Hugh and Lily, the dog.

Hugh lives in Heathfield and volunteers with his dog with Pets as Therapy.  He spoke to Andrew Walker from the Heathfield & District Volunteer Centre.

 Why did you want to volunteer?

“I am now retired but am keen to keep active. It’s also nice to know that you are doing something that helps your community.  I have done several different volunteer roles in the past, such as driving people to hospital and recording the news for blind people.  I then saw an advert for Pets as Therapy and thought my Lily would be ideal for that.  Together we have been to several interviews and I am glad to say she passed with flying colours.

I have the time available to volunteer and enjoy being with my dog Lily, so it’s really nice to combine the two and help others.”

Hugh has a lovely Golden Retriever called Lily. Lily was rescued from Romania and is extremely good with people which makes her an ideal dog to visit people in care homes, hospices, schools and prisons who benefit from the company of a friendly dog.

 How do you feel you have played a part?

“I have only just started with the charity and it’s not as much me, but Lily who has played her part.  I am looking forward to helping different people learn about dogs and seeing them interact with Lily, I am sure Lily will enjoy it, and I know I will!”

 What have you got from volunteering?

“There is always the ‘feel good’ factor of knowing you are doing something that helps others who aren’t as lucky as the rest of us.

Volunteering keeps me busy and I meet all different kinds of people which keeps things interesting.  For me, there is the added benefit of volunteering with my dog as she is great company.”