Monday, January 17, 2011

Celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day: Become an animal volunteer

Cricket was one of my first foster cats

On this Martin Luther King, Jr., remembrance day, we're all being asked to think of ways to volunteer to help others. Dr. King placed service high on his to-do list, and often asked his listeners to give back to their communities in any way they could. Volunteering seems a fitting tribute to a man who gave so much.

If you live in the Portland area, there are many ways you can honor Dr. King with service, and help needy animals at the same time. Here are just a few suggestions:
  • Be a foster parent for an animal in need. This is one of the most powerful ways to help animals. You provide care, feeding and socialization to an animal, who then goes on to live a long and productive life with a loving family. I can speak firsthand of the joys of being a foster parent: I have fostered two kittens thus far. Animal Aid is in serious need of foster homes for both dogs and cats. Pacific Pug Rescue is similarly in need.
  • Volunteer at a shelter. The Oregon Humane Society has a wonderfully structured volunteer program, appropriate for people of all ages.
  • Have an online garage sale through eBay and donate your proceeds to The Pixie Project. This link will show you how.
  • Build a fence for an animal through Fences for Fido. People 18 and up can donate a day to truly make a difference for a chained dog and his/her people.
The short answer is that there are many ways you can donate your time to help animals in need. I hope you'll consider it.