Thursday, March 19, 2009

A Volunteer With HART

If  you've visited our Huge Semi-Annual Book sale or our mini-sales, you may have had the pleasure of meeting one of our volunteers, Mary Ann. If you came to the Cat's Pajamas Sale last summer, you could not have missed her!  Mary Ann is our resident cheerleader. She loves to chat with people, find out their interests and match them with the perfect book. She always cheerfully pitches in to do whatever needs doing. She regularly comes in and sorts books in our back hallway.

But in addition to volunteering for the Friends, Mary Ann uses many of her same skills with another organization. She is a volunteer for HART, the Homeless Animals Rescue Team, headquartered in Fairfax Station. Her particular passion is taking care of kittens and cats.

Mary Ann started with HART about 3 years ago by helping during adoption day events. Now in retirement, she regularly cares for the kitties at the Sterling PetSmart and fosters when necessary. In addition to her 'permanent' babies, she currently has a foster cat, Brando, who needs a home.

Brando's Story (from Mary Ann): Brando was found wandering the streets of DC. HART was called to rescue him. He was pretty beaten up so we had him vetted and neutered and then 
placed him at PetSmart. It was love at first sight for all all who met him, including me. I found a family to adopt him but two weeks after he went home with them he got very sick.  He spent a few days at the vet but was getting worse daily.  HART intervened and took him to TLC (an emergency hospital) where he was given a transfusion. Many tests were run on him. After a few days, he began to perk up. After 5 days he was diagnosed with a viral infection commonly called hemobarton. It is caused by a flea bite, and would have been a simple fix with antibiotics had the first vet known what to look for. HART called me when he was ready for release and asked if I would take him on as a patient until he gets a clean bill of health. He has now been with us 3 weeks and is doing just great. I'm not sure we'll be able to let him go once the doctor says he's once again adoptable. It's tough fostering because one always falls in love with the 'child'. Brando's story is still unfolding.

Mary Ann adds that the reason she does the work for HART is that it is very satisfying to find loving homes for animals that have been abused, abandoned or left homeless by owners who have passed away. It is also fun getting the feedback from owners who relate how much they are enjoying their new cat. Helping creatures that can't help themselves is very rewarding.
HART is having their major annual fundraiser on April 18. The Annual Art and Silent Auction raises funds to help animals like Brando.

The Spring Semi-Annual Book Sale begins April 24 with Friends Night. Membership is required that night only, but you may purchase one at the door. Still, wouldn't it be better to beat the rush and take care of this now? Click the sidebar for membership and it will take you through the form and payment is now possible on-line! Of course, if you prefer you can still mail it to us. And for all you animal lovers, we usually have many books that are about animals, some 'by' animals, and some 'enjoyed' by animals. Mary Ann finishes with this comment, "My cats love my books almost as much as I do. They even try to turn the pages for me! Second only to my family, spending time reading a book with my cat sharing my space is one of my greatest pleasures." And we know that she has a wonderful, beautiful granddaughter included in her count of GREATEST pleasures as well!

Spring Semi-Annual Book Sale
Friends Night April 24
Open to General Public: Friday, April 25, 10-5, 
Saturday April 26, 10-4:30, Sunday April 27, 12-3:30.



Mary Beth said...

What a great article about dear Mary Ann...she is an incredible person! Those special animals are lucky to have her!

Anonymous said...

We love Mary Ann too and think she is VERY special! Mitch & Susan

Anonymous said...

Mary Ann is truly special. We love her so much, too!
David, Cindy and Carly

Anonymous said...

Mary Ann is real special, and we love her so much, too. David, Cindy and Carly

Anonymous said...

I had the pleasure of working with Mary Ann before her retirement and we all miss her kind spirit and warm smile. I still have the wooden siamese cat on my desk that she gave me and it reminds me of her every day-she is an inspirational person. The picture of your smile here has made my week! Keep up the good work Mary Ann.

Anonymous said...

Mary Ann is a warm, caring, and giving person that I'm happy to have called a friend for over 40 years. Both organizations are lucky to have her support. Eileen