A member of the CCA team for nearly a year and a half, Brenda Penland is one of our most dedicated volunteers who helps at both the shelter and special events. She recently began supporting the social media team as well.
What led you to CCA and how did you get involved?
I found out about CCA when I looked on Google to find an animal shelter near my house. Of course I knew about Greenville County Animal Care, but I wanted to find a no-kill shelter or rescue to work with, and through CCA, I found both! After my first day of volunteering I felt like I belonged. Like it was family! So of course that encouraged me to come back. And it's a great thing for me and my daughter Brianna to do together! We have been volunteering for almost a year and a half now.
What is your role at CCA and how do you contribute?
I am a very active volunteer, which means that I do a lot of things. I walk dogs and support adoption events on the weekends. During the week, I go and help the caretaker feed the animals, clean, do laundry, and pretty much anything else that's needed. I even cut the grass (I don't even do that home!). I show dogs to potential adopters. When weather permits, I like to take the dogs on day trips with my children to Cedar Falls Park! It makes me so proud to be a CCA Volunteer.
It brings me great joy to tell people about CCA! Just in the brief time I have been a volunteer, we have helped so many cats and dogs. We have found wonderful homes and know they are being loved instead of on the streets suffering! I am super proud to say I work with CCA. It's like I was always meant to be here!
What is a highlight from your time at CCA?
My favorite moment is, honestly, every time an animal gets a furever home! It so great to see adopters be so happy to get to take home one of our fur babies! I love seeing updates of them in their new homes and seeing them so spoiled! It is hard when they go, and I can say you definitely get attached to some. It is heartbreaking to see them go. But you know it’s great for them, and it's all worth it when you get those happy updates.
What would you say to someone considering volunteering with CCA?
I would encourage others to volunteer! I promise that you will get way more out of it then you could even imagine, including unconditional love and endless kisses! You get the joy of knowing you helped, too. Like, when a dog comes in scared and sad. You spend some time working with them and then you get to see their transformation. There's no better feeling! I am very proud to be a volunteer with such a great organization!
I have always wanted to work with animals. When I was a child, I would rescue the neighborhood cats and find homes for their kittens. As a child, I did the most I could for all animals. I used to feed my lunch to a stray dog that hung around my school. I named her Dandelion and made her a collar of dandelions. I am so thankful to CCA for allowing me to be a part of their wonderful mission and basically live out my dream!!