Jenny's Volunteering Story

Posted by Victoria Leedham

Jenny has been volunteering with our charity for nearly 7 years now, and what a difference she has made! After taking retirement Jenny and her husband decided to approach Hearing Dogs, which is only 5 minutes down the road from them, and since then they have not looked back!

After Jenny took on her third Labrador to train, she was asked to also help with the sound-work training in her own home (under the supervision of one of our trainers). Since then, Jenny has moved onto her fourth Labrador, Theo, who has been successfully socialised and sound-work trained, as pictured below.

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Jenny's work, and all our other volunteers, is absolutely essential towards our puppies becoming fully-accredited hearing dogs who will ultimately change the life of a deaf person. However on a more personal level, Jenny's husband is hard of hearing so she understands first-hand the impact it can have and she feels volunteering helps him cope with it. "I train the dogs, but David takes them for regular walks and enjoys their company. David gets to meet people on his walks, especially other dog walkers and engages in conversation with them – something he would not choose to do normally. The dogs help him socially and he is very proud to explain about HD’s when people ask."

"Having a puppy is hard work but such fun, and they are always doing funny things. Theo likes to bring you a present when he meets you, anything handy will do, so I am greeted in bed most mornings with my husbands underpants in his mouth!" Jenny comments. "I do feel part of the HD community and not just someone who does some work for them, and hence have become more involved in other aspects of the charity's work, the fundraising and assisting at talks. It is important to be able to share what you are doing with other volunteers and exchange any funny antics your dog has been up to!  It is such a rewarding experience."

 

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About the author

Victoria Leedham

Hello, I’m Victoria and the Volunteering Manager at Hearing Dogs for Deaf People. We refer to our volunteers as the Hearing Dogs ‘family’ and really mean it; hopefully some of my blog posts here will explain why!

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