Volunteer of the Month

April 2018 ~ Jackie McClellan

Congratulations to Jackie McClellan on being chosen as ALIVE Rescue’s April Volunteer of the Month! We truly appreciate everything Jackie does for ALIVE Rescue. Between spreading the word about ALIVE Rescue, sending potential adopters our way, volunteering on the grant writing team, building our foundations database, creating our first annual report, and adopting a cute little kitty from us, we don’t know what we would do without her. Thanks for all your hard work and dedication, Jackie!

A note from Jackie: Volunteering at ALIVE Rescue has really made me feel like I’m making a difference. Although I constantly wish I could do more, not just locally but worldwide to help animals, ALIVE is helping me achieve my personal goal of making a difference for animals in need. Volunteering is my chance to escape my day-to-day life and do something I am truly passionate about. Volunteering at ALIVE has also opened my eyes to how many other people care. I constantly feel like there are so many people out there that are blind to animal cruelty and animal welfare— either they’re blind to it or just don’t care. When I started going to events for ALIVE Rescue and interacting with other employees and volunteers, I realized that I finally found a group of people that actually do care. Lastly, ALIVE has helped me in my transition to a vegan diet. I love that we have vegan options at our events. In all, volunteering means a lot to me, and I’m glad that I get the opportunity to volunteer with such amazing and inspirational people that work so hard to make a difference.


March 2018 ~ Sonya Arroyave

I found ALIVE after losing my boxer, Zion. The rescue gave me new purpose. Their compassion for animals and humans is beyond anything I imagined. At first I didn’t know if I had the courage to volunteer at a rescue but universal forces led me to ALIVE. My heart is with the animals and I don’t know any other place where I feel more alive and useful. The rescue does more for me than I could ever do for them. I owe my sanity to the animals there. And a bonus to the rescue, is all the exceptional humans I’ve met. I’m lucky to have met them. I’m a better person because of ALIVE RESCUE.






February 2018 ~ Dori Goldman

Congratulations to Dori Goldman on being named our February Volunteer of the Month! What would we do without Dori?  Between helping at the barn, taking laundry home, providing transport, and just being awesome, we consider ourselves so lucky to have her on the team.  Thank you, Dori, for being an important member of the ALIVE Rescue family!

A note from Dori: “For 8 or so months my dog William has suspected I’ve been cheating on him. When I get home from the Little Barn, he sniffs me, my coat, my shoes, etc. He knows something has been up and now the cat is literally out of the bag.

Volunteering for ALIVE has been one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I have always been extremely passionate about animal welfare and the treatment of animals. I have contributed money over the years to various animal rescues and organizations but when I moved into the Avondale neighborhood a year or so ago I promised myself I would not only put my money where my mouth is, but also start giving of my time. It’s been extremely rewarding, fun, tiring, tough, enjoyable and life-changing. Spending time with Root Beer, Johnny Casino, Bear, Camaro, Andrew, Norah, Koval, etc., etc., etc. has been some of my best minutes and hours. Snuggling, feeding, walking, holding, training, cleaning, driving, or whatever it may be is helping. I have also enjoyed getting to know the other volunteers. I feel like I have a whole new social circle. I am honored to be a part of like-minded individuals that truly have the best interest of these deserving animals. Thank you, ALIVE! I look forward to many more months and hopefully years being a part of your amazing organization.”

 January 2018 ~ Patty Pater

Congratulations to Patty Pater on being selected as our first Volunteer of the Month for 2018! Patty always shows up to every shift ready to do whatever is asked of her, and she always has the best attitude that brightens everyone’s day.  Honestly, the kitchen has never looked cleaner and we get so much more laundry done with Patty at the Little Barn!!  Plus she is so loving to every animal, especially Root Beer who is so excited to see her every time Patty is there!!!! We are so grateful for Patty’s help and we are lucky to have her as a volunteer.

A note from Patty: “I am shocked and thrilled that I was chosen volunteer of the Month. There are so many people who work very hard to save, love, train, treat, heal, foster, adopt and financially support the precious animals who are members of the ALIVE family. I am just the “laundry queen”. I volunteer with other organizations, but none compare to ALIVE rescue. The volunteers give unconditional love and support not only to our family of pets, but to each other. There is no bickering, office politics or complaining, just love for our furry friends. In return, we get our faces sloppily licked, peed on, snuggled, and most importantly loved unconditionally. I am the happiest when I am at the Little Barn. These are things that money just can not buy! Because of this, I am truly grateful to be a team member of ALIVE rescue.”

 December 2017 ~ Rebecca Warren

Congratulations to Rebecca Warren, our December Volunteer of the Month! Although Rebecca is a newbie at the Barn, she has made a big impression! She is always jumping in to help where needed and all the Barn leaders speak so highly of Rebecca! Thank you for being a part of ALIVE Rescue!

About volunteering, Rebecca says: “I’m so grateful to ALIVE for everything they do. It’s unbelievably rewarding to work for an organization that cares so deeply about animals in need. I’m humbled by the fact that I was chosen by a group of individuals that inspire me daily. I’ve learned that it takes a village and I am thankful to be a part of such a dedicated, passionate, and fun team!”








November 2017 ~ Caragh Reilly

Congratulations to Caragh Reilly on being chosen as ALIVE Rescue‘s November Volunteer of the Month. Her help at the Barn and with the CRISP program is invaluable – and we know the pups love their massages. We’re also grateful for Caragh’s help with the administrative side of things! Thank you, Caragh!

About volunteering, Caragh says: “Thank you, ALIVE Rescue, for all that you do! It is so rewarding to see animals blossom that were once so much in need, either physically or emotionally, and I’m grateful to be a part of that journey. And while all the dog kisses and cat snuggles make every visit to The Little Barn fun, I am also so lucky to have met the amazing group of people that make up the ALIVE Rescue family and inspire me daily with their endless compassion and commitment.”


October 2017 ~ Leah Bence

Congratulations to Leah Bence on being chosen as the October Volunteer of the Month! We are so lucky to have Leah as part of the ALIVE Rescue team. She is always so positive in everything she does and always steps up when help is needed. Leah has been a rock star Barn Leader who handles her shifts with grace. She always goes above and beyond, and current Little Barn resident Root Beer has been so lucky to have Leah over the last month. Congrats!

A note from Leah: “I’d like to thank the incredible ALIVE Rescue team for always giving the most vulnerable animals a second chance. Seeing their progress from week to week as they learn to love and trust the volunteers makes it all worth it and I’m grateful to be a part of such a dedicated crew!





 September 2017 ~ Susan Fritz

Congratulations to Susan Fritz on being chosen as ALIVE Rescue’s September Volunteer of the Month. She’s taken the lead on the grant writing team and has stepped up to assist with many of our recent parvo cases! Thank you so much for your commitment, Susan!

About volunteering, Susan says: “Animal rescue is hard work and it takes a village. I love seeing animals heal physically and emotionally. Being able to help a sick dog recover or a scared animal come out of their shell has been more rewarding then I ever thought. I love what ALIVE Rescue does and am glad to be a part of the team!





 August 2017 ~ Megan Powers

Congratulations to Megan Powers, our August Volunteer of the Month! We are so grateful for the time she puts in! The foster team is lucky to have her, and the initiative she takes at the Little Barn is so appreciated! Megan always has a smile on her face and helps wherever she is needed!

A Note From Megan: “I am immensely grateful to have been chosen for this honor by a group of individuals that I so deeply admire. Thank you so very much. Truth be told, I was always afraid that I wouldn’t be able to handle animal rescue and advocacy prior to becoming a volunteer, but I knew I owed it to myself and the animals of Chicago to give it a try. My time with ALIVE Rescue has taught me how much stronger one can become when working toward a greater good, especially when surrounded by an incredible group of volunteers, foster families, and donors. I love that we get to experience the good, the bad, and the smelly together with an unspoken understanding that we’re the lucky ones for being given the opportunity to see the world through the eyes of the furry lives we care for and love so deeply during their time at The Little Barn and beyond.”




July 2017 ~ Karen Smilie

Congratulations on being chosen as ALIVE Rescue’s July Volunteer of the Month!  We have truly enjoyed the time you have spent helping the team and will miss you when you move tomorrow!  Thank you for taking pups on field trips, donating to our Art Dart, transporting a baby duck for me, showering all the animals at the barn with love, and spreading the word about ALIVE.  We are so grateful you were a part of the family, even for a short time.  

A note from Karen: “Thank you so much!   The pleasure was all mine. I truly loved the time I spent there and will miss everyone-dogs and people alike!  I hope I can find something similar in Michigan. Keep me in mind when you have auctions or events–I’m happy to donate.”






June 2017 ~ Mackenzie Gorham

Congratulations to Mackenzie Gorham on being chosen as June’s Volunteer of the Month at ALIVE! We are so appreciative of everything Mackenzie does! She is a total asset to ALIVE’s fundraising committee and has gone above and beyond to make Alive and Running so successful. We truly appreciate all her help, time and dedication. It’s volunteers like Mackenzie who make ALIVE what we are and we are so happy to have her as part of ALIVE!

A note from Mackenzie: “I could go on and on about how wonderful ALIVE is. I am so thankful to be a part of such an important and impactful rescue – playing with adorable pups and planning the best events in Chicago.” 





May  2017 ~ Hannah Nicolet

Congratulations to Hannah Nicolet on being chosen as ALIVE Rescue’s May Volunteer of the Month!  Where do we even begin? Hannah has truly shined as an ALIVE Rescue volunteer and has helped us grow tremendously. Her leadership at The Little Barn, her dedication on the social media team, and her passion to get the Alive and Running team to the next level have not gone unnoticed. We are so grateful for all the time and love Hannah puts into ALIVE as well as all those little dog costume shopping spree’s she goes on because she “had to.” Thank you, Hannah, for being a part of the team and our little family. It wouldn’t be the same without you!