There are more than 300 people involved with volunteer programs at Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services (SECS), helping out with nutrition, medical appointments and companionship, to name a few.
In honor of National Volunteer Month, SCES is highlighting some of our dedicated people who are doing important work in our community.
Phil Lamb has been an SCES volunteer with the SeniorPet program since 2009. We recently caught up with Lamb to say thanks, and to ask a few quick questions…
Q What do you do?
A I deliver pet food, usually to the same 10-12 people, but here and there to someone new. I also pick up people and their pets to take them to the vet. I wait there for them, and take them home. They have no way to get to the vet, and they’re so grateful.
Q Why do you volunteer?
A I thought I should do something specific. Rather than participating on a theoretical level, I thought I’d just get out there and do something. This is a small way of contributing, but you see the immediate benefit to people.
Q How do you connect with the people you serve?
A I like people who like animals. It’s an instant connection. I meet people who make all sorts of sacrifices for their pets. When I drive people and their animals, they tell me their stories, all about their lives. I often open the conversation by saying, “This pet means a lot to you, doesn’t it?” And they’ll say, “Yes, this is my best friend.”
SeniorPet volunteers take older adults and their pets to and from medical appointments, deliver food and supplies, trim cat/dog nails, and provide pet care and dog walking when necessary. Volunteers also care for pets when clients are in the hospital or rehab. For more information about SeniorPet, or any of our other volunteer programs, call 617-628-2601, x3051 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.