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Volunteer Week 2020 Messages from Managers and Volunteers

Thank You from Managers


I cannot possibly articulate in words what our volunteers mean to the store and me.  We could not do what we do without your support and love. I could not manage the Stores so successfully without you. We could not be of service to RAPS without you.  We have created a community and family at those thrift stores.  For that I am eternally grateful. 

WE MISS YOU‼‼🐕😻🐕😻  

Please come back when it’s safe ❤❤

– Karen Kamachi, Manager, RAPS Thrift Stores


“When you volunteer you are not paid in recognition, you are paid in love.”

Never is that more obvious than at the Cat Sanctuary. We will always be grateful for having compassionate, caring volunteers like you! Thank you so much for your enthusiasm and genuine dedication to assisting us in caring for these deserving souls. Believe us, as we let you know that we feel very blessed to have you. We truly couldn’t do this without you.
Thank you.

– Lisa Parker, Manager, RAPS Cat Sanctuary


Thanks for being so caring,

Thanks for being so loving,

Thanks for being so helpful,

Thanks for being so thoughtful,

Thanks for being so selfless,

Thanks for volunteering,

Your actions are priceless!

From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for all that you do!! 

We are truly so grateful for all the hard work and dedication given by all of our RAPS volunteers. RAPS would not be the same without you and your support.

We, the staff and animals, all miss you dearly and cannot wait until it is safe for you to return!

– Shena Novotny, Manager, RAPS Animal Shelter


We cannot express in words what our volunteers mean to RAPS. We could not do what we do without your passionate dedication and tireless support. We truly wish to thank you for helping us enrich the lives of the many animals entrusted to our care. We are lucky to have had your help this past year and hope that we will see all of you very soon. RAPS misses you! 

Stay safe, and all the best to your families.

– ❤ Marian Lucas Lane, Senior Manager, Operations


RAPS is blessed with the kindest, most giving, selfless, animal-loving volunteers. It is an honour and a pleasure to know and interact with you. During this time of social distancing, please know you are deeply missed by the RAPS’ staff and fellow volunteers alike. We are counting the days until we can welcome you back when it is safe to do so! Please stay healthy & well and take good care of yourselves and your families.

– Mandy Lichtmann, Volunteer & Outreach Coordinator


Messages from Volunteers

I volunteer at RAPS for almost three years now, because I want to give back and I have the time and ability to do so. I really enjoy the people who volunteer there, the staff and the customers.  We have a good time on our shift and know it is all for a great cause.  I miss everyone.

– Marie, RAPS Thrift Store


Cats! I love animals and being able to help take care of them is a privilege that I take very seriously. The people at RAPS are also super dedicated and just as friendly!

– Aldo, six-year-Volunteer, RAPS Animal Shelter & Special Events


I’ve been a volunteer at the Cat Sanctuary for only two months, but I’m really grateful for it! If there is one thing to say about it, it’s that going to the Sanctuary, even just once a week, and spending time with the amazing cats there really helps me go through difficult times. This place is a sanctuary for me! Thank you so much for your great work.”

– Raphaëlle, RAPS Cat Sanctuary


I miss playing fetch with Rambo.

– Victor, RAPS Animal Shelter


I have been volunteering at RAPS since September 2019. I choose to volunteer at RAPS because I want to do my part in improving the welfare of animals. My favorite memory from volunteering at the RAPS Thrift Store is giving Murphy some belly rubs every time I go, making new friends with the other volunteers and looking at the interesting things that people have donated.

– Wendy, Student Volunteer at RAPS Thrift Store


I remember first joining to complete my 30 hours of volunteer service so I can graduate. I thought that as soon as I was done, I would get out of there, but I didn’t. I had met so many amazing staff and volunteers and the energy they always brought to the table always made my Saturdays. I have never seen a group of people that were more selfless and enthusiastic as they were… I wasn’t about to leave that behind.

– Thamali, Student Volunteer, RAPS Animal Hospital Thrift Store


My favorite memories from volunteering are getting to know the amazing staff and talking to them each time I volunteer, and making new friends :). The people I’ve met have made volunteering so much more fun than it already is!

– Francesca, Student Volunteer, RAPS Thrift Store      


I have been a volunteer at RAPS for almost two years! I’m there every Sunday and it’s my favourite day of the week. I love being a volunteer because I am a part of these cats’ wonderful lives. They might not have had a chance at this wonderful life if RAPS didn’t exist. I’m proud to tell people I volunteer here.”

– Caren, RAPS Cat Sanctuary


I have been volunteering at RAPS for 13 years and I enjoy it very much and love working with the cats.

– Vanessa, RAPS Animal Shelter


I volunteer because the smiles you see from customers are priceless compared to anything else.

–Sherry, RAPS Thrift Store


I love volunteering because I love cats. I’ve been at the Sanctuary since the spring of 2019. As humans are ultimately responsible for the plight of animals, I need to do my human responsibility to help them. I’m especially fond of the “troubled” cats like Smokey. 

She helps me understand that cats are all individuals and deserve individual understanding. My favourite moment with her was when she finally took a treat from my hand without threatening me first. I knew I had finally earned her respect.

– Daphne, RAPS Cat Sanctuary


I volunteer at RAPS in order to make the community a better place for animals and humans alike. I consider myself an animal lover and I am in awe of everything this organization does. My time at RAPS has opened my eyes to the kindness of the people in Richmond. To have the chance to spend a few hours of my time helping out is a privilege. Volunteering has taught me important life skills such as how to communicate effectively, manage tasks and to take initiative in my own life. If you are interested in volunteering, I would whole-heartily encourage you to do so!

– Anna, Student Volunteer, RAPS Thrift Store


Volunteering at RAPS is an exceptionally rewarding experience!  Helping animals is incredibly fulfilling and the time I spend at the shelter is always a highlight of my week. The shelter staff care for the animals with such thoughtfulness and compassion and make it a great place for the animals and volunteers!

– Nash, RAPS Animal Shelter


I have only been a RAPS volunteer for a about two months. The staff and volunteers show such love and dedication for these fuzzy little souls, and it fills mine. I hope these deserving cats all find the home (or comfy bed at the Sanctuary) they deserve. I volunteer in memory of my sweet cat Addy who we adopted from RAPS but I get so much more back. I love all the purrs!

– Carole, RAPS Animal Shelter & RAPS Cat Sanctuary 


I had only been volunteering in the Small Animal room (bunnies, guinea pigs, birds, oh my!) since the end of January, then COVID hit, restrictions came into place and sadly it’s been a while since I’ve been with the sweet animals that I’ve come to love in such a short time. I had thought about volunteering for RAPS for quite some time and am so very happy that an opportunity became available to pitch in and help with the animals. The staff and volunteers at RAPS are absolutely amazing, all giving such wonderful loving care to all the animals who have come into the facility. Thank you so very much to all of you, for all that you do and continue to do for the animals! Hope to see you all soon!

– Deborah, RAPS Animal Shelter


I am a member of the Pathways Clubhouse in Richmond. They do a lot for people like me to get them back in the community. They used to have a thrift store when they were at their old place, now they are in an office on Granville St. and Number 3. I found volunteering there very rewarding as I could meet people and interact with them. A couple of years ago, someone told me about the thrift store at RAPS. Eager to get out of my house I rushed there and filled out an application form and before I could sign my name I was put to work. Lucky me! I enjoy volunteering at RAPS because of giving me something to do. I was giving something back to the community. I liked it so much that I started going in every day. It was like a place I felt wanted.

Thank you.

– Ron, RAPS Animal Hospital Thrift Store


Asked what he loves most about volunteering, Jim says: “Sometimes you get to bring your work home!” Jim is a long-term RAPS Animal Shelter weekly volunteer who also helps in many other ways. Neville was brought into the Shelter as an emaciated senior stray, with a badly infected wound on his side. After sweet Neville’s wound was treated and healed, Jim & his wife welcomed him into their home to live out his retirement. Neville sadly passed away from natural causes just shy of a year in his loving foster home & most certainly had the best golden year of his life. Jim, thank you for all you do!

– Jim, RAPS Animal Shelter


I can’t think of a better way to spend my Sundays than helping these wonderful and loving cats who have graciously welcomed me into their home!

– Erica, RAPS Cat Sanctuary


It’s been our passion to work with furry friends, especially dogs. However, now we find cats are quite fun to work with! During our volunteer duty, we came across and fell in love with a chubby big boy and we decided to adopt him! Now he is the king of the family that everybody loves. It’s been a pleasure working at RAPS as a volunteer. The staff there are very knowledgeable and friendly to both people and animals.

– May and Gladys, RAPS Animal Shelter


I’ve been volunteering for about four months, and traveling two hours every Thursday morning for work is totally worth it – yay! Making sure the animals are all in good condition and feeling comfortable in a clean environment is the biggest energy booster that helps me survive another week in school! I sincerely appreciate the amount of care that The Shelter provides for the animals and will encourage more people to join in on the team and help these cuties find their way to a loving home!!

– Catelyne, RAPS Animal Shelter


I’ve always appreciated how the sanctuary puts the cats first. Feral, moody cats or those whose only issue is a lack of litter box etiquette are all loved and given a place to call home. 

In that picture, Tibet spent close to 20 minutes circling around in my arms rubbing his face all over and purring in that distinct way of his.

– Chris, RAPS Cat Sanctuary


My husband and I have been volunteer dog walkers with RAPS since October 2019.  We are unable to have a dog of our own due to our crazy schedules so it’s a fantastic opportunity to get to spend some time with dogs and get them out for additional exercise and stimulation.  It melts your heart when they get to know you and are excited to see you.  It’s really the highlight of our week. Justin is pictured here with Hola (now adopted). She was more of a half walk / half carry kind of girl!

– Natalie & Justin, RAPS Animal Shelter


I’ve been volunteering in the shelter cat room for over three years and at Thrift Store #2 since it opened.  The highlight of my time at the shelter was the day I adopted Kasha (not her original name). I like to think she adopted me as she wrapped herself around my neck when I first met her. I can’t wait to continue volunteering at RAPS.  It is such a fulfilling experience and I miss seeing everyone.

– Margaret, RAPS Animal Shelter and RAPS Animal Hospital Thrift Store


I love my dog walking days at the RAPS shelter.  I have been doing it for 4.5 years…ever since I retired from my healthcare job.  It’s such a joy to spend time with such a wide assortment of dogs…big or small.  I am so grateful to be able to help out in some small way and I ended up adopting my little hooligan Harry.  He’s a real handful, but we love him.

– Debra, RAPS Animal Shelter