My introduction to the KTTC was through one of the original volunteers, Cathy Dixon. My daughter Samantha Woolley needed to start her volunteer hours in high school. Talking to Cathy at work (TD Canada Trust) she suggested that we join her at Lansdowne Place to help with an outreach day. Seeing as we did not have a clue as to what KTTC did, we joined them for what was supposed to be a few hours but turned to the full day and forever afterwards. We were hooked.
Sam completed her volunteer hours very quickly but stayed on as a volunteer. We did a lot of outreaches together,we cleaned tanks,did feedings, and weighed and measured turtles. When Cathy stepped down as a board member, I stepped up. I was on the board for a few years and also helped care for the turtles.
I had to stop the cleaning and looking after the turtles in 2008 when I was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. My duties became home based… looking after mail and donations. Samantha at that time was helping the kids 4 turtles with keeping turtle signs present in the area. She started an online petition that got a lot of media attention and was supported by David Suzuki. She spoke at city hall and was interviewed by CBC Toronto and CBC Ottawa!
Since my treatment I have not participated in a lot of KTTC activities but I am still a supporter and I help when I am able to. This experience has enriched my life and I have been lucky enough to be able to share it with my daughter.
(note: KTTC has limited capacity to supervise younger volunteers – we are not always able to provide turtle care volunteer experience to volunteers under 18. However, younger volunteers are encouraged to help with our outreach program!)