Animal magic for fundraiser Karen

A dedicated volunteer from Crewe has been shortlisted in veterinary charity PDSA’s annual Volunteer Awards for her outstanding commitment.

Karen Pickering is up against two other hopefuls in the coveted ‘Key Volunteer of the Year’ award. She gives up her free time to help at PDSA’s busy store in Delamere Street, which raises vital funds for local sick and injured pets.

Karen, who has been a volunteer with PDSA for over two years, is a ‘Key’ volunteer, which means she has received specialist training to take on more responsibility in the store and she gives up to 40 hours of her time every week.

PDSA store manager, Alexis Chadwick, who nominated Karen for the award, said she was ‘like the glue’ that holds the store together.

She said: “Karen possesses tireless dedication and drive in every task she undertakes and guides and coaches members of the team in areas that she excels.

“She is so passionate about our cause and her passion fires the enthusiasm of those around her. She’s a true star in our galaxy and an amazing ambassador for PDSA.”

Animal lover Karen said she decided to volunteer for PDSA after the loss of her pet dog called Poppy.

“She required extensive veterinary treatment to prolong her life and allow her quality of life in her final months. Had I not have afforded the veterinary care, my devastation at Poppy's death would have been so much worse to bear. I knew I had to do something to enable other pets and their families to spend time together, in sickness and in health.”

Karen has been extremely proactive in her volunteering role for PDSA and has recently organised a fundraising day for the store in the local market square raising over £300.

“The best bit of my role is knowing that I make a difference and being appreciated for making that difference,” she said.

“Whether I am answering emails or the phone, carrying out training or coaching, counting new goods or selling to customers, I know that I am helping sick and injured pets.”

PDSA, which provides free veterinary treatment to the sick and injured pets of people in need, has over 5,300 volunteers helping in its charity stores, PetAidhospitals and fundraising groups across the country.

To join PDSA’s volunteering team and find out more about helping pets in need, contact the National Volunteering Centre on freephone 0800 854 194 or visit www.pdsa.org.uk/volunteering The PDSA Volunteer Awards are now in their eleventh year and are supported by The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) and Pets at Home. The shortlisted volunteers will be judged on their commitment to PDSA and enthusiasm for their roles and the winners will be announced in the New Year.

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