Volunteer of the Month - February 2018 - Rosemary Edginton

Posted by Victoria Leedham

Rosemary is a fabulous volunteer and wonderful advocate of Hearing Dogs for Deaf People, never missing an opportunity to let everybody know how great the Charity is and what a wonderful difference having a hearing dog can make.

Networking comes as second nature to Rosemary and she’s exceptionally proactive in encouraging new volunteers as well as generating ideas and vital funds. Just this month she’s been the driving force behind a double-page feature in her local Sonning Common Magazine, she’s connected us to black-tie dinner opportunities in the past and has a ready laugh and kind heart that makes her instantly likeable and very popular.

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Five years have flown by since we first met Rosemary and husband Dennis. They were introduced to Hearing Dogs through another volunteer and, both have hearing issues, felt immediately empathetic to our work and - as animal lovers - knew that getting involved with one of our dog-care volunteer roles would give them great satisfaction and joy.

Puppy Supply Supervisor, Claire Jones, says: “We were delighted when Rosemary joined our breeding scheme in 2013 and started to look after Teaka, a chocolate brown Poodle mum-to-be. She is so dedicated to Teaka, their relationship blossomed from day one and – five years later on – Teaka has had 3 litters, 15 puppies and hopefully will be expecting again this spring.

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Rosemary always does her very best for Teaka’s pups, ensuring they get individual attention every day, from playtime to grooming and handling, they always benefit from Rosemary’s one-on-one time.

Rosemary’s care and attention is not limited to just the first 8 weeks of the puppies’ lives; she keeps in contact with their puppy training volunteers and supportively follows their progress long after leaving the Edginton household.”

Lynda McGregor explains: “From the moment I phoned Rosemary to say I had collected Jasper, a pup from Teaka’s first litter, I knew this lady was special. Her care and devotion to the pups was obvious from the start.

Dogs Monthly magazine followed Jasper’s story and Rosemary's interest and support was amazing: coming to puppy classes, learning about his training, helping with the articles and looking after 'our boy' when my husband and I took a holiday. Rosemary played a huge part in ‘Team Jasper' and helped to make it great fun.

Through Hearing Dogs and Teaka’s lovely puppies I have made a wonderful friend. We have shared many happy times together, laughed a lot and cried a bit too saying goodbye to dear Jasper when he left for the next stage of his hearing dog journey.

Rosemary invited us and our dog-mad granddaughter Kitty to see Teaka’s last litter. Rosemary being Rosemary knew it was her birthday and bedecked the 'puppy nursery' with balloons, banners and was ready with cake and candles too!”.

Rosemary’s drive to do her best for Hearing Dogs truly knows no limits. She is also an energetic fundraiser, accomplished speaker and has even been known to help at a Great British Dogs Walk on her own birthday! Nicholas Orpin, Community Fundraising Manager, expands: “Rosemary has a real zest for life and her enthusiasm is completely infectious. She has undertaken countless talks to promote our work to a variety of audiences and of course having Teaka means she knows what she is talking about! Rosemary is really caring, and this was in evidence when she named one of Teaka’s puppies ‘Alan’ after a dear friend passed away”.

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Rosemary’s kind nature is borne out by fellow volunteer Gillian Bannister: “I was lucky enough to meet Rosemary at my first training class with my own dog Tandy at The Grange. After being in her company for just a very short time, I knew that I liked her instantly. Yes, we were both new to volunteering, and yes, we both have similar gorgeous curly brown Poodles which gave us something instantly in common, however, I do remember coming away from that first meeting feeling like I had known her for ages!

It was her sense of humour that I liked from the outset, but it didn't take me long to realise what an amazingly clever, committed and caring lady she really is. She is fantastic company and I feel very lucky that we have become such firm friends thanks to Hearing Dogs”.

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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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