Story of a volunteer | Guide Dogs NSW/ACT

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12 June, 2015

Story of a volunteer

Travis with another volunteer, Scott, pictured at the Guide Dogs Centre. Behind them is Gulliver, a model Guide Dog.

The story of a Guide Dogs Volunteer

For more than 7 years Travis Evans has been involved in donating and volunteering with Guide Dogs NSW/ACT. He began as a puppy raiser and over the past few years has contributed countless hours to assisting with fundraising events and the sale of merchandise.

It all began when Travis's grandmother died. He discovered that she had been a regular financial contributor to Guide Dogs NSW/ACT and he wished to continue her legacy. However, he was not in the financial position to continue regular donations so he began to donate his time as a puppy raiser. For 7 years, Travis volunteered as a puppy raiser giving his heart and soul to bringing up puppies that would become an instrumental part in the life of a vision impaired person.

Travis saw puppy raising as an incredible opportunity to volunteer for Guide Dogs NSW/ACT. He has seen the benefits of Guide Dogs first hand and therefore understood just how valuable puppy raisers are for the community. Despite spending one year bonding with each beautiful Labrador puppy, Travis admits "it's not hard to give the puppies up knowing that his time has been fundamental in the development of future Guide Dogs".

Through puppy raising Travis began to uncover further ways to donate more of his time to assisting Guide Dogs NSW/ACT. He started to volunteer by working at fundraising events and selling merchandise.

"Puppy raising always felt like it was me benefiting from this opportunity and as I started to become more and more aware of the work Guide Dogs NSW/ACT do, I knew there was more I could do," said Travis.

Travis began volunteering at various events, selling merchandise and sharing his experiences as a puppy raiser, hoping to raise awareness of the work Guide Dogs NSW/ACT do for people with vision impairment. Through these events he has met many people who share the same vision and hopes to continue to spread the word about this great cause and get more people involved.

In 2014, Travis began working with Guide Dogs NSW/ACT to develop greater access rights of Guide Dogs and their users. The work Travis does with Guide Dogs NSW/ACT will enable vision impaired people to go about their daily lives with more freedom and ease. All his time and effort helps to improve the quality of life to those with vision impairment by providing independence, mobility and raising community awareness of Guide Dogs NSW/ACT.

Volunteers like Travis are an integral part of Guide Dogs NSW/ACT, helping to maintain the services provided free of charge to more than 4000 people who are blind or have vision impairment. Without volunteers Guide Dogs NSW/ACT simply cannot continue.

"Knowing my time and efforts at different events are very much appreciated by all those employees at Guide Dogs NSW/ACT, I feel valued and supported," said Travis.

By 2020, the number of NSW and ACT residents over the age of 40 with a vision condition that cannot be corrected is expected to rise 20%. Therefore Guide Dogs NSW/ACT will increasingly rely on the time and effort of volunteers like Travis Evans to help maintain the invaluable services provided to people with vision impairment.

Find out how to become a Guide Dogs NSW/ACT volunteer