"I found ME again at AATPC..." An interview with Elizabeth
What initially drew you to AATPC? I knew I wanted to volunteer, and specifically with animals. This opportunity showed up in Nextdoor right when I was starting to look.
What do you do at AATPC? I've been volunteering for 4 years now. I've worked with all the animals and done deep cleaning for several. First the rats, the guinea pigs. But now I'm primarily the deep cleaner for the goats and alpacas area. Besides that I also made the guinea pig room fleece bedding and fleece decorations.
How long have you been volunteering? 4 years
What is your favorite story from AATPC? OR What is your biggest takeaway from AATPC? For me, I started volunteering at a time when I had experienced great loss. Loss of self, loss of independence, and my health was struggling. When I finally had gotten the courage to get back into the world, volunteering was how I was going to do that. I had been suffering from seizures that were stress induced. And although I had done a lot of work to reduce how many I was having and my triggers, they were still a constant in my life. It was sort of crazy what happened since I started volunteering. I found ME again at AATPC. I found peace. I found my worth again. Helping the animals and being a part of this amazing place filled me in ways I had never saw coming. I actually stopped having seizures since volunteering. I know this was from the healing happening while I spent time doing my work and visiting with the animals. There are days where I feel overwhelmed, even days I think I might stop volunteering. But then i get to AATPC, and I'm completely filled up again, I'm light and easy, and I know this is my constant. I'll never be more thankful for all volunteering here has given me back. For all each and every animal here has given me. My heart is always full. This place is special, healing and this place is love.
What do you do when you're not volunteering? What are your job(s) and/or hobby(ies)? I work at Angels With Paws Cat rescue. I have fosters and 4 foster fails. I spend time with my two dogs and 4 kitte ns (plus one foster). I also have lots of siblings, nieces and nephews, I enjoy spending time with them all. We love going out to eat and just catching up.
What would you say to others who are interested in working with AATPC? I always recommend AATPC to friends and family. I tell them it's a wonderful place for healing, you can work with an animal (or not) during therapy. And the therapists and staff are just fabulous and caring.