The organization also launches “No PAW Left Behind,” a campaign to fulfill all current client needs.
NEW YORK, NY, October 14, 2021 – Pets Are Wonderful Support (PAWS) NY is thrilled to resume its Housecall Program, a core element of the organization through which volunteers provide on-site home visits to clients all over New York City. Visits generally include dog walking, litter maintenance, medication administration, and provision of food and water—and this support helps PAWS NY’s clients, who are older adults and individuals living with illness or disability, continue to care for their pets.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Housecall Program has been on hiatus since March 17, 2020, and during this time, PAWS NY has connected regularly with clients to provide pet food and supplies, coordinate veterinary care, and provide foster care as needed. Additionally, the organization hosted Virtual Volunteer Orientations starting in May 2020, training more than 600 new volunteers over the past 16 months. With the widespread availability of the COVID vaccine, PAWS NY and its board decided to re-open the Housecall Program in August 2021, with the first round of volunteers visiting clients in their homes in September.
“With new evidence-based safety protocols, and constant monitoring of the public health scenario, PAWS NY is so excited to enter into this phased reopening of our Housecall Program,” said PAWS NY Founder and Executive Director, Rachel Herman. “These past 18 months have been tough for all New Yorkers, and our clients are among the most vulnerable. We’re so happy to reunite with them in-person to provide daily pet care needs for their companions.”
In order to bring the Housecall Program back to its full potential, PAWS NY launched a new campaign called “No PAW Left Behind,” with the goal of filling all open client shifts across the organization. As of October 12, there is a need for 413 weekly shifts to support all PAWS NY clients, and 16% have already been filled by current volunteers.
Over the next few weeks, the organization will continue to connect current, former, and new volunteers to clients and their pets, and PAWS NY will expand its outreach to find new volunteers across New York City by connecting with our current partner organizations, neighborhood mutual aid groups, local colleges and universities, and pet stores, groomers, and veterinarians in the city. With 64 current and 32 waitlist clients in all five boroughs of New York City, the organization is asking everyone to help spread the word.
“We hope to reach full capacity as soon as we can, so we can start to onboard individuals who are on our waitlist and in need of our services,” said Carrie Nydick Finch, Deputy Director of Programs and Strategy for PAWS NY. “We can’t do this without the dedication and support of our amazing volunteers who take time out of their busy schedules to help their neighbors and pets in need. We are in awe of their passion and hope to connect every interested volunteer with a client and pet in the near future.”
Individuals who are interested in becoming a PAWS NY volunteer must first attend a Virtual Volunteer Orientation. Visit www.pawsny.org/volunteer to register for one of the upcoming dates:
- Thursday, October 21 at 4:00pm
- Wednesday, November 3 at 4:00pm
- Thursday, November 18 at 5:00pm
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, PAWS NY expects an increase in prospective clients in need of physical and financial support as they care for their pets. The organization will continue to promote the “No PAW Left Behind” campaign until all current client and pet needs have been met and will work to expand our services to new clients across New York City. Please visit our website for more information about PAWS NY and how you can support our work: www.pawsny.org.
About PAWS NY
The mission of PAWS NY is to help New York City’s most vulnerable residents remain with their pets by delivering critical programs and services through a community of partners and volunteers. Our programs help keep pets in their homes while protecting and promoting the human-animal bond that is so physically and psychologically valuable to our clients. Thus, our motto: helping people by helping pets. To learn more, visit www.pawsny.org.