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Review for Asheville Humane Society, Asheville, NC, USA

Rating: 5 stars   Featured Review

I've volunteered and fostered animals with many other animal rescues, both locally and in other states, and Asheville Humane is the only one that gets it right the first time. Volunteers and fosters receive comprehensive training up front, as well as ongoing support and access to resources. Regular classes enable volunteers to gain a variety of experiences. Volunteers are noticed and appreciated by the staff. AHS is a fun place to spend time, whether it's walking dogs, doing laundry, washing dishes, or working with potential adopters to find the right match for them.
As a donor, I know that my gifts are used for the benefit of the animals, not for excessive salaries. Donors are kept apprised of what their gifts are accomplishing, and are invited to gatherings where we connect with other like-minded people. AHS goes to extraordinary lengths to heal and treat animals brought in. Sometimes it takes months for healing, but the staff doesn't give up. One small example of how the animals' needs are put first is mandatory nap time. From 1-2 pm daily, the animal areas are locked and the lights dimmed. No member of the public, no employee, and no volunteer may enter while the animals have their downtime.
One of my fosters at AHS was a mother cat and her four kittens, all with upper respiratory infections. All except one kitten recovered and were returned to the adoption center for adoption. A herpes virus had taken hold of this last kitten and he was losing his eyesight. The medical staff at AHS provided me with the oral medications and eye ointments to treat him, but still he didn't recover. Ultimately this kitten required two eye surgeries by Dr. Otto Sharpe at Swannanoa Valley Vet to save his eyesight. AHS paid for all these treatments and medications. After four months of caring for this kitten, my family and I adopted Little Joe, shown in the photo. This is but one of hundreds if not thousands of stories of how AHS never gives up until the animal is healed.
Through its Community Solutions Program, AHS strives to help people keep their companion animals in their homes. This involves providing dog and cat food to 17 food pantries throughout Buncombe County on a weekly basis (about 5,000 lbs. of food per month); free or low-cost vaccine and vet clinics; spay/neuter vouchers; and community outreach tables in low-resource neighborhoods. There is a dedicated Helpline for the public to call for assistance with any concern regarding their animals, and the staff person speaks Spanish.
I am so proud to be part of an organization that is literally a safety net for our community.

Role:  Volunteer