October 20, 2012
I work as a "volunteer" in the course of my employment as a clinical Rehabiliation Service Provider for children with emotional and learning disabilities. In this capacity, I have worked with children in this wonderfully therapeutic setting known as Black Pine Professional Animal Retirement Center. The children learn to care for the animals by preparing their diets, provide enrichment activities for the animals, and learn to understand commitment, responsibility, and to better identify their own feelings. Feelings? Yes, feelings! Simply misting the tropical birds on a warm summer's day, helps a child understand what doing something nice for someone means. That's right - a happily chirping Macaw helps a child learn this important fact of life. In this same way, the Cockatoo that moves away from the gentle spray of water is saying "I don't like this." Again, the child learns. I have a child client who created her own Black Pine scrap book. This simple scrapbook is now a part of her toolbox of coping skills; she keeps it with her at all times and this helps her deal with crippling anxiety. When she is at the Park, she blossoms and this carries over into her life outside as well. Another child (in foster care) was blessed with a person visit to the wolves; simply calling to Nanook and having Nanook respond to him is a memory he is so proud of - something he can call his own. There is no better therapy.
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?