunteer opportunities. We’d love to have you on the team!