Puppy Love

I did not know what to expect on my first day as a dog handler volunteer at an adoption event for Lucky Dog Animal Shelter, but my overall experience was uplifting. I pictured myself walking and playing with the dogs all day, but I found that the reality was much different as soon as I was given my dog, Mayzie. From the moment Mayzie arrived at the adoption event, she was full of excitement, curiosity, and love. Her tail never stopped wagging a million miles per second and she always had a slobbery smile on her face. Mayzie is a black Labrador Terrier who is looking for a furever home. She is about two years old, weighs 50 pounds, and loves to play outside. I never learned how Mayzie ended up in a scary animal shelter, but I cannot imagine anyone wanting to give her away. As a dog handler, my responsibility was to keep Mayzie calm and to answer any questions potential adopters may have about Mayzie.

The day was very challenging for me because Mayzie would not stop barking and charging other dogs for the first hour of the event. She was very hard to control and I had to keep her away from the other dogs. I was nervous that I would spend the entire event separated from everyone else. Although Mayzie’s intentions were good, the other dogs took her eagerness to make friends the wrong way. This usually resulted in both dogs loudly barking while growling and snarling through their teeth. I realized that not all dogs were going to be happy and full of life like Mayzie. Most of these dogs have deep-rooted emotional hardships due to their past experiences.

My favorite dog I met during the adoption event was named Dante. He is very special because he has an extraordinary story and an amazing spirit. Dante is a two-year-old Belgian Malinois Mix who weighs about 40 pounds. He was living on the streets in Puerto Rico when he was hit by a car. Luckily, the volunteers there found Dante and took him to a hospital where he was treated. Unfortunately, a bacterial infection grew in the bone and his leg had to get amputated. I was speaking to his foster mom at the adoption event, and she told me that Dante is the fastest dog she had ever met and he continues to play and live life like any other dog. Dante needs an active lifestyle and I hope that potential adopters do not overlook him due to his uniqueness.

My best friend, Miranda, volunteered with me and the dog she handled for the day was named Jack. Jack is a two year old Border Collie Labrador mix who weighs about 50 pounds. He is the complete opposite of Mayzie. Jack is mellow, cuddly, and was completely calm during the whole adoption event. Jack was a stray who was found on the side of the road. Whoever found Jack brought him to a kill shelter and he was eventually saved by being put in the foster system.

I am so excited to volunteer at future adoption events with Lucky Dog Animal Rescue during my summer here in Washington D.C. There is at least one adoption event every weekend and I hope all of you can volunteer and give these dogs the love and support they deserve!


About the Author: Julia Alspach is an intern with the Daily Do Good. 

7 Kids Who Started Nonprofits

1. One day, 5-year-old Hannah Taylor saw a homeless man eating out of a garbage can in her hometown of Winnipeg, Manitoba. She didn’t know why and wanted to help the man and those like him. She started The Ladybug Foundation to help find shelter, safety and food for the homeless. Hannah, now 18, has raised more than $3 million for Canada’s homeless and has even started another charity, The Ladybug Foundation Education Program, which encourages school children to make a difference.

2. Alex Scott received a neuroblastoma diagnosis at age 4. To fight back, she created Alex’s Lemonade Stand to raise money for children’s cancers. Once a year, she set up a stand in her front yard. Word spread and others started making their own Alex’s Lemonade stands. Shortly before young Alex died at the age of 8, Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation raised $1 million. The foundation is still going  strong today.

3. Craig Kielburger was 12 when he saw the story of boy his age who had been murdered for speaking up about human rights and slavery in Pakistan. From that moment, he knew he needed to help. Craig, along with his older brother and several classmates, decided to speak out against child slavery. They established Free the Children to bring an end to child slavery. After realizing freeing children from slavery was not the only problem, Craig began Adopt a Village, a program that gives the village the tools needed to empower themselves out of poverty.

 

4. Leanne Joyce has a congenital heart problem.  Back in 2010 while waiting for her test results, she was given a gift by two of the hospital volunteers. The joy of receiving the gift made her forget about being in the hospital. Seeing that others care, Leanne wanted to give back to other children in hospitals to help them be happy too so Leanne established Positive Impact for Kids. Since then she has brought joy to hundreds of children. She has goals to make the stays of children and teens in the hospital better by raising money for iPads to keep them socially and educationally engaged.

5. Austin Gutwein created Hoops of Hope after seeing how children whose parents died of AIDS were suffering. On World AIDS Day in 2004 he shot 2,057 free throws to represent the number of children losing their parents to AIDS. Austin raised almost $3,000 for World Vision to help 8 of those children. To date, Hoops of Hope has raised more than $2.5 million to  help children get food, clothing, schooling and more. Parts of the money also goes to help buy mosquito nets, clean water and more to children in Malawi. This year they are working toward their goal of building 15 new dormitories for children as the current ones are overflowing with children that live too far away from the schools.

6. Jonas Corona created Love in the Mirror at age 6 after volunteering to feed the homeless in the LA area. He noticed that there were many children who were in line for food in clothes that did not fit them. All he wanted was to make these children happy and healthy. He started Love in the Mirror to provided families in need with the necessities of life.

 

7. Who run the world? Girls! Shannon McNamara launched Shannon’s After-School Reading Exchange in 2008, when she was 15 years old. While planning a mission trip to Africa, Shannon learned that many girls were not able to access education. Shannon, along with neighbors, friends and family gathered books and supplies to give to the girls of Africa. Since then SHARE has helped build school libraries and created scholarships in Tanzania. Recently they launched a Keep Girls Safe Initiative.

 

 

About the Authors: Ashley Angeline and Sarah Nylen are interns with the Daily Do Good. Sarah, an American University junior, dreams of lazy beach days in her coastal Massachusetts hometown, while striving to be a marketing major for a socially responsible company in DC. A communications student at the University of Cincinnati, Ashley aspires to be a broadcast journalist. And to marry Prince Harry.

 

Starbucks Savior

Late Thursday morning, I found myself fighting both cabin fever and a caffeine craving, so I decided to take a walk down the block to Starbucks. 

I placed my order and when I went to pay, realized I had no money. My wallet was in a different handbag than the one I was carrying. Yeah, I know, #firstworldproblem: "Oh, no, I have too many bags! I can't get my Starbucks!" 

 That moment when this book could be your biography. 

That moment when this book could be your biography. 

Sitting at a table, I proceeded to download the app on to my phone, hoping I'd be able to use that to pay, when the barista placed my coffee and oatmeal next to me. 

"The lady behind you paid," she informed me, gesturing to a young woman. 

When I thanked the kind soul, she just smiled and said, "I know how much it sucks to forget your wallet." 

So, thank you, sweet stranger, for turning a sucky moment into a good one. I promise to do the same for someone else. 


About the Author: Holly Leber is the editorial director of the Daily Do Good. She doesn't own a coffee maker.