From Anne Oliver, Director of Volunteer Services: “I first met Jenny and her coach from ICS when they came to Marin Humane inquiring about volunteer opportunities. I was immediately won over by Jenny’s charming spirit and “can-do” attitude. Here is a personal account from Jenny of her volunteer experience with us.”

How Volunteering at Marin Humane Changed My Life and My Love for Pets

By Jenny Fung

All right, so I love pets so much. First, I have a cat named Sandy, who was 9 years old, and she loves me a lot. I am her cat mom, and I have responsibility to take care of her by feeding her and brushing her fur. After my volunteering at the In Defense of Animals ended in December 2011, my program, Integrated Community Services, gave me a great volunteering job at Marin Humane in March 2011. This job had changed my life forever, and it was way better than my previous volunteering job at In Defense of Animals.

It was my first time volunteering at Marin Humane, which is closer to my home, when I first do filing on the desk next to Kyle, an employee of the Humane. First, I wrote the customers’ names from last to first on each paper, and then put them in order alphabetically. If their names are written by any volunteer, I have to just put it in the pile. If a first name is missing when the last name appeared on the paper, I have to write it down and put it in order in the filing cabinet. My filing is a part of the office work, so I cannot deny or ignore it. After filing, I begin shredding. I always ask Catherine and Ruthie, two of the employees of the Humane, if I have to shred the papers they thrown in their boxes. I always carry one or two boxes to the recycling room and throw them into the shredding machine. Finally, I bring them back to Catherine and Ruthie. I really enjoy working with them both, because they have great personalities.

The rabbits in the shelter are adorable, and they are very special to me. After the shredding, I went to the bunny shelter and pet the rabbits. In the earlier time, I first pet the rabbits’ head with the back of my hand once, and then pet them with the palm of my hand. However, I changed my strategy when Marianne, my job coach from ICS, convinced me to have the rabbits smell my fingers and then pet them because the back of my hand caused them to get scared by darkness. What makes them happy is that they enjoy smelling my fingers. When some of the bunnies are afraid of being petted by me, they ran away to the corners of their cages. Moreover, they feel so relieved from the darkness, so I give them a bright light. I love singing when I pet the bunnies. Therefore, my singing voice helps them to relieve their loneliness. I have been very determined that the families have to adopt the bunnies, so they will have their homes and feel loved by the families.

Besides rabbits, the dogs and cats are so adorable. In one example, before starting my volunteering work, I looked at the kittens who play around in the shelter box. I said hi to them, and they seemed to like me. I wish I would adopt one of them, in case that Sandy would love to have a kitty friend. I look at the cats, and then dogs after the rabbits, and I always think that I would love to adopt them. Hopefully, there would be puppies in the shelter, and I would love to adopt one of them.

I always take pictures of the rabbits, dogs, and cats as well as kittens and post them on Instagram and Google Maps. I love taking pictures of the rabbits and some animals, such as the doves, and I sometimes post them on Instagram by tagging Marin Humane and even Google Maps. The fun thing is that I took Boomerang stories of some kittens on Instagram when they are playing around. For example, I took one of the kittens playing in different places and the other story of the kitty scratching repeatedly back and forth. I always carry my phone with me, so I can take pictures or videos of the animals.

Because everyone in the Marin Humane, including Anne, Candace, Kyle, and my fellow
volunteers, are so friendly, I really enjoy volunteering there. I am very thankful that I receive so much love and happiness from them. If I retire from working in my mid-60s, I would volunteer at Marin Humane for the rest of my life. Marin Humane, thank you so much for having me volunteering at the program. I really appreciate your kindness.