Young people have pounced on the opportunity to gain some “pawsitively” amazing work experience while working for our furry friends at the HBSPCA this summer. Thirteen enthusiastic participants dove headfirst into the world of animal welfare through the Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) program, which is like a crash course in all things animal-tastic.

CSJ is part of the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy, a federal commitment to help young folks find their footing in the job market while making sure they’re having a blast doing it.

These placements at the HBSPCA not only highlight our organization’s dedication to supporting young talent but also reveal the wild world of job opportunities in the animal welfare sector. It turns out; there’s more to this field than just cuddling with cute critters (although that’s a major bonus).

Amanda, our resident Foster Animal Caregiver Coordinator, was in charge of matchmaking animals with loving homes. Having previously experienced the “all hands on deck” vibe in a non-profit, she had a blast here and learned tons, all while having a “pawsitively” good time.

Ana, joined us as Communications and Engagement Assistant,  She put her digital programming skills to good use and had a “howling” good time doing it. Ana, who’s studying Forensics at the U of T, couldn’t stop gushing about her experience here, where she felt like a part of the pack and not just another “purr-spective” worker.

Levi, our HR Coordinator extraordinaire, undertook the mission of revamping the volunteer database and training modules. Currently on a law journey in the UK, Levi graduated from McMaster in 2022 and found it immensely rewarding to lend a helping paw to the volunteer program. After all, volunteers are the unsung heroes of the HBSPCA, and Levi put on his thinking cap to make the volunteer program purr-fectly efficient.

Jillian, a chemical engineering student at Queen’s, stepped into the shoes of a Fundraising Coordinator. She crafted donor materials, penned heartfelt letters, and dabbled in some research. For Jillian, this was her first introduction to the professional workplace, and she was thrilled to discover the incredible efforts that go into helping our four-legged friends.

Justin, took on the role of Community Cat Coordinator. He did public outreach for the TNVR program and kept tabs on the colony cat caregivers database. Justin reveled in the chance to work with the “purr-snickety” details of TNVR and is dedicated to making it even more effective. It’s safe to say he was an asset to our shelter.

With these talented young individuals advocating for our furry companions, it’s clear that the animal welfare sector has a bright and promising future. As these youngsters “paws” their way into the field, they’re bringing energy, enthusiasm, and a whole lot of fun to the world of animal welfare. 🐾✨