Youth Forward Scholarship Winter 2016 – When I Volunteered

Name: Alyssa Palmer
From: De Pere, Wi
Grade: 12th
School: Bridges Virtual Academy
Votes: 0

Forward Scholarship

For the last two years, I have volunteered at Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary. I committed to two days a week for 3 hours to work at the
Critter Counter. The Critter Counter is where you present domesticated or injured animals to the public. I chose this position
because I love animals and being part of a sanctuary where animals can be rehabilitated to go back out to the wild encouraged me. When I presented these animals, I knew I was giving awareness to the community.

Though I didn’t help with animals that were injured, I saw them in pain when they came in the door. The biggest challenge that I faced when working there was hearing about an animal that passed away. My first year at the sanctuary we had an opossum named Blizzard. Blizzard was found in a snowbank severely frostbitten. He lost most of his toes and hair. When I presented him to the public I had to be careful because occasionally his toes would bleed. A year later I had heard he had passed away. It was so sad when I heard this. When we had kids come and ask to see blizzard we had to tell them the news and you could see their countenance completely changed. Even though he died and others died also, there was still a peace about helping the animals.

We had many animals come through our door and many were returned to the wild. When I presented animals to the public that were injured, I was able to tell the people about their situation and share what they can do to help animals that are in the same situation.

It was so satisfying telling the public about animals that are injured and share facts about those animals. I learned so many facts about
animals that I now have a larger knowledge of animals. One fact that I didn’t know is that a woodchuck is the same thing as a groundhog. It is just two different names. Learning what I can do for animals that are injured gives me peace so I can help them.

Forward thinking means to think of your future. Forward thinking can be used with these animals. If animals go extinct, what will happen to the human race? We need to bring awareness to animals that are going extinct. I hope what I have done at the wildlife sanctuary changes people’s perspective on animals and that they help the sanctuary. I believe what I have done has planted ideas in kids at an early age that they will volunteer and bring awareness to the public. When I look back in twenty years I believe I will see people donating and people spreading awareness to the community.

I hope the knowledge and the awareness I put in kids and adults while I was volunteering made a difference in many animal’s lives. I will continue to spread awareness and continue to help my community in any way I can.


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