Travel sponsorship provided by Dawn. All photos taken by Susan Goldman of Susan Goldman Photography.
The holidays are a time of giving, so I’ve been reflecting on my experience visiting The Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito, California. One of the things that impressed me most about TMMC is the number of manhours their dedicated volunteers put in year after year, all out of love for the animals. During my time at the center, I spent some time shadowing a volunteer in order to better understand they work they do. The volunteer I was assigned to, Ben Calvert, works in the stranding department rescuing animals from the beach. His other duties include animal care, exams, medical procedures, and answering the rescue hotline; Ben’s day job is working as a Veterinary Assistant, so the fact that he is willing to clock out of a job tending to animals and go straight into volunteering that same skill set speaks volumes about the dedication these workers have to what they do.
Ben discussed his volunteer experience with me in our interview – watch it below:
In the video, you’ll also notice some other fun footage from our day at TMMC, where we had an opportunity to get our hands dirty and pitch in with some of the daily volunteer chores:
And to wrap up our trip, we saw first hand why these volunteers work so hard: To watch these rehabilitated animals return to the wild. I had the incredible privilege of assisting with and observing the release of 3 sea lions:
Without a doubt, this trip was one of the highlights of 2014 for me. I encourage you to learn more about this incredible organization and how you can help at MarineMammalCenter.org!