Instead of spending her day off school Friday lounging around the house texting, playing Call of Duty, or in front of the TV, Alexis Murr of West Dundee enjoyed another day of volunteering at Anderson Animal Shelter in South Elgin.
"I really like being with animals, and I want to be a veterinarian when I grow up," said Murr, 15, who attends Dundee-Crown High School in Carpentersville. Murr said she sees her volunteer time as sort of practice for her future career.
The Carpentersville teen says she often volunteers after school during the week and also on Saturdays.
There are two volunteer programs at Anderson Animal Shelter. The junior volunteer program, which is for kids 13 to 16, primarily work with the cats and help around the shelter says, Holly Alcala, Anderson's director of development. The adult volunteer program also helps with the cats and other shelter needs but works with the dogs as well.
The shelter has between 125 and 150 cats and between 35 and 45 dogs at any given time. "It's essential that volunteers are here," Alcala says. "The volunteers help the animals and prepare them for their forever home."
The shelter typically needs 600-plus volunteers who put in more than 24,000 hours to make the shelter work each year.
The shelter is open 12 to 7 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, and closed Wednesdays.
To learn more about Anderson Animal Shelter, call (847) 697-2880, stop by at 1000 S. La Fox Road, or visit andersonanimalshelter.org.