More than 200 compassionate young people are part of the Youth Volunteer Program at OHS.
The Youth Volunteer program at the Oregon Humane Society gives young people, ages 12-17, a chance to put their love for animals into action. They provide hands-on care to the animals at OHS – walking dogs, socializing cats, bathing and grooming animals, teaching pets basic manners and cleaning. They work with each other, OHS staff and adult volunteers developing teamwork and leadership skills.
Collin Golden has been a youth volunteer at OHS since 2012. He was inspired to give his time and talents to the animals after attending Summer Camp at OHS. His love for animals and commitment to finding them good homes proved to be a fun and rewarding experience. “I enjoy watching the animals get adopted and watching new youth volunteers as they connect with the animals,” says Collin. He is now a team lead and assists OHS staff with group volunteers. Additionally, he is preparing to train other youth volunteers in the small animal area. This summer Collin will get back to an area where he first started at OHS, as a senior aide at summer camp. So far, he has dedicated 300 hours of service to the Oregon Humane Society.
This inspiring and ambitious young man has his sights set on the future and hopes to be an animal behaviorist. Collin already has a gift for helping pets put their best paw forward. “The most rewarding part is when I am socializing with an animal and a potential adopter walks by to see how great the dog/cat can be,” he says.
Collin has some great advice for others thinking about volunteering. “It may feel uncomfortable at first, but once you spend any time with the animals you will realize how much fun and rewarding it is.”