For the abandoned and often forlorn animals that come into care at the Patti Dale Animal Shelter, it's volunteers like Lisa Lambert who help turn around their lives.
"She's just one of those special volunteers who is valuable to an organizations because she's not only bright and friendly, but also highly motivated and she gets it done," said shelter manager Sean Baker.
Lambert was recognized during the Langley Animal Protection Society gala last fall, and was asked to speak about why she volunteers with the organization for coming up to three years.
"I don't know about you, but in my social circles I was the 'crazy' animal lady," Lambert admitted.
"It has been awesome to meet so many other people who are just like me. Crazier even!" she added with a chuckle.
As an inexperienced dog owner who was new to Langley, Lambert was looking to give back to the community and hoping to work with animals.
"I was thrilled when I found LAPS," said the volunteer who started as a kennel buddy and dog walker, and graduated to other things.
Since she started, she's added a few other titles to her "job" portfolio, including bottle feeding kittens, volunteering as receptionist, and helping organize community events. She's even been a foster mom to a kitten.
"I've learned [so much] from volunteering here. I've changed. I have grown to truly appreciate the individual personalities of all animals, and I regularly walk and interact with breeds I was so unsure of before," Lambert said.
"Everyone is always willing to encourage, and teach me, and they show gratitude to all the volunteers. It might have been the animals that brought me to LAPS but it's the people who keep me here," she added.
"Thank you for sharing your passions, experiences, and lives with me. You have made LAPS my home away from home."
LAPS, which is entering its 10th year, currently operates with about 300 volunteers - half of whom are active (seen in the shelter at least once a week or more).
"That's pretty special," Baker said.
He said it's not enough to have bodies on a list. It's critical to have people - like Lambert - who give so much of themselves to help the organization and more importantly, the animals. Contact 604857-5055, or www.lapsbc.ca to learn more or submit a volunteer application form.