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Pets as Therapy volunteer

“A couple of years ago, I heard about Shooting Star Children’s Hospices through their fundraising events on Facebook and about people fundraising for the charity. As soon as I signed Murphy up as a Pets as Therapy volunteer, I thought that would be the perfect way to help children.

“I bring in Murphy, a Show Cocker Spaniel, to do occasional visits to the hospice and people play and pet him. We have also attended music therapy sessions with children, as well as special occasions like birthdays and open days. We go to create happy memories for the children, and he brings them comfort for a couple of hours.

“Since we started volunteering, we’ve found it really rewarding to help others and to see the joy on people’s faces during difficult circumstances. When we come into Shooting Star, you can see the happiness that the hospice brings to children and when Murphy arrives, he puts a smile on their faces and adds some more happiness into their day.

“Give volunteering a go, it’s not as daunting as it seems. Everyone on the team is really welcoming and it’s genuinely a happy place. Working at a hospice, people automatically think it’s a sad place. Although people are going through really difficult times, everyone does their best to make it a happy place and a nice environment for everyone.”