“The heart of a volunteer is not measured in size, but by the depth of the commitment to make a difference in the lives of others.” – DeAnn Hollis
Volunteering is a way to give back to the community and gives you an ability to help out others who are less fortunate or need help. When my teacher first presented us with the innovation project, where we got to make an impact in our community or in our own lives through a project of our choice, I knew I wanted to volunteer and help in a topic that mattered a lot to me. My partner and best friend, Jasmine, and I came up with a bunch of ideas that we could have done for the project like going to the middle schools and talking to them about high school, making a children’s book, reading to the children at elementary schools, and volunteering with animal shelters. We decided to help out either the Community Animal Network, which raises money for food, medicine, and shelter for cats and dogs waiting for adoption, or Bunny Bunch, which is a non-profit organization that takes care of bunnies, chinchillas, and guinea pigs. We finally agreed to help out Bunny Bunch.
On the first day of volunteering, Saturday (5/16), we turned in our application from to Jennifer and started helping out in the back with the bunnies. We swept out the poop and grass in their cages, making sure that none of them escaped in the progress. We also replaced their waters and wiped down their bowls. When we were done with the dirty work, we got to sit outside in a pen and play with two bunnies named Penguin and Polar Bear. They were both so cute and energetic, but Penguin was a little feisty.
The next week, Saturday (5/23), we volunteered again at Bunny Bunch. We swept the cages again, replaced the water in the bunnies’ bowls and the bottles for the guinea pigs and chinchillas. We also cleaned the food pellet bowls with vinegar and played with the bunny, Lucy. That was the day that Bunny Bunch was holding a bake sale, and I donated a dollar to the cause.
The next week, Saturday (5/30), I was busy, so I did not volunteer, but Jasmine went that weekend, and she got to meet the chinchilla, Roo, that we are sponsoring right now.
From June 1st to June 5th, we collected donations for Bunny Bunch by asking students and teachers from our classes if they would like to donate to the non-profit organization. I made the donation jar by taking an old strawberry jam jar and adding pictures of the animals that we took while volunteering and donation slogans on the jar to add a little bit of décor. We were able to collect a lot of money for the organization and Roo.
– First day (6/2): $19.58, Second day (6/3): $22.20, Third day (6/4): $19.75, and Fourth day (6/5): $19.75
In all we made $86, and we planned to split $43 to Bunny Bunch and give the other half to the chinchilla named Roo that we were sponsoring. My mom also gave me $4 to make it an even $90 that we will be donating to Roo too.
On Saturday (6/6), we volunteered again. This time I swept out the cages as Jasmine cleaned out their litter boxes. Afterwards we replaced all their waters in the bowls and in the bottles. I had to leave after that task, but Jasmine got to have some social time with Roo. It was very fun to volunteer for the third time!
During this experience, we made a twitter account (@BunnyBunchFV) to share all about the organization, our achievements, and information about some of the animals. We also shared information on our social media accounts like Twitter and Facebook. We also made a wordpress account for Bunny Bunch (https://bunnybunchfvca.wordpress.com/) with an about page and a bunch of posts about Bunny Bunch and its animals awaiting adoption.
It has been a fun journey from planting our seed (our idea) into the idea Farm (#ideaFM) and cultivating our seed into a sapling. And giving the sapling love, compassion, dedication, and our own time to watch it grow into an amazingly huge crop. Through this entire process, I learned so much about this organization and life in general. I learned how to take care of those animals like how to clean their cages and all the other dirty work that we help with. I also learned how to work on my own as an independent person and try new things. Not to mention, I learn to help others and use my time wisely in dedicating it to a cause I believe in. It is such a good cause to help find homes for bunnies, guinea pigs, and chinchillas, who have been mistreated or need to find a new home since their owner moved away. I am proud to be helping them achieve their goal with Jasmine. Even though project might end here, I will continue with Jasmine to volunteer for Bunny Bunch throughout the entire summer.