RSPCA offers a comprehensive volunteer program that caters to animals and people alike. It gives animal-lovers an opportunity to participate in the rehabilitation of many creatures, as well as gain some perspective on the current climate of animal welfare in Melbourne. As an advocate for animal welfare, I signed up to become a volunteer at RSPCA Burwood and was put through a comprehensive five day induction period that included various paperwork, interviews, information seminars and tours of the grounds. I was thoroughly impressed by the dedication of the voluntary staff, as well as the exhaustive measures that were taken to ensure they hired only the most dedicated of volunteers.
My stint with RSPCA had me as a dog-walker, and I was pleased to find that the dogs were kept in a sterile, warm and friendly environment. Each dog had the opportunity to be taken outdoors regularly throughout the day by enthusiastic volunteers. Other areas of RSPCA volunteer program include administrative support, veterinary clinic assistance and event participation. You can choose between working the cattery, kennels, barn, rabbits/guinea pigs or the adoption clinic.
Sadly, not all animals have the same fate as those that I had the pleasure of walking. Even in a blessed country like Australia, there are many people who remain indifferent to the welfare of animals, and there cruelty is witnessed in the appalling state of many animals kept at various institutions similar to RSPCA. Scared and malnourished, these animals live a life of fear and pain, and tragically, they are rarely rehabilitated and placed into loving families as we would all like to hope. We may be pacified by thoughts that there is always somebody to save these poor animals, but we are mistaken. They are seized and caged and eventually terminated. Their lives are devoid of happiness and their bodies are robbed of sustenance: all because a negligent owner was unfit and unworthy to own an animal.
So I urge you to research the RSPCA; look at their website, their causes, their grounds and their animals; because they are a genuine organisation that is doing its utmost to provide an area of refuge and happiness to animals that are not as fortunate as our own pets. The volunteer program inspires and instils happiness, as well as educates and informs; improving our knowledge on animal handling skills and urging us to face the stark reality head-on.
If you want to exercise, socialise, care for animals or just do a bit of good for the state, then I would recommend signing up with RSPCA and jumping aboard their fantastic cause!
Thanks for the article! I've been thinking of volunteering there and it was good to get the perspective of someone who has done it :)
By shrad - reader Saturday, 22nd of October @ 01:17 pm
I had been applying volunteer oppositions in several animal shelters, an all have rejected my application (including RSPCA) because I had spent few years in jail. claiming to be an organization of caring and loving people but they all have given me a front and centre seat of social discrimination.
By Anonymous Saturday, 4th of February @ 09:01 am
Thanks Natalie for writing about animals and how people can help. xx
By joan. - reader Wednesday, 29th of July @ 11:33 pm