Kylie Lemin and Oakley the guide dog in training
This National Volunteer Week (15-21 May), the Department of Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania is celebrating its dedicated and skilled volunteers, like Kylie Lemin who cares for guide dogs in addition to her regular day job at Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service (PWS).
Kylie has been a part of the Property Services team at PWS since 2017 and has been a puppy development volunteer at Guide Dogs Tasmania for the past five years.
As a bed and breakfast boarder, Kylie is responsible for providing a loving home and transport to and from ‘school’ while the dogs complete their formal training. This training starts when the dogs are about 18 months old and can take from three to six months to complete.
She drops the dogs off for training in the morning on her way to work, and Guide Dogs Tasmania drops them back to her at NRE Tas around 3.30pm, ready to head home for the evening.
“Apart from the fact that I love dogs, it is great to know that I am a part of raising and training a dog that will go on to make such a difference to someone who is vision impaired,” Kylie said.
“I also enjoy the working with the Guide Dogs Tasmania team and the other volunteers, who do such a great job.”
“It is very rewarding to be able to be a part of something that you are passionate about and knowing that you are playing a small part in a great cause. If you volunteer with an organisation and you believe in the work that they are doing, you definitely feel like you get as much back as what you put in.”