11 Jun Foster Friday: Meet Darlene C.
As a part of our 10,000 lives saved celebration we will be featuring the stories of some of our fosters, both Northern and Southern, old and new. As a rescue that does not have a shelter facility, fosters are a vital part of our rescue.
Meet Darlene “ChaCha” C., one of our Arkansas foster moms and puppy foster extraordinaire!
What year did you join?
Why did you decide to join Rescue Road (one of LHK9’s southern rescue partners)?
Someone I worked with told me about the Rescue. I was sitting at work one day, looking at the Rescue Road Facebook page and I saw a post where this sweet dog was scheduled to be euthanized – and I was not about to let that happen…….so I stopped what I was doing and immediately submitted a foster application. I was accepted to be a foster mom and I was able to save my very first foster…Renalto!
How many fosters have you had?
Gheez….I’ve lost count. I usually foster an entire litter at once, so do the math!
What do you think has been the biggest change in the rescue since you started?
I can’t really say much about changes. I tend to hang out in the background behind-the-scenes and jump in when I’m needed to foster. That style works best for me.
What is your favorite Last Hope adoption story?
Oh gheez…..where do I start. I would have to say my ‘type’ of adoption story (because we all have many that are tear jerkers) is having a foster that just had the worst start in life, and ends up in a home where they are loved beyond measure. When you see their adoption post on Facebook it just makes it all worth it. One of the LHK9 foster moms, Red D., adopted a sweet foster, now named Maple. I was having a cry moment in my backyard where I was missing her terribly, so I sent Red a message on Facebook. Red offered to Facetime me so I could see and talk to Maple, and we did. That meant the world to me!
What is your favorite foster story?
I foster puppies, okay, need I say more? #puppybreath
What is your favorite part of volunteering with Last Hope / Rescue Road?
I would have to say my favorite part is the pack I am in. They accept me with flaws and all.
What is the most important thing you have learned since you started volunteering?
That I am surrounded by amazing individuals that love pets just as much as I do. If I need help, they are there. Never judgmental, always encouraging. I would not have made it this long in rescue without the individuals that cheer me on when I feel like quitting!
What advice would you give to a new volunteer?
Just jump in with both feet and all four paws. You will make mistakes, you will learn, you will grow. It’s emotional…it always will be. There will be those that come into your home and steal your heart, but know you are part of their journey, not their final destination. They must leave you so you can save more. Just remember to take a break from fostering when you feel you need it. It’s better to take breaks than to walk away for good. Rescue can be ugly, but what you are doing makes a difference. Don’t ever think that it doesn’t.