VOLUNTEER OF THE WEEK: Kate Hanes fosters to save lives

Published 8:00 am Sunday, April 10, 2022

This week’s Vicksburg Post Volunteer of the Week is Kate Hanes, who volunteers at the City of Vicksburg Animal Shelter. The City of Vicksburg Animal Shelter houses unwanted or stray animals while helping them find their forever homes. At the animal shelter, there is also a foster program that allows individuals to provide animals with personal attention and care until the adoption. Hanes and her husband have three “mostly grown” children, four dogs and two cats. She is the office manager for a pallet company. If Hanes ever gets spare time, she enjoys gardening and building things from wood.

“I have loved animals all my life,” Hanes said.

How did you hear about the fostering program with the Animal Shelter?

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I got in touch with Kacie Tingle Lindsey at the Vicksburg Animal Shelter, because I had five abandoned puppies that were about five weeks old. (She) had a rescue, but she needed a foster. She asked if I would be willing to foster the puppies and I accepted. I really didn’t know anything about the fostering program. I was a bit nervous if I could actually care for these five puppies along with my own dogs, but I pulled it off and cared for these puppies until it was time for them to go to their rescue. (Lindsey) was very helpful during this time. She was and still is very easy to work with.  

How long have you been volunteering?

I have been volunteering for the City of Vicksburg Animal Shelter since August of 2020.

What is your favorite memory while fostering?

I have so many great memories working with these animals. I think my favorite is when a momma I was fostering delivered puppies at my house. I was excited to give her and the puppies a safe place but so nervous for them at the same time. I got to watch these puppies grow and become independent until it was time for them to go to a forever home. The puppies have been adopted and it is a wonderful feeling knowing they are in a home and not on the street.

What would you tell someone who is thinking about fostering?

Fostering animals is a commitment that is serious, but very rewarding. By becoming a responsible foster, you can bring trust, hope and love back to an animal’s life. It fills your heart and is very rewarding to know that you helped save lives. It’s easy to get attached but if you are serious about fostering, you have to let go so you can help other animals.

What are your tasks while fostering animals?

I provide structure and care to animals. I take them to the vet, go on walks, play with them, feed and love them as if they were my own. I don’t have to pay for anything unless I want to. Food and supplies are given to me.

What have you learned from volunteering with this organization?

Since I’ve been volunteering for the animal shelter, I have learned how important fostering is. Fostering saves lives. (Lindsey) works hard to place these abandoned animals in a safe loving home. Fostering helps get them there. We need more people to help foster. An animal can’t get pulled by a rescue until there is a foster available. People think they will get stuck with an animal, but it is temporary. I have fostered 21 puppies and 10 dogs since I started.  

If there is a volunteer who should be featured, please submit their name and contact information to volunteer@vicksburgpost.com.