Austin Pets Alive! | APA!’s New Pet Friends Program Is Creating the Subsequent…

Mar 30, 2023

Austin Pets Alive! has lengthy been recognized for innovating, collaborating, and sharing our information of how you can save animals’ lives.

However animal welfare can also be about people—the people who love and personal pets, and the people who work in animal shelters. That’s why we’re so thrilled to introduce Pet Friends, our model new program for at-risk and susceptible working-age youth to take part in an 8-week paid internship!

The interns, who’re between 16 and 21 years previous, are studying the ins and outs of shelter administration, and gaining the required abilities and expertise to work in animal sheltering—together with at Austin Pets Alive!.

9 interns type our inaugural class. Beginning on February 4, each Saturday they’re assembly at APA!’s City Lake Animal Heart campus for 4 hours to discover the world of animal welfare and study necessary skilled abilities.

Every session features a lesson and/or coaching, group dialogue and exercise, one-on-one mentoring, lunch and refreshments, and strolling and enjoying with animals.

This system additionally entails resume constructing, mock interviews, and “increase all these interview abilities that an adolescent in all probability often would not have entry to earlier than they begin in search of a job,” says Alexis Telfair-Garcia, APA!’s Social Work Program Improvement Supervisor—and one of many nation’s very first social employees on employees at an animal shelter.

“Pet Friends offers us and our group an urgently-needed alternative to shut the hole between human and animal companies, and develop the subsequent era of animal welfare leaders,” Alexis says. “We hope, and count on, that this progress received’t cease in Austin, both—however that animal shelters in different communities will begin Pet Friends applications of their very own.”

Social work college students from the College of Texas and St. Edward’s College function mentors for the Pet Friends interns, together with Austin Pets Alive! volunteers.

Dr. Ellen Jefferson, President and CEO of Austin Pets Alive!, says her pleasure for Pet Friends is partly attributable to partaking the interns within the pressing work of saving the lives of cats and canine—and it’s additionally about serving to these younger animal lovers notice their goals.

“One intern instructed us she’s planning to main in animal science to turn into a veterinarian, and believes this program can assist her get there. One other stated they had been moved to take part by the loss of life of a beloved canine, and wanting to save lots of the lives of different animals on this pet’s honor,” she says.

“Pet Friends will open doorways and new paths for our interns, and alter the lives of the cats and canine who they contact with their work. We’re so proud to be a part of the Pet Friends individuals’ journey to do nice issues for individuals and pets.”

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