Contributing to animal rescues does not always mean a donation; your time and commitment are priceless to answering our telephone hotline calls. PAWS receives calls from pet owners on our hotline asking questions like where can I find a low-cost spay & neuter clinic, which shelters are no-kill, who do I call to report an abuse?, etc. We need volunteers to pick up these voice mail messages and return the call with an answer. A Helpline Manual is provided, and volunter resources are always available if you need help answering a question.
We ask that you man the Helpline just one day a week. This can be done from your home or from any phone. Calls should be returned within 24 hours and can be done at your convenience. A Helpline Coordinator will find substitutes for you if you cannot take the calls because of illness or vacation.
These messages should be picked up several times a day in case there is an emergency, at which time you would call our Director immediately. We generally check first thing in the morning, again at noon, mid-afternoon, evening and before we go to bed.
Our Helpline Coordinator will meet with you and start your training. A knowledge of dogs and/or cats is desirable, but not necessary. You will be provided with our volunteer information so you can refer the caller to the appropriate person.
Manning our Helpline is an extremely important job. You are the spokesperson for PAWS.
It will be aggravating at times to hear "We've had our dog for 10 years, and I am now allergic so have to get rid ot it" or " My dog ran away and he doesn't have tags". You will have to remain calm and offer whatever help you can.
As we do not take in any home-owned dogs, you will have a list of shelters the caller can try. You can also accept placing a classified ad for them on Petfinder for a $10. donation. We also have detailed information in our manual as to how to find lost animals.
The helpline volunteer will find her day rewarding, sometimes exciting and always interesting.
Public Animal Welfare Society of Ohio a nonprofit humane society serving the animals & people of Greater Cleveland
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