October 3, 2012
My husband and I have raised three guide dog puppies for Southeastern Guide Dogs and are currently raising our fourth (http://mcleanpup.blogspot.com/), Coach. Southeastern has always been a great organization, but I think that in the last couple of years they have really upped their game. They have made amazing strides in communications with volunteers, with volunteer publications and videos, and with the puppy raising program. They have really improved the training program for their area coordinators so that flows down to the puppy raisers. Area coordinators now have two different training weekends that they go to in order to become ACs. They have also instituted a puppy raiser weekend. I missed it, but would love for them to have another. It was where they explained a lot of what was going on at Southeastern and helped you to be a better puppy raiser. I'm hoping they have it again. They have made it easier and more fun to be a puppy raiser for Southeastern. And with the amazing marketing campaign that they have going on, you are always proud to be walking with your dog in his/her blue coat out in public spreading the word about Southeastern and the good work they are doing. For example, they have updated the volunteer manual, they have created specific training videos for learning difficult commands, they have created a trainer run facebook group just for puppy raiser where we can post questions and get immediate (or nearly so) feedback on what is going on with our puppy, they created an IFT (in for training) day that made taking your puppy back into a celebration instead of a traumatic event. It was so lovely. My contructive criticism is that I wish they were a little more cognizant of working volunteers. Sometimes things are only done Mon-Fri 8-5 and most puppy raisers work and don't have the freedom to take off. Having a late day or a weekend day option would be awesome.
Would you volunteer for this group again?
For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?
Did the organization use your time wisely?
Would you recommend this group to a friend?
When was your last experience with this nonprofit?