“Join us as a volunteer” – *click* – and that’s how Stasha started out as a volunteer with SOSD.
Then, Stasha badly wanted to have a dog of her own, but her parents thought otherwise. Stasha, then a fresh graduate from a polytechnic, decided to volunteer to walk dogs at SOSD. It was the only way for her to be able to spend more time with dogs.
When Stasha first stepped into SOSD’s small kennel at Ericsson Pet Farm in 2012, she was greeted by about 10 dogs. Each one was unique and special in their own ways, Stasha fell in love with the dogs in the shelter. One dog, Guinness, stood out among the others. Stasha found herself growing very attached to Guinness.
“Among the many things that Guiness taught me in our time together was being able to maintain calm in the midst of chaos and to have compassion for other beings. These were some principles which I grew to adopt and continue to carry with me till this day.”
Stasha stopped volunteering for awhile due to school and work commitments. But with her passion to help Singapore’s homeless dogs, Stasha is back volunteering, taking on even bigger roles – Stasha is the volunteer in charge for SOSD’s Healing Paws programme (http://sosd.org.sg/community-outreach/healing-paws/), and also SOSD’s honorary secretary!
“Working with Healing Paws is an entirely refreshing experience. I love how our programme brings SOSD to people who would otherwise have nothing to do with an Animal Welfare organisation; I am proud of how we are making ripples in the wider society and bringing the cause of Animal Welfare to greater heights.”
Juggling volunteering work and studies is no easy feat for Stasha but she found it helpful to bear in mind a little nugget of wisdom to keep herself on track:
“Nothing in life is guaranteed, but when we put more energy, time and heart into our pursuing what we believe in, we will thrive better.”
Soon, Stasha’s family began to acknowledge her love for dogs and they recently allowed her to adopt a Papillon named Bao Bei.
“I see him as my little brother. He is my shadow, never more than three metres away from me at home. Though it took a while, he finally grew on me and I have learned to love his quirks. I firmly believe that a dog is your best teacher.”
Volunteering with SOSD was an immensely rewarding journey for Stasha.
“In my time with SOSD, I’ve come to learn more about myself, and developed strong relationships with my fellow volunteers and shelter dogs.”
Do you have what it takes to be a volunteer?
Join us at http://sosd.org.sg/join-us-as-volunteers/