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Dec 31 2018

 

Yucaipa Animal Placement Society (YAPS) is proud to announce the recipient of this year’s Volunteer of the Year award. Each year, this honor is awarded to an outstanding volunteer for their valuable and selfless commitment, dedication, and contribution to the homeless pets at YAPS.

This year’s award was given to Redlands resident, Monica Harris, for generously giving of her time and dedication as the YAPS Volunteer Coordinator, Wags & Walk Coordinator and for being instrumental in the rehabilitation of Malki the once feral Shepherd/Dalmatian.

Monica's dedication to YAPS has helped countless dogs get the socialization they needed to be adoptable. Many dogs come into YAPS feeling scared and alone and some may have been in abusive or neglected situations before coming to the YAPS facility. One of the most important tasks at YAPS is to socialize these pets so that they can be ready for adoption. Monica has done many jobs at the YAPS facility, but perhaps her largest contribution has been to aid these pets on their journey home.

Monica began volunteering with YAPS in August of 2011. She was motivated to volunteer by her love and relationship with her dog Rio. ”It was kind of a pay-it-forward for the love we had for each other. He expanded my heart and enriched my life. I wanted to share that with other dogs,” said Monica Harris.

Monica made it her personal goal to interact with the large shy dogs, dogs that needed experience walking on a leash, and the challenging dogs. She has spent countless hours with many dogs but her biggest reward has come from working with Malki.

Malki, named for the exit off Interstate 10 where she had been roaming, was feral and protective of her 2 pups when she first came to YAPS in 2015. Malki spent well over a year learning to trust. Monica has been part of a team dedicated to Malki’s rehabilitation. Every day she got out for free time following volunteers and staff around the YAPS grounds after closing. During her “free time” Malki would not allow anyone to touch her and the very first time she got close enough to Monica to give her a lick was on July 23, 2016, and the first time Malki allowed Monica to pet her was on March 5, 2017. It has taken patience and consistency but now Malki is completely comfortable with people and ready for adoption.

 “We are truly thankful for our volunteers. Their help is vital to the pets at the YAPS facility and I am inspired by the dedication of our volunteers. Monica has filled an important role here at YAPS and we are fortunate that she is part of our team,” says YAPS executive director, Annette Florez.

Pets Placed in 2017

612

Animals Placed this Year

468

 

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